The West Wing (1999–2006)
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Pilot 

The West Wing staffers are introduced as each learns via phone or pager that the President was in a cycling accident. Josh faces the possible loss of his job after an on-air insult of a ... See full summary »

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Storyline

The West Wing staffers are introduced as each learns via phone or pager that the President was in a cycling accident. Josh faces the possible loss of his job after an on-air insult of a political opponent, which Toby tries to prevent by having Josh make a personal apology. Sam's fling the previous night with Laurie, who unbeknownst to Sam is a call girl, puts him in hot water, which he compounds when ineptly lecturing a class of 4th-graders about the White House and then asking their teacher which child is Leo's daughter. Leo must deal with the fallout from Josh's blunder, as well as 137 Cuban refugees who escaped on rafts and are seeking asylum. The president walks in during Josh's apology, recites the First Commandment, and lambastes three Christian pols for not denouncing a fringe group.

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Drama

Certificate:

TV-14
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Release Date:

22 September 1999 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Rob Lowe says the line, "Alger Hiss just walked in with my secret pumpkin." Hiss was a State Department official in the 1940s accused of spying for the Soviet Union. His accuser was Whittaker Chambers, who hid copies of government files in a pumpkin on his farm before giving them to then Rep. Richard Nixon, a member of the House Un-American Activities Committee. The line most likely refers not to the original incident, but to North by Northwest (1959), in which Cary Grant's character asks, "Did you get the pumpkin?". See more »

Goofs

In the pilot episode, Sam tells Mallory's class that the Roosevelt room is named after Franklin D Roosevelt. Mallory later corrects him stating that it is named after Theodore Roosevelt and pointing out the painting over the fireplace. In fact, while originally named for Teddy, Richard Nixon dedicated it to both Roosevelts, and the painting over the fireplace changes depending which party is in office, Teddy for the Republicans, FDR for the Democrats. This means that with Bartlet in office it should probably have been FDR's painting hanging there, although Bill Clinton did decide to keep Teddy's painting in place as he preferred it. See more »

Quotes

[talking about the President's bike accident]
Donna Moss: And what was the cause of the accident?
Leo McGarry: What are you, from State Farm?
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Connections

References ABC News Nightline (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

Moment of Weakness
Written by Bif Naked and Peter Karroll
Performed by Bif Naked
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User Reviews

 
Welcome to the West Wing
21 August 2017 | by See all my reviews

This is a wonderful pilot episode of what became a wonderful show (well, at least for the first four years), penned by the incredible talent that is Aaron Sorkin.

To introduce and get us to like all those characters, even the minor ones, and establish the world that is the daily life of West Wing staffers, as well as trying to tell a story, was a huge task, but it's all carried off in style.

A lovely first episode.


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