The West Wing: Noël   Rewatch 
December 27, 2016 12:39 PM - Season 2, Episode 10 - Subscribe

Josh grows ever more anxious and volatile after his shooting, and is ordered by Leo to see a psychiatrist. C.J. uncovers a Nazi-looted painting at the White House and Sam voices support for tapping the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Cellist Yo-Yo Ma makes a guest appearance.

On The West Wing Weekly, Josh and Hrishi talk to Bradley Whitford, who won an Emmy for this episode (his first nomination and the only individual award he won for TWW); and set decorator Ellen Totleben, who was nominated for an Emmy for this episode (but already had one for the pilot and didn't win this time). Tommy Schlamme and Thomas Del Ruth also won awards for this episode (Directors Guild and American Society of Cinematographers, respectively).
posted by Etrigan (5 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Some things that were interesting here:

* It's so clearly Emmy bait. I mean, the Christmas episode of TWW was always Emmy bait (Toby got last season's shot). But it's still fairly well done.

* The awards for directing and cinematography were well-earned. Art direction (Totleben's category) was lost to Boston Public, while competing with The Sopranos, Sex and the City, and CSI. I almost want to dig up that episode, because I don't recall Boston Public being a show with a distinct visual style the same way that every other nominee series had.

* Leo's "Guy in a hole" story/speech. Just the best.

* Also, Leo's amazing ability to be in the right place at the right time. He's just around when you need him, right?

* Also, nice to see someone finally standing up to President Bartlet.
posted by aureliobuendia at 8:46 PM on December 30, 2016 [1 favorite]

This episode has an incredibly deep impact on me, because someone I watched someone I loved struggle mightily with PTSD, and her favourite piece of music is the Bach Cello Prelude played by Yo Yo Ma.
posted by dry white toast at 7:31 PM on January 2, 2017

Yo-Yo Ma Rules!
posted by ApathyGirl at 11:56 PM on January 16, 2017

I was thinking as I watched the Congressional party scene just how much the cast and crew must have loved getting to hear Yo-Yo Ma play.
posted by orange swan at 8:18 PM on October 6, 2017

Rewatched this (And "Bartlett for America," and "Holy Night") tonight.

*I don't think I have PTSD, but I have frequent panic attacks, and this episode is a little like a 43-minute-long vicarious panic attack.

*What in hell was Toby thinking putting three bagpipers in the White House lobby? That anyone can have a normal-speaking-volume conversation anywhere in the west wing while that shit is going on is tv magic.

*I guess based on what Keyworth knows it makes sense to have the trainee there on suicide watch, but Jesus, it's not unrealistic that that puts Josh on the defensive from the get-go.

*Adam Arkin has exactly one acting note, but it's incredibly engaging.

*Yo Yo Ma may, in fact, rule.

*Carol of the Bells is one of my very favorite Christmas songs but I think it's because it's one of the few with real tension in it, and hot damn that tension is played to the nines at the end here.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:08 PM on November 29, 2018

« Older Travelers: Bishop...   |  Travelers: Kathryn... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments