The West Wing: Season 5, Episode 17

The Supremes (24 Mar. 2004)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama
8.8
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A Supreme Court Justice dies, forcing the administration's hand on picking a desirable replacement who can be confirmed by a hostile Congress.

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Title: The Supremes (24 Mar 2004)

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Cast

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Senator Roland Pierce (as Mitchell Ryan)
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Storyline

Josh's efforts to break the deadlock over judicial nominees is brought to a head by the death of a Supreme Court Justice. With the Republicans controlling Congress, the administration's chances of getting a replacement they want appear to be slim. Despite this, Josh and Toby begin back-channel negotiations over a radical scheme which could be exactly what the overly-moderate judicial system needs. Written by Murray Chapman

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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supreme court justice

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Drama

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Release Date:

24 March 2004 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The case Mulready and Lang are speaking of is U.S. v Lopez, a landmark Supreme Court case in which the Supreme Court ended 50 years of precedents allowing Congress to federally mandate certain legal standards (including civil rights and federal gun control laws) based on a very liberal interpretation of the Commerce Clause (Article 1, Section 8. Clause 3) of the U.S. Constitution. See more »

Goofs

Final scene in the W.H. press room when President Bartlett is at the podium introducing his two new Supreme Court nominations, he incorrectly introduces Glenn Close's character, Judge Evelyn Baker Lang, as the next Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. While she will be the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, the correct title should be "Chief Justice of the United States." See more »

Quotes

President Josiah 'Jed' Bartlet: Thanks for coming in.
Justice Christopher Mulready: It's an honor, Sir.
President Josiah 'Jed' Bartlet: [gesturing for Mulready to have a seat] Please. I understand you and Judge Lang had a bit of a knock down, drag out.
Justice Christopher Mulready: She wants to federalize law enforcement. I thought it was hasty.
President Josiah 'Jed' Bartlet: Not your brand of judge.
Justice Christopher Mulready: Quite the opposite. I have not had that much fun in months.
President Josiah 'Jed' Bartlet: [surprised] Really?
Justice Christopher Mulready: Use her if you can. I'm not sure what all this is about. I suppose a number of people are placated by a glimpse of someone like her, or someone like me in these halls. I'm ...
[...]
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Connections

Referenced in Jeopardy!: Episode #22.196 (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

American Pie
(uncredited)
Written by Don McLean
Performed by Allison Janney & Mitch Ryan
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User Reviews

 
Brilliant episode
24 March 2007 | by (Denmark) – See all my reviews

This episode leaves me with a good feeling. I have to admit that I had misty eyes all through the last half hour. And its difficult to claim that "West Wing" usually does that to the viewers.

The reason for my joy for this episode is two-folded. First of all there is Glenn Close, perfectly casted as a liberal judge. Second there is the message, that the gloomy impression of a Left and Right in USA, unable to communicate, is not true.

The beauty lies in the compromise that does not look like the usual compromise. Instead of victory for the mediocre, we see a victory of the genius.

This episode is also the last high peak before the series finally loses its momentum.


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