|Rob Lowe as||Sam (Samuel Norman) Seaborn||Deputy Communications Director|
|Stockard Channing as||Abbey (Abigail Ann) Bartlet M.D.||First Lady|
|Dulé Hill as||Charlie (Charles) Young||Personal Aide to the President|
|Allison Janney as||C.J. (Claudia Jean) Cregg||Press Secretary|
|Janel Moloney as||Donna (Donnatella) Moss||Assistant to Deputy Chief of Staff|
|Richard Schiff as||Toby (Tobias Zachary) Ziegler||Communications Director|
|John Spencer as||Leo Thomas McGarry||Chief of Staff|
|Bradley Whitford as||Josh (Joshua) Lyman||Deputy Chief of Staff|
Martin Sheen as
|Jed (Josiah Edward) Bartlet||President of the United States|
|Special Guest Stars|
|Mary-Louise Parker as||Amy (Amelia) Gardner||Lobbyist|
Roger Rees as
|Lord John Marbury||British Ambassador to the United States|
Hector Elizondo as
|Dr. Dalton Millgate||Sam's former physics professor|
|Robin Thomas as||Senator Jack Enlow||D-Ill.|
|NiCole Robinson as||Margaret||Hooper (last name) /
Assistant to Chief of Staff
|Jerry Lambert as||Chuck Kane|
"She's formidable without being off-putting in any way," [Stockard] Channing says of her Abigail. "She's honorable. She's also quite passionate. I think what people respond to is, they sense this tremendous love that she has for her husband -- and he has for her."
And that love is getting her into trouble, as she is a target of an investigation for covering up the president's multiple sclerosis.
"Aaron has put me in a lot of hot water," she says. "I don't know if he knows how to get me out of it but that's up to him."
"Taking Stock(ard) of the First Lady on The West Wing"
by Douglas J. Rowe
December 30, 2001
Tonight's lesson subjects: Ireland; federal funding for scientific ventures (Hector Elizondo plays a physicist who demands that Sam get to the bottom of why the Senate isn't acting on his supercolliding superconductor); and, for an Enron-attuned nation, what to do when a very large company run by a major campaign contributor hits the skids. (There's a major difference between real life and this subplot, however, and it's the difference between apparent shenanigans and an honest mistake.
...... and, tonight, his [Jed's] marriage to Abbey; and Josh's evolving relationship with women's-group lobbyist Amy Gardner (Mary Louise Parker).
...... [Josh] doesn't have a life, but at least she complains about that tonight.
...Tonight his [Toby's] agenda is Ireland, and we're in luck because he's conducting it with Britain's irrepressible ambassador, Lord John Marbury (Roger Rees), who's always a welcome sight. Rees makes Marbury both outrageous and instantly likable (to everyone but Leo), and his appearances always provide both substance and comic relief.
And speaking of comic relief, why must that burden fall with such regularity on poor Donna (Janel Maloney)? She gets that helpless look on her face far too frequently and silly things happen to her too often. Tonight, for instance, the Secret Service won't let her into the East Room party (although Abbey lets her into her private party and -- to Maloney's credit, and Sorkin's -- Donna makes the most of it).
"IT'S MY PARTY"
by Paul Droesch
March 6, 2002
TV Guide Online
But previous fleeting references to America's northern neighbour were totally eclipsed by Wednesday night's episode, which closed with the playing, then the singing, of O Canada against a backdrop of giant Canadian flags.
They even got the words right.
"It is amazing. It's quite amazing," said Roz Wolfe, senior officer at the Canadian consulate in Los Angeles, who suggested the embassy should organize an event in honour of actress Janel Moloney, for whom the anthem played.
In the episode, Moloney's character Donna loses her security clearance when the Secret Service discovers her Minnesota birthplace has become part of Manitoba in a finetuning of the border. She bemoans the fact she's been throwing away Canadian pennies all her life, doesn't know the words to her national anthem and is developing an instant inferiority complex.
More than 1.5 million Canadians tuned in to the episode. Many were atwitter over the high profile Canadian content, e-mailing, faxing and phoning CTV to express their excitement, said Mike Cosentino, the network's director of programming communications. CTV broadcasts The West Wing in Canada.
Cosentino said that while the majority of comments were positive, a few viewers grumbled that several of the show's characters talked over the anthem.
West Wing is must-see TV for the staff at the L.A. consulate, which is thrilled by the prime-time acknowledgment of America's largest trading partner - even when the reference is wrong.
That happened in the season opener last fall, a special two-part episode called "Isaac and Ishmael" which dealt with the issue of terrorism against the United States. It opened with word that a sought terrorist had snuck into the country from Canada via a remote border crossing on the Vermont-Ontario border.
Vermont and Ontario don't share a border - as Sorkin subsequently learned.
"Even when we're mentioned in the context of geographic confusion, it's still kind of fun that we're on the radar screen," Wolfe said. Fun, but not necessarily surprising, says John Rogers, a Canadian screenwriter living in Los Angeles.
"The Canadian presence in Hollywood is really strong," explained Rogers, who was born American but became a Canadian after he studied at McGill University.
"Especially on sitcoms for awhile . . . you had two Canadians wandering around somewhere on the staff. Mostly because we came down to be sitcom stars and we were all so pale and pasty they just wouldn't put us on camera so we wound up writing."
Consequently Canada has a much higher profile in the entertainment industry than in the country in general.
"So when you're looking for something that's a little offbeat, it's kind of a natural thing to go to because you're familiar with it," he said. "It's a foreign nationality you can explore without it being too difficult to understand or laden with politically incorrect freight."
Wolfe is convinced, however, that someone on the West Wing staff knew the words to O Canada before this week's episode.
"I'm convinced that there is Canadian input there. Because most Americans who haven't had contact with Canada, didn't go to school there or don't have a Canadian connection wouldn't think of it.
"So it would have to probably be a Canadian who said: 'Let's just sneak that in.' "
"Does West Wing's Aaron Sorkin have a thing for the Great White North?"
by Helen Branswell
March 8, 2002
The 40-year-old thesp adds that she barely catches West Wing -- though she adored last week's episode, when the First Lady (Stockard Channing) invited C.J. and the other ladies to confab over several bottles of vino. "Yay Stockard!" she cheers. "The women getting drunk, wasn't that fabulous? I love that. That was the first time we women all got to be together. I hope [creator] Aaron Sorkin writes more for us." - Allison Janney
"West Wing Star's Soapy Past"
by Daniel R. Coleridge
March 13, 2002
TV Guide Online
Oregon wines are becoming television stars.
Willamette Valley Vineyards wines have made it on two television shows this year, including a recent spot on the popular sitcom "Friends."
They got a mention on "West Wing" earlier this year, and they showed up on "Friends" this past Thursday.
"We're still on cloud nine," Willamette Valley Vineyards president Jim Bernau said.
On the "West Wing" segment, the specific wine was mentioned in a description of a birthday dinner.
President Bartlett [Bartlet] (portrayed by Martin Sheen) was describing the wine he selected for the First Lady's birthday. It was a 1997 Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Noir.
"Oregon wines appear on television"
November 6, 2002
Salem Statesman Journal