West Wing Continuity Guide
path: home / About the Series * Episode Guide to "Sports Night"
By Peter Vetsch
We found the information on writers and directors gathered on two earlier ""Sports Night"" sites was helpful to us in making the following list and we wish to acknowledge all their work:

1-1: Pilot
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Casey's recent divorce is affecting his onscreen performance, so much that network brass is hinting to Dana that they'll fire him; he's considering quitting until a brilliant athletic performance rekindles his love for sports. Jeremy is hired as associate producer.

1-2: "The Apology"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Network execs force Dan to apologize to his viewers about an Esquire interview with him that reveals his support of the legalization of marijuana. Natalie admits she has feelings for Jeremy, and gets Dana to think romantically about Casey.

1-3: "The Hungry and the Hunted"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Jeremy gets "the call" to produce his own segment for the first time, but is incredibly uncomfortable when a deer is shot on the hunting show to which he is assigned. Casey is jealous when Dana meets another man, Gordon, at a formal party thrown by CSC's CEO, Luther Sachs.

1-4: "Intellectual Property"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Casey goes through various bizarre behaviours, like swatting an imaginary fly, because of his discomfort about Dana's burdgeoning relationship with Gordon.

1-5: "Mary Pat Shelby"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Tracy Stern, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Natalie goes to do a pre-interview with a football star, Christian Patrick, who has agreed to talk on "Sports Night" later that evening, but she ends up being physically assaulted by him in the locker room. After a struggle, she decides to press charges against him, throwing herself into a media circus.

1-6: "The Head Coach, Dinner, and the Morning Mail"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Matt Tarses, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Natalie is being targeted with hate mail because of the charges against Christian Patrick, and Jeremy isn't sleeping because he is trying to intercept negative e-mails being sent to her. Jeremy confesses to Natalie that he has feelings for her, and sets up a picnic in the office for her, but falls asleep before they can eat.

1-7: "Dear Louise"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and David Walpert, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Dan has writer's block that torments him to no end, and Casey finds Gordon a much stronger foe than he expected. Natalie and Jeremy share their first kiss.

1-8: "Thespis"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
The evening's production of "Sports Night" is plagued with technical glitches, which Jeremy attributes to Thespis, an ancient mischevious ghost. Isaac's first grandchild is born, but there are complications with the birth.

1-9: "The Quality of Mercy at 29K"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Bill Wrubel, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
The show is closely covering a climbing party's ascent of Mount Everest. Natalie and Jeremy finally officially start their relationship, though they have trouble separating work and personal demeanors.

1-10: "Shoe Money Tonight"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Dennie Gordon
The crew of the show are forced to do the 2 a.m. show as well as their normal 11 p.m. show, and so they fill the time between by playing poker. Casey approves the 2 a.m. rundown given to him by its producer, Sally Sasser, without even looking at it, causing Dana to feel taken for granted.

1-11: "The Six Southern Gentlemen of Tennessee"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Matt Tarses, David Walpert and Bill Wrubel, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Six black students are suspended by their school for refusing to play football under the Confederate flag; Isaac supports their stance on the air, much to the displeasure of Luther Sachs, who disagrees. Casey accepts compliments for his clothes on the air, leading a wardrobe assistant to teach him the value of recognizing everyone involved in the show's production.

1-12: "Smoky"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Rumours circulate that Isaac is leaving the show, causing chaos in the newsroom. Dan catches Casey flirting with Sally, and later Dana makes Casey "practice" flirting with her.

1-13: "Small Town"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Paul Redford, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Dana and Casey both have the night off, and end up together in a double date: Dana with Gordon, and Casey with a lawyer from Gordon's firm. Natalie produces "Sports Night" on her own for the first time and handles a last-minute trade rumour perfectly.

1-14: "Rebecca"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Dana is worried that Gordon is going to break up with her because her job keeps her so busy. Dan meets Rebecca, the woman of his dreams, but when he runs into her the next day she doesn't remember.

1-15: "Dana and the Deep Blue Sea"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Dan tries to recruit other staff members of the show to help him pursue Rebecca, while Dana agrees to go on a snorkelling trip with Gordon, even though she's deathly afraid of fish.

1-16: "Sally"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Rachel Sweet, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Casey sleeps with Sally and doesn't tell anyone; Dan finds out when Sally tells Casey that she can't find his missing shirt that he accidentally left at her place. Later on, Gordon shows up to take Dana out wearing Casey's shirt, revealing to Casey that Gordon is having an affair with Sally as well.

1-17: "How Are Things in Glocca Morra?"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Marc Buckland
A tennis match that won't end delays the start of the show and leaves Dana trying to choose between waiting for the show to start or handing it off to Sally and going out with Gordon. She eventually gives the show to Sally, which hits Casey hard.

1-18: "The Sword of Orion"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, David Handelman and Mark McKinney, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Jeremy's parents are getting divorced because of his father's 27-year affair with another woman. Rebecca and Dan's relationship finally begins in earnest when she agrees to watch a baseball game with him.

1-19: "Eli's Coming"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Tensions rise between Casey and Dana due externally to Dana's handing the show off to Sally and internally to the friction between them due to their unresolved feelings for each other and Gordon's presence in the middle of things. Rebecca tells Dan that she and her ex-husband, another sportscaster named Steve Sisco, are only separated and not yet divorced. The staff finds out that Isaac has had a stroke.

1-20: "Ordnance Tactics"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Story by Paul Redford, Directed by Alex Graves
There is a bomb scare in the CSC building and everyone is tense: Jeremy wants to break up with Natalie because of his parents' divorce, Isaac is in the hospital, Rebecca is considering going back to her husband, and Casey continues seeing Sally.

1-21: "Ten Wickets"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin, Story by Matt Tarses, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Natalie refuses to acknowledge Jeremy's breakup with her, while Gordon tells Dana that he's going to propose to her. Rebecca ends up going back to her husband in an attempt to salvage her marriage, which devastates Dan.

1-22: "Napoleon's Battle Plan"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Casey's plan to break up Gordon and Dana is the same as Napoleon's plan: first you show up, then you see what happens. The entire love rectangle between Casey, Dana, Gordon and Sally is brought out into the open; Dana is angrier that Casey slept with Sally than that her fiancee Gordon did.

1-23: "What Kind of Day Has It Been"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Gordon breaks off the engagement with Dana because he believes (rightly) that she's still hung up on Casey. Dana starts totally unravelling, but she and everyone else have a huge weight lifted off their shoulders when Isaac returns for the first time since his stroke.


2-1: "Special Powers"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Ninety days have passed since Gordon broke off the engagement with Dana, and Casey still hasn't asked her out, despite many attempts to work up the nerve. When the moment seems to have passed him by, he finally summons up the will and kisses her.

2-2: "When Something Wicked This Way Comes"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Robert Berlinger
A rumor that a ratings expert is coming in to help the show comes true as Sam Donovan comes to town and immediately starts tweaking the broadcast. At a bachelorette party, Dana has an epiphany that Casey should date other women for six months before starting a relationship with her. He is understandably unimpressed.

2-3: "Cliff Gardner"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Stiffness reigns around "Sports Night" as Sam's presence has everyone on edge. The poor quality of recent shows worries network brass, who offer Sam Isaac's job as managing editor, only to have Sam not-so-politely show them that he is entirely uninterested and loyal to Isaac.

2-4: "Louise Revisited"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin and Miriam Kazdin, Story by Miriam Kazdin, Directed by Marc Buckland
An internet poll asks the question: "who is cooler, Dan or Casey?" With the help of Jeremy, Casey rigs the poll so that he wins by hundreds of thousands of votes. Dana goes out to dinner with an old classmate and spontaneously takes off her panties during the meal.

2-5: "Kafelnikov"
Written by Matt Tarses and Bill Wrubel, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Jeremy attempts a Y2K test to prove that he has prepared the show's computers for the 21st century, with disastrous consequences. Dan meets a woman in a bar, Abby, and arranges to meet her again, but after Casey discovers she's a therapist he's not sure whether the meeting is for a date or an appointment.

2-6: "Shane"
Written by Kevin Falls, Matt Tarses and Bill Wrubel, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Shane McArnold, a famous baseball player who gave Casey his first big break in sports, gives an interview on "Sports Night" and insults New York (after just signing a huge contract to play for the Yankees). Dan sees Abby, and although he insists it's for a date, she ends up analyzing his feelings of guilt about his brother's death years ago and his relationship with his parents since then. Dan starts having some kind of nervous breakdown when he can't pronounce "Yevgeny Kafelnikov".

2-7: "Kyle Whitaker's Got Two Sacks"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Tom Szentgyorgyi, Directed by Dennie Gordon
Dana is ecstatic when her brother, Kyle Whitaker, a member of the Denver Broncos, gets two sacks in a game. However, her joy quickly turns to anger when "Sports Night" gets the scoop on a possible NFL drug scandal, and Kyle is one of the players involved.

2-8: "The Reunion"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Kevin Falls, Directed by Dennie Gordon
Dana's brother is coming to see her after being busted by the NFL for steroids and she doesn't know what to say to him. Natalie gives Dan an audition tape of her as an anchor and asks for his opinion; he thinks it's good but not great, but lies and tells her it's excellent.

2-9: "A Girl Named Pixley"
Written by David Walpert, Directed by Dennie Gordon
Casey finally caves in to Dana's dating plan and goes out on his first date with another woman, Pixley. While Dana and the rest of the staff are frantically searching for stories to fill a show that's 42 minutes short, Casey's date ends badly when he tells Pixley that the dating plan is the only reason he's there.

2-10: "The Giants Win the Pennant, the Giants Win the Pennant"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Matt Tarses, Directed by Pamela Dresser
Dan discovers that Isaac was at the famous pennant winning game by the Giants in 1951, but Isaac refuses to go on camera to talk about the experience for the game's 49th anniversary. Casey convinces Pixley to see him again, and their date ends much differently this time, much to Dana's dismay.

2-11: "The Cut Man Cometh"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin and Bill Wrubel, Story by Bill Wrubel, Directed by Alex Graves
Casey and Dana are at each other's throats because of the tension created by Pixley and the dating plan, leading Casey to break it off, while Dan's father shows how little he cares about his son. CSC covers a big title fight that ends up lasting only seven seconds, and the ringside reporter, who only responds to the name "Cut Man", shows why he's the worst reporter in the history of television. Probably my favourite episode; the scenes with the Cut Man are amongst the funniest things I've ever seen.

2-12: "The Sweet Smell of Air"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin, David Handelman, Kevin Falls and Matt Tarses, Story by David Handelman, Directed by Alex Graves
Michael Jordan makes himself available for Sports Night to interview him, and the crew are delighted until they discover that his goal is only to promote his new cologne, and that he picked CSC over ESPN or Fox because he thought they'd need the ratings desperately enough to accept. Casey is concerned with Sam Donovan's increasing effect on Dana.

2-13: "Dana Get Your Gun"
Written by David Walpert, Directed by Alex Graves
Natalie and Jeremy break up after they fight about whether or not to go to a club. A substitute anchor on the show can't stop obsessing about his girlfriend, and Dana and Sam get close in her office.

2-14: "And the Crowd Goes Wild"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin and Tom Szentgyorgyi, Story by Tom Szentgyorgyi, Directed by Alex Graves
Sam's time with the show is up; Dana tries to convince him to stay a little longer. Casey's eyes are giving him trouble, while Natalie breaks down in Isaac's office about her breakup with Jeremy.

2-15: "Celebrities"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Robert Berlinger
Natalie hosts a charades game called "Celebrities", to which Jeremy isn't invited. He ends up going to a bar, where he gets hit on by a beautiful woman named Jenny. He can't bring himself to ask her out when he discovers that she's a porn star.

2-16: "The Local Weather"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin, Story by Peter McCabe and Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Timothy Busfield
Jeremy can't stop thinking about Jenny and tracks her down again by e-mailing her website. Casey gathers the crew of the show to watch a track meet, and while getting food for everyone, Dana ends up going to church.

2-17: "Draft Day, Part I: It Can't Rain at Indian Wells"
Written by Aaron Sorkin and Matt Tarses, Directed by Bryan Gordon
It's NFL Draft day, and everyone at "Sports Night" is excited except for Dan, who wants to get his shift over with and have a round of golf with David Duval. Jeremy tells Natalie about Jenny, but lies about what she does for a living. Dan and Casey fight about his recent attitude towards his job.

2-18: "Draft Day, Part II: The Fall of Ryan O'Brien"
Teleplay by Aaron Sorkin, Story by Kevin Falls, Directed by Danny Leiner
Dan and Casey's friendship takes another downward turn as their bad feelings make it to the air when Dan sets Casey up for embarrassment on national television. Jeremy invites Jenny to the set to show he isn't ashamed of her, then is paranoid for the entire day because he is. When Jenny sees that he can't accept who she is, even though he's trying, she leaves.

2-19: "April is the Cruelest Month"
Written by Matt Tarses and Bill Wrubel, Directed by Don Scardino
There are warning rumblings at the network level, as "Sports Night"'s Olympic budget is drastically slashed and there are rumours about layoffs. Jeremy and Natalie start to put their relationship back together, and Dan and Casey also begin to heal the rift in their friendship as Dan hosts a Passover ceremony.

2-20: "Bells and a Siren"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Chris Lusvardi and David Walpert, Directed by Don Scardino
Due to a warning from Dana that her job might be in danger, Natalie goes to a job interview with Saturday Night Live. They offer her the job, but she can't bring herself to leave "Sports Night". Meanwhile, Casey and Jeremy discover that Continental Corp., the parent company of CSC, is for sale.

2-21: "La Forza del Destino"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Timothy Busfield
Dan and Casey are offered a job in Los Angeles in the ever-increasing likelihood that "Sports Night" will soon be scrapped, and Dan tries to convince Casey to consider it. Dana meets a mysterious stranger in the restaurant across the street from the CSC building who seems to have inside information on the bidding for Continental Corp.

2-22: "Quo Vadimus"
Written by Aaron Sorkin, Directed by Thomas Schlamme
Jeremy officially gets back together with Natalie, and Rebecca suddenly reappears in Dan's life, having divorced her husband (for sure this time). The mysterious stranger Dana met turns out to be Calvin Trager, the incredibly rich owner of Quo Vadimus, a holding company that buys Continental Corp. and keeps "Sports Night" on the air. Unfortunately, the fortunes of "Sports Night" in real life were less good, as this was the last episode ever made.

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