The West Wing Weekly

The West Wing Weekly

thewestwingweekly.com
An episode-by-episode discussion of The West Wing, one of television’s most beloved shows, co-hosted by one of its stars, Joshua Malina, along with Hrishikesh Hirway of Song Exploder.
5.22: Memorial Day (with Josh Singer)
Nov 13 • 75 min
We’re wrapping up Season 5 with screenwriter Josh Singer, whose first writing credit was “Memorial Day.” We also look back at the past 22 episodes to ask: what kind of season has it been? For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/522
5.21: Gaza (with Jason Isaacs and Janel Moloney)
Nov 7 • 73 min
We’re joined by special guests Jason Isaacs and Janel Moloney to discuss the big, ambitious, penultimate episode of Season 5. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/521
5.20: No Exit (with Fmr. Senator Tom Daschle, Wilson Cruz, and Eli Attie)
Oct 30 • 67 min
We’re joined by three guests for our discussion of “No Exit.” Former Senator Tom Daschle tells us about what it was like getting sent anthrax in the mail; Wilson Cruz tells us about playing Jack Sosa for his two episodes on The West Wing; and Eli Attie…
5.19: Talking Points (with Richard Schiff)
Oct 23 • 81 min
We’re joined by Richard Schiff to discuss this episode, his television directing debut! Hear what it was like for him to step behind the camera for this story about power and labor and international trade. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/519
5.18: Access
Oct 9 • 46 min
In “Access,” we’re given a behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to work inside the West Wing. …wait a second, what have all these other episodes been about? Let’s discuss. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/518
5.17: The Supremes (with Debora Cahn)
Oct 2 • 68 min
We hereby appoint the Honorable Debora T. Cahn, West Wing writer, for the position of Chief Guestice of The Supremes episode. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/517
5.16: Eppur Si Muove (with Dr Muller Fabbri and Jason Zengerle)
Sep 25 • 82 min
They tried to get us to renounce The West Wing, but Eppur Si Puodcaste! Josh and Hrishi investigate some of the real world mechanics behind NIH grants and the federal judiciary with help from cancer researcher Dr Muller Fabbri and political journalist…
5.15: Full Disclosure (with Lawrence O’Donnell)
Sep 18 • 81 min
Full disclosure: you’re going to hear the words ‘full disclosure’ a lot in this episode, as we discuss “Full Disclosure.” Lawrence O’Donnell joins us to discuss how he wrote this episode, how Richard Schiff changed its meaning without changing a word, and…
5.14: An Khe
Sep 11 • 50 min
In this episode, the past is laid bare like a nude portrait, or at the very least, like a photo of your ex in a bikini. Grab your copy of Latin Phrases for Awkward Situations, and parachute in with us. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/514
5.13: The Warfare of Genghis Khan (with Fmr. Congressman John Tierney and Jacob Keaton)
Sep 4 • 67 min
A potential nuclear threat looms on the horizon, so let’s head down to the Situation Room to discuss The Warfare of Genghis Khan. We’re joined by former congressman and nonproliferation advocate John Tierney, who catches us up on nuclear politics then and…
5.12: Slow News Day (with Eli Attie and Nancy Altman)
Aug 21 • 79 min
Sleep in! We’ll wake up the President for you to tell him about our great idea to record a podcast about the Slow News Day episode of the West Wing. Joining us in this historic endeavor is returning guest Eli Attie, who shares his memories about real and…
5.11: The Benign Prerogative (with Janel Moloney)
Aug 15 • 71 min
This week, we discuss “The Benign Prerogative,” and the not so benign aspects of Presidential pardons. We’re joined once again by Janel Moloney to talk about Donna’s moving storyline in this episode. Plus, Lin-Manuel Miranda makes a little cameo (#Hameo)…
5.10: The Stormy Present (with Bellamy Young)
Aug 8 • 60 min
It’s the 100th episode of The West Wing! Our guest this week is Bellamy Young, who made her first appearance in a TV White House here, some years before joining Josh on Scandal as PRESIDENT Mellie Grant. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/510
5.09: Abu el Banat (with Joe Fab)
Jul 31 • 66 min
“Cauliflower.” For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/509
5.08: Shutdown (with Gene Sperling)
Jul 24 • 61 min
Shut! It! Down! Josh and Hrishi are walking right up to the hallway outside your office to talk about “Shutdown.” Gene Sperling, former White House Director of the National Economic Council, joins them to compare Bill Clinton’s shutdown game plan to Jed…
5.07: Separation of Powers (with Michael Hyatt)
Jul 18 • 67 min
The Supreme Court is looking at a case that relates to Korematsu v. United States, while the White House starts to make their moves towards appointing a new justice. But ai yai yai, we aren’t talking about last month’s headlines—we’re talking about…
5.06: Disaster Relief (with Alexa Junge and Lauren Schmidt Hissrich)
Jul 10 • 49 min
We’re joined this week by Alexa Junge and returning guest Lauren Schmidt Hissrich. They co-wrote “Disaster Relief,” and together, we try to propulgate the backstory of this episode onto the frontstory. Like President Bartlet in Oklahoma, you’ll never want…
5.05: Constituency of One (with Jennifer Palmieri)
Jun 27 • 64 min
What is a “Constituency of One”? You know, it’s all about that boss, ‘bout that boss, those troubles. It’s all about that boss, ‘bout that boss, those troubles. Toby and POTUS. Will and Bob Russell. Amy and the First Lady. Plus, we speak with…
5.04: Han (with Paula Yoo)
Jun 19 • 65 min
Listener beware - like the episode we’re discussing, Han, this installment of The West Wing Weekly has more sad piano music than all previous episodes combined. When they’re not lost in a sadness so deep no tears will come, Josh and Hrishi interview Paula…
5.03: Jefferson Lives
Jun 12 • 47 min
Jefferson lives, but the President’s dreams for a strong VP die—killed by committee. But Josh and Hrishi, pilgrim detectives, are on the scene to investigate. PS: Jefferson is also dead. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/503
5.02: The Dogs of War
Jun 5 • 48 min
Friends, Romans, people in other places, lend us your ears. We come to dissect this episode, and to praise it, or at least the parts we liked. So cry “havoc!” and let slip this podcast into your downloads. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/502
5.01: 7A WF 83429 (Live with Bradley Whitford and Ronald Klain)
May 29 • 68 min
Josh and Hrishi take a deep breath and dive headfirst into the post-Sorkin years. They’re joined by guests Bradley Whitford and Ronald Klain to discuss the suspense of the Season 5 premiere — a fateful moment for the characters, and the show itself.…
4.24: Season 4 Retrospective (Live with Aaron Sorkin and Emily Procter)
May 16 • 84 min
We’ve reached the end of the fourth season, and the end of Aaron Sorkin’s tenure on The West Wing. For this special farewell, Aaron himself joined us on stage at the historic Town Hall in New York to teach us how to say goodbye. He surprised us with his…
4.23: Twenty Five (Live with Thomas Schlamme)
May 9 • 81 min
Recorded live in Boston, Tommy Schlamme joins Josh and Hrishi to talk about the last days of the Sorkin-Schlamme era as they recap the episode Twenty Five. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/423
4.22: Commencement (Live with Bradley Whitford, Ronald Klain, and Melissa Fitzgerald)
May 2 • 67 min
Live from the Lincoln Theatre in Washington, DC, Josh and Hrishi discuss the penultimate episode of Season 4—and all its trip-hop-laced anomalies—with special guests Bradley Whitford, Ronald Klain, and Melissa Fitzgerald. Plus: a surprise guest who’s…
4.21: Life on Mars (Live with Richard Schiff, Eli Attie, and The Swingles)
Apr 25 • 85 min
We’re live in London! Josh and Hrishi discuss Life on Mars with guests Richard Schiff (@Richard_Schiff) and Eli Attie (@EliAttie). Plus some special West Wing-themed musical performances from Debbie Fiderer’s favorite a capella group, The Swingles…
4.20: Evidence of Things Not Seen (Live with Richard Schiff and Marlee Matlin)
Apr 18 • 70 min
We’re live in Dublin to discuss Evidence of Things Not Seen with special guests Richard Schiff, Marlee Matlin, her interpreter Jack Jason, and a pint of Guinness that is like an angel crying on Richard’s tongue. Cilantro! For more, visit…
0.06: Hamilton Special (with Lin-Manuel Miranda and Thomas Kail)
Apr 4 • 70 min
AARON BURR: How does a podcast, web thing, Recap and chat on The West Wing, Dropped on the internet by nostalgic pals On a fake President—it makes no sense! How do Josh and Hrish, on balance, Manage to land two major Broadway talents? The two gallants,…
4.19: Angel Maintenance (with Fmr. Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning)
Mar 27 • 62 min
Please set your cell phones to airplane mode, it’s Angel Maintenance time. In this episode we’re joined by former Acting Secretary of the Air Force (and former Secretary of the Army) Eric Fanning for lots of juicy details about Air Force One, including…
4.18: Privateers (with Allison Janney, Jeff Perry, Helen Slayton-Hughes, and the DAR)
Mar 20 • 81 min
Privateers has a special place in our hearts because we love the scene where Allison Janney can’t stop laughing - and she’s here with us to talk about the fugue state necessary to create such memorable giggles. We’re also joined by Josh’s Scandal costar…
4.17: Red Haven’s on Fire (with Senator Tammy Duckworth and Lauren Schmidt Hissrich)
Mar 6 • 76 min
The Laurens make good! West Wing writer Lauren Schmidt Hissrich joins us to recap Red Haven’s on Fire and share stories of the real world Lauren confusion behind this episode. And Senator Tammy Duckworth tells us what to expect when you’re a senator who’s…
4.16: The California 47th
Feb 27 • 53 min
Ah, Miss Hamantaschen! It’s the California 47th. Josh and Hrishi discuss the linguistic nuance of Rice Krispies and what one calls the treats made from them. And, Mrs Hottentot, Hrishi introduces a handy online tool for President Bartlet: the Debbie…
0.05: Big Block of Cheese Live (with Dulé Hill, The Memory Palace, The Allusionist, and more)
Feb 21 • 69 min
A live Big Block of Cheese Day from San Francisco Sketch Fest! Hrishi and Josh are joined by Dulé Hill to answer questions from fans - including a semi-surprise guest. Nate DiMeo of The Memory Palace (@thememorypalace) podcast tells the history of the big…
4.15: Inauguration: Over There (with Gene Sperling)
Feb 13 • 63 min
For our discussion of Inauguration: Over There, Josh regales Hrishi with tales of shooting in his underwear and throwing snowballs at Janel Moloney. Plus, we’re joined by West Wing writer and former Director of the National Economic Council Gene Sperling…
4.14: Inauguration: Part 1 (with Danica McKellar)
Feb 6 • 69 min
Inauguration: Part I is the first part of our two-part series about a two-part series of West Wing episodes. Josh and Hrishi dig up fun facts about presidential bibles, and cast a critical eye on CJ’s flirting and Josh’s mean sass about Jack Reese. They…
4.13: The Long Goodbye (with Jon Robin Baitz and The Alzheimer’s Association)
Jan 30 • 47 min
As the West Wing takes a trip to Dayton, OH, for The Long Goodbye, Josh and Hrishi talk to playwright Jon Robin Baitz, who playwrought the episode. He talks about how his own father’s illness informed the script in ways he didn’t realize at the time, and…
4.12: Guns Not Butter (with MAZON and The ONE Campaign)
Jan 23 • 68 min
For our discussion of Guns Not Butter, Josh and Hrishi go on a hunt for Hrishi’s Hebrew name that is almost as intense as Donna’s quest to get Josh’s phone into the hands of Senator Hardin. Tom Hart of ONE (@OneCampaign) makes the case for foreign aid,…
4.11: Holy Night (with The Whiffenpoofs and Robert Malina)
Jan 16 • 73 min
On the West Wing, it’s Toby’s birthday (December 23), and his father visits. On the West Wing Weekly, it’s Josh’s birthday (January 17), and HIS father visits. We turn to Mr Robert Malina for some Yiddish info and some Joshish insights. Plus, we’re joined…
4.10: Arctic Radar (with Richard Schiff, John David Coles, and Fmr. Cabinet Secretary Chris Lu)
Dec 19, 2017 • 90 min
One of us! One of us! Will Bailey finally arrives in the West Wing and we’ve got a trio of guests to welcome him. Former Cabinet Secretary Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44) talks about the (nonexistent) precedent for cabinet resignations; director John David Coles…
4.09: Swiss Diplomacy (with Kevin Falls and Eli Attie)
Dec 12, 2017 • 74 min
Eli Attie (@EliAttie) and Kevin Falls (@KevinFalls) are our guests to talk about the “break glass in case of emergency” writing that went into “Swiss Diplomacy”, a rare episode without a Sorkin writing credit. These guys have stories! And they’ll tell you…
4.08: Process Stories (with Joanna Gleason)
Dec 5, 2017 • 57 min
Stock up on Cheetos, because Joanna Gleason (@TheRealJGleason) is our guest and she’s got a drinking game - sorry, an eating game - for anyone who loves to pick apart Bradley Whitford’s acting technique. Needless to say, Josh is on board. It’s a probable…
4.07: Election Night (with Clark Gregg)
Nov 21, 2017 • 66 min
As the characters anxiously await election results and Donna tries to swap votes with Christian Slater, Josh and Hrishi interview Clark Gregg (@ClarkGregg) about how everybody wants to call him Agent Something. And, Josh looks back fondly on the mighty…
4.06: Game On (with Rob Lowe, Bradley Whitford, and Joshua Malina)
Nov 14, 2017 • 85 min
Hrishi and Josh welcome special guest Joshua Malina to talk about Joshua Malina’s first episode as Will Bailey. [fanfare] With special appearances by Bradley Whitford, Rob Lowe, and Joshua Malina. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/406
4.05: Debate Camp (with Ronald Klain)
Nov 7, 2017 • 59 min
To discuss the Bartlet Administration’s debate camp, we’re joined once again by Ronald Klain, who has been in charge of debate prep for every Democratic presidential candidate since 2004. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/405
4.04: The Red Mass
Oct 31, 2017 • 54 min
Pretty much one long “ai yi yi.” For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/404
4.03: College Kids (with Aimee Mann and Fmr. Secretary of Education John King, Jr.)
Oct 25, 2017 • 74 min
This week, we’re joined by former Secretary of Education John King, Jr. (@JohnBKing) and Aimee Mann (@aimeemann) to discuss “College Kids”. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/403
4.02: 20 Hours in America, Part Two (with Christopher Misiano)
Oct 17, 2017 • 83 min
Josh and Hrishi discuss second part of Season 4 premiere with episode director, Christopher Misiano. West Wing Weekly love episode! For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/402
4.01: 20 Hours in America, Part One (with John Gallagher, Jr.)
Oct 11, 2017 • 60 min
Our discussion of Season 4 begins! We’re joined by John Gallagher, Jr., who made his Sorkin debut in the premiere, years before he would go on to star in The Newsroom. Here we go, cuties! For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/401
4.00: President Bartlet Special (with Martin Sheen)
Oct 4, 2017 • 65 min
Martin Sheen joined Josh and Hrishi for a conversation about The West Wing, The American President, Aaron Sorkin, and more. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/400
0.04: Big Block of Cheese III (with 99% Invisible)
Sep 27, 2017 • 58 min
Before we dive into Season 4, we’re answering some pressing listener questions like: why hasn’t Martin Sheen been on the podcast yet? Plus questions about music, musicals, and underwear. (Don’t be scared.) And to go along with our new Bartlet’s Army…
3.22: Posse Comitatus (Live with Aaron Sorkin, Allison Janney, and Melissa Fitzgerald)
Sep 20, 2017 • 64 min
To discuss the Season 3 finale, we traveled to San Francisco to record a live episode at the Castro Theatre. We’d announced the show would be with a special guest: Aaron Sorkin. But what we didn’t tell anyone was that we’d also be joined by a couple of…
3.21: We Killed Yamamoto
Sep 13, 2017 • 47 min
Josh and Hrishi discuss a few conflicts central to this episode and its making: Amy vs Josh, President Bartlet vs moral absolutes, and script deadlines vs directing schedules. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/321.
3.20: The Black Vera Wang (with Mark Harmon)
Sep 6, 2017 • 62 min
We’re joined by Mark Harmon to discuss all things Simon Donovan. Our interview with him spans the rest of Season 3, so if you’re watching The West Wing for the first time, be warned that spoilers abound during that part of this episode. For more, visit…
3.19: Enemies Foreign and Domestic
Aug 23, 2017 • 60 min
A correction: Eli Attie’s teacher, Mrs Morello, is alive. A reminder: Paxton Whitehead, who played Bernard, is also alive. Josh and Hrishi discuss Russians being played by non-Russians, Tom Lehrer, and the Sorkinism of having nothing to do. Plus, to…
3.18: Documentary Special (with William Couturié)
Aug 15, 2017 • 34 min
This week, Josh and Hrishi speak with the director of The West Wing Documentary Special episode. For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/318.
3.17: Stirred (with Eli Attie and Fmr Deputy Labor Secretary Chris Lu)
Aug 9, 2017 • 65 min
This week we’re joined by Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44), who served as the White House Cabinet Secretary during the first term of the Obama administration and the Deputy Secretary of Labor during the second term. He gives us some real-world insight into…
3.16: The U.S. Poet Laureate (with Television Without Pity and David Wade)
Aug 2, 2017 • 67 min
We’re joined by two of the co-founders of the website Television Without Pity, Tara Ariano (@TaraAriano) and Sarah D. Bunting (@TomatoNation), to discuss the lemonlyman.com plotline—inspired by Aaron Sorkin’s own posts on TWoP. We’re also joined by David…
3.15: Dead Irish Writers (with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau)
Jul 26, 2017 • 62 min
In light of Donna’s brief time as a Canadian in “Dead Irish Writers,” we’re honored to be joined this week by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau). (We know. We can’t believe it either.) The PM discusses political idealism – both on-…
3.14: Hartsfield’s Landing
Jul 19, 2017 • 59 min
This week, our discussion ranges from chess and poker games, to code switching, to West Wing Weekly themed fart machines. All this, plus Josh, the master prankster, ranks the pranks in CJ and Charlie’s prank war. For more, visit thewestwingwekly.com/314.
3.13: Night Five
Jul 12, 2017 • 74 min
To get some real-world insight into the Sam/Ainsley/Celia scene in Night Five, we invited three West Wing Weekly listeners – Amy Carlson, Jamie Lynn Crofts, and Debora Verdier, employment attorneys in three different states, representing both plaintiffs…
3.12: The Two Bartlets (with Blanche Sindelar)
Jun 27, 2017 • 65 min
President Bartlet and his father; CJ and her father; Bob Engler and his father…this episode is the Dada of Dada issues. And Josh and Hrishi talk to Blanche Sindelar, the property master for all seven seasons of The West Wing — the keeper of Gail’s…
3.11: 100,000 Airplanes (with Dr. Leo Mascarenhas)
Jun 21, 2017 • 61 min
This week, we’re joined by Dr Leo Mascarenhas, the Deputy Director of the Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Diseases and the Section Head of Oncology at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, to discuss the cancer crusade that President Bartlet wanted for…
3.10: H. Con-172
Jun 14, 2017 • 49 min
Is Cliff Calley actually a good guy? Hrishi thinks it’s obvious. Josh thinks he’s not so great. Meet us in the Georgetown Law Library so we can discuss. For more, go to thewestwingweekly.com/310.
3.09: Bartlet for America (with John Spencer)
Jun 6, 2017 • 84 min
To accompany our discussion of “Bartlet for America,” we’re thrilled to present an interview with John Spencer, who won an Emmy for his performance. We talk to David Daniel (@CNNLADavid), who is a senior producer at CNN Newsource. He interviewed John…
3.08: The Women of Qumar (with Allison Janney, Fmr UN Ambassador Sarah Mendelson, and Tim Ballard)
May 31, 2017 • 89 min
This week’s episode gets a bit dark, as does our discussion of it. We’re honored to have three amazing guests. We learn more about the realities of trafficking with former UN Ambassador Sarah Mendelson (@SarahMendelson) as well as with Tim Ballard…
3.07: The Indians in the Lobby (with W.G. Snuffy Walden)
May 24, 2017 • 72 min
Thanksgiving! Native Americans! Turkey! Foodborne illness! Hrishi’s dad! All this, plus we present the recording of our live interview with Emmy-winning West Wing composer Snuffy Walden (@snuffywalden). For more, visit thewestwingweekly.com/307.
3.06: Gone Quiet
May 16, 2017 • 52 min
Our discussion of this episode takes many a twist and turn: from the NEA to JFK, from Star Trek to Eddie Murphy. Plus, Toby’s confession that he is no fan of musicals leads us to the next chapter of “Hrishi Hruins a Musical.” For more, visit…
3.05: War Crimes (with Fmr. UN Ambassador David Pressman)
May 9, 2017 • 83 min
David Pressman is the former US Ambassador to the United Nations and was the first-ever Director for War Crimes and Atrocities on the National Security Council at the White House, and we’re thrilled to have him on the podcast to discuss the “War Crimes”…
3.04: On The Day Before (with Janel Moloney)
May 3, 2017 • 65 min
For this episode, we’re joined once again by Janel Moloney (@NellyMoloney), who was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Emmy in part for her performance in this episode. Alas, she did not help us learn to tie a proper bow tie. (At the end of the…
3.03: Ways and Means (with Eli Attie)
Apr 25, 2017 • 54 min
We’re joined again by our friend Eli Attie, the former speechwriter to Al Gore who went on to join The West Wing in Season 3. Eli has a ‘story by’ credit on “Ways and Means”, and we dig into what that really means. Plus, we talk about the importance and…
3.02: Manchester, Part II (with Connie Britton)
Apr 18, 2017 • 66 min
Josh and Hrishi are joined by Connie Britton (@conniebritton) to discuss the second half of the Season 3 premiere. I made a joke about Freudian slips in the show notes for Part I (“Josh and Hrishi try to sort their way through it all without making any…
3.01: Manchester, Part I
Apr 11, 2017 • 45 min
The Season Three premiere has a dense script, and an enormous production to match. Josh and Hrishi try to sort their way through it all without making any Freudian slips while talking to each mother. thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/301
3.00: Isaac and Ishmael (with Ajay Naidu and Fmr Press Secretary Mike McCurry)
Apr 5, 2017 • 85 min
This is a controversial episode of The West Wing, and one that falls outside the regular storyline of the show. We hash out our conflicting opinions on it to find some common ground. We’re also joined by Ajay Naidu to discuss his role as Rakim Ali. And we…
2.22: Two Cathedrals (Part II, with Aaron Sorkin and Kirsten Nelson)
Mar 22, 2017 • 72 min
Aaron Sorkin joins Josh and Hrishi for our final episode of Season Two, to talk about his experience writing “Two Cathedrals.” Plus, Kirsten Nelson (@NelsonKirsten) tells us about playing the role of the young Mrs Landingham.…
2.22: Two Cathedrals (Part I, with Lawrence O’Donnell and Mary Graham)
Mar 15, 2017 • 46 min
We present the first of two episodes of our podcast discussing the Season Two finale. In this episode, we’re joined by West Wing writer / producer Lawrence O’Donnell (@Lawrence), aka Jed’s father, Headmaster Bartlet. Plus, Mary Graham, author of…
2.21: 18th and Potomac (with Oliver Platt)
Mar 8, 2017 • 57 min
It’s the penultimate episode of Season 2. Oliver Platt (@OliverPlatt) joins Josh and Hrishi to discuss his role as Oliver Babish. thewestwingweekly.com/episodes/221
2.20: The Fall’s Gonna Kill You (with Marlee Matlin)
Feb 28, 2017 • 78 min
Marlee Matlin (@MarleeMatlin) joins Josh and Hrishi to discuss her role as Joey Lucas. Along with her interpreter, Jack Jason (@655Jack), she pranked us pretty badly just before we recorded her interview. Listen for the brutal details of that, plus our…
2.19: Bad Moon Rising
Feb 22, 2017 • 50 min
Before we get into Oliver Babish and the Big Hammer, and Donna Moss and the Secret Pumpkin, we start with a much needed follow-up to our discussion of autism in 2.17: The Stackhouse Filibuster. Special thanks to Amy and Jill, who were two of the many…
2.18: 17 People (with Richard Schiff, Emily Procter, Rebecca Walker)
Feb 14, 2017 • 69 min
We’ve got 7 people for “17 People.” Richard Schiff (@Richard_Schiff) talks to us about Toby’s journey, and the origins of the Spalding ball. Emily Procter (@emilyprocter) talks to us about Ainsley “spilling coffee” with Sam. Rebecca Walker…
2.17: The Stackhouse Filibuster (Live with Bradley Whitford)
Feb 8, 2017 • 59 min
Josh and Hrishi are joined by Bradley Whitford (@WhitfordBradley) for the first-ever live taping of a West Wing Weekly episode, recorded at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre in San Francisco at the SF Sketchfest Comedy Festival. We also hear from Dee Perkins…
2.16: Somebody’s Going to Emergency, Somebody’s Going to Jail (with Rob Lowe)
Feb 1, 2017 • 84 min
Sitting here in the darkness\ I’ve gotta post the show\ Somebody’s joining us this episode\ Somebody named Rob Lowe\ We found somebody to explain free trade\ Cuz there is so muuuch we don’t knowwww\ And we asked Aaron about the song… It’s the West Wing…
2.15: Ellie (with Nina Siemaszko)
Jan 25, 2017 • 51 min
In this episode, we look at the uncomfortable contiguity of Bartlet the President and Bartlet the Dad. Along the way, we discuss zeugma, gloriosky!, Smoot-Hawley, and other ridiculous sounding words. We also talk to Nina Siemaszko (@MsSiemaszko) about her…
2.14: The War At Home
Jan 18, 2017 • 44 min
Stockard Channing was nominated for an Emmy based on her performance in this episode. Though her performance in the first part of this two-part arc was also excellent, we discuss why this second episode may have had the edge. Plus, a discussion around the…
What’s Next? featuring Lin-Manuel Miranda [clean]
Jan 16, 2017 • 3 min
The West Wing Weekly presents an ode to The West Wing. Hrishi made a beat, an extended remix of our podcast’s intro theme, for the biggest West Wing fan we know— Lin-Manuel Miranda — who wrote lyrics and recorded vocals for the track! What’s next? To…
What’s Next? featuring Lin-Manuel Miranda [explicit]
Jan 16, 2017 • 3 min
The West Wing Weekly presents an ode to The West Wing. Hrishi made a beat, an extended remix of our podcast’s intro theme, for the biggest West Wing fan we know— Lin-Manuel Miranda — who wrote lyrics and recorded vocals for the track! What’s next? To…
2.13: Bartlet’s Third State of the Union (with Don Baer, Fmr. White House Communications Director)
Jan 11, 2017 • 68 min
In this episode, we’re joined by Don Baer, who was the chief speechwriter for President Bill Clinton, to tell us what it’s really like to write a State of the Union Address. And when you’re done listening and you’re ready to go home, we only have one…
0.03: Big Block of Cheese II
Dec 21, 2016 • 48 min
For the last episode of the year, we answer listener questions in our 2nd edition of The West Wing Weekly Big Block of Cheese Day. Thanks so much for listening to the show this year and giving us a great 2016 — apart from, well, everything else that…
2.12: The Drop In (with Kim Webster)
Dec 14, 2016 • 53 min
Forget the popcorn, we got Ginger! Kim Webster joins us to talk about the fortuitous path that led her to the role. So affix your signature and seal, baby — Plus, we’re doing our FIRST EVER live taping. It’s in San Francisco, on January 15, 2017, at the…
2.11: The Leadership Breakfast
Dec 6, 2016 • 45 min
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.…
2.10: Noël (with Bradley Whitford and Ellen Totleben)
Nov 30, 2016 • 72 min
(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…
2.09: Galileo
Nov 15, 2016 • 57 min
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…
2.08: Shibboleth
Nov 8, 2016 • 52 min
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…
2.07: The Portland Trip (with Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning, Congressman Brendan Boyle, and Fmr. Congressman Steve Gunderson)
Nov 2, 2016 • 67 min
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…
2.06: The Lame Duck Congress (with Dave Chameides)
Oct 26, 2016 • 51 min
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…
2.05: And It’s Surely to Their Credit
Oct 19, 2016 • 50 min
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)
Oct 12, 2016 • 75 min
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…
2.03: The Midterms
Oct 4, 2016 • 43 min
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)
Sep 28, 2016 • 77 min
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…
2.01: In The Shadow of Two Gunmen, Part I (with Thomas Schlamme)
Sep 28, 2016 • 72 min
“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…
2.00: Special Interim Session (with Aaron Sorkin)
Sep 20, 2016 • 50 min
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,…
1.22: What Kind of Day Has It Been (with Tim Matheson)
Sep 7, 2016 • 53 min
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)
Aug 31, 2016 • 64 min
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?…
1.20: Mandatory Minimums (with Kathleen York and Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson)
Aug 24, 2016 • 69 min
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…
1.19: Let Bartlet Be Bartlet (with Under Secretary of the Army Patrick Murphy)
Aug 17, 2016 • 56 min
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…
1.18: Six Meetings Before Lunch
Aug 10, 2016 • 42 min
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
Aug 3, 2016 • 51 min
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…
1.16: 20 Hours in L.A.
Jul 27, 2016 • 42 min
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)
Jul 20, 2016 • 76 min
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.
0.02: Live with FiveThirtyEight
Jul 13, 2016 • 67 min
Josh and Hrishi team up with the FiveThirtyEight Elections Podcast to discuss how polling is used in The West Wing, by looking at a few scenes from the show. This episode was recorded live at the Crest Theatre in Los Angeles. We talk about scenes from…
1.14: Take This Sabbath Day
Jul 6, 2016 • 62 min
Like Toby in this episode, Josh and Hrishi go to shul to try and learn more about the death penalty and faith. They have a conversation with Rabbi Jonathan Spira-Savett. Plus, we email Aaron Sorkin to ask how Marlee Matlin came to be cast as Joey Lucas.
1.13: Take Out the Trash Day (with Senator Bob Casey and Liza Weil)
Jun 29, 2016 • 75 min
This episode of the West Wing deals with hate crimes, and our discussion comes close on the heels of the massacre in Orlando. So, we asked Senator Bob Casey (@SenBobCasey) about the current state of hate crime legislation. We also talk to Liza Weil…
1.12: He Shall, from Time to Time…
Jun 22, 2016 • 45 min
Is it right to defend someone, even when they’ve asked you not to? Josh and Hrishi debate. Plus, a supercut of The West Wing opening theme music with accompanying lyrics, from submissions sent to us by West Wing Weekly listeners.
0.01: West Wing Reunion (Live from ATX)
Jun 15, 2016 • 102 min
Live from the ATX Television Festival, a panel discussion looking back at the West Wing. With Aaron Sorkin, Thomas Schlamme, Janel Moloney, Richard Schiff, Bradley Whitford, Dulé Hill, Melissa Fitzgerald, and Joshua Malina, moderated by Lawrence…
1.11: Lord John Marbury (With William Duffy and Peter James Smith)
Jun 7, 2016 • 62 min
According to Encyclopedia Brittanica, Josh and Hrishi are joined by William Duffy (@WilliamDuffy_) and Peter James Smith (@PJSActor), who played Ed and Larry.
1.10, continued: Memorial Day Special (with Melissa Fitzgerald)
May 30, 2016 • 22 min
On this Memorial Day, we bring you a special episode with Melissa Fitzgerald (@maffyfitz) talking about her work with Justice for Vets.
1.10: In Excelsis Deo (with Richard Schiff)
May 25, 2016 • 67 min
Richard Schiff (@Richard_Schiff) joins Josh and Hrishi to talk about “In Excelsis Deo.” His performance as Toby in this episode earned him his first Emmy win.
1.09: The Short List (with Ronald Klain)
May 18, 2016 • 50 min
The path to a Supreme Court nomination takes us through a discussion of the right to privacy. Plus, Ronald Klain (@RonaldKlain) tells us about the real-life short list that he put together for President Clinton that led to the appointment of Justice Ruth…
1.08: Enemies
May 11, 2016 • 48 min
Retribution, romance, and The Antiquities Act. Plus, Josh and Hrishi attempt their own Big Block of Cheese Day.
1.07: The State Dinner (with Lyn Paolo)
May 4, 2016 • 50 min
Josh and Hrishi largely disagree with each other about this episode. Plus, award-winning costume designer Lyn Paolo (@lynpaolo) discusses her work on the series and on this episode in particular, which earned her an Emmy nomination.
1.06: Mr. Willis of Ohio (with Janel Moloney)
Apr 27, 2016 • 60 min
Janel Moloney (@nellymoloney) joins Josh and Hrishi to talk about playing Donna, and Ben Casselman (@bencasselman) gives an update on the state of the census.
1.05: The Crackpots and These Women (with Eli Attie)
Apr 20, 2016 • 49 min
For Big Block of Cheese Day, Josh and Hrishi are joined by Eli Attie, who was Vice President Al Gore’s chief speechwriter before leaving politics and joining The West Wing as a writer and producer. Plus, the truth about David Rosen.
1.04: Five Votes Down
Apr 13, 2016 • 31 min
The limits of practical idealism. Plus, Hrishi sets Leo’s dialogue to music, and Josh unwittingly reveals a secret.
1.03: A Proportional Response (with Dulé Hill)
Apr 6, 2016 • 51 min
Dulé Hill joins Josh and Hrishi to talk about shooting his first episode of The West Wing, visiting the real White House, and losing to Martin Sheen in 1-on-1.
1.02: “Post Hoc, Ergo Propter Hoc”
Mar 30, 2016 • 33 min
Latin, the Vice President, Morris Tolliver, and more.
1.01: Pilot
Mar 23, 2016 • 48 min
Josh and Hrishi discuss the West Wing’s pilot episode, in the pilot episode of this podcast.
0.00: Cold Open
Mar 15, 2016 • 3 min
Introducing The West Wing Weekly.