Lin-Manuel Miranda’s West Wing Rap Is the Nerdiest Tribute Imaginable

Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda is enough of a West Wing fan that the musical’s orchestra used the theme music from Aaron Sorkin’s TV series to give him a sendoff after his final stage performance. So it’s on fitting that he returned the favor by recording an original rap for West Wing Weekly, the podcast co-hosted by the show’s erstwhile Will Bailey, Joshua Malina.

“What’s Next,” recorded over a track by podcast co-host Hrishikesh Hirway, isn’t just an offhand tribute. It’s the work of a truly obsessive fan, dropping references not just to individual characters but specific episodes and even behind-the-scenes figures like director Thomas Schlamme, who’s responsible for the Steadicam behind the show’s iconic walk-and-talk sequences. Stick around until the end for the nerdiest name-drop of all, as Miranda calls out “The flentl,” the name for the oft-used West Wing device where the episode’s sound continues over the final fade to black and into the end credits. To quote Miranda himself, that’s some Agent Butterfield-level detail.

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