Ed and Larry

Ed and Larry are fictional characters on the television series "The West Wing", played by Peter James Smith and William Duffy. They are secondary characters, both of whom work in the White House. Their most notable feature is that they are never seen apart from each other, in which respect they are similar to Lenny Leonard and Carl Carlson on "The Simpsons" or Rosencrantz and Guildenstern from "Hamlet". Larry is Caucasian and Ed is Asian-American.

Their position within the White House is never made clear, although they often function in an operational role under Josh Lyman. They have also been seen, however, attending C.J. Cregg's staff meetings. Most likely, they work in the Office of Management and Budget.

Over the years, they have worked on a wide variety of projects: They briefed several senior staffers on the India-Pakistan conflict, using information they claimed to have taken from the Encyclopædia Britannica. They once helped write jokes for one of President Bartlet's speeches, contributing a joke that involved an impression of John Wayne and a sock puppet.

Very few fans of "The West Wing" can tell the two apart, a fact which has been acknowledged onscreen by C.J. Cregg, who admitted she could not tell the difference between them. Ed and Larry themselves have said that it doesn't matter. There are four points in the series at which the distinction can be properly deduced: in "H. Con-172", the Caucasian member of Ed and Larry mentions that he is Larry and the other is Ed, although the lighthearted nature of the scene could indicate they were joking so as to confuse Sam Seaborn. In "20 Hours in America, Part I", during one of the President's daily briefings, the Caucasian appears alongside Sam to staff the President during the meeting. The President addresses him as Ed, and is corrected by the staffer, who claims to be Larry. In "Angel Maintenance", President Bartlet directs Larry to talk to the press aboard Air Force One. The Caucasian acknowledges the order and turns to leave. And finally, in "The Fall's Gonna Kill You", Ed and Larry catch Donna Moss in the hallway to read her a fax that they find hilarious. The Caucasian refers to the other as "Ed".

In addition, neither of the characters' last names have been revealed. Their last names are conspicuously absent in the season 7 episode "Here Today," when Toby Ziegler writes down their full names instead of saying them aloud when the White House Counsel asks for them.

In the credits for episodes where Ed and Larry appear, Peter James Smith is credited as Ed and William Duffy is credited as Larry. The final episode also features President Bartlet saying goodbye to each of them, along with many other White House staffers, and managing to get their names right.

See also

*"The West Wing"
*List of characters on The West Wing
*List of politicians on The West Wing
* List of The West Wing episodes


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