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October 23, 2014

The West Wing: Transition

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 23rd 2006 9:40PM
Josh and Donna(S07E19) Can I tell you how much I liked the opening scene with Josh on the airplane, going to see Sam in L.A. to ask him to be Deputy Chief Of Staff? I liked that Josh interrupted him in the middle of a law firm meeting (shades of "In The Shadow Of Two Gunmen"), and the banter outside the building was just like old times. I really think it's odd -- really odd -- that Sam says nothing about Leo or apologize for not being there (they should have at least mention that Sam had called), but I'm not going to quibble with that. In my mind, he did call.

While Josh tries to get Sam back in the White House, the President-Elect runs afoul of the President ...or does he?

After meeting with Nancy and other staff members in the situation room about Kazakhstan, Santos calls China, and the NSA intercepts the call, and what he says doesn't make the current administration too happy.  C.J. confronts Josh about it (this wasn't a nasty scene like I was expecting - their rapport has gotten better - he even tells her that she can have any job in the administration that she wants), and Josh confronts Santos and tells him he can't interfere until he is sworn in. Santos demands a meeting with Bartlet.

Josh asks Lou to be Communications Director. But she says no, she doesn't want to end up like him. Josh thinks about this.

Josh is a mess. He's confused about Donna (she gives him a deadline to find out where exactly their personal and working relationships stand), he's ragged, he's drinking Alka-Seltzer like it's Diet Coke and Maalox like it's water. Bradley Whitford is doing some award-caliber work here. You can see him on the edge. I wouldn't be surprised if he started to have flashbacks to the shooting and have to go see Dr. Stan again.

Sam tells Josh that his fiancee isn't against the idea of going to D.C. But Sam still hasn't made up his mind (kudos to the writers here for some nice lines between Josh and Sam).

Mrs. Santos asks Donna to be her Chief of Staff. She says she has to think about it. She tells Josh, who offers her a Communicatinos job. She says that she can't work for him, because of what's happening between them. Josh doesn't really say anything about it. He seems to stall.

Sam unexpectedly shows up at the White House! Just in time to see Josh chew out Otto about his Blackberry. Sam interrupts and tries to talk some sense into a crazed Josh. Sam tells Josh he's destroying himself and needs to take a vacation. If he doesn't get on a plane, then Sam is getting on a plane, and he won't take the job.

Santos meets with Bartlet, then Josh introduces Sam to Santos. Josh is going on a vacation and Sam is going to take over for him. Sam tells Santos he's "a big fan."

Josh is on a plane going on his vacation...with Donna by his side.

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