Thursday, December 22, 2005

John Spencer

This is a little late, but I just wanted to add my bit to the chorus of people mourning the loss of John Spencer, who played Leo on The West Wing. Whatever issues I might have with the direction in which the show's writers took Leo's character in recent seasons, it can't be denied that Spencer was an absolutely incredible actor, and an integral part of the show. I was watching the episode '18th and Potomac' a few nights ago, and the look on Leo's face when Charlie tells him that Mrs Landingham has died is heartbreaking and brilliant all at the same time. I've seen a lot of people quoting this moment from the wonderful episode 'Noel', and I thought I'd join in, because it's one of my all-time favourite Leo moments.
Leo: "This guy's walking down the street when he falls in a hole. The walls are so steep he can't get out. A doctor passes by and the guy shouts up, 'Hey you. Can you help me out?' The doctor writes a prescription, throws it down in the hole and moves on. Then a priest comes along and the guy shouts up, 'Father, I'm down in this hole can you help me out?' The priest writes out a prayer, throws it down in the hole and moves on. Then a friend walks by, 'Hey, Joe, it's me can you help me out?' And the friend jumps in the hole. Our guy says, 'Are you stupid? Now we're both down here.' The friend says, 'Yeah, but I've been down here before and I know the way out.' As long as I have a job, you have a job."

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