The West Wing

10 Best Episodes of The West Wing - Season 2

The West Wing provides a glimpse into presidential politics in the nation's capital as it tells the stories of the members of a fictional presidential administration. These interesting characters have humor and dedication that touches the heart while the politics that they discuss touch on everyday life.

Written by Sophie and last updated on feb 02, 2023.

PS: The following content contains spoilers!

PPS: I will admit that parts of this page was written with the help of AI - it makes my work so much easier to not start from a blank page!

The West Wing - S2E9

#15 - Galileo (Season 2 - Episode 9)

On the eve of Jed's participation in a national television conference with thousands of school children as the Galileo probe arrives at Mars, NASA loses the communication link; Leo contends with a Russian ambassador who denies that a fire has broken out in a nuclear missile silo; C.J. and Sam accompany Jed to a concert where they're each faced with people they'd rather not see; Josh and Donna work on the nomination for the next person to appear on a postage stamp; C.J. wrangles a minor controversy ignited by a leak that Jed doesn't like green beans.

The episode was rated 7.96 from 348 votes.

The West Wing - S2E8

#14 - Shibboleth (Season 2 - Episode 8)


Toby encourages the President to appoint Leo's controversial sister to a national education post, against Leo's objections; Bartlet must decide what the do with 83 Chinese citizens who stowed away on a freighter ship and seek asylum on the grounds of religious persecution; CJ has to decide which one of two turkeys the President should "pardon" but then tries to save the other from the chopping block; Charlie is tasked with buying the President a new carving knife which is not as easy as it sounds.

The episode was rated 7.97 from 328 votes.

The West Wing - S2E20

#13 - The Fall's Gonna Kill You (Season 2 - Episode 20)

Babish menacingly questions CJ and Abbey about their involvement in the MS cover-up while Josh asks Joey Lucas to create a hypothetical poll the gauge the public's reaction; Sam is happy with a projected smaller-than-expected budget surplus; Donna is the only one worried about a Chinese satellite hurling toward the Earth at 2,000 mph.

The episode was rated 7.98 from 316 votes.

The West Wing - S2E16

#12 - Somebody's Going to Emergency, Somebody's Going to Jail (Season 2 - Episode 16)


It's Big Block of Cheese Day again. Toby meets with World Trade Organization protesters, and CJ meets with a group of cartographers who want the standards for maps changed to be a more accurate reflection of geographical and political reality. Donna asks Sam to look into granting a pardon for a friend's deceased grandfather. Bartlet is having problems selecting a site for his Presidential library.

The episode was rated 7.98 from 329 votes.

The West Wing - S2E14

#11 - The War at Home (Season 2 - Episode 14)

Bartlet authorizes a special ops team to rescue the five DEA agents only to have them caught in an ambush; CJ arranges for the host of "Capitol Beat" to have an exclusive interview with the wronged police officer; Toby must deal with Senator Gilette who threatens to make a third party run for president due to the tone of the changes on social security reform; Sam gives Ainsley another chance to meet the President, but she still fails to create a good impression; Josh finally gets the poll results from Joey; Abbey and Bartlet discuss his running for a second term.

The episode was rated 8.02 from 337 votes.

The West Wing - S2E18

#10 - 17 People (Season 2 - Episode 18)


Toby, suspicious that there's something going on with the President, finds out about Bartlet's MS and informs Leo of the legal ramifications; Josh and Donna disagree about the date of their "anniversary"; Sam and Ainsley argue about the necessity of the ERA; staffers struggle to punch-up the speech the President will give at the White House Correspondents Dinner.

The episode was rated 8.07 from 349 votes.

The West Wing - S2E19

#9 - Bad Moon Rising (Season 2 - Episode 19)

Bartlet confers with Babish on the legal ramifications of his MS cover-up; Sam has a personal interest in an oil spill off the coast of Delaware; Josh and Donna argue about a loan to Mexico; Toby orders C.J. to flush out a leak in the White House staff, which is far from easy.

The episode was rated 8.12 from 326 votes.

The West Wing - S2E21

#8 - 18th and Potomac (Season 2 - Episode 21)


The staff prepares for the worst as they make arrangements for the public announcement of the President's condition; Sam and Babish grill Abbey about her medical treatment of the President's MS; a crisis erupts in Haiti; Josh deals with two Democratic senators who won't support the administration's suit against tobacco companies; Mrs. Landingham buys her first new car, with tragic consequences.

The episode was rated 8.14 from 333 votes.

The West Wing - S2E5

#7 - And It's Surely to Their Credit (Season 2 - Episode 5)

Leo tries to make Ainsley's arrival as painless as possible, despite resistance from her new boss and several other White House staffers; Donna helps with the President's weekly radio address; C.J. tries to derail a retiring General's attempt to speak out against Bartlet; Sam gives Josh ideas on how to deal with his insurance company.

The episode was rated 8.15 from 347 votes.

The West Wing - S2E4

#6 - In This White House (Season 2 - Episode 4)


To investigate the cost and availability of AIDS medication needed in Africa, the White House plays host to representatives of American pharmaceutical companies and the president of an African nation; C.J. accidentally leaks information to a freshman reporter; after Sam is shown up by an amateur Republican operative on a television program, Jed decides to hire her.

The episode was rated 8.15 from 345 votes.

The West Wing - S2E17

#5 - The Stackhouse Filibuster (Season 2 - Episode 17)

The staff is blindsided when an elderly senator stages a Friday night filibuster to block their Family Wellness bill; Toby is confused when VP Hoynes, a strong supporter of the oil industry, volunteers to give a speech attacking the energy sector; CJ tries to locate a valuable Egyptian cat goddess statue given to the President.

The episode was rated 8.19 from 352 votes.

The West Wing - S2E10

#4 - Noël (Season 2 - Episode 10)


Josh investigates the suicide of a pilot with whom he has things in common; Donna tries to get an invitation to the Congressional Christmas party to hear Yo-Yo Ma perform; Jed insists on signing a mountain of Christmas cards himself; after a White House visitor has a strange reaction to a painting, C.J. sets out to discover its provenance; following weeks of volatile behavior and an outburst in the Oval Office, Josh meets with representatives from the America Trauma Victims Association and finally deals with the trauma from his shooting.

The episode was rated 8.27 from 363 votes.

The West Wing - S2E1

#3 - In the Shadow of Two Gunmen (1) (Season 2 - Episode 1)

While the staff awaits news regarding the injuries to Jed and Josh, they recall how Josh, Sam, and Toby became involved in the campaign three years earlier; Leo, Toby, and C.J. deal with inquiries on Secret Service protection policies, as well as the absence of executive authority while Jed was in surgery.

The episode was rated 8.35 from 399 votes.

The West Wing - S2E2

#2 - In the Shadow of Two Gunmen (2) (Season 2 - Episode 2)


With the accomplice in custody, it's revealed that the intended target was Charlie, not Bartlet. The staff still awaits news about Josh, and recalls how C.J. and Donna came to join the Bartlet campaign.

The episode was rated 8.41 from 374 votes.

The West Wing - S2E22

#1 - Two Cathedrals (Season 2 - Episode 22)

On the day of Mrs. Landingham's funeral, the staff deals with a Haitian presidential crisis and the law suit against the big tobacco companies, and Bartlet must decide about running for reelection.

The episode was rated 8.74 from 345 votes.

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