West Wing
In The Room

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In The Room Of One's Own

The three of them enter the infirmary, and immediately Jed starts to tell them that he just got off the phone with President Wang of South Korea, and that everything concerning the nuclear experiment has been cleared up. For most of Jed's speech, Millie is standing in front of him, blocking him from sight. Once we finally see him, we see that he is sitting up in a chair, with an IV bag hanging on a pole. C.J. has a hesitant look on her face. When Jed tells her to set up a quick briefing for the press on the plane, she starts to ask him if he's feeling better, but she can't seem to get the words out. He reaches forward with his left hand and tells them, "My left hand is back. I still have no feelings in my legs, and my right arm's in no shape to be shaking hands in China." Toby asks him if he's in pain. Jed: "I'm fine, so long as I don't attempt any superhuman feat, like, say, writing my name." He suggests that they get started with the briefing, pointing out that the flag burning story will likely be killed by the whole MS thing. As he discusses the briefing, he moves his right hand several times. Some folks have suggested that this was a slip on Sheen's part, but I don't think it's inconsistent with the description he gave of his condition. He tells them that he's "just going to tell them that the President of the United States will be working from a wheelchair again." C.J. asks, "'Again'?" I don't believe that I'm going to cut the writers some slack, but I think this lapse is completely understandable in light of the stress and heightened emotions that C.J. must be experiencing. In any case, Toby whispers over to her, "FDR." Once Toby reminds Jed that Roosevelt died in office, he decides that he might skip the comparison. Jed calls over to someone who just entered the room and tells him (or her, I couldn't see) to bring "it" over here. Whoever it is sets a folded wheelchair down with a loud clanking sound. Jed asks C.J., "How much you wanna bet I can get 'em to ask me a question about South Korea?" C.J. looks a bit stunned, and then gamely responds, "How much you got?"

C.J. opens the curtain to coach, also known as the press section of the plane. The lights are just turning on. She apologizes for waking them, but tells them that Jed has an announcement. Someone starts to wheel Jed down the corridor to the press section, but he says, "No, I'll take it from here." And then with superhuman grit and determination, he wheels himself down the corridor. I join with the many, many people who called bullshit on this scene. I get that they wanted to show how much Jed needed to be seen as being able to take care of himself, but if we're to believe that his right arm is too weak to shake hands, I just don't buy the wheelchair bit. Not to mention that with the IV stuck in the back of his hand, any kind of movement would be extraordinarily painful. In any case, he makes his way to the press section, and we hear C.J. announce, "Ladies and Gentlemen, the President of the United States." Fade to black.

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West Wing

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