West Wing

Episode Report Card
Deborah: C | Grade It Now!
Han Solo

C.J. goes to get the photographers, reminding them that there are no questions, only pictures. They file in and start taking pictures as Jed and the still-nameless pianist shake hands. Jed gives the official welcome and blah blah cultural exchangecakes. The pianist speaks in Korean, and the translator tells everyone that he thanks the President and praises the "dear" North Korean leader, to whom all glory flows, and for whom he wishes good health and longevity. Jed: "Really? Next time he's overseas, [it'd] be nice if Yo-Yo Ma said that." The photographers chuckle politely. As C.J. ushers the photographers out, Leo asks the pianist if he'll be going sightseeing. The translator says, "We will visit Lincoln's memorial, commemorating the shameful practice of slavery; the Vietnam wall of death." Leo: "Uh-huh." They're about to leave, when the pianist pulls a couple of CDs out of his pocket, offering (in hesitant English) to sign one as a gift. Jed: "Great." The pianist turns his back to his bodyguard, and signs the CD on Jed's desk. Jed accepts the gift, saying, "I'll treasure this. Thank you." The pianist replies: "Pleasure...all mine." They leave as Jed pulls out his glasses to read the inscription. Leo comments: "Sweet kid." C.J.: "The handlers are a lot of laughs. Bet they can pretty much transform any place into their own little wall of death." Jed's looking all serious over the top of his glasses and tells Leo and C.J.: "This isn't an autograph...it's a message." And this isn't storytelling...it's spoonfeeding. He shows them the CD, on which the pianist has printed, "I WISH TO DEFECT!" Leo makes his "aw, holy hell" face, and C.J. looks surprised. Jed takes off his glasses and raises his head, settling it on his neck in that majestic, Presidential-dilemma kind of way he has.

After the credits and commercials, Jed, C.J., and Leo are all still in the Oval Office, and Leo says, "This is complicated." Jed tells him to call in all the relevant agencies and find out what they're talking about. C.J. says that the pianist is back for rehearsal and sound check at 2:30. Jed says, "We behave normally, like this isn't happening." Leo asserts that it may not be happening. C.J. doesn't understand. Jed explains that they've been in secret negotiations with North Korea in Geneva for the last three weeks regarding nuclear weapons. Leo: "This guy defects, everybody goes home." Jed says they don't know that, and that they need to find out. C.J., alarmed: "But we're not turning him away?" Jed: "Of course not." Leo says for the third time, "It's complicated." C.J. and Leo leave. Is it just me, or is C.J. wearing a lot more eyeliner than usual? Between the eyeliner and the haircut, it's a little bit '80s-era Joan Jett. Just a bit. (Hey, there's a slash couple for ya.)

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West Wing




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