The West Wing Weekly

The West Wing Weekly

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An episode-by-episode discussion of one of television’s most beloved shows, co-hosted by one of its stars, Joshua Malina, along with Hrishikesh Hirway of Song Exploder.

Episodes

2.11: The Leadership Breakfast  

When we spoke to Emily Procter (episode 2.04), she told us a story about a lunch meeting she had with Tommy Schlamme that had an unexpected twist. We've been holding on to her story until this episode. You'll hear why. Plus, a lot of #TrumpAiYiYi.

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/211

2.10: Noël (with Bradley Whitford and Ellen Totleben)  

(sung to the melody of "Carol of the Bells")

Hark! oh my gosh
Hrishi and Josh
Discuss Noël
Puns and intel

Ellen Totleben
Tells us laymen
All that you see
Was her duty

She was the West Wing Set Decorator
And we’ll talk to Bradley Whitford later

When it’s just us
Things we discuss:
PTSD
Tommy Schlamme

I got a job?
You got a job
Bush versus Gore
Flentls and more

Merry, Merry, Merry, Merry Christmas!
Bradley Whitford won an Emmy with this

Merry, Merry, Merry, Merry Christmas!
Epic flentl; you don't want to miss this.

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/210

2.09: Galileo  

At this extremely historic moment, we present a very unique episode. (Wow, that really is some terrible writing.) In this episode, we bone up on our Mars with help from NASA Systems Engineer Mallory Lefland, who is working on the Mars 2020 mission at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

footnotes —
Freddie Mercury said it right.

 

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/209

2.08: Shibboleth  

The pressure is on as we discuss one of Hrishi's all-time favorite episodes. Will his feelings be spared by Josh, or will they be placed on the chopping block and pulled apart like a turkey's giblets and flentls?!

Introducing the TWWW University Sweatshirt! You can get one for yourself or for your favorite West Wing Weekly listener at thewestwingweekly.com/sweatshirt

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/208

2.07: The Portland Trip (with Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning, Congressman Brendan Boyle, and Fmr. Congressman Steve Gunderson)  

For "The Portland Trip," we try to slip the surly bonds of Earth. We are, in turns, lifted and dragged down by our feelings. In honor of Josh Lyman's conversation with Congressman Matt Skinner, we ask real-life former Wisconsin congressman Steve Gunderson what it was like to be the first openly gay Republican in Congress. And we're joined later by Pennsylvania Congressman Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle), as well as the Secretary of the Army, Eric Fanning (@SecArmy) — the first openly gay person to head any service in the U.S. Military.

 

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/207

2.06: The Lame Duck Congress (with Dave Chameides)  

How ya doin, Dalai Lama? In this episode, we're joined by steadicam operator Dave Chameides to talk about the complex choreography of the shooting a walk and talk. Plus, we get a visit from Kevin T. Porter (@KevinTPorter) to talk about his Sorkinisms supercut videos.

footnotes —
Sorkinisms: Part I, II, and III 

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/206

2.05: And It's Surely to Their Credit  

Loosen your tie. Loosen whatever you'd like. But don't get it twisted: leaf peeping is totally a thing.

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/205

2.04: In This White House (with Emily Procter and Ambassador Deborah Birx)  

Ginger, get the popcorn, because we're joined by Emily Procter (@emilyprocter) to talk about her first appearance on the West Wing as Ainsley Hayes. Plus, for some context and perspective on the storyline about AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa, we speak to Ambassador-at-Large Deborah L. Birx, the US Global Coordinator to Combat HIV/AIDS (@PEPFAR).

And introducing The West Wing Weekly t-shirt!

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/204

2.03: The Midterms  

While you may be mistaking this for your monthly meeting of the Ignorant Tight-Ass Club, it's in fact the weekly meeting of the West Wing TV Book Club. (The Ignorant Tight-Ass Club meets down the hall, on the right.)

2.02: In The Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part II (with Bradley Whitford and Michael O'Neill)  

In Part II of our double header, Bradley Whitford (@WhitfordBradley) makes his West Wing Weekly debut to talk about getting the role of Josh Lyman, and starting the season by getting shot. But first, we speak with Michael O'Neill, who played Special Agent Ron Butterfield. Plus, a few thoughts on Emily's List from its former executive director, Amy Dacey (@AmyKDacey).

 

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/201-202

2.01: In The Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part I (with Thomas Schlamme)  

"In the Shadow of Two Gunmen" was the Season 2 premiere of the West Wing. The two-part episode aired as a special 2-hour broadcast. In honor of that, here's our own two-part episode. 

In Part I, we're joined by director and executive producer Thomas Schlamme, who created the visual language of The West Wing around Aaron Sorkin's words. We ask him about his directorial decisions for the show, and for this cinematic premiere. And we ask: what happened with Mandy?

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/201-202

2.00: Special Interim Session (with Aaron Sorkin)  

West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin joins Josh and Hrishi for a special episode. Aaron reflects on the experience of making the first season of the West Wing while making the second season of Sports Night at the same time. We look back on the previous season, and look ahead to the upcoming one.

1.22: What Kind of Day Has It Been (with Tim Matheson)  

For the finale of season one: you get Hoynes. Tim Matheson (@Tim_Matheson) joins us as we reflect on what kind of season it has been. Plus, a little preview of what's next.

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/122

1.21: Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics (with Bill O'Brien)  

Josh and Hrishi are joined by Bill O'Brien to talk about his role as Kenny Thurman. This West Wing episode focuses on polling, so here's a poll question: do you approve or disapprove of the lack of Oxford comma in the title?

thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/121

1.20: Mandatory Minimums (with Kathleen York and Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson)  

Kathleen "Bird" York (@birdyork) talks to us about playing Congresswoman Andrea Wyatt, and Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson (@karenaboutgary), former CEO of The National Association of Drug Court Professionals and current mayor of Gary, Indiana, talks to us about mandatory minimums.

1.19: Let Bartlet Be Bartlet (with Under Secretary of the Army Patrick Murphy)  

This episode of the West Wing represents the lowest point so far for the Bartlet team, but perhaps the highest point so far for the series. Josh and Hrishi are joined by The Honorable Patrick Murphy (@USAMurphy), Under Secretary of the Army. While he was a Congressman from Pennsylvania, Secretary Murphy helped overturn Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

1.18: Six Meetings Before Lunch  

The Good: a conversation about reparations; the Bad: Mandy and pandas; and the Ugly: Josh and Sam dancing (?) to “The Jackal.” Plus, a few words from West Wing music supervisor Anne Kline (@theannkline). 

1.17: The White House Pro-Am  

If you don't like this episode, just be wrong. Just stand there in your wrongness and be wrong and get used to it. Plus, Hrishi brings back a field report from the Democratic National Convention, with thoughts on The West Wing from former DNC CEO Amy Dacey (@AmyKDacey), Senator Chris Coons of Delaware (@ChrisCoons), and Zeke Miller of TIME (@ZekeJMiller).

1.16: 20 Hours in L.A.  

We live in Los Angeles, but no one has offered *us* a development deal. We're going to the wrong parties.

1.15: Celestial Navigation (with Jay Carney)  

Former White House Press Secretary Jay Carney (@JayCarney) joins Josh and Hrishi to discuss Josh Lyman's secret plan to fight inflation, and other ways press briefings can go horribly, horribly wrong.

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