Sure, it was cancelled. But it was also a full season - 22 episodes - of some of the best, most intelligent television out there. And we can say that now because once you get canned that fast, you become an instant cult-classic. So here it is...
Ever sit with one of your friends and say, "Y'know what would be a good idea for a TV show...?" Well, bestselling author Brad Meltzer did just that with friend and fellow co-creator Steve Cohen to come up with the idea for "Jack & Bobby," the critical darling of a TV show that ran in from 2004-2005 on the WB.
The original idea for "Jack & Bobby" was simple, but incredibly unique: Jack and Bobby are two brothers (not the Kennedys) —one of whom will be the President of the United States. He'll be the leader of the free world. He'll make the world's toughest decisions. And he'll be the world's most powerful man. That's when he's President. Right now, though—he's just a teenager.
Throughout each episode, "Jack & Bobby" follows this young boy who will one day be President. Needless to say, the boy has no idea of his destiny. But the audience does. Set in the current day, the show uses flash-forward interviews with the future President's staff and confidantes to show us the greatness this boy will one day find. From boyhood, to the world's most powerful man. It's an idea we've gotten away from, especially in these volatile times. But it's an idea Brad and Steve were determined to bring us back to: the simple American concept that anyone can be President. Welcome to "Jack & Bobby."
Armed with this incredible idea and their stunningly realized characters, Brad and Steve pitched the show to Tommy Schlamme of "The West Wing," who became executive producer. They were then paired with the fantastic executive producer/creator of "Everwood," Greg Bertlanti (check out his movie, The Broken Hearts Club -- and of course check out Everwood -- for a real treat), Micky Liddell (all around great guy and also a stand-up comic), and the incredible Vanessa Taylor, also of Everwood, who's one of the kindest people around.
With the amazing talents of Christine Lahti, Matt Long, Logan Lehrman, Jessica Pare, John Slattery, and the best writers in show business (yes, we said it), "Jack & Bobby" became a reality. In the end, sure, "Jack & Bobby" was cancelled, but for those 22 episodes, those fictional brothers were truly alive. Thanks to all who tuned in. It meant more than you know.
You wanted an episode guide? We got one. So here you go -- ripped from the headlines, or your TV Guide, or the WB website… So, here’s where we are so far… In an era when political parties are more divided than ever, Jack and Bobby offers a look at a leader who truly unifies. His unlimited hope and optimism earns President McCallister the nickname "The Great Believer." Although the McCallister administration is not without controversy and even scandal, the underlying message is that one individual can still make a difference in the world. Created by Greg Berlanti & Vanessa Taylor and Steve Cohen & Brad Meltzer, Jack & Bobby is executive produced by Berlanti, Mickey Liddell and Thomas Schlamme. Taylor and Andrew Ackerman (Everwood) serve as co-executive producers.
Jack (Matt Long) and Bobby (Logan Lerman) McCallister are two bright young brothers growing up in Hart, Missouri, under the watchful eye of their eccentric single mother Grace (Christine Lahti), a college professor whose strong personality helps shape both of these young men´s lives and secure one a place in the history books - as President of the United States. Grace and Jack's temperamental mother/son relationship takes a dangerous toll on Bobby as he gets caught in their rival forces, prompting a major change in the McCallister household. The arrival of a new college president, Peter Benedict (John Slattery), and his beautiful daughter, Courtney (Jessica Paré), makes an impression on the McCallisters that lasts a lifetime.
Edwin Hodge also stars as Jack's best friend Marcus Ride. David Nutter directed the episode with teleplay by Vanessa Taylor and story by Greg Berlanti, Vanessa Taylor, Steven A. Cohen & Brad Meltzer.
Jack (Matt Long) explodes after catching Grace (Christine Lahti) smoking pot again and gives her an ultimatum. However, after a particularly trying day, Grace seeks refuge in her old habit and is unprepared for the price she must pay for the one joint. Meanwhile, Bobby (Logan Lerman) tries to help make things better for Jack, both with Courtney (Jessica Paré) and in school, but only succeeds in making things worse. Also, it is revealed how President McCallister became affiliated with a surprising political party.
Edwin Hodge and John Slattery also star. Mick Jackson directed the episode with teleplay by Vanessa Taylor and story by Greg Berlanti & Vanessa Taylor.
Bobby (Logan Lerman) joins the "challenge program" at school and learns a powerful lesson. Meanwhile, Grace (Christine Lahti) is startled by news that Bobby´s new teacher gives her regarding Jack (Matt Long). Also, the flash-forward segments reveal how a surprising ally (guest star Paul Sorvino) helps President McCallister out at a critical moment in his political career.
Jessica Paré, Edwin Hodge and John Slattery also star. David Nutter directed the episode written by Michael Green.
Grace is accused by Hebba (guest star Lina Patel), an Arab-American female student, of letting her individual beliefs about religion color her lectures. Taking offense, Grace chastises Hebba in front of the class, which leads to a boycott of Grace´s classes by the religious groups on campus. Meanwhile, after helping Warren (guest star) with his bar mitzvah and learning a bit about Judaism, Bobby demands to know why Grace never took him to church. Completely thrown by the accusations, Grace must explain to Bobby & Hebba what "faith" really means to her. Also, Jack (Matt Long) helps Marcus (Edwin Hodge) out of tough situation.
Jessica Paré, Keri Lynn Pratt and John Slattery also star. Peter Markle directed the episode written by Maggie Friedman.
The future reveals a dark secret about the first lady. Back in the present, Jack (Matt Long) offers to escort a depressed Courtney (Jessica Paré) to her father´s (John Slattery) work fundraiser leading to an unexpected confession and kiss. Meanwhile, much to the consternation of her sons, Grace (Christine Lahti) offers to let a homeless man stay at their house for a few days until she can find him a better place to live.
Logan Lerman, Edwin Hodge and Keri Lynn Pratt also star. David Petrarca directed the episode written by Jonathan Lisco.
Grace (Christine Lahti) is stunned after Benedict (John Slattery) informs her that her fellow colleague and good friend has been accused of sexually harassing a student. Grace immediately defends her co-worker but must re-think her loyalty when new evidence arises. Meanwhile, Bobby (Logan Lerman) is spending so much time with his new girlfriend, Dex (guest star Jeanette Brox), he begins to neglect his school work. Under pressure from Grace to succeed, Bobby cheats on his test. Still reeling from the guilt of kissing Courtney (Jessica Pare), Jack (Matt Long) is horrified to discover she and Missy (Keri Lynn Pratt) have become friends.
Edwin Hodge and Bradley Cooper also star. Thomas Schlamme directed the episode written by Marc Guggenheim.
Bobby’s (Logan Lerman) relationship with Dex (guest star Jeanette Brox) continues to grow until Grace (Christine Lahti) walks in on them kissing in her study. After failing to convince Bobby to break it off with Dex, Grace and Jack (Matt Long) take matters into their own hands. Meanwhile, Peter (John Slattery) shows his overprotective side and though he has Courtney´s (Jessica Paré) best interests at heart, ultimately causes her embarrassment among her peers. Also, the future reveals that President McCallister has trouble with his oldest son and the secret service.
Edwin Hodge, Keri Lynn Pratt and Bradley Cooper also star. John Coles directed the episode written by Steven Cohen and Brad Meltzer.
Bobby (Logan Lerman) is heartbroken over his break-up with Dex (guest star Jeanette Brox) and decides to get even with Jack (Matt Long) after finding out he is responsible for their split. Bobby´s actions cause Jack, Missy (Keri Lynn Pratt) and Courtney (Jessica Paré) much embarrassment and anger, which results in a feud between the brothers. Meanwhile, Grace (Christine Lahti) and Tom (Bradley Cooper) sneak away from the campus election night party to smoke pot, which proves to be a terrible mistake for Grace and her family. The future reveals that in 2040, McCallister wins the election by only a few votes.
Edwin Hodge and John Slattery also star. Keith Samples directed the episode written by Erik Oleson.
Grace (Christine Lahti) promises to be on her best behavior when she and Jack (Matt Long) go to Missy´s (Keri Lynn Pratt) house for dinner but loses her cool after the Reverend (guest star Ed Begley, Jr.) starts attacking her ideals. Upset by the event, Grace turns to Tom (Bradley Cooper) and the two share a romantic moment. Meanwhile, Bobby (Logan Lerman) intentionally loses at chess games with Peter (John Slattery) in order to spend more time with him. Also, Courtney (Jessica Pare) uses Marcus (Edwin Hodge) to get back at Jack.
David Petrarca directed the episode written by Jonathan Lisco.
Grace’s (Christine Lahti) warm, intelligent, gay younger brother (guest-star Tom Cavanaugh, Ed) makes a surprise visit to the McCallister home for Thanksgiving. Grace is thrilled that he has returned but her feelings change after he lands in jail on drug charges. Meanwhile, Jack (Matt Long) feels responsible for a friend’s suicide.
Bryan Gordon directed the episode written by Barbie Kligman.
Jack (Matt Long) is mortified after Grace (Christine Lahti) catches him buying condoms in preparation for his big night with Missy (Keri Lynn Pratt). Trying to be supportive of his actions, Grace insists that Jack talk to her about sex and questions him about whether he is sure Missy is the right girl. Meanwhile, Jimmy (guest star Tom Cavanaugh) slips back into his old habits, forcing Grace to make a difficult decision about her family. Also, Bobby (Logan Lerman) tries to help Warren (guest star Dean Collins) win over his crush Deena (guest star) but is surprised when she declares she has feelings for Bobby.
Jessica Pare, John Slattery and Bradley Cooper also star. Michael Schultz directed the episode written by Michael Green.