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Inauguration Part I - ww_renaissance
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Inauguration Part I
So after the Midwest ennui of The Long Goodbye, we're back to the ensemble, witty banter, heavy politics and effervescent typicality of classic West Wing. This episode is a particularly stunning example of excellent West Wing.





Sorkin is doing his thang where he shows a scene close to or at the climax of the story in the teaser and then goes back and shows the scenes leading up to that point in the story. It's tremendously effective.

Jed and a bunch of staffers plus CJ are walking through elegant rooms. It turns out that they're walking to the point where Jed is sworn in for his second term.

BARTLET
Why are they talking to me about the order of the balls?

C.J.
Political Affairs thinks it's important.

LARRY
They'd like you to start with the Plain States, followed by the Rust Belt Ball, then the one from the Pacific Northwest.

ED
It shows you're President of the whole country.

C.J.
Aren't we about to demonstrate that pretty clearly right now?

ED
He could start with the New Hampshire ball.

LARRY
Make it clear he knows where he came from.

C.J.
The President has a driver's license.

The other staffers are dismissed so it's time for CJ and Jed to get sentimental.



BARTLET
You read it?

C.J.
Every draft all night long.

BARTLET
You haven't weighed in.

C.J. leans over and kisses him on the cheek.

C.J.
I just did. Anything else, sir?

Just in case this scene wasn't cute enough, CJ has a parting shot.

C.J.
Eat 'em up, Chief.

BARTLET
Thank you, Claudia.



It turns out that Josh is there too!

BARTLET
I have a problem.

JOSH
Well, you're about to propose the most massive shift in foreign policy since the Marshall Plan, and it's going to be wildly unpopular.

Although if we judge foreign policy just by the texts of of the promise, the Bush Doctrine IMO is a bigger deal than the Bartlet Doctrine. Although the point is moot because George W. Bush doesn't exist in Bartlet!University. Lucky fictional ducks.

BARTLET
All right, two problems.

JOSH
Yes, sir.

BARTLET
I don't have a bible.

JOSH
What do you mean?

BARTLET
I kept changing my mind all week on which bible I wanted to use, and then I finally settled on the George Washington Bible but we ran into a problem with the New York Freemasons, which we don't have time to get into.

JOSH
The Freemasons?

BARTLET
Yeah. Charlie's out hunting one down, but he's not back yet.

JOSH
You know, there's nothing that says you have to be sworn in on a bible.

BARTLET
Is that true?

JOSH
You can be sworn in on a Sports Illustrated swimsuit Issue.

BARTLET
You think that's a good idea?

I love the old school, disappointed dad way that Martin Sheen delivered that line.

JOSH
No.

Josh pledges his support to Jed in a a nice moment and Jed beats haste to talk to more people about his Bible. In a surprise to no one, Jed spends a lot of time gabbing about his bible. Someone has to fulfill the Quirky Quota for this episode! Leo comes by and compliments Josh on his suit. I love Clothes Horse!Leo.



JOSH
Hey, Leo, can you tell me anything about what happened to Jack Reese?

LEO
The President asked him to get a Forced Depletion Report under the radar.

JOSH
On Kundu?

LEO
Yeah.

JOSH
And someone found out.

LEO
Hutchinson. It was my fault. Which doesn't excuse...

JOSH
I don't excuse it.

LEO
I don't know how she could do that, I really don't. I mean I don't want to talk about it now, but do you suppose her timing could have been any worse?

JOSH
I told her all that in no uncertain terms.

LEO
I'll be telling it to her, too.

JOSH
She knows.

LEO
Good.

Josh's loyalty to Donna is stunning. I may have issues with him being dismissive or inappropriate with her on a day-to-day basis but his loyalty to her when the chips are down is unimpeachable.



Senators want a piece of the action that is Leo McGarry.

BECKWITH
I know you've been under ground all night but, uh... there's a rumor that the President's contemplating a new doctrine for the use of force.

LEO
The President's nothing if not contemplative, Senator. The man makes the Prince of Denmark seem reactionary.

BECKWITH
No, I mean that he's going to talk about it right now.

LEO
He's the Commander-in-Chief. He's going to reserve the right to, you know, command.

The next Senator:

O'DONELL
The Hill's going to go crazy.

LEO
For a refreshing change of pace.

O'DONELL
I've assured a dozen members that the White House wouldn't act without us.

LEO
Then you're all set. There's cheese over there.

Leo is such a bad-ass. Only John Spencer can make, "There's cheese over there" sound cunningly manipulative and always in control.

Since we're on the verge of a big moment and Sorkin prioritizes relationships on this show correctly, we have a Jed/Leo moment.



LEO
You know, I saw the dress that Abbey's wearing tonight.

BARTLET
Yeah, I may need to get a room.

As I said before, Jed/Leo/Abbey is the most subversive love triangle in the history of television. Mostly it's all about crushing on Jed- Abbey in love with Jed, Leo in love with Jed, Jed in love with Jed. It's always refreshing to see the sub-textual attraction between Leo and Abbey.

BARTLET
No kidding. In the last two minutes, three people have reminded me what Jefferson said in his Inaugural.

LEO
"Peace, commerce, honest frienship with all nations and entangling alliances with none."

BARTLET
The problem is that when he said it, your best chance of getting entangled with an ally was by rowboat.

Someone needs to read his history. The reason that Jefferson said that is because the Britain and France were trying to draw the US into their war and despite the young America's best efforts, we were still drawn into the War of 1812 in a few years after Jefferson's inaugural address.



Charlie has the special bible.

BARTLET
Donnie's Motel?

CHARLIE
Yes, sir.

BARTLET
They didn't have one in the House Library?

CHARLIE
This is the one from the House Library.

The unseen Chief Justice comes up with a picture-perfect line to smash to main-credits.

CHIEF JUSTICE
Mr. President.

BARTLET
Mr. Chief Justice.

CREDITS



It's six days before the inauguration. In a delightful call-back to What Kind of Day Has It Been, CJ is being very anal about preparing Jed for his inaugural.

C.J.
That's when the Chief Justice will ask you to raise your right hand and place your left hand on the Bible.

BARTLET
What do I do then?

C.J.
You raise your right hand and put your left hand on the Bible.

BARTLET
And will there be someone who'll tell me when it's time to do that?

C.J.
You mock me?

Jed asks Toby to pull up the inaugural address on the prompter but Toby figures that the Bible issues won't fulfill the Quirky Quota for the episode so he creepily laughs about the Chief Justice's opinion.



The Chief Justice-- wrote a dissenting opinion in Sea Northern v. Arizona, saying
that an association between asbestos and a higher risk of cancer in later life was
insufficient to merit relief.

BARTLET
So what?

TOBY
He... [chuckles] I don't know how to say this. He wrote it in meter.

BARTLET
A meter?

TOBY
He wrote a dissenting opinion in what I am almost certain is trochaic tetrameter. Will?

WILL
It is.

BARTLET
What are you talking about?

TOBY
He starts in the fourth graph.

BARTLET
"Fear of cancer from asbestos, fuzzy science manifestos."

TOBY
A guy just faxed this to Will.

BARTLET
Which one's Will?

Aw, Jed still has trouble learning names. Another subtle and well-done callback in this scene.

TOBY
It's a loud syllable followed by a soft syllable, which is a trochaic foot, then there's four per comma, which is tetrameter.

C.J.
You think he's trying to tell us something through code?

Jed reads the foreign policy from the teleprompter.



BARTLET
"America cannot be the world's policeman. America cannot enforce its own values, its own standards across the world. Yet when it's in our clear an vital interests..." We're being candid at least.

TOBY
This is State Department language.

Toby tells Will to meet with the State Department's Communications Director on the language.

WILL
Isn't he going to be insulted that he's meeting with someoone he's never heard of, who isn't a White House staffer?

TOBY
I would really think so.

The meeting ends and Leo and Jed walk through the hallways.



BARTLET
The Chief Justice wrote a poem.

LEO
He's trying to get the Court to adopt powdered wigs.

BARTLET
What do you mean?

LEO
Exactly what I said.

BARTLET
Powdered wigs?

LEO
Like the British magistrates. I'm telling you, I think there might be a problem.

BARTLET
You think he stayed too long at the fair?

LEO
He's not a young man.

BARTLET
Neither am I.

LEO
This is what I'm talking about.

A thirty second conversation. Like, six uproariously hilarious lines. I suppose with Jed's and Leo's heavy-duty jobs, they need to be efficiently awesome.

Jed frets about the foreign policy but there's substantive foreign policy issues on the horizon.

BARTLET
I got a short security cable this morning about civil unrest in the Republic of
Equatorial Khundu, and I had to reach for an atlas.

LEO
Near the Ivory Coast.

BARTLET
I know that now.

LEO
The government forces run by the Arkutu have apparently killed as many as 200 Induye on the streets of Bitanga, which is the capitol.

BARTLET
Two warring tribes?

LEO
Well, no, one tribes warring, and the other one's getting killed. But the point is we got about 500 American missionaries.

BARTLET
They're being evacuated?

LEO
Yes, sir.

Very nicely set up that Leo reports this incident as being really important because of the Americans that could get caught in the crossfire and Bartlet just accepts Leo's premise. This will challenged but I'm sure that many viewers just accepted this attitude as "The Way Things Work" when they heard it for the first time; I certainly did. Sorkin is challenging the way that people think of genocide in Africa along with his characters.



Moving from genocide, Charlie has earth-shatteringly disappointing news.

CHARLIE
Mr. Hollowman says if you want to use the Goerge Washington Bible, they need some time to get it here.

BARTLET
From where?

CHARLIE
The Freemason's have the Washington Bible.

Anyway, that's moot because Jed, along with Constitutions, carving knives and who knows what else, has his own bible of White New England heritage.

BARTLET
I'm going to be using the Bartlet Bible. That's at the New Hampshire Historical Society.

Will comes in.



WILL
Sir, just to be clear... You're hoping that there can be a broader definition of
"vital interests."

BARTLET
Hoping beyond hope.

WILL
Thank you, sir.

Will starts to walk out, but when he gets to the door, he turns around.

WILL
There's a... partnership, sir, that can develop between someone and his speechwriter. It happens over time. You get to know just where he likes his commas and why he says self-government instead of governement. Why he doesn't like the word "implement" but does like the word "obfuscate". Like jazz musicians...

BARTLET
I can't remember your name, but are you asking me out on a date?

WILL
No, sir. It happens over time.

On that note, Will asks Charlie for copies of every public address that Jed has ever made so he can divine Jed's speaking style because Jed is being rather intimidating with his presidential power and inability to remember Will's name and snarky "Are you asking me out on a date?" remarks.



Donna, hell-bent to prove that the good sense and sensitivity that she exhibited in Guns, Not Butter was just a weird day for her, comes to irritate Josh and me by bragging about Jack Reese's soldierly manliness.

DONNA
You know what Jack will be wearing? A saber.

JOSH
God, Donna, please tell me that's not going to be the only thing he's wearing.

DONNA
No, he'll be wearing his dress blues. Warfare pin, Submarine Officer pin, two commendation medals, meritorious unit, Purple Heart, Bronze Cross and a saber.

JOSH
I'll be wearing a tuxedo from Gary's.

According to Donna, people are calling from the State Department all flummoxed over why Will is meeting with the State Department's Communications Director. Josh tells Donna to give them a non-answer.

DONNA
13 buttons on the trousers.

JOSH
I don't want to know how you know that.



CARDINAL PATRICK
Heavenly Father, assist with your spirit of counsel and fortitude the President of the Untied states, that his administration may be conducted in righteousness, and be eminently useful to your people over whom he presides. And we ask this morning for the safe evacuation of the 500 American missionaries and their children in the Republic of Equatorial Khundu and for the people of Khundu, where horrible violence has broken out. We pray to you, who are Lord our God, forever and ever. Amen.

A little Catholic guilt, no? More coming.

ARCHBISHOP ZAKE KINTAKA
Patrick, you may pray all you wish, but thousands upon thousands African children will die unnless the U.S. intervenes. Tens of thousand of Khundunese children and their parents slaughtered.

PATRICK
Well, I don't control the armed forces, Zake.

BARTLET
No, he was talking to me, your Eminence. Your Excellency, I got a very sketchy intelligence report on the violence in the capitol about an hour ago.

ZAKE
The violence isn't limited to Bitanga, sir. It's spread to the countryside.

BARTLET
I didn't know that.

ZAKE
May I ask you something, sir, with all due respect, please?

BARTLET
Yes.

ZAKE
If mass genocide had broken out in a small European country, would your intelligence briefing this morning have been quite so sketchy?

BARTLET
No.

ZAKE
I join my colleagues in their prayers for the safe evacuation of the Americans.

It's the first shot in guilting Jed to get him to stop the genocide. A pretty effective first shot.

BONNIE
Okay, Will, you ready? This is Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs, Bryce Lilly.

Devika Parikh plays Bonnie. I often enjoy her in this role but the condescending, "employee reporting to a new and likely undeserving boss" delivery here was especially memorable. Speaking of acting, Granville Van Dusen who plays Bryce Lilly is a hoot and half. His deep, faux intellectual voice is great. This scene is one of my favorite of the episodes. I had to transcribe the entire scene instead of omitting and summarizing lines. It's all really funny or very important and usually both.



WILL
You worked for both parties.

BRYCE
You know the difference? Republicans want a huge military but they don't want to send it anywhere. The Democrats wants a small military and they want to send it everywhere.

WILL
Yes, I've heard that.

BRYCE
Actually, when I heard the name Bailey, I got a chill in my occipital, a Pavlovian reaction from when I used to have run-ins with a General Tom Bailey at the home store in Brussels. Any relation?

WILL
A little bit. He's my father.

BRYCE
Really?

WILL
Yes, sir.

You can see Van Dusen's change thinking that Will got in on his daddy's rep.

BRYCE
How long have you been with the NSC?

WILL
I'm not.

BRYCE
How long have you been White House Senior Staff?

WILL
Oh, no, I'm not that either. I'm on a three-week contract with the DNC to work on the Inauguration speech.

BRYCE
Son, I'm an Assistant Secretary.

WILL
For Public Affairs. Which makes you just the person I need to speak to. The President is troubled by some of the language...

BRYCE
Then this should been taken up between myself and Toby Zeigler.

WILL
I hope you don't mind. Toby's asked me to speak to you.

BRYCE
Then this should been taken up between myself and Toby Zeigler.

WILL
I hope you don't mind. Toby's asked me to speak to you.

BRYCE
What are the concerns?

WILL
"America stands alone as the indispensable nation-- a force for peace, freedom and prosperity on all corners of the globe."

BRYCE
But that's almost exactly what we wrote.

WILL
No, that is exactly what you wrote. I'm quoting the State Department text.

BRYCE
You memorized it? It was 1,200 words.

Making fun of people memorizing entire things is a Sorkin-trope.

WILL
I'm pretty sure it was 1,123.

BRYCE
What's his concern?

WILL
Well, I'm suppose to begin with-- and this neither here nor there-- but globes don't have corners.

BRYCE
If this is about style and not substance...

WILL
No, it's about substance.

BRYCE
We've been over this long before you got here, and I imagine we'll keep on goingover it long after your three weeks are done. This White House has to be careful aboutthe use of force. It's a hostile Congress.

WILL
Well, personally, I'd have no problem using force on Congress, but that's not my call.

BRYCE
This President can't write himself a blank check when it comes to foreign policy. Especially this President.

WILL
Especially this President.

BRYCE
That's right.

WILL
Because of the Clause in Article One that says not every President gets the full
powers of Commander-in-Chief?

Will is a natural at instinctively protecting Jed. If people doubted all of the irrefutable evidence thus far that he would replace Sam, this scene should have convinced them that they were wrong.

BRYCE
Are you rewriting the section?

WILL
Yes, sir.

BRYCE
Dramatically?

WILL
Well, I like to think I have a certain flair.

If that's not my favorite Will Bailey quote, than it's at least in my top three.

BRYCE
I mean significantly.

WILL
That's what the President is looking for, sir.

BRYCE
In consultation with State?

WILL
That's entirely up to Toby.

BRYCE
Thank you, sir. Apparently, I'm not done with the Baileys.

Bryce Lilly exits.

WILL
Apparently not... you effete...



Will's snark is interrupted by Toby doing his usual summoning of the deputy by throwing a ball against the window. It's clear that Will don't play dat like Sam did.

WILL
What are you doing?

TOBY
I throw a rubber ball against the window, that means you come to me.

WILL
Really?

TOBY
As my frustration level grows, so does the velocity of the ball against the window.

Toby notices all of the cartons with Jed's public statements and confirms that Will noticed it. In standard Toby fashion, his words are grumpy and businesslike about the whole thing but he's secretly respecting Will's speechwriter geekery.

WILL
Is there a reason for me to be standing here?

TOBY
No.

Sam wasn't so blunt about demanding respect for him and his time from Toby as Will. Will's higher self-esteem in dealing with Toby was very refreshing.



More Jed/Charlie quirkiness.

CHARLIE
Mr. Cravenly, the Director of Special Collections at the New Hampshire Historical
Society, just phoned about the Bartlet Bible.

BARTLET
And?

CHARLIE
You can't use it.

BARTLET
I can't?

CHARLIE
It needs to be in a climate-controlled vault or it warps.

BARTLET
Just as the disciples intended.

CHARLIE
He suggested the Jefferson Bible.

BARTLET
The Jefferson bible doesn't warp?

CHARLIE
I think it does, and being from new Hampshire, he just didn't care.

BARTLET
Probably. Speaking of New Hampshire, don't I own the Bartlet Bible?

CHARLIE
It was sold at auction.

BARTLET
I know. I bought it.

CHARLIE
And you donated to the New Hampshire Historical Society.

BARTLET
And they won't loan it back to me so that I can be inaugurated?

CHARLIE
Mr. Cravenly felt bad about that.

BARTLET
Yeah. His name is really Mr. Cravenly? You're not making that up?

A great Bartlet comic line. Anyway, Jed mentions the situation in Kundu and Charlie reacts like Leo and Jed before by only asking about the American missionaries. You can tell by the expression on Martin Sheen's face that he's sick of this ethnocentric bullshit. He asks for Bob Slatterly, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs.



I love this picture. It's like Danny and Carol are flirting and CJ can see them through the TV. Anyway, CJ continues to be didactic about the procedure of inauguration but it's not really funny on a second time. CJ and Carol walk out and Carol asks CJ if she has any time with CJ. CJ, unlike Carol, doesn't notice that Danny is right behind her.

C.J.
Stop trying to get us together, okay? If I wanted Danny, I could have him. And he's still a jackass from the foreign Ops vote and many other things, so tell him I'm getting my hair done.

DANNY
Your hair looks great.

C.J.
There was no way you could tell me he was right behind me? You couldn't fit that in?

CAROL
Sorry.

I'm a little irritated that the show has to either humiliate or write CJ as being dark (Mandatory Minimums) when she denies Danny His Very Special After-School Session. That said, I still like the continuity and subtlety that CJ resented his preachy/dangling the Shareef story over her/use of "bumfuzzled" in Guns, Not Butter behavior and she's still smarting over it a few weeks later. Right or wrong, CJ is a very human character.



Anyway, CJ and Danny have taken their rendezvous into CJ's office where top-secretness can occur.

DANNY
My signal agent's missing, the cricket player.

C.J.
How...

DANNY
I tried his house. The phone's disconnected. The airstrip won't give me information, neither will the landlord, except he just signed a new two-year lease two weeks ago.

C.J.
How do you know?

DANNY
Because I do.

C.J.
If I help you find the cricket player, you'll consider it a favor and not the White House cooperating with your story?

DANNY
I would never think the White House is cooperating with me.

C.J.
Thank you.

Because a meeting between two of them can't just be business.

DANNY
Can I just ask? What is it you'd do exactly to have me?

C.J.
Is there anything else?

DANNY
No.

C.J.
Good.



Jed meets with Slattery. Thomas Kopache who plays Slatterly is wonderful. Slattery reports that American intelligence is terrible in Kundu and they have no way of knowing the real body count. Slattery estimates 5,000.

BARTLET
Bobby, I don't want to make noise but I want to see a forced depletion report. I want to know how many we'd lose and I want to do it without going three rounds in the newspaper with Miles Hutchison. Who do we have at the Pentagon who could do this for us?

BOB
Jack Reese, Nancy's aid.

BARTLET
You trust him?

BOB
I do.

BARTLET
Tell him I want to see forced depletion on a peacekeeping force in Khundu. And tell him we'll do our best to keep it away from the Secretary's office.

BOB
He won't need to hear the second part, sir. You just gave him an order.

Of course, that's the way it should work. Soldiers in uniform perform the orders of their civilian leadership, with special deference if they know that the order comes directly from the president. They didn't know that they're dealing with Jack Reese, Baby in Uniform who will throw tantrums about his professional consequences all over The Washington Post.



Another briefing room scene the next day.

C.J.
First things first. We're going to have to learn how to pronounce it. I learned it as "Kuhn-doo." The Republic of Equatorial Kundu.

REPORTER MARK
C.J.?

C.J.
Mark.

REPORTER MARK
There are reports that the Arkutu government issued identification tags.

C.J.
We don't know.

MARK
I mean, stating whether a Kundunese is Arkutu or Induye.

C.J.
We don't know. Danny?

DANNY
Archbishop Kintaka, who was coincidentally in the White House yesterday for a
prayer breakfast, said the government's using the radio to direct mobs. Does the
White House know anything about that?

C.J.
Well, I don't.

DANNY
Apparently, one of the Bishop's had provided refuge to about 800 Induye in his
church. When the radio station in Bitanga heard about it, they directed a mob.
They had machetes, they sent them to the church...

C.J.
Did they...?

DANNY
They hacked up all 800.

C.J.
No, I didn't know that.

DANNY
Apparently, every broadcast ends with the word "Krawala."

C.J.
It means "cleanse."

DANNY
Yeah. So I guess my question is, is the President going to send U.S. troops in to knock this off?

C.J.
The White House is monitoring the situation very carefully.

DANNY
I can tell.

LOL. That was a pretty awesome moment from Danny.

KATIE
State Department estimates yesterday put the dead at anywhere between 3,000 and 7,000. Are there revised estimates today?

C.J.
15,000. Sheila?

I adore Sorkin using CJ's press briefing room to present up-to-date, climbing estimates of the death count. It's powerful writing taken on its own but you can see really see the power of this trick in the Previously of the next episode and the one after as the show splices together many of CJ's briefings to really show the body count was rising in "real-time".



Anyway, we've spent so long discussing the international politics fall-out of the situation of Kundu. Let's get to the human element. Not the raped and murdered Kundunese. The fall-out that is Donna's love life and Jack Reese's professional aspirations.

JOSH
Wondering whether the Nuclear regulatory Commission really needs $100,000 for a "morale improvement program." It's got to be a pretty critical lap dance.

DONNA
I went down to Jack's office last night and he was using the NSC lock on the door, which he never has before.

JOSH
Did you knock?

DONNA
Yeah.

JOSH
And?

DONNA
He let me in.

JOSH
That's a good story.

Let's give it up for Josh's snark.

DONNA
I wanted to make plans for getting together around midnight, and he said he couldn't 'cause it'll be morning where he needs to talk to some people.

JOSH
Donna...

DONNA
What's halfway around the world?

JOSH
Most of the homes and offices of the people who live on this planet.

DONNA
He had a fax from the Commander of the Seventh Fleet about forward units in the North Atlantic and Mediterranean.

JOSH
What's he doing showing you a fax from the Commander of the Seventh Fleet?

DONNA
Showing off for me.

JOSH
Fantastic.

DONNA
He wasn't showing me a classified signal intercept.

JOSH
How do you know what he was showing you?

DONNA
I don't. He does. Is a joint task force being assembled...

JOSH
Are you serious with these questions?

DONNA
He's been sealed off for almost 24 hours, and everything strikes me as strange.

JOSH
Then let it strike you that way, and please find out what they mean by "morale improvement program" so I can get back to-- you know-- actual people.



The trivialities continue.

BARTLET
Hey, I changed my mind about the Bible.

CHARLIE
Yes, sir.

BARTLET
I don't know. I never... it just seems parochial. I hate saying that.

That line is funny because I think Jed's biggest flaw is his occasional tendency to see the world through parochial eyes. However, in fairness, he does transcend that a lot and he does it very much so in this set of episodes.



Great Leo/Jed scene ahead.

BARTLET
"Grace is but glory begun and glory is but grace perfected." I made my Bible selection.

LEO
Listen to this, please. The Supreme Court is striking down the use of prior offenses as a factor in Stiles v. Rhode Island. The Chief Justice writes a concurring opinion: "Guilty or not guilty, past convictions frustrate the judge who wonders should your fate abate."

BARTLET
It's awkwardly worded.

LEO
No, it's not. it's 22 syllables.

BARTLET
Oh, God.

LEO
Two, four, six, eight. Two. And it's suppose to sound like this: "Guilty, or not guilty, past convictions frustrate, the judge who wonders should your fate, abate." It's a cinquain.

BARTLET
A what?

LEO
Cinquain.

BARTLET
How do you know?

LEO
I know things. And I'm worried about the Chief Justice.

BARTLET
And I'm worried about the White House making that suggestion.

LEO
He's writing in verse, plus the powdered wigs.

BARTLET
Wasn't that a rumor?

LEO
Yes.

So cute! I love the role reversal. Normally, it's Jed who gets carried with the whimsy of a something like this and Leo is trying to bring Jed back to business. In the comparatively rare but memorable moments that Leo gets carried away by trivia and whimsy, it makes it especially clear that Leo and Jed are like peas and carrots.

Anyway, Jed got his forced depletion report.

BARTLET
The best scenario is that simply by engaging, the Arkutu lay down their weapons, but that doesn't seem likey, so we'd lose people.

LEO
Yeah.

BARTLET
More if they go into the countryside.

LEO
What do you expect?

Leo tells Jed that Toby is working on new foreign policy language and the comment feels throw-away but it's perfectly placed. Jed is thinking of giving on Kundu because of the report but when Leo brings up the original thing that caused Jed to start thinking about intervening (the stark disappointment of the flat, ethnocentric foreign policy language), it brings Jed back to start re-thinking intervening.

Leo asks for the force depletion report.



Will is bubbling about how much has he has fallen with Jed based on his public statements. See, how much fun is it to get man-crushy about your own politician instead of just being driven by strong opposition of the other side?

WILL
He led an unsuccessful court case to block all federal death penalties as violating the Equal Protection Clause.

ELSIE
Why?

WILL
'Cause federal law applies to almost nowhere but Indian reservations.

ELSIE
Hmm.

WILL
This is the best. Congress will never create real campaign reform because they're the ones who have to run in elections, so he proposed legislation that would grandfather it in 30 years.



Toby comes in to be a party-pooper.

TOBY
What are you doing?

WILL
Familiarizing myself with his tone.

TOBY
You're not thinking about policy language?

WILL
I'm doing both.

TOBY
Because we have five days.

ELSIE
He knows, and I can confirm that he's thinking and familiarizing himself simultaneously.

TOBY
You really comfortable going through life with a name like Elsie Snuffin?

ELSIE
I've never been comfortable, but I'm not sure it's because of my name.

TOBY
Will, the idea isn't going to walk in here and announce itself as being important and take a place on the top of the pile.

LOL. I can hear Don Draper saying that last line to Peggy or Kinsey or someone. It's a big deja vu moment.

This intern named Stacy comes in with a very important document.

INTERN STACY
Excuse me, Will. This is from the Congressional Research Service. It's an old Bartlet speech on foreign policy.

WILL
Why wasn't it in the original?

STACY
It was stricken from the Congressional Record at the Presidents request. Should I place it here on top of this pile?

WILL
No, I'll take that.

Toby smiles, clearly impressed with Will's nerdy moxie. The speech was so important the next scene cuts again to Will and Toby, except Will and Toby have taken off their jackets and Will is argumentatively reading the speech to make his point.



WILL
"America needs a new doctrine for a new century..."

TOBY
Mr. Bailey...

LOL, Toby's use of "Mr. Bailey" is almost a pouty nickname because Toby has been calling Will by his first name all of this time. I don't know about everyone else, but I actually find Toby more slashable with Will than with Sam.

WILL
"...based not just on our interest, but on our values, across the world."

TOBY
Define those values for me, please.

WILL
I don't have to. The President of the United States already has. "We are for freedom of speech everywhere. Freedom to worship everywhere. Freedom to learn for every child."

TOBY
Just out of curiosity, how are you going to enforce a universal global right to education?

ELSIE
The same way the U.S. enforced anything it wanted in the middle part of the 20th century. Somebody called our father.

It's really not true that the US was able to enforce all the human values it wanted in the middle of the twentieth century but it realistic that Elsie and Will as children of a NATO commanders, remember falsely-fondly the period that NATO really meant something and could at least enforce values through the First World.

TOBY
What exactly are you doing here, anyway?

ELSIE
The First Lady likes my jokes.

TOBY
Excellent.

WILL
"It is our duty to give more than merely our support. We must give our strength diplomatically, materially....

WILL and TOBY
"And if need be, militarily."

TOBY
I read it, I think, 16 years ago. It was about El Salvador and he had it stricken from the record and there was a reason.

Again, throw-away lines have a lot of purpose on this show. This line clearly indicates simpatico between Will and Toby even as they're fighting. There was a period in the past when Toby was reading all of Jed's public statements as Jed's speechwriter.

WILL
What?

TOBY
I don't know, but things have reasons.

WILL
Do they?

TOBY
Yes, they do.

The fight has moved back to Toby's office.



WILL
Okay, but C.J. this morning put the body count at 15,000.

TOBY
You're talking about Kundu? That's what the hell this is about?

WILL
We're talking about everything. "And freedom from the tyranny of oppression, economic slavery, religious fanaticism." Tell me if any of these describe anyone we know.

TOBY
This isn't what I meat by drafting new language.

WILL
What did you mean?

TOBY
Making the old language sound better. You're asking the two of us to create foreign policy by ourselves. That's usually not a good idea. You've got your Pentagon, the NSC and-- what do you call it?-- the State Department.

WILL
You and Leo McGarry and Josh are his senior counselors and it's not like he doesn't already want to go there.

This irritates me. CJ is also a senior counselor to the President (20 Hours in America) and what's more, Jed called her in with Leo/Toby/Josh/Will when he made his final decision and made a point of wanting her to weigh in on the decision in the teaser. I don't know if it's sloppy writing or sexism creeping through.

TOBY
This language proposes a new doctrine for the use of force. That we use force whenever we see an injustice we want to correct. Like Mother Theresa with first-strike capabilities.

"Hello to the imagery"- Buffy

WILL
Damn right.

TOBY
Oh, you've had too many dinners with daddy. Please go back to finding new language for the foreign section!

WILL
Yeah, I should.

Will starts to walk out, but turns back around.

WILL
I'm only working here another four days.

TOBY
But what?

WILL
He'd do a radio address proposing free liposuction to every child of woman born if you wrote it for him.

TOBY
You're wrong. And if he did, I'd be fired shortly thereafter.

WILL
Maybe, but ten pounds lighter.

That's a stupid remark. There had to be a less ridiculous way for Will to comment on Toby's influence over Jed.

Will walks out. Elsie remains in his office and Toby looks at her.

TOBY
You go back to doing whatever it is you do.

Elie beats haste.



Charlie escorts Adam Kent of the Jonathon Edwards Historical Foundation and his merry men who are carrying the ginomourous John Edwards Bible.



The Huge Ass Bible.

This scene is very funny. I have a weakness for big sight gags like this and this adds mocking religion/historical relics at the same time. That said, it does make Charlie look like doofus. He arranged trips for a bunch of folks from the Jonathon Edwards Historical Foundation so they can bring a bible that would never be used at the inauguration?! That's just bad staff work.

BARTLET
It's huge.

ADAM
Well, it ought to be.

BARTLET
Actually, it can't be.

ADAM
It's a pulpit folio, obviously from a time when portability was not an issue and illuminations add pages as well as heft. Also, it's written in four languages.

Aw, Adam Kent is super-proud of his bible. He acts just like you'd imagine a rather deranged director of a historical society would act.

BARTLET
The First Lady has to hold this in her hand. This one's going to take the First Lady, the Chief Justice and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

ADAM
Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic and English.

BARTLET
Okay... Mr. Carlton?

ADAM
Kent.

BARTLET
Sorry. Thanks. Charlie's going to take care of you. [to Charlie] Charlie, that Bible's the size of a Volkswagen. Can we get the Washington Bible?

CHARLIE
Yes, sir.

Leo is in the Sit Room, getting continent-by-continent related updates on the news. However, that is dispensed with quickly to get to Leo/Hutchinson Drama. FYI, I think that Hutchinson is as closer as this show got to a recurring villain. Hoynes and Bruno may have been written as odious a lot of time but they certainly had their redeeming qualities. Russel was a foul human being but he didn't have the wit to be a villain. That said, I have a soft spot for Hutchinson. He's very clever and witty. He's played by Steve Ryan who just does awesome work whether he's doing a standard exposition scene or being an uber-dramatic asshole. I'll have to transcribe the entire scene because in my very unpopular opinion, it's by far the best scene of both parts of Inauguration.



LEO
Miles? What's the general thinking in Kundu?

MILES HUTCHINSON
That we should support all the international diplomatic efforts to.... You know the U.N.'s already made overtures to the Arkutu.

LEO
That's what's happening at the State Department. I want to know what's happening at Central Command.

HUTCHINSON
If you mean militarily, we're going to want to supply the bordering countries.

LEO
That's not what I mean. We're getting INTEL that isn't making it onto CNN, but that's a matter of a couple of hours. Truly horrible accounts of mass slaughtering...

HUTCHINSON
Leo...

LEO
...that should make us at least want to investigate whether there's a genocide.

HUTCHINSON
Lee lost 10,000 at Gettysburg, didn't make it genocide.

LEO
Okay, so I'll go to the President with it.

Transcribing can't capture the beautiful sarcasm in John Spencer's voice at that argument. Leo doesn't tolerate this "Any Historical Analogy Works for My Argument No Matter How Ridiculous It Is" bullshit.

HUTCHINSON
In our case, we'd lose closer to a thousand, which is pretty stupid. Magnificently so when we realize we're talking about a guy who's never led an army.

LEO
A] The guy is the President. B] He's been leading one for 3 years, 51 weeks and three days. How much more training would you like him to have? And C] It's not a thousand. We saw a forced depletion report, it's 150.

HUTCHINSON
You saw a forced depletion report?

LEO
Yes.

Again, brilliant acting from John Spencer. He's struggling to keep the macho confidence in his voice because he's dealing with a very dangerous member of the administration but you can see on his face, how much he's kicking himself for revealing too many of his cards.

HUTCHINSON
How did he see a forced depletion report?

LEO
Look, from time to time, just to expedite things, Nancy will print...

HUTCHINSON
Nancy's out of the country. It was her aid.

LEO
The guy was following a direct order.

HUTCHINSON
I have no doubt he was. That's my problem, Leo.

LEO
I don't give a damn what....

HUTCHINSON
What?

LEO
I said I don't give a damn what your problem is, Miles. The man wants to know if he sends troops, how many are going to die.

HUTCHINSON
And if he wants to see forced depletion, he asks me.

LEO
He asks you and three days mange to go by before he sees it, Mr. Secretary. Yet miraculously, the Wall Street Journal, on day two, the numbers inflated all to hell. It's 150, not a thousand.

HUTCHINSON
And that's acceptable to you in Kundu?

Steve Ryan strikes the perfect balance of dismissively saying "In Kundu" but not sounding like a mustache-twirling villain but instead like what he is, an ethnocentric, arrogant Secretary of Defense.

LEO
I don't know what you mean when you say "in Kundu." Nah... yeah, I do.

HUTCHINSON
Go to hell.

LEO
Okay.



Leo gathers up his papers and out of frustration throws them down on the desk knocking over a glass of water. Between that and his lame comeback of "Okay" to Hutchinson's "Go to hell", it's very clear that Leo has totally lost his cool. He handled this whole thing very poorly but the whole endeavor is so difficult and John Spencer plays the part so humanly, you can't help but feel badly for him and certainly on his side.



Jed comes in to Will's office to visit him. I like to think that is Jed sticking out an olive branch because his past meetings with Will were rather rough because Jed was snarking on Will the whole time. Jed knocks and poor Will doesn't look up and continues his awkward streak with Jed.

WILL
Keep your pants on, Toby, I'm almost there.

BARTLET
Toby been taking his pants off again? That's just something he does.

WILL
[looks up, then stands] Good evening, Mr. President.

BARTLET
How's it going?

WILL
Fine, sir.

BARTLET
Good.

WILL
No, it's not.

BARTLET
Yeah. What's hard is that foreign policy has become a statement of what we won't do.

Jed sees his old speech on Will's desk and reads the spiciest quote again aloud.

BARTLET
Why is a Kundunese life worth less to me than an American life?

WILL
I don't know, sir, but it is.

BARTLET
That was ballsy.

WILL
I won't be working here long.

Great scene for both of them showing off my favorite things about both characters- Will's self-confident moxie and Jed's ability to take and learn from dissent even when it gets harshly personal.

BARTLET
You Tom Bailey's son?

WILL
Yes, sir.

BARTLET
Talk about the very model of a modern Major General.

WILL
Yes, sir.

On that note, Jed leaves and the scene cuts to CJ getting ready for another briefing. When CJ walks to the hallway, Danny calls out to her.



C.J.
I found your ramp signal agent.

DANNY
Me too. He took a job in an airport in the Cooperative Republic of Guyana. That's where you're sending people?

C.J.
We don't send anyone anywhere who doesn't work for us, but I understand he's gotten a salary-bump and he's co-captain of a local cricket team.

LOL at CJ throwing in that detail about the signal agent being the co-captain of a local cricket team. It's a continuing theme that CJ is a crack-researcher and she uses the quirkiest, most bizarre knowledge to actually do a good job of proving her major points.

DANNY
I called him.

C.J.
And?

DANNY
He doesn't remember me. Then he does, but he doesn't remember anything about an airstrip. He does, but he doesn't remember anything about not getting in.

C.J.
Mystery solved.

Then, CJ gets a little weird. She pulls Danny in a room and turns off the lights.

C.J.
And I'm almost over it. I mean, I am right there and you come back with scruffy face and your jokes and your incredible talent and your way of getting at... getting at me. And I was thinking if we could...

DANNY
Be adult?

Then, CJ seductively asks him if she likes her perfume and blouse. Of course, he does. She asks him to come closer. I don't like this scene but Allison Janney and Tim Busfield are playing the hell out of it. Danny's hesitant at first, but he gives in and comes to her. He leans in and is
about to kiss her when C.J. interrupts.

C.J.
Remember when you asked me what exactly I'd do to have you?

By now, C.J. is right up against Danny with her hands stroking up and down his chest. She's has his face in her hands as if she's about to kiss him.

DANNY
Yeah.

C.J.
I'd do that.

She leaves coolly, off to her briefing. I really don't like this scene. In the past, CJ was very firm on her decision to not date him while they had their naturally opposing jobs and she could be short with him out of frustration. However, generally, she was sensitive to his romantic feelings while being firm and incredibly assertive about their professional opposition and her duty to protect the Bartlet administration's reputation. CJ riling him up sexually just for the LOLZ is totally OOC.



CJ goes to brief with updated estimates for Kundu.

C.J.
Good evening. I have revised estimates for Khundu. We said 15,000 yesterday. Intelligence reports are putting it closer to 25... 25,000.



Josh is waiting for a meeting in the Oval Office so he and Charlie have some bonding time.

JOSH
What's that?

CHARLIE
It's a seating chart for the Inauguration.

JOSH
You're sitting with us in the staff section.

CHARLIE
Yeah, I'm looking for someone else.

Aw, Charlie. Josh takes Charlie's lovelorn attitude over Zoey as an invitation to passive-aggressively bitch about Jack Reese.

JOSH
Would it be weird if I just walked around with a military dress saber?

CHARLIE
Mm-hmm.

JOSH
Okay. He's in a security briefing?

CHARLIE
I'll let him know you're here.

JOSH
Navy dress uniform has 13 buttons on the pants. I mean, traditions tradition, but I'd be concerned about the level of bladder discipline that requires, wouldn't you?

Charlie didn't realize that by subtly revealing that he's looking for Zoey that Josh would take that as an invitation to be gross and you can see that all over Dule Hill's face. LOL.



Jed is at his security briefing in the Roosevelt Room instead of the Sit Room for a change. Maybe the cleaning staff is still cleaning Leo's spilled water. ;-)

MAN 1
King Nawa of Bhutan died.

BARTLET
We'll send condolences. What's next?

MAN 1
The new king is Yeshey Pradhan Nawa.

BARTLET
Okay.

MAN 1
He's 13 years old.

BARTLET
Well, if he's old enough to marry Jerry Lee Lewis, I guess he's old enough to be king of Bhutan. What's next?

Jed hears news but we get to the pivotal line on what's going on Kundu.

CLARK
Neighbors are... swapping family members.

BARTLET
All right, thank you.

Jed and Charlie walk out and Jed clarifies that he wants to use his father's bible instead of the Washington Bible. I wonder if Jed wants to use the Bartlet Bible and calls it "his father's bible" here as a sub-textual "fuck you" since he overcame his dad's abuse to be president and he, a Catholic, is swearing the presidential oath on his adamantly Protestant father's bible. It would give some depth to this bible storyline.



Jed and Leo meet in Leo's office.

BARTLET
Did he tell me to shut up and let him run the Pentagon?

LEO
In so many words.

BARTLET
How many?

LEO
Not that many. As a matter of fact, we didn't get that far. I got Jack Reese in some trouble.

BARTLET
So Hutchinson know I've seen forced depletion.

LEO
Yeah.

BARTLET
He should be pissed at me, not Jack Reese.

LEO
He should be pissed at you? The Secretary of Defense should be pissed at...

I love Leo's totally outraged delivery of that line. Damn straight. Jed urges Leo not to worry about his disastrous meeting with Hutchinson which is definitely the action of a best friend rather than a President.

BARTLET
Clark says neighbors are swapping family members in Khundu.

LEO
Really?

BARTLET
Also, there's a new king of Bhutan. And he's been bar mitzvaed and everything.

LEO
All right.

BARTLET
Hey, this guy you hired for the Inauguration speech gave me a little back chat a few minutes ago.

LEO
Bailey?

BARTLET
Yeah, he was using a floor speech about El Salvador I gave 98 years ago to demonstrate that the U.S. should send troops to Kundu. Rhetorically, I said, "Why is a Kundunese life worth less to me than an American life?" And he said, "I don't know, sir, but it is."

LEO
I'll try to get some better information.

This recap is turning into a love-letter to John Spencer. Still, he does great, subtle work here. He tries to figure out how to respond to Jed's parable about what Will said and pauses as he comes up with an answer that can sooth Jed without promising a way to fix the genocide and he slowly comes out with, "I'll try to get some better information." Perfect, perfect work.

Josh finally gets the meeting that he's been wanting with Jed.



Bradley Whitford looks especially handsome here.

BARTLET
Hey, Josh. There's intelligence that Kundunese neighbors in the country are swapping family members.

JOSH
I'm sorry, I don't understand.

BARTLET
For the night, they're swapping family members you know, and sleeping in each others
houses.

JOSH
Yes, sir.

BARTLET
What's going on?

JOSH
You know what, nothing I can't deal with.

Another great character moment. On the gravity of forced rape, Josh is insecure about having the meeting that he's been waiting some time for. However, Jed essentially says, "Out with it" so Josh continues. State is concerned and irritated about the possibility of the whole foreign policy being rewritten.

BARTLET
It's not.

JOSH
I know, they just... asked me to emphasize that the current language has been vetted with the ranking members of House Armed Services.

BARTLET
The language is being polished.

JOSH
That's what I told them. They just asked me to remind you that their version also reflects existing treaties some of which....

BARTLET
Some of which have my name on them. So tell Jeff Tomlison and baby Bob to take a deep knee bend, would you? I'm just as big a cotton candy ass as they are.

JOSH
Yes, sir.

BARTLET
You're just going to let that hang in the air?

JOSH
Of course not, sir. You're a much bigger cotton candy ass than they are.

BARTLET
Damn right.



Josh meets up with an agitated Donna. Jack Reese has been reassigned to Aviano Air Force Base.

DONNA
I don't know. He said he was asked to do something, he did it, he got a slap on the wrist and wouldn't tell me more than that.

JOSH
The reality of the fast-track Navy guys is they're going to bop around the globe a lot.

DONNA
He was here less then three months, plus he said something happened.

JOSH
You can't begin to conceive of the internal politics of the Pentagon. Right now, Hutchinson and his boys...

DONNA
But he worked here. This is internal politics of the White House.

JOSH
Well, no one's told me about it and I'm not going to ask.

DONNA
He said he was asked to do something for somebody. It can only be Nancy, Leo or the President.

JOSH
Three doors you definitely want to knock on to complain about your boyfriend being
transferred to the Italian Alps.

DONNA
Hey, I'm not Gidget, okay? Something...

I'm sorry but Donna deserves being dismissed as a being Gidget-type here. I can't believe that she would fathom asking Josh to complain to the Secretary of Defense, Chief of Staff or President about her boyfriend being transferred. Seriously, what the hell?! She's been working there for four years and she has no concept of how the place works.

JOSH
Is he complaining?

DONNA
He doesn't complain.

LOL. For a guy who doesn't like to complain, he certainly complained loudly in The Washington Post.



JOSH
I ask you that because sometimes people request transfers.

I'm on Josh's side through this whole confrontation but that wasn't necessary.

DONNA
Somebody asked him to do something and he did it. I take him at his word, as should you, there being no reason not to. Is there anything you need?

JOSH
No.

DONNA
Thank you, sir.

Donna runs off after that. I had to laugh. She throws a Gidget tantrum about her boyfriend being transferred and her big ending insult is to poutily call Josh "sir" and run off like she's going to cry in the ladies' room? What a joke. This is Sorkin miswriting women as his worst. He couldn't have had Donna be disappointed at Jack Reese being transferred but made her a little more stoic and professional about the whole thing? I strongly object to the entire storyline where Donna takes responsibility for Reese's quote but I would have found it more palatable if a) they made a bigger deal of how much Donna fucked up and consequently learned from the experience and/or b) didn't add so much fuel to her fuck-up by making her unlikable here.

It's strange because this is a great episode from dialogue, storytelling, directing and acting perspectives but Sorkin really didn't do well by his female characters. Donna is completely odious, CJ is given a terrible seduction for revenge scene and Will leaves her out of his list of important senior counselors and Elsie is reduced to a hanger-on who just listens to Will's points instead of contributing. Those are the only three major female characters. Even though NSC intrigue is here, there's no Nancy McNally and we have to wait for next episode for Abbey Bartlet to appear. Boo!



Josh and Charlie have a moment.

JOSH
Jack Reese got transferred.

CHARLIE
Well, I've got my own Beach Boys song going.

Man, Charlie. I hate Donna here but there's no need for you to pile on behind her back to bond with Josh. Dick move by Charlie here.

JOSH
If you tell me you got a crush on Reese...

CHARLIE
Jean-Pierre is sitting next to her in the friends and family section.

JOSH
Zoey's lover?

CHARLIE
It's important that you call him that?

JOSH
Isn't his name Jean-Paul?

CHARLIE
Are we going to be together on this?

JOSH
Yes.

Their attention is turned to serious things as they watch coverage of the horrors in Kundu.

JOSH
Intelligence says neighbors in Kundu are sleeping in each others houses.

CHARLIE
What does that mean?

JOSH
It means they're making people in the same house rape each other on the promise
their lives will be spared.

CHARLIE
Okay. Do you need anything?

Josh doesn't and Charlie leaves. With great cinematic flair, Josh turns off the TV and the sound effects and camera tricks make it look like the climax of horror movie. In fact, the horrors are real.
7 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
jean_c_pepper From: jean_c_pepper Date: March 29th, 2011 05:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
I love Jed/Charlie. I am quite sure that in Season 7,in the forward- the reason Charlie greets Jed so familiarly is that he is also Jed's son-in-law at this point. Jed wasn't nearly as freaked about a disheveled and satisfied looking Charlie coming out of Zoey's room as he was at Vic impregnating Ellie. His gift of the Paul Revere Knife-whether or not Charlie and Zoey were broken up at the time he gave it-clearly indicated that he thought of Charlie as his surrogate son. Also Charlie's defense of the President in The Benign perogative reinforces this. It's no surprise to me when Charlie and Zoey get back together.

Hutchinson as a Villain is interesting. I love him! My favorite scene with him(and there are several) is the one where CJ tells him that his "Acerbic wit" is not the best tone to use with her. 7th season. I like that the show makes clear that the Dept. heads have their own agenda(The surgeon general, the secretary of state, the AG-and why do they hate the AG and he hates them? that comes up in season 1-why not get a different AG for the second term? i never caught why there is that animosity).
I should add that I love that they start on the Chief Justice-and don't actually RESOLVE that plot for 20 episodes.
I'm sorry- but i love Josh and his envy of Jack in this episode. He REALLY doesn't get why Donna likes Jack? He misses the point entirely that it's another of their vicarious relationship(much in the way that he calls Donna from Amy's)and that Donna truly wants him and loves him. This lasts even after he and Donna hook up. He is truly so socially retarded that he just doesn't get it. That being said, the little Jack/Donna/Josh threesome gets kind of old after a while and I am glad that this goes away with this episode.
I did not get the sense that the Bartlett bible and 'Mr. Bartlett's' Bible were NOT the same. I am thinking the Bartlett bible belonged to the original, historical Josiah Bartlett. But, I like that you point out he doesn't use his dad's bible-probably for precisely the reasons you mentioned. There may be a bigger fuck you to your abusive father than becoming POTUS, but I can't think of it.

Finally- I believe Charlie, like all the WH staff, knows that Josh and Donna are in love so he really doesn't have much sympathy with Donna because the guy she REALLY loves is still here. You mentioned it's only the outsiders(Jack Reese, Amy, Colin Ayers) who actually point out to Josh and Donna that they are in love. The WW staff is with them all the time so it's not like they dont know

Edited at 2011-03-29 05:55 pm (UTC)
sunclouds33 From: sunclouds33 Date: March 29th, 2011 07:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
I am quite sure that in Season 7,in the forward- the reason Charlie greets Jed so familiarly is that he is also Jed's son-in-law at this point.

Maybe. I've always wondered about whether Zoey and Charlie got married. However whether Zoey or Charlie marry, I do think Jed will always see Charlie as a son.

Hutchinson as a Villain is interesting. I love him! My favorite scene with him(and there are several) is the one where CJ tells him that his "Acerbic wit" is not the best tone to use with her. 7th season.

I love that scene so much! I think this episode's scene with Hutchinson and that scene with CJ are tied for my favorite Hutchinson scenes.

why not get a different AG for the second term? i never caught why there is that animosity).

I forgot why there was the animosity but maybe they didn't want to expend political capital getting another AG confirmed for the second term. The administration does tend to live with VPs and Cabinet members that they hate a lot.

I'm sorry- but i love Josh and his envy of Jack in this episode. He REALLY doesn't get why Donna likes Jack? He misses the point entirely that it's another of their vicarious relationship(much in the way that he calls Donna from Amy's)and that Donna truly wants him and loves him. This lasts even after he and Donna hook up. He is truly so socially retarded that he just doesn't get it. That being said, the little Jack/Donna/Josh threesome gets kind of old after a while and I am glad that this goes away with this episode.

I love Josh through this Jack Reese plotline. I hope that comes through my recaps. There are things that he could have done differently (see intimating that Reese requested a transfer in this episode) but I think he remains supportive of Donna and loyal to the administration through this trying time. He's a very good man but a very human one.

Donna and Jack were the people who were really awful this thing- not Josh.

I did not get the sense that the Bartlett bible and 'Mr. Bartlett's' Bible were NOT the same. I am thinking the Bartlett bible belonged to the original, historical Josiah Bartlett. But, I like that you point out he doesn't use his dad's bible-probably for precisely the reasons you mentioned. There may be a bigger fuck you to your abusive father than becoming POTUS, but I can't think of it.

CHARLIE
I'm only asking 'cause they need some notice on the Washington Bible.

BARTLET
Yeah, I'm going to use my father's.

Jed was thinking of using "his father's" bible. I got the impression that this was the Bartlet Bible.

Finally- I believe Charlie, like all the WH staff, knows that Josh and Donna are in love so he really doesn't have much sympathy with Donna because the guy she REALLY loves is still here. You mentioned it's only the outsiders(Jack Reese, Amy, Colin Ayers) who actually point out to Josh and Donna that they are in love. The WW staff is with them all the time so it's not like they dont know

Hmmm, interesting perspective. I remain a little cross with Charlie for that remark but you did give me a legit extenuating circumstance for Mr. Young! I quite agree that Charlie could feel the Josh/Donna love tonight.
jean_c_pepper From: jean_c_pepper Date: March 29th, 2011 08:12 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think we are gong to agree to disagree. I feel the Bartlett Bible belonged to Josiah Bartlett, original signitory of the Declaration of Independence. I think "My Father's " was the bible that actually belonged to abusive Daddy Bartlett. At some point in time, the "Bartlett Bible" got away from the Bartlett family, hence the need for Josiah Edward Bartlett to purchase it at auction and donate it to the New Hampshire Historical Society. "His Father's" bible no doubt passed along with whatever else Abusive Daddy owned when he bought the farm. I do agree with you that perhaps Jed refrained from using his Dad's bible because his Dad was a Protestant or Abusive or both. The Bartlett bible is safely locked in a vault under the guard of the New Hampshire Historical Society and he had been turned down already when he says "my father's". And, him even wanting to use his dad's bible may have furthered te "FU dad, I'm POTUS" effect and Jed decided it was stupid or something(remember Stanley tells him that no matter what he does, he can't get his father's approval). Or, he simply changed his mind in true Jed fashion.
laurenba From: laurenba Date: March 30th, 2011 11:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
I agree about the Bartlet Bible being an antique (he bought it back at auction and donated it to the Historical society, after all) and his father's bible was, you know, his dad's. Although this entire storyline makes me wonder what he did at his first inauguration, hmmm?

The "Why is an American life worth more than a Kundunese life" kinda bothers me. Howabout an american life means more to him because he's the President of the United States? If you ask me, when considering foreign policy, american lives *should* mean more to the president than Kundunese lives (or any other nation's, for that matter.) I know that Sorkin is going for some racial statement here, but that's just not a convincing way to do it for me.

For instance, would we be standing around arguing if there was genocide in France instead of Africa? Ok, that's convicting.
sunclouds33 From: sunclouds33 Date: March 30th, 2011 11:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
I disagree with you on the Bible but I'm in lock-step agreement on the "Why is an American life worth more than a Kundunese life?". You can think that America should have tried to stop the genocide in Rwanda or the Holocaust for a representation of black and white victims but still think that the American president, as the elected stakeholder and custodian of America's well-being, should value American lives more than Rwandans or the French. It just becomes more a hazy cost benefit analysis. Americans > Foreigners for the American president but he's willing to risk 20 American soldiers who assume the risk to save 800,000 Rwandan civilians.

The cardinal made the white foreigner vs. white foreigner that you bring up and it was more effective for me.
jean_c_pepper From: jean_c_pepper Date: March 31st, 2011 01:35 am (UTC) (Link)
Perhaps he used the Bartlett Bible and then donated it to the New Hampshire Historical Society. That would make sense where he would think that he could borrow it back for his second Inagural.
flamingocregg From: flamingocregg Date: September 12th, 2014 06:19 pm (UTC) (Link)

CJ & Danny

I think CJ's teasing of Danny was totally in character. Danny has been smug, demanding, critical, and even called out her lack of information in the briefing room. He is drilling her for a story he knows she absolutely cannot reveal. The last straw was his pompous 'What exactly would you do to have me?'. Her actions were simple revenge and showing Danny who had control of their relationship. I can totally buy that she felt the need to put Danny in his place, knock him down a notch or five. I loved that scene. I love C.J.'s triumphant strut as she walks away leaving Danny bumfuzzled.

P.S. The reason C.J. mentions the cricket co-captain detail was because in Holy Night, Danny told the story of the same signal agent who went to go get his Cricket bat from his locker at work at the airport where they killed Shareef and couldn't get back in because two America marshalls were standing outside. It was a detail in Danny's lead to the Shareef story and not a random fact, which is why C.J. mentions it. It does tell about her attention to detail and memory however.

Edited at 2014-09-12 06:28 pm (UTC)
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