West Wing
The U.S. Poet Laureate

Episode Report Card
Shack: C- | 4 USERS: A
YOU GRADE IT
The Truth, and Other Nuisances

Toby wanders in to ask Sam and Ainsley what they're doing in his office. Sam explains that the television in his office isn't working. Toby tells Ainsley that she did a good job with her television appearances. I wish we had seen that. I'm totally neutral on Ainsley -- her accent, her hair, and her tapeworm -- but I would have liked to see exactly how a Republican defended Bartlet's gaffe. ["Maybe they had to cut that to make room for the LemonLyman.com plot thread." -- Wing Chun] Ainsley thanks Toby, and leaves. Sam asks about Tabatha. Toby isn't exactly sure what's going on with her. Sam asks if she has a history of activism. Wouldn't Sam already know? She's the incoming poet laureate. Toby says she has no history of activism. He says that when they were debating, she said, "From everything I've seen, and everything I've been told..." Sam interrupts to ask if Toby thinks she's being pressured to take this position. Toby doesn't know. Before he can elaborate, Ginger (I think? I never can remember the tertiary characters.) comes in to tell him that Georgetown University called and that there's some sort of problem.

Subplot of Sorkin Getting the Last Word In. Josh chases down Donna because the whole LemonLyman.com thing has blown up in his face. Donna responds in mock surprise, "You're kidding!" As much as this subplot bugged, Janel Maloney's delivery throughout the whole thing has been wonderful. Apparently, posters are calling Josh names and telling him that he doesn't understand the purpose of the GAO. In addition, there's more than a page of posts questioning whether or not Josh's Sanskrit comment was an insult against Egyptians. Of course, as Sanskrit bears absolutely no relationship with Egypt, I haven't a clue whether or not this is another crack against the crazy posters or if, in Sorkin's "little stories," Sanskrit actually was used in Egypt. And of course, if the moderator had truly been a control freak on top of her game, Josh would have been banned and his post deleted anyway. ["Yep. Unless she were intentionally giving him enough rope to hang himself before she called the Post." -- Wing Chun] Donna says she told him the people at the site were hysterical. Josh says he thought she meant they were funny. Josh finally decides to drop the whole thing so that he can focus on the press conference in ten minutes.

But it's too late, because here comes C.J. to open a can of whoop-ass, jump down from the top ropes, and give Josh the People's Elbow. She strides in and tells Josh that somebody from the federal pages of The Washington Post has called Carol to confirm that Josh posted on a message board that the White House could order a GAO report of anything it wants. Josh -- realizing that he's about to be in big, big trouble -- meekly adds the part about "without threatening the separation of powers." C.J.'s not biting. She's incredulous that Josh is posting on a website. He explains to her that the site is a crazy place: "It's got this dictatorial leader who I'm sure wears a muumuu and chain-smokes Parliaments." C.J. angrily interrupts him to ask him what he was doing there in the first place. He explains that it was called LemonLyman.com. C.J. reminds him that dealing with the public is her field and goes on to trash the website, pointing out that all the people involved are crazy. She gives this huge speech comparing it to the plot of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, with the moderator in the role of Nurse Ratched and Josh in the role of McMurphy, and though Allison Janney's delivery is wonderful, I'm not going to justify the gross overgeneralization of web communities with a full recap. She concludes by telling Josh that she's going to assign an intern to check the site every day to make sure Josh never posts again, and promises that, if he does, "[she'll] shove a motherboard so far up [his] ass..." Josh tries to point out that he outranks C.J. She shouts, "SO FAR UP YOUR ASS!" Josh is cowed. C.J. calms down and asks him if he's ready for the press conference. He is. They head out.

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West Wing

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