Itâs three days after the election. Leoâs funeral (er, âcelebrationâ) comes and goes before the opening credits roll, and then itâs time to come to terms with the transitions ahead: Santos tries to get used to being called âMr. President-Elect,â and discovers that My First Presidentiary doesnât write itself. Josh is a walking ulcer after Santos (a) announces Barry as head of the transition team; (b) decides to press for lobbying reform as the first legislation of the new term; and (c) considers getting involved in the battle for Speaker of the House...not to mention Amy (whoâs pushing for a female V.P., natch) showing up and trying to get Josh to agree to a date with some Justice staffer right in front of Donna. Awkward! In other news, Ainsley hates Hoover and begs to come back, Toby skips out on the burial, Charlie impersonates Donnaâs backbone, the entire Vinick camp is MIA, and Otto is still hot. At the wake, Donna suddenly remembers sheâs homeless and asks whether she can crash at C.J.âs place; C.J. agrees, and she and Donna decide to break off their respective booty dates with Danny and Josh, denying us the four-way weâve so anticipated for seven years. Jed, whoâs otherwise acting like heâs closed up shop already, makes his entrance and smoothly lightens the roomâs mood by getting everyone to start sharing anecdotes about Leoâs crazy misadventures with garbage cans, parkas, and local press. Later, at the residence, the list expands to Leoâs various sports achievements (all tall tales, to gullible Annabethâs dismay) and shooting fish for a nicotine fix.
Final tally: Leo: 1, sex: 0. RIP, John.
First, I want to send some big gratitude to Oaklander for covering the recaplet for me while I was in rehab for my gambling addiction. You're the best! I'm still allowed to drink, so I'll buy you a beer.
Previously: Leo died, and Santos won the Presidential election. It's kind of like The Facts Of Life, with the taking of the good and the bad. And like The Facts Of Life, the bad (Blair, Mrs. Garrett's screeching) is so much worse than the good (Jo, young George Clooney) that it's a total rip-off. The world is definitely not living up to my dreams right about now.
We open with a montage of show regulars getting ready for Leo's funeral, while we hear part of the funeral service in the background. As the eagle-eyed forum posters pointed out, the language that we hear in the funeral service is all Episcopalian, even though Leo was Catholic. Jed puts on a tie. C.J. is having trouble putting on an earring. Josh puts on his watch. Toby, with his beard untrimmed in accord with Jewish custom, is putting on a tie. Donna puts on a necklace.
The montage continues, as Jed and Abbey ride to the funeral in the Presidential limo. Jed is staring out of the window. Abbey looks over at him, concern in her eyes (and a fabulous hat on her head).
And the montage continues in the church, where a bishop (I'm guessing, based on his miter) continues with the prayers. We get shots of various mourners, including Jed, Josh, Margaret, Donna, Abbey, Mallory, Zoey, Liz, Ellie, Santos, C.J., Charlie, Nancy McNally, Will, a couple of unknown children, Amy Gardner, Danny Concannon, V.P. "Bingo" Bob Russell, Carol, Ainsley Hayes, Nancy (Jed's other secretary), Andi, Toby, John Hoynes, Annabeth, and Debbie. And a mysterious woman with reddish-blonde hair, who might be Josie (Leo's sister) or Jenny (Leo's ex-wife) or Millie (the Surgeon General) or Elizabeth (Leo's other, never-before-seen sister) or Sam Seaborn in drag. It could be any of those people. (Except, really, it's Josie.) The tears are flowing. The bishop ends the service, and the military honor guard proceeds down the aisle. The pallbearers take their place around Leo's flag-draped casket. The six pallbearers are Jed, Josh, Santos, Goodwin (formerly called Anspaugh in these recaps), Charlie, and the man who was sitting with Mallory (who is presumably her life partner or husband). We get an overhead shot of the six of them taking their places, and there's a great moment where Josh just drapes his arm around Jed's shoulders. There's ethereal choral music in the background, undercut by the tapping sound of the honor guard's steel-soled shoes, as they solemnly proceed down the aisle. The music ends, just as the pallbearers pick up the casket. Martin Sheen does a tremendous job showing the emotional and physical strain that Jed's undergoing, although I doubt it was much of a stretch for any of the cast to be overwhelmed with grief in this scene. The pallbearers slowly carry the casket down the aisle. Joey Lucas is there. We get a long shot of Jed's grief-stricken face, and then we cut to credits (which feature the entire regular cast for the first time in a long time).