Random Thoughts on The Supremes
Written by Toniann
Where did this episode come from? The Aaron Sorkin vault of
goodies? Why wait until this late in the season to finally give us
something so downright good? I mean, the plot was entertaining,
there were too many subplots (something that's been plaguing me in
recent episodes) to distract, and most importantly, somebody
remembered to bring the funny again. Finally! Josh was dry and yet
very amusing ("I love her, I lover her mind, I lover her shoes."),
CJ was a little giddy but still witty, Donna was sassy ("Oh my God,
you put my parent's cats on the Supreme Court!"), Debbie was
hysterical (hosing down Josh), Toby was his cynical and crabby fun
self. Amazing. I almost expected the show to end with Martin Sheen
looking at the camera and saying, "The previous 18 episodes were,
well, a joke. Apparently not a very funny one, but we realize that
now, and we'll be returning you to your regularly scheduled
excellent show from here on." Oh, if wishing made it so.
Of course, the guest stars helped. William Fichter, playing Mr.
Right-Wing Judge, I've always been a fan. Milo O'Shea as Chief
Justice Ashford was a pleasure, as always. And Glenn Close... let's
be honest. The woman has more class and presence in her pinky finger
than most of the rest of Hollywood put together. She could've been
reciting the phone book and it would've been compelling.
Speaking of guest stars, who was that playing young Ryan's power
uncle, Congressman Pierce? The one getting everyone drunk and
singing, I believe, "American Pie" with CJ. The one who very
conveniently was just the person they needed on their side to make
this all work! What a stroke of luck, it's the pesky intern to the
rescue again. Who apparently isn't dead (though he's got a bit of
confusion himself about who is). Why did we have that nonsense in
the last episode about him being MIA?
Ah, CJ in love. She emails (at work -- misusing taxpayer dollars,
very bad), she phones, she giggles, she's isn't getting much sleep,
and she keeps apparently nice-smelling lotion on her desk. Cute.
"Of all the gin joints in all the world..." I really love that
Toby's thing with "Casablanca" is a recurring bit.
Having even one cat can make you a cat person; I'm one. But he
said it like it was a bad thing... And after all, when you think
about it, it was Feline Influence that started this whole process
rolling, got people thinking, and eventually balanced the Supreme
Court. I find nothing at all strange about the idea that two kitties
changed the course of American history. Two kitties, and dry cookies.
Congresswoman Wyatt. I used to like Andy, but she's kind of on
my "not so likable" list now. I'll confess I didn't quite sign on to
her "You're too sad, Toby" reason for turning our guy down in the
first place. I thought refusing to move into the dream house he'd
bought for her and for their children sent a bit of a "I don't want
you that involved" message. And we also heard that she sat out
Huck's bris. And it's Toby's fault for not being more involved? I
don't know. Her character has been mixed signals from day one. I
just can't figure out if that's exactly what we're supposed to think
of her, or if it's bad/inconsistent writing.
There's nothing like a harpsichord to drown out your boss'
yelling. Lily Tomlin is just wonderful.
The Roberto Mendoza story arc was one of my favorites of the early
seasons... didn't Bartlet appoint him to the Supreme Court? It just
seemed, in this episode, that achievement was forgotten... nor was
Mendoza's name mentioned whenever anyone was listing SC members.
Still, I was pretty happy with the resolution of "The Supremes".
It was idealistic, but idealism has almost entirely been missing
from this season, and the show has suffered for it. I can remember
feeling, in the first two seasons, that I was watching a show about
the way I *wished* things really were. Sure, it wasn't always
completely (and drearily) realistic, but it was plausible and
enthusiastic. But for the past two seasons, I've felt more like I
was watching government be everything I hate that it is, and I get
enough of that on the news -- during any administration. In other
words, we can stand to have a little more idealism, I think, in the
Bartlet White House. This episode was a good start.
"...Standing in the gaze of history, pantless."