The West Wing

Season 7 Episode 13

The Cold

Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Mar 12, 2006 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (8)

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out of 10
135 votes
  • The Kazakhstan issue continues to perculate and finally, after 6 and a half years, Donna and Josh! However tragic ending as befits such a long running show!

    The Kazakhstan issue continues to perculate and finally, after 6 and a half years, Donna and Josh! However tragic ending as befits such a long running show!

    In a shock beginning we find the Santos campaign pulling up with the Vinick campaign, something that seemed nearly impossible a week ago. And then, almost immediately, the Donna/Josh fans among us are thrown into a frenzy of \"is this a dream\" questions before finally we\'re told that it wasn\'t, and they finally kissed!

    A brilliant episode once again and despite the horrible ending (horrible in the sense that I wanted him to take the key) we\'re very nearly at the election.

    Side note - gotta love the Will/Kate stuff going on through the episode \"We\'re really not good at this!\"
  • Santos and Winick are neck to neck, but the real exitement lies in the realisation of a fandom!

    I absolutely love this episode! And even though we get a more serious involvement in the Khazakstahn story-line, that -for me- takes the back seat. Why? Because after waiting for seven *long* years for Josh and Donna to hook up, it finally happened! Right there in the teaser- The Kiss!! And then, ofcourse Josh turns back into Josh, and tries to smooth things over with his; "That was unappropriate" talk. But Donna isn't about to let this become just another moment ment to be overlooked. And to the beautiful music of Billie Holiday- "Body & Soul", we see her slipping him the key to her room. A prelude to things to come... And I could'nt be happier for them!
  • the episode is scattered but it gets the point across so we can move fromone national crisis to another without overshadowing the campaign. And a moment we've been waiting for for 7 years finally comes for to characters.

    It's sad to say, but I think my favorite part of this episode was the teaser at the end for the upcoming episodes. I think this episode, and maybe some of the forthcoming ones as well, was a means to an end. The show began so scattered from one campaign o the other to the whit ouse. It's hard to develop a storyline when the plots are moving in so many different fdirections. But this dilema was soved in the end by culminating everything and everyone together into the White House. i really don't know were this issue of Kazakhstan is goingand am afraid that the writers will end the show with an ongoing war. i think in ending the series they need conclusion in all area of relationships and diplomacy and hope thi s only means that thereis a final hour for Bartlet to pull some major stops in his foreign policy.

    As for our couple who have "tragically unconsummated love kept at arm's length by puritanical American workplace ethics"(great line from "NFS Thurmont") I think this is another issue that MUST be resolved in the final days of the show. I am a little upset that the whole thing is having to be totally initiated by Donna, but I guess that is the ypical josh character, to notice someone he practically has to trip over them. I know alot of people are worried thattheir too much of a brother-sister type relationship , but i think it will work and am looking forward to the next few weeks to see it grow.
  • Was I dreaming? Was I imagining it? No! Josh and Donna really kissed! They did! They really did! OMG I can't believe it. Savor the Moment!!!

    OMG I'm sorry but after the kiss (and that hilarious first scene with them all in that office looking at numbers) I could not think about ANYTHING else. I really haven't a clue what else went on in that episode. I paid attention to the funny stuff that stood out, like "Make yourself comfortable...Not too comfortable." But I loved the kiss, the passion in the kiss, the spontineity of the first quick one, and then the obvious desire in the second, longer, more intense one. I'm obsessed. And then when they got in the car later they were like, "hi"..."hi". So sweetly awkward. And I thought it was cute how they continuously exchanged sultry looks throughout the episode. I almost cried at the end--not literally, I'm not a crier, but i felt like crying--when Donna slipped him the key and that woman (Ronna, was it?)spotted it and sent it back. I swear Donna thought Josh sent it back. I hated the look she gave him and the sense of hopelessness the end of the episode left us in. I was actually mad the kiss came so early in these last episodes...I wish it would happen in the second-to-last or something, so they have less time to break up.
  • Another great episode on the campaign trail, as things become far more complicated for the candidates

    It was a damn long wait for this episode, but as far as I’m concerned, it was worth it. And I’m not even a strong Josh/Donna shipper, either. (For the record, I relished every bit of it, because I really do feel like they should get together already, even if I usually don’t go for that sort of plot thread!) A lot of interesting twists came along in this episode, and finally, the possible war in Asia factored into the election plot threads. That alone made me a very happy fan.

    I understand that some people don’t like this season, and that’s really their right. I have been very happy with the series since Santos and Vinick were introduced, with some minor exceptions, and this episode only continues with the happy. I was expected the “cold” metaphor to be used with Santos, especially after his visit home not so long ago, but it works a bit better with Vinick in this context. Vinick’s campaign is sick, by external criticism and internal schism, and it’s in desperate need of treatment if it wants to survive.

    Santos’ campaign has seldom been in a position to act with confidence, and it’s good to see it happen, even if only for a little while. After all, by the end of the episode, it’s clear that the level playing field is no longer quite what the candidates thought it would be. Vinick and Santos both look stunned and sickened by the prospect of taking control of a country in the middle of a nation-building exercise (something that the 2008 candidates should keep in mind).

    The election is no longer going to be about domestic issues; it’s going to be about a nation supporting a military effort with little or no exit strategy. This actually favors Vinick, based on what the initial concerns during the primary season indicated, because Santos has very little experience with national security issues. And Asia would be spun as a national security issue.

    Vinick would have to be careful, though. If he jumps after Santos now, given his recent setbacks, it could be perceived by those undecided voters as a desperate ploy. After all, many of them moved out of Vinick’s camp into the undecided column, which means they had a specific reason to change their stance. He needs to be careful to give them more than just a reason not to vote for Santos.

    I was also struck by the fact that the writers weren’t going to provide Bartlet with some magic bullet of a legacy. Bartlet is exactly right: his legacy will be this military quagmire, regardless of whatever else he might have accomplished. I find that to be a bold choice. After all, it speaks to something that we know on an intellectual level yet often fail to acknowledge: even a good man like Bartlet could end up with a tarnished and devalued presidency.

    If there’s one thing I might mention as a negative, it’s the use of a musical montage at the end of the episode. I seldom like these, because too often, it’s a storytelling device used to overcome an inability to close out a script in a compelling manner. It can be done artfully, and it has been done very well on this series, but this time it seemed a bit unnecessary and a little pretentious. Other than that, I was quite pleased to have the series back on the schedule, even if just for a little while.
  • The surrender episode: Josh and Donna surrender to one another, and I surrender to the Khazikstan plot.

    All right. I give up. The Khazikstan plot finally became interesting, probably because it finally found its way into the presidential race. And Donna and Josh finally gave into seven years of stifled passion--only to be stifled by outside forces.

    What crystalizes the really fine West Wing episodes are usually one scene, one speech: a Toby blow-up, an Oval Office confrontation. I'm staring at a screen one day after this episode and thinking: Okay, what this time? And I don't know. A better title for this episode would be "Foreplay," in that all of us are lead to the brink of something: war, and election, hot office sex, and (unfotunately) closer and closer to the death of John Spencer/Leo McGarrey. I snuck a look down coming episodes list to see that, yes, McGarrey will pass away. I also saw that election night will be a two-parter: something going to the Supreme Court, perhaps? And the second time I jumped out of my chair (the first was the Donna-Josh kiss, of course) was the Rob Lowe teaser. (When I first saw Lowe on the West Wing I thought: wow, finally a role he was born to play, not a role he got because he's so damn good-looking. He can't play tortured, he can't play down-and-out. He can play evil ("Bad Influence") but clearly doesn't want to. What I never knew was that he could play smart and glib. And he was a fool to have walked away.) But what of this episode?

    Well, Josh and Donna's kiss, of course. Plus episodes that take you to the brink have their own qualities, especially in the last season. This, I think, was the last-take-a-breath episode: from here on in the shoes will fall, one by one.
  • presidential and candidatial response to the nuclear meltdown. Josh and Donna's relationship almost progresses beyond professional - with the campaign thwarting it at every turn.

    FINALLY!! A Josh/Donna kiss!! and seems that there\'s promise of more to the relationship later. loved the way Donna dealt with it and talked with Will and CJ...and then the way there was an almost second kiss when Josh got the news of Vinick\'s cold.

    I also loved the politics in this episode - the way they put Jeb Bartlett in George Bush\'s shoes. great way to show that the decision for war is not never an easy one. the dialogue and character development were \"old school\" West Wing. this episode ROCKED!
  • A promise finally fulfilled. A promise haunting.

    In a moment reminiscent of the first Bartlet Illinois primaries and after seven seasons Josh and Donna finally shared their first kiss. I love that they found a way to work the moment into something purely spontaneous - complete with car awkwardness and Bram hugging later.

    The camp camaraderie of the first Bartlet election experience finds further echoes in how the Santos staff interacts. After a season of struggling to find their footing the Santos staff finally looks like a coordinated group of people. The cohesiveness plays nicely against the continuing biting among Vinnik's staff.

    The Kazakhstan thing was a bit boring, but the writers managed to find that gruff Bartlet manner of pointing out the obvious in the situation room minutia. It's odd how the Bartlet foreign policy policy introduced at the second inaugural has come back to haunt the candidates.

    It looks as if the push toward the finish will be worthy of the show.