Jed approaches Toby on the plane and brings him what seems to be some coffee. He asks how Toby is, and Toby says that walking around the plane looking at "these great and terrible old men" has made him think that it would be a happy outcome if Saudi Arabia were prosperous and free, but that "the men on this plane spent the better part of the late twentieth century trying to play God in other countries. And the regimes they anointed are the ones that haunt us today." He pauses. "Yeah, I'm not making much progress with the eulogy." Jed tells Toby how Lassiter used to call him from time to time and offer advice and lectures, which Jed usually didn't care to listen to. Now that he realizes that other guys who have had this job are the only ones who know how it is, he wishes he'd paid more attention: "I wish I'd taken more of his calls." Charlie comes and tells Jed -- you guessed it -- that Leo is on the phone. POTUS gets up and leaves, and Toby looks at his computer and dives back into the eulogy. That was a very good scene. When Jed, or anyone else on this show, has even momentary glimmers of humility, it helps a great deal. It doesn't happen very often.
In the conference room, Jed hears from Leo that the compound with the Americans is still okay, but that there's fighting in Riyadh. "How serious?" Jed asks. "Bunch of imams throwing stones," Leo says. He also reports that they tracked down one of the diplomats they were looking for, who has vouched for the protest leader as a "true reformer" and not a fundamentalist in reformer's clothing. Jed tells him to move some more military in a little closer, and set up a chat with the prince. Leo starts to say something, but Jed cuts him off, saying, "It's time to tell him, Leo. Real change. He can start looking for a new kingdom."
It is "3 Hours Later" PM-TCT. We see a lovely expanse of green lawn covered with white chairs. Obviously, this is the setting for Lassiter's funeral, and it's a very lovely shot. One point for the cinematography. Toby is the only person sitting in any of the chairs, though, and before long, he gets a call. It's Donna, who is just relieved to hear that he isn't singing. She asks how it is there. He tells her not to ask, and she says, "Okay." But then, like the perceptive woman she is, she asks again. "Sad," Toby says. "It's just...sad."
Jed is strolling on the...I don't know, veranda, I guess, of the Lassiter Library when Charlie. Brings him. The phone. It's Leo. Leo reports that the National Guard (this is the Saudi National Guard) is fanning out around the protests. Jed asks how things are with the prince, and Leo reports that they actually haven't found him yet. Jed tells the military types to ready a peacekeeping mission, and tells Leo to get to the prince and warn him that if he acts against the protestors, Jed will cut off military sales to his forces. "If he can use American lives as a pretext for force, so can I," Jed says, and he hangs up just as Newman strolls up behind him. Newman and Jed go for a walk, Newman asking whether it seems likely that Lassiter actually read the books in his library. Newman lets go the interesting news that Lassiter called him when they all found out about Jed's MS. Jed guesses that Lassiter was mad, but Newman says it was actually he who was mad, and Lassiter who told him to shut up. They walk a little more, and Jed lets fly a Wilson quote. As usual, Jed's priority is to prove that he knows more trivia and can quote more historical figures than whomever is in the room with him. They agree that Wilson didn't have all the answers, and neither did Lassiter, and neither did Newman. "But at least at the end," Newman says, "we were all asking the right questions." Ooh, deep. There's a patented West Wing line for you. It's so artfully written that it's hard to keep your eye on the fact that they haven't provided enough story for it to make very much sense. They've essentially skipped to the payoff -- to the moral of the story -- without telling the story. What questions? What is he talking about? We haven't heard enough about what exactly Lassiter was thinking late in the game, and I'll give away right now the fact that we're not going to. It's like they know what point they're trying to make, but instead of making it, they act like it's already been made. And story-wise, that just doesn't work.