West Wing
Night Five

Episode Report Card
Deborah: F | 4 USERS: B+
Those Who Do Not

Jed sits down. Stanley asks Jed to describe the nature of his problem. Jed: "I can't sleep." Stanley: "What happens when you try to sleep?" Jed: "I stay awake." Thank God we've nailed that down. Jed says he hasn't slept in four nights. Stanley wonders if Jed's tried taking a sleeping pill. He did, the third night. It didn't work until the middle of a security briefing the next morning. Me, I think that might just have been the meeting. Stanley: "That's no good." Jed gets up to get a cigarette and says, "Stanley, I think you've been underselling yourself as an expert on sleeping disorders, 'cause you've been right straight on the money so far." Stanley asks how many cigarettes a day Jed smokes. Jed says, "Not many." Stanley points out that nicotine can interfere with sleep. Jed says it never has before. Stanley suggests it could be doing so now. Jed asks, "You think if I put this out I'm going to fall asleep?" Yeah, that's what he's saying. Stanley says no. Jed wants to move on. As Jed opens an armoire containing a TV and turns it to a closed-circuit channel featuring C.J. in the Briefing Room, Stanley manages to rule out arthritis, heartburn, irregular breathing, and periodic muscle contractions as possible physical causes. Jed mentions he's at the UN on Monday. C.J. is being asked about when the reporters will get to see copies of the speech. Jed mutters, "When we're done writing it."

As we fade from the study to the briefing room, C.J. tells the press corps that they will get copies of the speech Sunday night. A reporter asks whether the State Department has reviewed it. C.J. expects their reviews any minute, assures reporters that they'll see it Sunday night, and calls a full lid. As the room clears, a bespectacled fellow comes up to C.J. and tells her he's missing a reporter. Kind of odd coincidental timing on this subplot, since it's only two weeks since U.S. reporter Daniel Pearl was kidnapped in Pakistan (and as of this writing, it is not known whether he is dead or alive). The fellow -- I'm assuming he's an editor -- says the missing reporter is Bill Price. C.J. asks, "Isn't Billy in the Congo?" The editor confirms this. C.J. gets the guy to come with her. He explains that Price has missed his last two deadlines, and has never missed a deadline once in seven years. ["Maybe he's just pulled a Greta Van Susteren, getting so much plastic surgery that he's virtually unrecognizable." -- Wing Chun] C.J. asks, "What does State say?" The editor says because it's Friday night, he's having trouble finding people. He says he's talked to the embassy in Kinshasa and they're becoming involved, but "this is the Congo." The editor thinks Price left the capital. C.J. asks, "Without written permission from the Ministry?" The editor wonders how Price would know he needed that. C.J. says, "By reading State background notes." The editor asks, "Does that sound like Billy?" C.J. says no. The editor: "The first fifteen minutes, they're the most critical in a war-zone abduction." C.J. knows. I'm thinking that if this guy's already missed two deadlines, the good ship Fifteen Minutes has sailed. The editor muses, "If we could get him delivered to someone higher up...." C.J. says she'll talk to Leo. The editor acknowledges that Billy's been a thorn in the side of the Bartlet administration throughout its existence, but that Billy has a wife and three kids, and the editor hopes the White House can forget about any animosity that may exist. C.J. doesn't care about any of that, and she's going to try to help, but since he's missed two deadlines, his fifteen minutes were yesterday. The editor knows. C.J. advises calling Price's wife. She takes off.

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West Wing




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