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The Two Bartlets

Original Airdate 01-30-02 Rerun 06-26-02 and 12-18-02

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The Presidential race clarifies on the day of the Iowa caucuses, as does Josh's relationship with Amy Gardner (Mary-Louise Parker). Meanwhile, Josh must make a call he'd rather not make to an old friend who's protesting Navy arms testing at Vieques, Puerto Rico; Toby and C.J. disagree about affirmative action; Donna tries to get out of jury duty; and Sam meets with a ufologist (Sam Lloyd) who tells him that most of the gold at Fort Knox has been replaced with something else.
From NBC:
While the President (Martin Sheen) and his staff ponder whether to counter a verbal assault on affirmative action by a fast-rising Republican presidential candidate, Josh (Bradley Whitford) must postpone his tropical vacation with a women's rights advocate (Mary-Louise Parker) to defuse a risky powderkeg on an island that serves as the Navy's firing range. When Josh rolls up his sleeves to remove protesters who have planted themselves in harm's way on the Puerto Rican island, he makes his first call to the cell phone of an old friend who's leading the group. Meanwhile, Sam (Rob Lowe) meets with an eccentric politician (Sam Lloyd) who believes that Ft. Knox is missing a fortune in gold bullion; a defiant C.J. (Allison Janney) debates with Toby (Richard Schiff) over the merits of affirmative action; and Donna (Janel Moloney) asks Josh to intercede and relieve her of pending jury duty.
From Warner Bros.:
Bartlet and his staff ponder whether or not to counter a fast-rising Republican presidential candidate's verbal assault on affirmative action. Josh must postpone his tropical vacation with women's rights advocate Amy Gardner (Mary-Louise Parker) in order to defuse a risky situation in Vieques, Puerto Rico, an area that serves as a U.S. Navy firing range. As he prepares to remove protesters who have put themselves in harm's way on the island, Josh telephones his longtime friend--who is leading the group. Meanwhile, Sam meets with an eccentric politician, Robert Engler (Sam Lloyd), who believes that Ft. Knox is missing a fortune in gold bullion; C.J. defiantly debates Toby over the merits of affirmative action; and Donna asks Josh to intercede and relieve her of pending jury duty.


Rob Lowe as Sam (Samuel Norman) Seaborn Deputy Communications Director
Dulé Hill as Charlie (Charles) Young Personal Aide to the President
Allison Janney as C.J. (Claudia Jean) Cregg Press Secretary
Janel Moloney as Donna (Donnatella) Moss Assistant to Deputy Chief of Staff
Richard Schiff as Toby (Tobias Zachary) Ziegler Communications Director
John Spencer as Leo Thomas McGarry Chief of Staff
Bradley Whitford as Josh (Joshua) Lyman Deputy Chief of Staff
Martin Sheen as
Jed (Josiah Edward) Bartlet President of the United States
Special Guest Star
Mary-Louise Parker as
Amy (Amelia) Gardner Lobbyist
Guest Starring    
Sam Lloyd as Robert "Bob" Engler Ufologist
NiCole Robinson as Margaret Hooper (last name) /
Assistant to Chief of Staff
Renée Estevez as Nancy Aide
Kim Webster as Ginger Assistant to Communications' Director
Ted Garcia as Newscaster  
Tom Knickerbocker as Civilian  
Tom Porter as Officer  
Elizabeth Liang as Staffer  

Information Links



Emmy Awards

Submitted for consideration after Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series Nomination by
Bradley Whitford
Submitted for consideration for Outstanding Drama Series Win

Media Quotes

"I do get into it with Aaron when I think the young aides are getting too cheeky. Even with Bill Clinton, who is fairly casual and young, not your father's president, there still is a line." - Dee Dee Myers

"High-Stakes TV"
by Karin Lipson and
Frank Lovece
February 27, 2000
New York Newsday

Things will get plenty stirred up in an upcoming emotionally charged episode when Toby slams the POTUS (President of the United States) for the way he's running his re-election campaign. "It's a very difficult confrontation that doesn't go very well because I get personal," previews the actor [Richard Schiff]. "That's all I really should say about it."

"West Wing Star's Career Schiff"
by Jeanne Wolf with Michael Ausiello
January 30, 2002
TV Guide Online

The properties of discussion and education are entirely from the properties of drama. Which is why all I deal with when I sit down is intention and obstacle. Andi wants changes in a speech, it's very important to her. Toby doesn't want to make them, it's equally as important to him. The more personal the arguments become, the better. The less rational the discussion is, the better.


What I read was "Why do they keep make Toby say such asinine things? 'They'll like us when we win'? I'm not sure how much more of this I can take." I HATE making someone feel that way. People get different things from the show and like different epsiodes for different reasons I guess. - Aaron "Benjamin" Sorkin

Posted at Forum
by Aaron "Benjamin" Sorkin
February 11, 2002

... for instance, Press Secretary C.J. was talking to Presidential Conscience Tobey [Toby] about affirmative action. When Tobey [Toby] pressed C.J. for her views, she said she was the wrong Democrat to ask. She explained that her father had once been denied a job when someone else got it in an affirmative action decision. Tobey [Toby] nodded and asked, "How's he doing?" C.J. said, lightly, "Fine."

In my version, C.J.'s father had suffered. He was an idealist who believed everyone has an equal shot at success in America, a public school teacher who wanted to help kids and was gifted in his work with them; now he saw a less qualified and implicitly less loving person elevated at his expense, and only because he was the wrong color. It left him shattered. The flag on which he'd stood had been pulled from under him, and he never fully regained his balance.

When Aaron wrote it, C.J.'s father was not a victim of government but a fellow doing fine. In part because that's how Aaron thinks about affirmative action, and it's his show. And in part perhaps because C.J.'s terse "he's fine" is dramatically interesting--a man is treated badly and he's fine. Life is strange."

"Break Out the Bubbly"
by Peggy Noonan
March 1, 2002
Wall Street Journal

"Bartlet is going to be running against Governor Robert Ritchie, of Florida, who's not the sharpest tool in the box but who's raised a lot of money and is very popular with the Republican Party," - Aaron Sorkin

by Tad Friend
March 4, 2002
The New Yorker

"I won't pretend that I don't know who Bush is," says [Aaron] Sorkin, "but I was interested in writing about a demonization of intellect. Which didn't start with Bush-Gore -- it didn't even start with Eisenhower-Stevenson. It's peculiarly American: Being tagged as the smartest kid in your class turns into both a sense of arrogance and a sense of weakness -- that an 'egghead' [can't] see us through a world war."

"How the 'West' Was Undone"
by Ken Tucker
November 8, 2002
Entertainment Weekly

"I was open to anything, but comedy was what I really loved," he says. "I try to think of myself as both comedic and dramatic." He [Sam Lloyd] cites his two appearances on The West Wing, in which he played a man obsessed with UFOs, as an example of a role that allowed him to combine both genres, noting, "I think what helped me get Desperate Housewives is the fact that [creator] Marc Cherry had seen me on The West Wing. I think he probably thought, 'He can do comedy and straight stuff, so he'd probably be a good fit for this show.'"

"Sam Lloyd: A Talent for Pain"
by Jenelle Riley
June 2, 2005
Back Stage West

In The Two Bartlets when CJ and Toby are talking about whether Bartlet will be The Professor or Uncle Fluffy, Richard Schiff apparently finds "Uncle Fluffy" to be two of the funniest words ever when used in connection with Martin Sheen, because he laughed and giggled through, like, 3 takes.

Posted by cyren_2132 @
November 11, 2005
Notes from Alex Graves talk at the University of Kansas

For more information about this episode:
Continuity Guide to "The West Wing"
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