Josh (Bradley Whitford) is troubled when he receives a special card informing him of where to safely go in the event of a nuclear attack — a privilege denied to most of his White House co-workers — while Leo (John Spencer) instructs the senior staff to meet with various special interest groups, some of whom have wacky agendas. Prior to an important press conference, Toby (Richard Schiff) voices strong opposition to many of President Bartlet’s (Martin Sheen) plans for an upcoming California trip and later checks out the rumor that he was not the chief executive’s first choice for the job. The President, meanwhile, virtually orders his staff to sample his prized chili when he arranges a reception for his Georgetown-bound daughter, Zoey (Elisabeth Moss).
THE WEST WING 'THE CRACKPOTS AND THESE WOMEN' WRITTEN BY: AARON SORKIN DIRECTED BY: ANTHONY DRAZAN TEASER FADE IN: EXT. BASKETBALL COURT - NIGHT In a basketball court outside the White House, we see Bartlet, playing a game of basketball with a few of the White House staffers, including Toby, Josh and Charlie. Surrounding the court are Secret Service Agents. We hear the basketball bouncing. BARTLET [OS] Oh, man. I'm sorry. Toby takes the President to low post, shoots over him, and makes the shot off the backboard. JOSH Oh yes! CHARLIE That's how you do it now. TOBY Game point. CHARLIE Mr. President you look a little winded. The President, with hands on his knees, tries to catch his breath. BARTLET I'm fine. CHARLIE Maybe you want to sit out for a minute, sir. BARTLET Why would I want to do that? JOSH Cause people are bound to be pretty upset when they find out we killed the President. TOBY Sit down, sir. BARTLET All right, game point. Let's go. JOSH Sir... BARTLET I'm playing. TOBY Mr. President, there's no shame in calling it quits. All you have to do is say, 'Toby, you're the superior athlete,' and slink on off the court. BARTLET Take the ball out, Toby. TOBY You're really going to keep playing? BARTLET Take the ball out. Let's go. TOBY Oh, this is perfect, you know that? This is a perfect metaphor. After you're gone, and the poets write, 'The Legend of Josiah Bartlet,' let them write you as a tragic figure, sir. Let the poets write that he had the tools of greatness, but the voices of his better angels was shouted down by his obsessive need to win. BARTLET You want to play or write my eulogy? TOBY Can I be honest with you, sir? BARTLET Mr. Grant! Bartlet waves to a car in the sidelines. Toby, Josh, and Charlie looks as a Secret Service Agent opens a side door of the car and out comes a very tall black guy, possibly a professional basketball player. He approaches Bartlet and shakes his hand. JOSH Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Whoa. Who's this guy? BARTLET I'm making a substitution. TOBY Who is this guy? BARTLET Mr. Grant's a new member of my team. TOBY A ringer, perhaps? BARTLET Mr. Grant is a federal employee. TOBY You know the thing about you, Mr. President? It isn't so much that you cheat. It's how brazenly bad you are at it. BARTLET I beg your pardon? JOSH Toby's got a point there sir. BARTLET When have I ever cheated? TOBY Up on Florida, playing mixed doubles with me and C.J. You tried to tell us that your partner worked at the American Consulate in Vienna. BARTLET And she did! TOBY It was Steffi Graf, sir. BARTLET Well, I will admit that the woman bore a striking resemblance... TOBY It was Steffi Graf, you crazy lunatic! You think I'm not gonna recognize Steffi Graf when she's serving a tennis ball at me? JOSH Steffi Graf's won quite a few championships, sir. We've had many opportunities to see photographs. BARTLET Be that as it may, Toby Ziegler, Josh Lyman, Charlie Young. I would like to introduce Mr. Rodney Grant. Mr. Grant is Associate Director of the President's Council on Physical Fitness. Game point. Your ball. Let's go! TOBY Whoa, whoa, whoa. BARTLET What? TOBY Not so fast. BARTLET What's the problem? TOBY Mr. Grant, your name sounds awfully familiar... Before you joined up with the President's Council on Physical Fitness, a council, I might add, the President would do well to avail himself of... Is it possible, that you played some organized ball? GRANT Yeah, I used to play a little with my friends. TOBY And where was that? GRANT I'm sorry? TOBY Where would that be? GRANT Duke. Toby and Josh laugh out loud, while Charlie looks at Grant. TOBY This guy was in the Final Four! BARTLET Take the ball out, Toby. Game point. Let's go. TOBY Alright. BARTLET The new man. TOBY [to Grant] I'm taking you to the hole. Toby dribbles the ball into low post. Grant guards him. Bartlet is guarding Josh on the other end of the court. Toby tries to shoot the ball. JOSH You got it! Mr. Grant, with quick reflexes, blocks the ball hard, making it go out of bounds. Toby almost falls down. TOBY Oh! BARTLET Let the poets write about that there, Byron. TOBY Charlie, guard the new guy. Charlie walks in front of Grant and stares at him. SMASH CUT TO: MAIN TITLES. END TEASER * * * ACT ONE FADE IN: INT. JOSH'S BULLPEN AREA - DAY Donna comes out of the bullpen while Josh is walking by. Josh, surprised, continues walking down the hallway as the ever loyal Donna walks with him. DONNA You have a staff meeting. JOSH That's... where I'm going. DONNA I'm just telling you. JOSH Yes, but you see that's obviously where I'm going, and yet you tell me anyway. DONNA And you don't find that adorable? JOSH That you seek to control me? DONNA Yeah? JOSH Love it. DONNA Donald hasn't called me yet. JOSH Who's Donald? DONNA Donald? JOSH Yes. DONNA From the thing? JOSH Right. [stops by a side table to get coffee] Can we clear up a few things about my level of interest in the revolving door of local gomers that you see, in the free time you create by not working very hard at your job? DONNA Excuse me? JOSH You work hard at your job. DONNA How hard? JOSH Very hard. DONNA And I am? JOSH Not at all controlling. DONNA Thank you. You have a staff meeting. JOSH On my way. Josh walks on towards the door, and stops and turns back as he hears Donna's voice again. DONNA Wait, uh, there's another thing. JOSH What? DONNA Hang on. JOSH Donna? DONNA Hang on. [takes out a note from a folder] Here it is. Leo wants you to meet someone named Lacey from the National Security Council in his office after staff. JOSH Thank you. [takes the note, continues on his way, and walks out the door] DONNA What do you think it's about? JOSH I don't know. But this is the White House, so it's probably not that important. C.J. quickly walks past Donna and catches up with Josh. C.J. Josh! JOSH Ma'am. C.J. There's an article I want you to read in the New Yorker. JOSH What's it about? C.J. Smallpox. JOSH The disease? C.J. No, the dessert topping, Josh. JOSH Okay. C.J. Yes, the disease. CUT TO: INT. ROOSEVELT ROOM - CONTINUOUS We see some of White House staffers seated around the table, including Toby, Mandy, Sam, Cathy and Margaret. MARGARET We do it at the first of every month. CATHY We've missed a few months. SAM But, generally speaking, we try to do it on the first of every month. TOBY We've done it twice in 12 months. SAM We're a little behind. MANDY I still don't know what we're talking about. TOBY It's 'Throw Open Our Office Doors To People Who Want To Discuss Things That We Could Care Less About... Day' MANDY Well, that sounds goofy, doesn't it? SAM It's not so bad. You talk to them for a minute. You give them a souvenir pen with the Presidential seal on it. MANDY This isn't a waste of time? MARGARET Oh, it's definitely a waste of time, but it's one of Leo's pet office policies. MANDY Why? LEO [walks in] Good morning. TOBY [whispers to Mandy] Sadly you're about to find out. LEO Andrew Jackson, in the main foyer of his White House had a big block of cheese. TOBY Hmmm. Some of the White House Staffers giggle lightly. LEO I am making a mental list of those who are snickering, and even as I speak I'm preparing appropriate retribution. [beat] The block of cheese was huge--over two tons. And it was there for any and all who might be hungry. TOBY Leo, wouldn't this time be better spent plotting a war against a country that can't possibly defend itself against us? LEO We can do that later, Toby. Right now I'm talking about President Andrew Jackson. SAM Actually, right now, you're talking about a big block of cheese. LEO And Sam goes on my list! SAM What about Toby? LEO I'm unpredictable. [beat] Jackson wanted the White House to belong to the people, so from time to time, he opened his doors to those who wished an audience. MANDY And then he locked the doors behind them and made them eat two tons of cheese. LEO It is in that spirit... SAM Hang on. Mandy doesn't go on the list? LEO Mandy's new. SAM So it's just me... on the list? LEO Yes. It is in the spirit of Andrew Jackson that I, from time to time, ask senior staff to have face-to-face meetings with those people representing organizations who have a difficult time getting our attention. [beat] I know the more jaded among you, see this as something rather beneath you. But I assure you that listening to the voices of passionate Americans is beneath no one, and surely not the peoples' servants. JOSH [walks in with C.J.] Sorry, we're late. Is it 'Total Crackpot Day' again? LEO Yes, it is. SAM And let us please note that Josh does not go on the list. LEO [to Josh] Actually you've got a thing right now. JOSH Yeah, I know. Donna told me. LEO Margaret, hand out those appointments would you? Josh walks out with Leo from the Roosevelt Room into the HALLWAY. JOSH What's up? LEO First of all... [smacks Josh in the head] JOSH Ow! LEO That's for 'Total Crackpot Day.' JOSH Yeah, yeah. They enter LEO'S OFFICE. Standing in the middle of the room is JONATHAN LACEY. Josh offers his hand. LEO Second of all, this is Jonathan Lacey. JOSH Josh Lyman. LACEY Good to meet you. [points at the door] Mr. McGarry, would you mind? Leo closes the door and stands behind Josh. LACEY [to Leo] Thanks. [to Josh] I only have a few moments. I know you're busy too. JOSH What can I do for you? Lacey opens a folder on the table. In the folder, attached with a paper clip and a cardholder, is a green-colored card. He takes it and gives it to Josh. LACEY I'd like you to keep this card on your person at all times. If you keep it in your wallet and you lose your wallet, your first call isn't to American Express. It's to us. JOSH [looking at the card] Who's us? LACEY I'm sorry. I thought you knew. I'm with the N.S.C. JOSH [still looking the card] They told me that a minute... What's the card do? LACEY Tells you where to go in the event of a nuclear attack. JOSH [swiftly looks up] You're kidding me. LACEY Obviously, we want to get everyone up on Air Force One or into one of the underground command centers as quickly as possible. JOSH [very distraught] Sure...well,um...Okay, I really, um, I don't know what to say. LEO [to Lacey] I guess that's it then? LACEY Should you have any questions, you should feel free to call. JOSH Sure. Sure...and my staff goes with me or do they have separate...? A long silence fills the room. Lacey looks at Leo, who looks away. JOSH [surprised] Oh, God! Sorry...you know what? I just got it. Sorry...Ok, sure. [takes out wallet] I'm just gonna stick this right here next to my, uh, my video club membership and there's no reason, I guess, why my staff ever has to know anything about it...So there it is. [puts wallet back in pocket] And I think the best thing to do is just forget all about it. I'll go now. Leo opens the door. Josh takes a last look at Lacey, walks out and sees White House staffers passing through the hallways. He looks left, looks right, looks left, looks right again, and walks away. FADE OUT. END ACT ONE * * * ACT TWO FADE IN: INT. BRIEFING ROOM - DAY The senior staff are preparing the President for a press conference. Sam, Mandy, and Leo are sitting in the blue chairs in the room, while Toby is walking around in the aisle. Mrs. Landingham carefully watches Bartlet as he walks left and right behind the briefing room's podium as he looks at a bunch of papers through his glasses. SAM Last week's rise in the producer's price index coupled with the increasingly tight labor market have sparked a growing concern over future inflation. Do you share that concern, sir? BARTLET No, Helen, I don't. The U.S. economy is fundamentally... SAM Ah! I wasn't Helen there, sir. Actually, I was Sandy King. BARTLET From the... Miami Herald? SAM She moved to The Sun-Times. BARTLET But, your voice sounded the same as when you did Helen. SAM [different accent] Do you share that concern, sir? BARTLET No, not at all. The U.S. economy remains fundamentally strong as the steady decline in unemployment reflects, which I think is cause for satisfaction, not gloom. The solitary aberrant spike in the P.P.I. is not cause for overreaction. SAM You might also want to point out that there's been no corresponding increase in wholesale prices. MANDY Yeah, so Mr. President, if you could further see clear to not answer that question like an economics professor with a big old stick up his butt, that would be good too. BARTLET I AM an economics professor with a big old stick up my butt, but I'll do my best for you there, Mandy. MANDY Thank you, sir. SAM [to Toby] That's it for the economy. TOBY Let's move to guns. BARTLET We don't need to do guns. TOBY Sir, they are absolutely gonna ask about guns. BARTLET I'm not saying they're not gonna ask about them, Toby. I'm saying I'm all set. TOBY How 'bout one or two questions, Mr. President? BARTLET [looks at watch] Is it time for my 10 a.m. scolding? LEO Are we gonna have this argument, again? TOBY [with hand raised a little] Mr. President... BARTLET Let's do guns. TOBY Sir... BARTLET Let's do guns, Sam. Toby drops his hand, looks at the President and continues to pace the aisle. SAM Mr. President, is there any reason to believe this victory, this weapons ban bill, will have any significant reduction in crime? BARTLET Yes, next question. TOBY Mr. President... BARTLET Ah! Mr. Ziegler from the Coney Island Killjoy. You have a follow up? Bartlet picks up the cup beside the microphone in the podium, finding it empty, puts it back. Mrs. Landingham gets up from her chair and walks to the podium. TOBY You're gonna take the question. We're lucky enough to get the question, you're gonna take it and blow it off? BARTLET Yes. TOBY Due respect, sir, may I ask why? Mrs. Landingham takes the cup from the podium and starts to walk out through the back exit. BARTLET 'Cause I'm weak-willed and stupid. LEO Let's do this another time. TOBY Four days ago sir, we talked this over. BARTLET Then I talked it over with some other people. TOBY Which people? BARTLET I have lots of other people. TOBY Sir, I believe we are missing a huge opportunity here... Toby and the President continue to fight in the background. Just outside the BRIEFING ROOM, we see Josh standing by the door staring through space. C.J. walks past him. She notices him and looks back. C.J. What's going on? JOSH Hmm? C.J. What's going on? JOSH Oh, we're doing the thing. C.J. Why aren't you in there? JOSH I was just going in. Mrs. Landingham, coming from the Briefing Room, walks behind C.J. with the President's cup in her hand. C.J. Good morning, Mrs. Landingham. Where are we in the saga of Toby and the President? MRS. LANDINGHAM They seem to be having a disagreement. C.J. A disagreement or a fight? MRS. LANDINGHAM Well, it certainly has the potential... BARTLET [OS] [shouts] Oh, for God's sakes Toby! MRS. LANDINGHAM There we go. Mrs. Landingham walks out the door. C.J. looks at Josh, who is still staring to space. C.J. [to Josh] Let's go in. [beat] Josh! JOSH Hmm? C.J. Let's go in. [walks inside with Josh] TOBY Sir... BARTLET I'm not gonna come out and say the bill we just passed is worthless. TOBY If we could just admit its weaknesses. MANDY Toby? TOBY Why not? MANDY It will infuriate the left, it will energize the right and everyone in the middle will feel they just got yanked around...I'm sorry, Mr. President, did you want to answer that? BARTLET Yeah, my answer was gonna be 'because I said so,' but you did pretty good. MANDY Say nothing of taking a victory and declaring defeat. SAM Yes. MANDY Look, Toby, by changing some words... TOBY By changing some words, the world can move or not by changing some words. BARTLET What's your point? TOBY I have many points, sir. I choose not to make them right now. BARTLET [eating a bagel] Well, on behalf of everybody in the west wing, Toby, let me just say that that's a relief. Cathy, standing behind Josh and C.J. has just delivered a message for Sam. SAM Excuse me, Leo. LEO Yes? SAM Cathy tells me my first 'cheese' appointment is here, but I think preparing the President for this press conference should be a priority. C.J. I agree. LEO No. C.J. Leo, it... LEO No! SAM But I really need to get... LEO You're not getting out of these appointments. C.J. This is a very important press conference. LEO This is a thoroughly unimportant press conference. SAM I think this press conference is about our future. BARTLET [still eating] I think this press conference is about we haven't had a press conference in a while. LEO Sam, go. CHARLIE [walks in] Mr. President? [points at his watch] BARTLET We're going too. TOBY Sir... LEO [to Toby] We'll pick this up this afternoon. CUT TO: INT. SAM'S OFFICE - DAY Sam just came in to his office. He sees a nerdy BOB ENGLER sitting in a chair beside the door. SAM So, you are from the United States Space Command? BOB Not a lot of people know about us. SAM This is my first time. BOB We're a little nerdy, I'll admit. SAM You camouflage it well with your clothing. BOB I'm used to that, Sam. SAM What can I do for you, Bob? BOB In a nutshell? SAM So to speak. BOB We'd like the White House to pay a little more attention to UFOs. SAM Are we paying any attention at all right now? BOB No. SAM Thank God. Like we don't have enough trouble with the First Lady and her Ouija board. BOB I would like you to show the President some data we've collected on some possible extraterrestrial contact. SAM I really can't do that. BOB May I ask why not? SAM Because the President will either yell at me or laugh at me. Either way, it won't work out well for me. BOB This morning at 6:35 a.m. local time, air traffic control in Honolulu picked up an unidentified flying object flying east across the Pacific towards California. Air Force and Naval Jets have been in the area for hours and have been unable to establish visual contact. These things happen and go unexplained. You don't think this is something you should take to the President? SAM No. BOB Again, may I ask why not? SAM Because there are levels and an order to our air defense command, and to jump from a radar officer to a commander-in-chief would skip several of those levels. BOB Like what? SAM Like the Pentagon, and, you know, perhaps, therapy. BOB Okay, I can see that. SAM Bob, no hard feelings, but I can't walk into the cabinet room and ask the President to put down the budget surplus because there are flying saucers over Maui. BOB Something's heading east in the sky over the Pacific. It's in and out of our radar. We can't see it, and it's up there right now. I leave you with that thought. SAM It's been good meeting with you, and I hope that you don't feel that you've wasted your time... I leave you with this pen. [shows a pen with a Presidential seal on it] CUT TO: INT. HALLWAY - DAY C.J. walks out of the Press Room. Mandy approaches her. C.J., not looking at Mandy, carries and places some papers from different places as she walks. MANDY I know the President's not wild about Larry Posner's fund-raiser on the California trip, but I think we can't pass. And I want to know where you were on this. C.J. You don't have to worry about me on Hollywood fund-raisers. You have to worry about Toby. MANDY I know. That's why I'm shoring up support. C.J. I'm in. C.J. walks in the secretaries' bullpen. The confused Mandy passes through the bullpen, sees C.J. through the glass, and walks back to enter the bullpen. MANDY They sent pictures of the Malibu place. It's great. C.J. This wasn't the one we used during the primary? MANDY No, he bought another place. C.J. Where was the one where Roberto Benigni pushed me into this swimming pool? MANDY That was Larry Posner's house, but that was the old place. C.J....if it gets a vote then isn't it worth it? C.J. Which would be fine if Roberto Benigni can vote in our elections, but since he's Italian, that makes me a six foot wet girl in a Donna Karan dress. CUT TO: INT. ROOSEVELT ROOM - DAY Bartlet and Leo are meeting with distinguished people concerned with economics. LEO I'm the only one in the room who isn't an economist, but it seems to me that the annual budget for the new fiscal year is found either in balance, in deficit, or in surplus. I don't know how I can sell congress, to say nothing of people who graduated eighth grade on the idea that there's anything in between. BARTLET Leo's not talking about the portion being accounted for as off budget and particularly not the long-term capital outlays. LEO [points at the President] Here's where you lose me. BARTLET Ten years ago, the federal budget had a deficit of 22 billion dollars but the national debt rose... Charlie walks in the door behind the President. BARTLET [cont.] ...from 5.2 trillion to 5.4 trillion in the same fiscal year. Charlie gives the President the note in his hand. BARTLET [cont.] Thank you. That's a debt increase of 188 million against a 22 billion dollar deficit. [reads note] Oh, this is good news. WOMAN [to the President] You knew those numbers in your head? LEO The President's startlingly freakish that way. BARTLET [to Leo] Zoey's coming for dinner. LEO She's in town! BARTLET Yeah. [to everyone in room] My daughter's starting Georgetown after the first and she's scouting off-campus housing. Guys, we're done. I'm sorry, but some of my staff has been waiting and they haven't had the chance to bother me for a couple of hours. Thanks so much. Bartlet and Leo come out of the ROOSEVELT ROOM. BARTLET I'm gonna make chili! LEO Yeah. BARTLET I'll make it for everybody. Charlie! LEO Sir... BARTLET My friends, my daughter, my beer, and some chili. Yes! LEO And you're gonna be the one to, you know, cook this food? They enter THE OVAL OFFICE. Charlie comes from behind them. CHARLIE Yes, sir? BARTLET Ah, Charlie. My youngest daughter, Zoey, is down from Hanover. I'm making chili tonight. It's her favorite. CHARLIE Uh, sir, you know the first lady does not want you to eat... BARTLET The first lady's in Pakistan. I can eat whatever I want. CHARLIE Yes, sir. BARTLET I'm gonna need some ingredients. CHARLIE Like what? LEO Well, he'll need some chili. BARTLET Don't ever listen to him. Look, Mrs. Landingham's got it all written down somewhere. Just tell her to give it to the steward's office. And send everyone else in. CHARLIE Yes, sir. [walks off] BARTLET Thank you, Charlie! LEO How could you possibly remember that ten years ago there was a 188 million dollar debt increase off a 22 billion dollar deficit? BARTLET [hand in chest] God, I was right? LEO Ah, see, that's what I thought. Bartlet laughs and LEO smiles. The senior staff walk in. BARTLET Everyone! Come in. Come on in. Hey, listen up everybody. Zoey's down from Hanover. I'm making chili for everyone tonight. SENIOR STAFF [very weak and uninterested] Great. Okay. Chili. BARTLET [looks at Leo then to his staff] All right...You know what? Let's do this. Everybody look down at the big seal in the middle of my carpet. They all look down at the Presidential Seal on the carpet in the middle of the room. BARTLET Now, everybody look back up at me. Zoey's coming down from Hanover and I'm making chili for everyone tonight. SENIOR STAFF [loud and very excited] That's great! I love chili! Terrific! BARTLET There, you see how benevolent I can be, when everyone does what I tell them to do. Now sit down. [picks up a newspaper and reads. Everyone else sits down.] LEO I would like this meeting to last no more than three minutes. I will allow it to last no more than five. Speak, Mandy. MANDY We're going to California in a few weeks. LEO Yes. MANDY Larry Posner would like to host a fundraiser. TOBY Nope. MANDY Why? TOBY 'Cause 24 hours earlier the President's gonna give a speech to the entertainment industry on violence in film and television. SAM A speech I don't think we should be giving. TOBY That's beside the point. MANDY What's the point? TOBY Larry Posner's movies are incredibly violent. SAM So is The Godfather. What you mean to say is Larry Posner's movies are incredibly bad. TOBY No, actually, what I mean to say is Larry Posner's movies are indicative of a Hollywood that is excessibly violent, arrogantly violent, and is promoting violence and the disrespect to human life. Either way, I don't see how we can admonish Hollywood on a Tuesday and cash their check on a Wednesday. How can we do that? BARTLET [still reading] Cause it's Hollywood. Who gives a damn? TOBY Now, hang on a second, Mr. President, you have me drafting a speech for the entertainment industry, where we more than suggest to come right out and say that much of their product is corruptive. Now are we doing this because we believe that it's time for them to take moral leadership seriously or are we doing it because nobody ever lost an election attacking Hollywood? BARTLET Why can't we do both? TOBY [sighs] That's not hypocritical, sir? BARTLET No. TOBY Why not? BARTLET Because Sam is right. It's not that Larry Posner's movies have gratuitous sex and gratuitous violence. It's that they suck. They're terrible. But people go to see them because they have gratuitous sex and gratuitous violence. Now, if we could just get people to stop going to see crappy movies, Posner would stop making them. I promise you. TOBY How's that strategy working for us in the war on drugs, sir? LEO Toby... TOBY We are going to go out there and implore these people to step up to the plate and not be quite so casual with the awesome influence that they have. That's fantastic. But, sir, every time someone makes headlines by blowing thunder at this ridiculous target, it only serves as a criminal distraction in the pursuit of actual solutions. Now, let me just say one other thing. If I were an actor, a writer, or a director, or a producer in Hollywood and someone would start coming at me with a list of things that were American and un-American, I'd start to think that this was sounding eerily familiar. BARTLET [stares at Toby] Do I look like Joe McCarthy to you, Toby? TOBY No sir. Nobody ever looks like Joe McCarthy. That's how they get in the door in the first place. C.J. We seem to have wandered off the point a bit. LEO Yeah. And time's up. Everyone stands up and walks out the door. Toby touches his head in frustration. C.J. Thank you, Mr. President. BARTLET Chili, tonight! JOSH Yes, sir. MANDY Thank you. Out in the HALLWAY, Sam and Josh walk out of the Oval Office. Sam looks at Josh and notices something. SAM You okay? JOSH Yeah. SAM 'Cause you look a little...you know... JOSH No. No. SAM Cathy? CATHY [walks up with mouth full] You know that doughnut sitting on your desk? SAM You ate it. CATHY That was predictable, wasn't it? They enter the COMMUNICATIONS OFFICE. Sam whispers something to Cathy. SAM Hey, is there any word yet on the... CATHY The thing's still out there. SAM [to Josh] Had a guy on my office today. He'd like us to spend a little more time working on UFOs. JOSH walks into SAM'S OFFICE. Sam follows. JOSH Are we spending any time working on UFOs? SAM That's what I said. JOSH 'Cause coming on the heels of Mrs. Bartlet's Ouija board... SAM I hear you. JOSH I'm closing the door. [looks out and closes the door] SAM The Central Pacific Command's been picking this thing up on radar all day. JOSH Sam? SAM Right. JOSH Listen, you're close with Cathy, right? SAM I haven't seen her naked, if that's what you're asking. JOSH [surprised] No, Sam. Well, that's not what I'm asking. SAM I mean, she's like my younger sister, but she gets paid, and... JOSH Right. SAM And she frightens me. JOSH Yes. SAM But I love her. JOSH Yeah. SAM It's like you and Donna. JOSH Right. [beat] When they gave you a card and they told you... that it was just you and not Cathy, how did you... how'd you feel about that? SAM When they gave me what card? JOSH The N.S.C. guy... the card with the directions. SAM The directions to... JOSH You, C.J., Toby. I'm saying when the N.S.C. guy gave you your cards. A long pause. SAM Josh... What card? JOSH [very surprised] Nothing... I-I-I was thinking of a different... nothing. Nothing. [opens the door and walks away] FADE OUT. END ACT TWO * * * ACT THREE FADE IN: INT. ROOSEVELT ROOM - DAY A white screen is set for an overhead projector. A woman sitting at the middle of the room controls it. Two men on each side of the screen, starts to talk to C.J., who is sitting at the other end of the table. MAN 1 C.J., we'd like to tell you the story of Pluie. C.J. Who's Pluie? MAN 1 I'm glad you asked. From the projector, a wolf is shown in the screen. C.J.'s face changes. C.J. That's Pluie. MAN 1 Yes. C.J. Pluie's a wolf? MAN 1 Yeah, she is. C.J. And you're gonna tell me her story? [smiles] MAN 1 Jerry? MAN 2 For four years, scientists have tracked Pluie as she made her way from Banff National Park in Alberta up and down the Rockies. In that time, she's made three round trips between Canada and Wyoming covering 40,000 square miles. MAN 1 We thing you'll admit it was a pretty impressive performance for Pluie especially when you consider the impediments of modern life she had to conquer: highways, housing, forest denuded of trees. WOMAN Not to mention the US-Canadian border. C.J. Sure, 'cause no photo I.D. [laughs] WOMAN I'm sorry? C.J. That was a joke. MAN 1 Why does Pluie make the trek? Because wolves have to breed with many packs in order to keep from becoming extinct. C.J. Really? MAN 1 If they breed among themselves, they'll eventually produce offspring that's genetically weaker, thus endangering their long-term survival. C.J. That helps explain Buckingham Palace. [laughs] MAN 2 May we tell you what we propose? C.J. Sure. MAN The wolves-only roadway. C.J. [surprised] The wolves-only roadway? MAN Eighteen hundred miles from Yellowstone to the Yukon Territory complete with highway overpasses and no cattle grazing. C.J. [still surprised] An 1800-mile wolves-only roadway? WOMAN Pluie, you'll recall, had to... C.J. Hang on. How are you gonna teach wolves to follow road signs? MAN 2 Our scientists are working on a plan. C.J. Yeah, but in the meantime, Pluie's gonna get drunk and wander off the wolves-only road and end up eating my cat. MAN 1 [scoffs] We don't think that'll happen. C.J. I don't think this is gonna happen. [indicating the roadway] JERRY Perhaps, if we should... C.J. First of all, ranchers don't want wolves returned to the West. MAN Ranchers are killers. C.J. No, they're not. And anyone who says it should take it back. Ranchers face the following conditions: falling stock prices, rising taxes, prolonged drought, and a country that's eating less beef. Ranchers want to blame something, and because they're ranchers, they want to fight something. I'd rather be a wolf than us, so unless Pluie registers to vote... WOMAN Pluie was shot and killed by a rancher in British Columbia last month. The two men and the woman bow down their heads. C.J. I'm... sorry to hear that. WOMAN I'm not sure you are. C.J. [throat clearing] Just out of curiosity, how much would it cost? MAN That's the beauty part. With contributions and corporate sponsorship, the cost of the taxpayer is only 900 million dollars. C.J. [laughs very hard] No, seriously, how much would it cost? JERRY C.J., if we're gonna do this, why not do it right? C.J. We're not gonna do it. MAN Sure, there are other things we could spend the money on. C.J. You think? WOMAN I'd like to hear what you think. What's a better way to spend this money? C.J. Nine hundred million dollars? WOMAN Another war plane, another S&L Bailout? C.J. How about we build the nine best schools in the world? MAN Let's... Let's move on to the grizzly bear. C.J. looks as a grizzly bear appears on the screen. CUT TO: INT. TOBY'S OFFICE - CONTINUOUS Mandy knocks at Toby's door. Toby, seated at his couch, looks at her and looks back at the papers he's reading. MANDY Hi. [leans at door] TOBY Hi. MANDY Can I talk to you? TOBY What'd you get him, a spot on Hollywood Squares? MANDY Posner's a huge supporter, Toby. I don't have to tell you that. TOBY No, you don't. MANDY I came in here to be nice to you, Toby. TOBY Go ahead. MANDY I don't like going up against you. TOBY I don't like going up against you. MANDY Okay. TOBY That's you being nice? MANDY [steps in] I'm glad David Rosen passed on the Communications job. They couldn't have done better than you. TOBY [surprised] Excuse me? MANDY I'm saying you make a better Communications Director than David Rosen ever would've been. That's me being nice. CUT TO: INT. HALLWAY - DAY An agitated Toby is walking with C.J. TOBY Remember a month ago when I asked you if I was the President's first choice? C.J. We're back to this? TOBY And you called me paranoid? C.J. Yes. TOBY And a nudnik. You called me a paranoid nudnik. C.J. Toby, for the 48th time, you are not the President's second choice. TOBY What about David Rosen? C.J. What about David Rosen? TOBY Mandy was just in my office, and she said she was happy David Rosen passed on my job. C.J. Carol, we're gonna start in a few minutes. CAROL [walks by] Should I bring them in? C.J. Give 'em fair warning. TOBY David Rosen. C.J. I don't... Toby, I know nothing about David Rosen, and I don't know where this is coming from. TOBY He's about to have a press conference. Let me talk to him about the gun thing. We'll just leave Hollywood for some other time. C.J. Since when do you need help talking to the President? TOBY Since all of a sudden I became the kid in the class with his hand raised that nobody wants the teacher to call on. C.J. That's silly. TOBY No, it is not. C.J. Toby... TOBY Just help me, please. CUT TO: EXT. WASHINGTON, D.C. - DAY A shot of an office building somewhere in the city. CUT TO: INT. AN APARTMENT OFFICE - CONTINUOUS Josh is standing in the middle of the room. Bright light from outside the window surrounds him. We see that he's talking to his psychiatrist, who we'll know later as STANLEY. JOSH So, like I said, I appreciate you squeezing me in like this. STANLEY I was able to cancel someone when you called. JOSH You shouldn't have Stan. It's not a big deal. STANLEY What's not a big deal? JOSH Uh, I'm out of practice. STANLEY Well, that's what comes from not coming to see me for ten months. JOSH Well, I think the idea will make some people I work for nervous. [sits] STANLEY Why are you here now? JOSH Hmm. This is gonna sound silly. [beat] There's a magazine article... a magazine article came out... and it said that several countries, some of them are enemies, have stored in freezers the smallpox virus. STANLEY Are you afraid you might have smallpox? JOSH No...Don't laugh. [beat] I can't get 'Ave Maria' out of my head. STANLEY The Schubert? JOSH Yeah, I swear it. I've been humming it to myself all morning. It's the strangest thing... Why do you think the 'Ave Maria?' STANLEY Why do you think the 'Ave Maria?' JOSH I don't know... My sister used to play it over and over in her room, but that was, I don't know how many years ago. STANLEY Your sister who died? JOSH Joanie. STANLEY Why did Joanie play the 'Ave Maria' in her room? JOSH She liked music... a lot. She liked it a lot. She wanted to be an orchestra conductor. She used to pretend she was conducting the music. Anyway, there's that. Plus, I have to tell you. I was a little thrown off this morning when they gave me this card. And it turns out that I was the only one who got one. I mean, of my friends. It surprised me... Joanie and Toby and C.J. and Sam. STANLEY Joanie? JOSH What? STANLEY You named Joanie in there. You said you got some kind of card and Joanie didn't get one. JOSH I meant... No, 'cause we were just talking about Joanie. STANLEY What kind of card? JOSH It was uh... there really are some things I'm not allowed to talk about. I assure you, I'm not withholding anything I'm supposed to be emotionally available for. STANLEY Okay. JOSH Thanks. STANLEY Can you talk about the card without talking about the card? JOSH I got to go. [stands up] STANLEY Josh? JOSH It's really not a big deal, Stanley. I'm sorry I had you cancel an appointment. STANLEY But I did cancel. Why don't you take your coat off and sit down. JOSH It was an impulse. I wasted your time. STANLEY Josh, do you think it's strange that you've never told me how Joanie died? JOSH I've told you. STANLEY No, you haven't. JOSH Sure, I have. STANLEY No. JOSH It's not a big deal. [thinks it over, sits down] Uh, she was babysitting for me, and there was a fire. STANLEY How'd the fire start? JOSH I honestly... I don't remember... Something about a popcorn maker. STANLEY The house caught on fire? JOSH Yeah. STANLEY While your sister Joanie was babysitting for you? JOSH Yeah. STANLEY Why aren't you dead? JOSH I ran out of the house. STANLEY You were just a little boy, Josh. That's what you're supposed to do. JOSH [staring at nowhere] Yeah. FADE OUT. END ACT THREE * * * ACT FOUR FADE IN: INT. JOSH'S OFFICE - NIGHT Schubert's 'Ave Maria' is playing in the boom box. Josh is sitting in his chair, thinking deeply. From outside, we hear C.J. knocking. Josh doesn't answer. C.J., carrying a glass of wine, opens the door and walks in. C.J. Josh? I was knocking but you didn't answer. JOSH I didn't hear the door. C.J. What are you doing? JOSH I think I'm ready to brief the President on the smallpox article. C.J. Why don't you forget about that for tonight, and come have some chili? Everyone's there. JOSH C.J., an N.S.C. staffer gave me a card with instructions on it for what I'm supposed to do in the event of a nuclear attack. They want me up in the plane or down on a bunker. They don't want you... or Sam, or Toby, for that matter. I didn't want to be friends with you and have you not know. C.J. Josh, have you been upset about this? JOSH Yes. C.J. You're very sweet sometimes. You really are. JOSH C.J... C.J. Of course, they don't want me, Josh. I'm a press secretary. I don't think they're gonna be issuing a whole lot of releases. Sam and Toby are communications and my guess is that speech writing won't be a priority either. Come, have some fun. [starts to go to the door] JOSH [points at the boom box] This is a beautiful piece of music. Do you know this? C.J. [turns back] I'm Catholic. JOSH Hang on. Listen. Listen. [goes to the boom box and slowly turns up the volume. A high voice in the choir sings and Josh is moved] There, right there. It's... miraculous. [beat] Schubert was crazy, you know. C.J. Yes. JOSH Do you think you have to be crazy to create something powerful? C.J. Josh, the cold war is over. There's not gonna be a nuclear... JOSH God, C.J. It's not gonna be like that. It's not gonna be the red phone and nuclear bombs. C.J. What's it gonna be? JOSH It's gonna be this. It's gonna be something like this. Smallpox has been gone for 50 years. No one has an acquired immunity. Flies through the air. You get it... you carry a ten foot cloud around with you. One in three people die. If 100 people in New York City got it, you'd have to encircle them with 100 million vaccinated people to contain it. Do you know how many doses of smallpox vaccines exist in the country? Seven. If 100 people in New York City get it, there's gonna be a global medical emergency that's gonna make HIV look like cold and flu season. That's how it's gonna be, a little test tube with a-a rubber cap that's deteriorating... A guy steps out of Times Square Station. Pshht... Smashes it on the sidewalk... There is a world war right there. C.J. We'll make more vaccine. [turns to the door] JOSH You better hurry 'cause I'm the only one with one of these cards. C.J. Come have chili. The President's asking for you. JOSH Yeah, I'll be right there in a minute. C.J. You really are very sweet sometimes. [exits] Josh stares at the door. CUT TO: INT. THE WHITE HOUSE RESIDENCE - NIGHT We follow C.J. as she walks by. White House staffers are having a good time in a reception while waiting for the chili. We stop at Bartlet having a conversation about basketball with Sam and Charlie. BARTLET Sam, it's all about mastering the fundamentals, see? Got to keep your hands up, your feet moving on defense. Pass and get open or find the open man, and follow his shot on offense. See, I am a master of fundamentals, and that is why my team so thoroughly dominated your team. SAM It probably didn't hurt so much to have a 2 time A.C.C. player of the week on your team. BARTLET [walks away] Leo, kids don't understand the fundamentals. LEO No appreciation for the game, Mr. President. BARTLET Mrs. Landingham, are you drunk? MRS. LANDINGHAM [carrying a bottle of beer] No, sir. Now why would I... BARTLET I just like asking. MRS. LANDINGHAM You know, I should tell you... BARTLET Oh, give it up. Where's Zoey? [takes beer from Mrs. Landingham] MRS. LANDINGHAM [takes back her beer] She's in the kitchen. On the OTHER ROOM, C.J. talks with Toby, Cathy, and Donna. C.J. Wolves don't kill people. That's a myth. TOBY Where along the way did she turn into a wolf person? C.J. More people get killed getting change out of vending machines than get killed by a wolf attack. CATHY Are you serious? C.J. Number of people killed last year retrieving change from a vending machine: four. Number of people killed by a wolf attack: zero. TOBY [sees the President in the other room] Excuse me. One second. DONNA How do people die from vending machines? TOBY [sits across Bartlet] So, I guess we haven't been getting along too well lately. Have we, sir? BARTLET No, I guess not. TOBY I've been... irritating you? BARTLET Yes. TOBY Was David Rosen your first choice for my job? BARTLET [looks away] Yes. TOBY Well, I'm glad we had this little talk, sir. I feel a lot better. Thank you, sir. [laughs] BARTLET We were up all night on that one, Toby. Me and Leo and Josh. They were screaming at me, 'Governor, for God's sakes, it's got to be Toby. It's got to be Toby.' When I held my ground, and we went to David Rosen, and Rosen said he wanted to take a partnership at Solomon Brothers, thank God... I couldn't live without you Toby. I mean it. I'd be in the tall grass. I'd be in the weeds... I know I disappoint you sometimes. I mean I can sense your disappointment. And I only get mad because I know you're right a lot of the times, but you are not the kid in the class with his hand up and whatever it was you said to C.J. You are a wise and brilliant man, Toby... The other night when we were playing basketball, did you mean what you said? My demons were shouting down the better angels in my brain? TOBY Yes, sir. I did. BARTLET You think that's what's stopping me from greatness? TOBY Yes. BARTLET I suppose you're right. TOBY Tell you what though, sir. In a battle between a President's demons and his better angels, for the first time in a long while, I think we might just have ourselves a fair fight. BARTLET Thank you, Toby. [beat] Now, go away. CUT TO: INT. RESIDENCE KITCHEN - NIGHT The President's youngest daughter, ZOEY BARTLET, is cooking chili in a big casserole. Behind her, Josh looks at the door window and sneaks in. Zoey, not taking a look, smiles as she realizes that Josh came in. From behind, Josh tries to surprise her. JOSH Drop the spoon! ZOEY I knew it was you. JOSH You look good! ZOEY And, you look like death in a triscuit. JOSH Oh, thanks very much. I'm seeing a new barber. ZOEY I heard you've been having a little nutty today. JOSH Mind your own business. [beat] What classes are you taking? ZOEY Mind your own business. JOSH Okay. CHARLIE [enters] Excuse me. JOSH Charlie, you met Zoey Bartlet? CHARLIE No, it's a pleasure to meet you, ma'am. I'm Charlie Young. ZOEY Hi. JOSH Okay, hang on a second. Let's take it back a moment and give it another chance. This is a girl, Charlie. You don't have to call her 'ma'am.' CHARLIE I beg your pardon. Did I call you... ZOEY Zoey. CHARLIE I should call you Zoey? ZOEY [smiles] If I can call you Charlie. CHARLIE Yes... Um, I have a message for you from the President. JOSH That would be her father. CHARLIE You're forbidden from adding additional cumin to the chili. ZOEY Charlie, check the door to see if my father's nearby? CHARLIE Ma'am, I... JOSH Ah, ah, ah. [looks out the door] CHARLIE Zoey, I have certain instructions, and I don't want to get in trouble... JOSH You're fine. ZOEY Taste this. [offers Charlie a taste] Doesn't it need cumin? CHARLIE It needs oregano. ZOEY Well, let's get to work. JOSH See, you guys. [exits] CUT TO: INT. RESIDENCE - NIGHT We see C.J. still talking about wolves and vending machines, this time with Leo and the President. C.J. I don't know. I mean, maybe the vending machines fall on them while they're getting their change. Bartlet and Leo laugh. C.J. [cont.] My point is, can't we build schools and protect wildlife at the same time? We must be able to do that. LEO Pluie really got to you, huh? C.J. She really was very sweet, Leo. Josh joins in the conversation as C.J. leaves. BARTLET Josh! We've been looking for you. C.J. [to Leo] I'll be over here. BARTLET Look at this, will you? JOSH At what sir? BARTLET I don't know why, but nothing makes me feel quite so good as the sight of colleagues, enjoying each other outside work. JOSH So, what were you guys talking about? BARTLET We were talking about these women. JOSH Yeah? LEO We can't get over these women. BARTLET Look at C.J. We see a glimpse of C.J. laughing and talking to Sam and Donna, while holding a Polaroid. BARTLET [cont.] She's like a fifties movie star, so capable, so loving and energetic. LEO Look at Mandy over there. Mandy, on the other side of the room is fighting with Toby about something. LEO [cont.] Going punch for punch with Toby in a world that tells women to sit down and shut up. Mandy's already won her battle with the President. The game's over, but she's not done. She wants Toby. BARTLET Mrs. Landingham. Mrs. Landingham is having fun while talking to some staffers. BARTLET [cont.] Did you guys know she lost two sons in Vietnam? What would make her want to serve her country is beyond me, but in 14 years, she's not missed a day's work, not one. [beat] There's Cathy, Donna, and Margaret. JOSH Mr. President, there's something that's been bothering me for most of the day, and while I know that this is an inappropriate time... LEO No, what's on your mind, Josh? JOSH I serve at the pleasure of the President, and it's a great privilege that I will never forget. [takes out the card from his wallet, a card that has bothered him for the whole day. He shows it to Leo and the President.] I can't keep this. I think it's a white flag of surrender. I want to be a comfort to my friends in tragedy. And I want to be able to celebrate with them in triumph. And for all the times in between, I just want to be able to look them in the eye. Leo, it's not for me. I want to be with my friends, my family, and these women. Bartlet pats Josh on the back. From the other side, we see Zoey and Charlie come in the room. Charlie signals the President that the chili is done. Bartlet starts to silence the room. BARTLET Uh, excuse me! Thank you. Uh, friends, please... Well, chili's ready and I hope you all enjoy it. In fact, since I told you you would enjoy it, I'm reasonably certain that you will. Laughter. BARTLET [cont.] You know, of course, the first lady's in Pakistan. [starts to walk around the room] I'm not entirely sure why, but I have learned it's a pretty good idea not to ask my wife too many questions as it seldom leads to anything but further confusion. I miss her very much, but I'm delighted our beautiful daughter, Zoey is here. You know, she's starting Georgetown in the spring. Everyone claps their hand for Zoey. BARTLET [cont.] This, prior to medical school and a life of celibacy. JOSH Yeah, right! BARTLET It's an incredible adventure you're starting on, sweetheart. An amazing four years full of people and experiences you haven't yet dreamed of. And if you will allow me just one minute of business, please. I hope that by the time we're done with our four years here, we'll have seen to it that every young person who chooses can go to college and beyond, regardless of their economic status. Applause. BARTLET [cont.] I understand that today was another one of Leo's 'big block of cheese' days! You all start out so cynical, but it never fails. By the end of the day, there's always one or two converts, right? And today was no exception. C.J. Cregg is gonna be up all night writing a position paper for the interior department on the necessity of wildlife protection. [C.J. laughs.] C.J., I don't mind the cost of this wolves-only highway. It's the segregation. The ACLU is gonna file a petition on behalf of some reindeer and then we're all screwed. Everyone laughs. BARTLET [cont.] Sam Seaborn had a guy who spotted a UFO today, am I right? Sam laughed him out of his office, but you've been thinking about it ever since. But you can rest assured, Sam. It was not a spaceship from another planet, just another time. A long since abandoned Soviet satellite, one of its booster rockets didn't fire and it couldn't escape the earth's orbit--a sad reminder of a time when two powerful nations challenged each other and then boldly raced into outer space. [beat] What will be the next thing that challenges us, Toby? [looks at Toby] That makes us work harder and go farther? You know, when smallpox was eradicated, it was considered the single greatest humanitarian achievement of this century. Surely, we can do it again. As we did in the time when our eyes looked towards the heavens, and with outstretched fingers, we touched the face of God. [beat] Here's to absent friends, and the ones that are here now. [holds up his glass of wine] STAFF Cheers! Everyone in the room hold up their glasses in unison. DISSOLVE TO: END CREDITS. FADE TO BLACK. THE END * * * The West Wing and all its characters are properties of Aaron Sorkin, John Wells Production, Warner Brothers Television, and NBC. No copyright infringement is intended. Episode 1.5 -- 'The Crackpots and These Women' Original Airdate: October 20, 1999, 9:00 EST Transcript by: giorgio July 2, 2000