Finally, in its winter finale, Scandal gave us the thing we all (or at least I) have been waiting for: Olivia chose herself. She said, out loud, to Jake’s face, that she wanted the impossible dream he offered her, and Fitz’s alternative—but that instead of choosing between them, she was just going to … not. Then again, this declaration was immediately followed by her wanting to do Jake on top of a piano, so I guess she’s in a threeway relationship now? Let’s check in with everyone.
Well, this was a bit anticlimactic. Our Intrepid Trio spent the beginning of the episode freaking out about finding Papa Pope, even letting Maya out of the torture hole to deny she knew anything and reject Olivia’s cry-face—but it turns out all Olivia had to do to find her dad was go home. He was waiting with some wine, her favorite childhood record, and a gun that unfortunately for Il Papa turned out to be not loaded. Joe Morton plays unhinged-by-disappointment so, so well, but after letting Olivia know, again, just how angry he is that she always chooses two white dudes over him, he just disappears without doing much of anything. Given that the show seems to be setting up another Big Bad for the second half of the season, it feels sort of like Rowan is going out with a whimper.
After last week’s devastatingly poor parenting decisions, Huck is panicked about his son, which doesn’t help his wife think he’s anything less than insane. Meanwhile, he and Quinn are still working on their case of the week, and they find out VP Andrew, Liz, and Kubiak were all at Caitlin’s dad’s law firm the night she died. Quinn uses Kubiak’s severed finger—sans gloves—to get into the law firm, where they find out the meeting was coded Waco. Sadly, this does not signal the return of our favorite Southern-fried businessman Hollis Doyle—it stands for West Angola Commercial Organization, and Caitlin’s dad managed the country’s US assets. Quinn also figures out that Andrew knew his car was going to get blown up; the only piece of the puzzle that doesn’t fit is why Olivia was being spied on.
Also happening: Rowan is trying to “clean house,” dispatching people to kill all the remaining B613 agents by giving them playing cards with their mark’s face on it. Quinn tries to warn Charlie, which of course leads to them sleeping together, which of course leads to Quinn finding her kill card in Charlie’s pocket and them beating each other to a bloody pulp. By way of apology (I guess), Charlie offers to deliver some B613 files he saved to Huck’s wife to “un-ruin” his life. Looks like she’s finally going to find out the truth about her husband.
Mr. Beene is now a “gay cliché,” thanks to Liz leaking the photos of him with Michael the prostitute. Olivia concocts a plan wherein he and Michael will get married because everyone loves a love story, but Cyrus says he can’t defile his memory of James with a sham wedding. He instead hands in his resignation and prepares to flee to Europe—but Olivia gives him a pep talk that mostly involves them yelling the phrase “little bitch baby” in each other’s faces, and he decides to marry Michael so he can keep his job and “serve the republic.”
Cyrus’s indiscretions lead David to subpoena Abby to question her about whether she helped Cyrus cover up evidence about his affair. He’s jovial until he asks her about her alibi for a specific night, forcing her to admit she spent the night at Leo’s house. Even though they have been broken up for, like, ever, David is still mighty upset.
Also upset, though more awesomely so, is Mellie, who finds out (via Olivia, which must sting) that Andrew has been two-timing her with Liz. When Liz comes to visit to put a bug in her ear about El Prez refusing to engage in war in West Angola, Mellie lets on exactly what she knows. Then she tells her she better choose carefully which candidate to back in the next presidential election, “because when I screw you, it’s gonna hurt.” FLOTUS for President!
In between efforts to track down Rowan, Jake is trying not to get shot in alleyways and El Prez is getting pressured to send troops to West Angola, which Cyrus advises him against. Olivia, after going head-to-head with first her father (whom she tries to shoot) and then her mother, who tells her she’s just like Rowan, decides to give up: She invites Jake over for Gettysburger and wine and tells him they’re not going to talk about her father anymore. Then she puts on that record her dad gave her and starts dancing like she’s Ian Somerhalder circa season one of The Vampire Diaries. Jake declares his love, she says she chooses herself, and they’re about to have sexy time until Jake goes to get a blanket and comes back to discover she’s gone. Where did she go? Just ask Andrew—who is apparently using her to blackmail Fitz into declaring war on West Angola.
A FEW THOUGHTS
“That doesn’t make us friends; it just makes us at risk for the same STDs.” So glad Mellie got to be angry powerful betrayed woman instead of tearful betrayed woman. I really hope we get to see her run for President.
Charlie killed his grandmother, which Quinn finds totally normal and kind of sweet—and somehow these two have one of the more functional relationships on the show. I do feel bad for Quinn’s dentist, though.
What is the point of forcing Fitz to go to war? I assume it has a lot to do with money and also with getting Andrew elected as President.
So Olivia knows how to shoot a gun. With parents like hers, that skill is probably just imprinted in her DNA. But why does she own a piano?
WINNER: Looks like something good might finally happen for Huck, so I’ll give it to him.
LOSER: Judging by how well Fitz and Jake have worked together in the past, Olivia is in some very deep trouble.
That’s it for Scandal in 2014! What do you think of the season so far? Sound off in the comments.