This week on ABC’s Scandal, Cyrus, Olivia and Mellie each had strong reactions to Fitz’s bombshell — but that bit of domestic dynamite was nothing compared to the (latest) jaw-dropping discovery about the attempted assassination of President Grant.
IN THE PRE-ELECTION WORLD THAT WAS…. | We saw how Lindsay Dwyer’s beau Jesse Tyler (played by Katie Lowes’ real-life husband, Adam Shapiro) swapped out the voting booth memory cards in Defiance — and later blew his lid upon realizing that Hollis Doyle raked in $2 billion as the result of his handiwork. When Jesse squeezed Hollis for a $5 million bonus, Becky arranged for his “explosive” workplace surprise (after laying the foundation for “scorned” girlfriend Lindsay to take the rap).
SEPARATION ANXIETY | Now in the present, Mellie visits Cyrus, beckoning him to “get your guy in line. He asked me for a divorce!” Cy promises to look into it (scoffing, “Breeders!” after she exits). Later in the Oval Office, Cyrus asks the president how he’s feeling, seeing as the side effects of his shooting could cause recklessness, or delusions — such as believing you can kick your nine-months-pregnant missus to the curb and move in your mistress, all while still holding state dinners. Fitz explains that “the great thing” about being shot at is “you stop being afraid of anything or anyone. You realize there’s nothing to lose, there’s no time to waste.” In short: “This is going to happen.”
Fitz calls Olivia, interrupting her already manic day/needed nap to report that he has some news. “You don’t know who I am,” a self-flagellating Olivia interrupts. “You don’t know me.” Sharing her own update, about Edison’s proposal, she ventures, “I could quit, go have babies, live in the country… make jam.” Fitz says he asked Mellie for a divorce. “Don’t marry Edison,” he implores. “Just say you’ll wait for me.” Olivia responds by hanging up, and then gives Edison the ice-cold shoulder, forcing him to alert the Gladiators. “Help her,” the senator begs. Quinn responds: “I think we just found our next [in-house, non-paying] client!”
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER | In the name of helping Olivia, the associates agree to each spill their guts with no judgement. Quinn starts with the story of how Huck drugged her years ago and gave her a new identity, using Verna’s plane to shuttle her around. Abby reveals she was bedding David, and thus knew that Hollis Doyle had worked with Jesse in the name of rigging votes to get an “oil pipeline” approved. But what could Doyle have on Olivia? Hmm, when did they first meet? Ding! On the campaign trail leading to Fitz’s election.
Huck visits Olivia in bed, says that Hollis “has to go.” Olivia reuses to let her friend kill again, and explains that Cyrus is “handling” it. Huck reveals that Cyrus is in “my circle” and uses that creepy guy Charlie to get things done. Horrified, Olivia turns Hollis in herself, then charges the gladiators with firming up David’s case by finding a money trail linking Doyle to Becky.
Cyrus rails at Olivia’s quest for “justice,” saying (in a wonderful if misguided speech), “Our electoral process is magical…. What you’re doing is telling people that the shiny presents left under the tree are from Mom and Dad, that we’re Santa and the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. You’re ruining Christmas morning…. When the republic comes tumbling down, it’ll be because you weren’t tough enough to do what needed to be done.” O’s response: “Get your house in order and get a lawyer — a good one!”
After the associates retrieve Jesse’s old laptop (which QuinnDsay had ditched at a genius bar two years prior) to ID Hollis’ payment to him, Huck visits Becky in prison and sweet-talks her into giving up her (Swiss bank account) digits. That info surfaces the dollars Becky got to bomb Cytron, but the payment she got to pop POTUS came not from Hollis! Olivia quickly phones David with the news, but Hollis has already been released — and at episode’s end he is seen boarding an elevator with… Charlie.
SPECIAL DELIVERY | When Cyrus reports back to Mellie that Fitz is holding firm on the divorce plan, she flips a bit, relating how she “cleaned up” Fitz after the damage his father did to him, and now Olivia will reap the benefits?! Well then, Cy says, “If you have one last trick up your sleeve, now is the time.” Later, just as Cyrus is delivering data to the president about the 10 percent approval rating he’d earn after divorcing his pregnant wife while in office, they get a call about a medical emergency — Mellie is in labor, and Fitz rushes there to be at her side, ultimately holding her hand as they did with their first two kids.
What did you think of this week’s episode and the “last trick” Mellie had up her sleeve? And if Hollis didn’t order the hit on POTUS, who did? (Is anyone thinking Sally?)