The West Wing is an American television serial drama created by Aaron Sorkin and set in the West Wing of the White House, the location of the Oval Office and offices of presidential senior staff, during the fictional Democratic administration of Josiah Bartlet.
The series originally aired in the USA on NBC from 22 September, 1999 to 14 May, 2006. There are 156 hour-long episodes (including two special episodes) in seven seasons.
The West Wing originally premiered in South Africa on e.tv on Monday 13 March 2000, at 20h00. It later aired on DStv's M-Net Series, Hallmark and Sony Entertainment Television (SONY) channels. See "Seasons" below for seasonal broadcast dates and times.
Season 7 premiered on SONY on Thursday 9 December 2010, at 21h20. New episodes broadcast weekly. There are 22 episodes in the seventh and final season.
From his office in the White House, President Josiah Bartlet leads the most powerful nation on earth - but needs lessons on riding a bike.
Directly descended from one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, New Hampshire Democrat Bartlet exudes a country-lawyer charisma that belies his brilliance, his deep conviction and his devotion to what he believes is right for the country - despite what the special interest groups demand.
While his left hand is lulling you with folksy charm, you don't even hear the right hook coming.
Pacing the West Wing morning, noon and night, Bartlet's loyal staffers put on a show for the press and public.
Professorial Leo McGarry, the President's chief of staff, leads the pack. Leo knows the President quite well - and regards him as a klutz. Nonetheless, Leo hits the ground running whenever Bartlet is challenged in any arena.
Despite his frustration over lack of good intelligence on the economy and important domestic matters, Leo has his finger on the pulse of the nation. And he doesn't hesitate to chew out any staff member that embarrasses the President, especially Deputy Chief of Staff Josh Lyman.
Straight from the cover of George magazine, youthful Josh sometimes seems more adept at creating crises than resolving them. A highly regarded political brain, he helped elect Bartlet, but Josh's liberal views and contempt for the Religious Right get him in hot water on more than one occasion.
Press Secretary C.J. Cregg spends most of her time deflecting the press' awkward questions with grace and skill. Cool and competent, C.J. moderates tempers and keeps the bloodhounds at bay, working alongside Toby Ziegler, the rumpled and sleepless communications director.
Toby's cynical sense of humour gets him through many a sticky situation, as he considers all the political ramifications of every decision. Still, even Toby is known to have an emotional outburst or two when rubbed the wrong way.
In contrast to his boss, Deputy Communications Director Sam Seaborn is a strictly political animal, able to craft an appropriate presidential response but leaving the details of U.S. history and current events to more well-read staffers.
Like a lot of powerful people, Sam could ruin his promising career if he doesn't show a little more restraint in his personal life - especially when it comes to women.
Observing it all is the president's intelligent but inexperienced young personal assistant, Charlie, who must struggle to learn the ropes in the most powerful office in the world.
Note: e.tv did not air the final season. Records for Hallmark and M-Net Series are incomplete.
Season 1 (22 episodes)
Channel: e.tv | Premiere: 13 Mar 2000 Finale: 7 Aug 2000 | Mondays, 20h00
Channel: M-Net Series | Premiere: 29 Apr 2003 | Finale: 23 Sep 2003 | Tuesdays, 21h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 3 Jul 2008 | Finale: 1 Aug 2008 | Weekdays, 19h00
Season 2 (22 episodes)
Channel: e.tv | Premiere: 8 May 2001 | Finale: 2 Oct 2001 | Tuesdays, 20h00
Channel: M-Net Series | Premiere: 30 Sep 2003 | Finale: 24 Feb 2004 | Tuesdays, 21h00
Channel: Hallmark | Premiere: 19 Dec 2007 | Finale: 24 Jan 2008 | Mon-Thu, 18h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 4 Aug 2008 | Finale: 2 Sep 2008 | Weekdays, 19h00
Season 3 (22 episodes)
Channel: e.tv | Premiere: 15 Jul 2002 | Finale: 9 Dec 2002 | Mondays, 21h00
Channel: M-Net Series | Premiere: 2 Mar 2004 | Finale: 3 Aug 2004 | Tuesdays, 21h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 3 Sep 2008 | Finale: 1 Oct 2008 | Weekdays, 19h00
Season 4 (23 episodes)
Channel: e.tv | Premiere: 12 Jan 2004 | Finale: 14 Jun 2004 | Mondays, 21h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 6 Oct 2008 | Finale: 5 Nov 2008 | Weekdays, 19h00
Season 5 (22 episodes)
Channel: e.tv | Premiere: 14 May 2005 | Finale: 9 Oct 2005 | Sundays, 16h00
Channel: M-Net Series | Premiere: 11 Jun 2007 | Finale: 5 Nov 2007 | Mondays, 22h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 8 Jun 2009 | Finale: 7 Jul 2009 | Weekdays, 19h45
Season 6 (22 episodes)
Channel: e.tv | Premiere: 8 Oct 2006 | Finale: 4 Mar 2007 | Sundays, 16h00
Channel: M-Net Series | Premiere: 15 Dec 2008 | Finale: 11 May 2009 | Mondays, 22h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 11 Aug 2010 | Finale: 9 Sep 2010 | Weekdays, 22h15
Season 7 (22 episodes)
Channel: M-Net Series | Premiere: 12 Oct 2009 | Finale: 8 Mar 2010 | Mondays, 22h00
Channel: SONY | Premiere: 9 Dec 2010 | Finale: 5 May 2011 | Thursdays, 21h20