Scandal Poll: Is Jake Really Dead?

Scott Foley Scandal

Is Scandal about to pull a fast one on us?

At the end of Thursday’s episode, Olivia’s beau, Russell, stabbed Scott Foley‘s Jake nearly a dozen times in the chest and stomach. It’s hard to imagine anyone — even death-defying Ballard — surviving such an assault. And the promo for next week’s episode, which features a frantic Quinn declaring, “Jake is dead. Jake. Is. Dead” while the character’s bloodied corpse rests on OPA’s conference table, seems to confirm that Foley’s Scandal run has come to an end.

The operative word there being seems.

In the unpredictable, bait-and-switchy world of Shondaland, things are rarely as they seem. As one skeptical TVLine commenter points out, a major character like Jake would almost certainly get a more explosive, satisfying send-off than the stairwell stabbing we witnessed Thursday night. “Oh, please. Jake’s not gonna die like that. He may die, but it’s gonna be a better death than one random guy who’s had five seconds of screen time getting the drop on him.”

What do you think? Was Jake’s death the real deal or a red herring? Vote in the poll below and then defend your choice in the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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105 Comments
  1. Franka says:

    You saw the photos that leaked of a bandaged Jake in an upcoming episode, right? So definitely alive.

  2. John Davis says:

    He’s not dead. Shonda likes the actor too much.

  3. Jen says:

    I’m skeptical about it. For the simple fact that Shonda Rhimes has an unhealthy obsession with Scott Foley. The woman is up his butt all the time. She has ruined every character on the show just so she can prop up her precious Jake Ballard. She even admitted that she wanted Scott to play McDreamy on Grey’s, but ABC wouldn’t let her. Then he got cast years later, but because she killed him off, she gave him a new job on Scandal. She loves this guy way too much to simply kill him off like that. Then we have the promo pics released and then taken down, plus he is listed for the final 3 episodes on IMDb. Who really knows, though. But I’m highly skeptical for the simple fact that Shonda wouldn’t let her little boy toy get away that easy.

    • AddieM says:

      Get over yourself! So what if Shonda Rhimes like him..

      • Eric says:

        I can’t speak for Jen, but this is my take on it. There is no problem with Shonda like Scott or any of her actors. What is a problem is that she takes it to an extreme. Good showrunners are objective and do what is best for the show and the story. Shonda doesn’t do that. She lets her love for the actors get in the way of what is best for the story. Take a look at the last couple episodes. What purpose did Jake really serve? None. If you take Olivia, Abby, Quinn, Huck, Mellie, Fitz, Cyrus, etc. out of the show, it will go haywire. Their presence (or lack of) drastically changes the show. Jake? Not so much. You can take this guy out and the show will be just fine. In fact, the show thrives and is at its best when they are focusing on OPA and the White House, not Jake, Papa Poe, and B613. But because Shonda loves Scott so much, she won’t ever get rid of him. It doesn’t matter if nobody likes him, his character has it’s course, or if the show suffers, she won’t do it. Her bias gets in the way, which is a very bad quality to have as a showrunner/writer. I certainly don’t hate Scott Foley nor do I really even hate Jake. I’m pretty indifferent to his character, actually. It’s just the fact that his character has run it’s course. He serves no purpose at this point. When your character has run it’s course, you make them exit. But again, Shonda would never do that because of her love for this actor. You look at people like Jason Katims (Parenthood and Friday Night Lights) and he does a fantastic job. When a character has run it’s course, he lets them go and finds a graceful, realistic way to make them exit. Why? Because he actually cares about putting out quality storytelling. Shonda doesn’t. She only cares about OMG moments and ratings. That is evident by how awful this show has turned out to be. Anyways, I’m getting way off course. The point being, Jake Ballard serves no purpose anymore and needs to go. BUT because of Shonda’s obvious and disgusting bias, she would never do that. Oh well, though.

        • AddieM says:

          Yep…you need to get over yourself as well…
          How are Huck or Quinn or even Abby essential to the show! I’m sure if they left today the show would still go on, just like it did after Stephen, James and Harris left..so really what is your point??? You have no idea what future plots she has for Jake (if he’s alive that is). You are not fooling anyone by saying you do not hate Jake/Scott Foley. And how would you know the r/ship that Scott has with Shonda, is it a crime that she chooses to work with a cast she has worked with before…honestly your obsession with Shonda/Scott r/ship is the one that is disgusting!!

        • tonya says:

          Eric amen to every freaking word. U spoke the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

          • Cooper says:

            AddieM, EVERYTHING you’ve stated is in COMPLETE contradiction to what has actually transpired (to dated) which explains the sudden/drastic decline to an outstanding show. For starters, to shut down that repetitive TIRED ASS LIE that toxic OLITZ is the reason people are wondering if the show could possibly be cancelled. 1. The last OLITZ love scene was epi 306 VERMONT, since then there has been None/Nada/Zilch. 2. It defies logic that you would suggest that ALL the main/original characters ie. OP the fixer & ALL of her associates, along with POTUS are NOW irrelevant but Johnny come lately/non-acting SF is so freaking good yet the TANKED rating obliterates that notion.

        • Cooper says:

          Boo Yah Eric.

        • Paul says:

          Just a heads up folks the crazy olitzers from tumblr got a hold of this article. They love to make up fake names and post here and run back to tumblr and pretend its an unbiased viewer go look these complaints are word for word drivel they spew from their crap blogs.

        • Scandal fan says:

          What purpose?!? The way Jake loves and protects liv is why I watch the show- I want to watch crazy passion between them and jake is HOT

        • whoopsie says:

          First of all, Scott Foley joined the cast in S2 as a recurring guest star. I’m a huge Scott Foley fan so I was elated when he was added to the cast for S3. My Scandal obsession began with the appearance of his character, Capt. Jake Ballard. Second, the B613 story arc began in S2 with “Spies Like Us” which revealed Huck had worked for an off the books CIA black ops program. We learn in S3 that it is called B613. Third, we learn in 419 via Papa Pope, Olivia is a B613 agent and Jake was his Golden Boy. Jake is the only man Papa Pope thought was good enough for his “greatest possession and achievement, But Jake’s refusal to pay homage to Papa Pope led to their conflict. Of course we learn Jake has been hunting Rowan for a long time so his intention was always to bring him down. Scott Foley is a great actor. Your problem with Scott Foley is that you see his character as a threat to Olitz, a relationshio that is part of the MAIN character’s story but not the whole story. Finally, it is frustrating to have ignorant people call into question Shonda Rhimes’ storytelling abilities because YOU don’t like the story she is telling. Scandal is a political thriller. It is not a love story about a President and his side piece. You need to find another show to watch that meets your needs. This one obviously is way beyond your comprehension.

    • jc says:

      You seem to be the one obsessed with scott.

    • You need anger counseling.

    • Rae says:

      You forgot to mention that she wanted Scott to play Stephen in Scandal and had cast him until ABC put the Kibosh on that. So what does she do she sneaks him as a guest then recurring and before you know it he’s a regular cast member. Meanwhile his character adds NOTHING to the show and is infact one of the characters dragging it downwards.

      • Cooper says:

        Rae can you say “ADD NOTHING” a little louder. I have NEVER witnessed a writer/creater literally DESTROY an ENTIRE show to appease ONE actor & one that’s NOT even good at it, right before our eyes.

    • Cooper says:

      JEN you are definitely on point with this analysis because SF sucks as JB. And EVERY since she made him a regular & keep FORCING that useless love triangle, Scandal ratings have PLUMMETED/TANKED, see the ratings for yourself. EVERY TIME the show was ONLY about that tired ass B613 or JERK/JOKE was running behind OP, the viewership dropped dramatically.

      • AddieM says:

        The ratings are plummeting because of that toxic Liv/Fitz will they/ wont they BS!
        They are the anchor dragging the show down. It’s not B613, it’s not Papa Pope, it’s certainly not Jake, it’s OLITZ!
        Olitz may have been the reason this show became famous and so loved but it will soon be the reason for the death of the show if Shonda does not do something about it.
        You cannot blame the decline of a show on the supporting cast when the leads are terribly developed characters like Fitz who seems to be regressing with every season.
        If Jake adds nothing to the show how can he then be the cause of the decline!

        • Tai says:

          Thank you! The Olivia/Fitz storyline is just so toxic and terrible. I really lost interest in the show because I’m sick of this whole “epic” love they supposedly share. I never saw the appeal of them as a couple and as the show progresses it just becomes worse.

        • Chery says:

          FITZ is terribly developed?? FITZ!?!?! Not Jake who we LITERALLY know NOTHING about?? Girl bye!

    • shboogies says:

      Scott is great, thats obvious as Shonda sees it as well. So what’s your point? He’s a great actor and she liked to employ him. Get over it.

    • whoopsie says:

      Yep. as a fan, Shonda and I have the Scott Foley. I absolutely love him on Scandal. Jake Ballard is my favorite character. And yes I saw the pics for 421. So my bae Jake is ALIVE!!

  4. Ryan says:

    Definitely not dead. Scott Foley and/or Shonda Rhimes would’ve done “post-mortem” interviews immediately following the episode, just like every other time a series regular leaves a hit show (see, most recently, Colton Haynes leaving Arrow). If you don’t see a link to an interview following a “death,” consider it a fake out.

  5. Mr. Tran K says:

    Hope they cheat Jake’s death despite of having him get stabbed by Papa Pope’s right hand man.

  6. lalong says:

    Certainly hope not! If he really is then I will definitely lose interest in watching the show!

  7. lalong says:

    Certainly hope not! if he reaĺly is then I will definitely lose interest in watching the show!

  8. AddieM says:

    I love Jake and I really hope he’s not dead, but Scott Foley’s tweet after the show seemed kind of final, like this is it…
    He’s been the second deadliest assassin on the show after Huck…I’d feel really short changed if he was to go out this way.

  9. I agree, I think Jake went down too easy…when/if Jake goes down it will be after an epic fight…

  10. Brandy says:

    He better not be dead or I’m done watching scandal !

  11. Liz says:

    Scott pitched a new show to Shonda and she killed him off of Scandal so he can go on to the new show.

  12. aph1976 says:

    I think Jake is still alive but i’m thinking Olivia will make it look like he’s dead to protect him.

  13. Kalee says:

    There’s bandaged pictures?

    I thought he was dead because I read on here that Scott Foley signed up with Greg Grunberg and Shondaland for a comedy? It said he wasn’t starring in it, but that would’ve been too telling of a spoiler.

  14. Ames says:

    No death, including this one, is official until there’s a TVLine post-mortem with either the actor or TPTB behind the show.

  15. celeste says:

    He better not be ( somebody over there in the writer’s pool must be on crack)this had better be a ploy or a dream sequence or something because Ryan White is not sufficient to try and take Jakes place ( no shade intended) but no. Get together Shonda because this is not cute without Jake.ll

  16. Grey says:

    There should have also been a choice of “Don’t care.”
    :-)

  17. niloofar says:

    I love Jake but I’m not sure and i saw the bandaged up photo and if he is going to die, he should go out in an epic fight.
    For those commenters in the recap who want Jake dead for good and list his sins are Fitz fans who don’t remmember him grabbing Olivia’s wrist very hard when he found out she went away with Jake, not to mention smothering Verna and Huck choking Olivia to get her to confirm that her father is Command ,plus the brutal murder of Susanne.

    *** Everyone in this show is guilty of someone’s death directly or indirectly doing something that leads to innocent people dying.***

    • ellajwade says:

      Thank you for reminding everyone of this. I think all the “Jake” haters are people that still want Olivia with Fitz. Fitz is never going to leave Mellie. Jake and Olivia are great together. If you want to talk about obsessions, why not “Papa Pope”? So sick of his nine lives.

    • Sally says:

      Didn’t Jake choke Olivia and throw her up against a wall. Fitz fans don’t forget his sins but Jake fans love to forget that he has choked her, killed her god daughter’s father, made a sextape and passed it out etc. Come on. You can call Fitz on his stuff that’s fine, but don’t act like Jake hasn’t done horrible things too. Hypocrisy is a bad look.

      • niloofar says:

        As i said before, everyone in the show is guilty.I like Jake but in every Scandal related post only his misdeeds are listed because he stands in the way of Olivia and Fitz.
        * Cyrus in my opinion is worst than Papa Pope he used his husband, mistreated him multilple times and got him and innocent Daniel Douglas killed now he is the sad widow.

        P.S. since Olivia and Fitz are not having sex on top a desk everyweek he is more like a real president not a teenage boy.

  18. azu says:

    Who cares? You know shonda loves this man a lot, so it’s difficult to believe he’s dead

  19. arial2 says:

    Can’t share the pic here, but if you do an image search for “Scandal promo pic jake” it will be among the results unless it gets taken down.

  20. Eliza says:

    I hope he’s not dead. Jake unexpectedly became one of my favorite characters!

  21. Mik says:

    No offense to Scott Foley, but I wish Jake would die. I hate how he’s being portrayed as a hero even though he’s killed several innocent people. Same thing with Damon on Vampire Diaries. I can tolerate him being there, but when all the girls on the show starts making out with him despite of what he’s done, it’s just too much for me. And I completely lose respect for Olivia every time she gets it on with Jake. She believes in justice, but when it comes to her love interest, she don’t care how many people he killed, as long as they love each other… Sorry, maybe I’m old school on this one, I just can’t stand that kind of thing.

    • Lisa says:

      I completely agree, Jake is a bit of a db in my opinion. Can’t stand him and hope he is gone for good.

    • Cooper says:

      Mike, I’m old school too. How do you have off the chain/unbelievable/undeniable chemistry between the two MAIN characters (albeit adultery), only to have OP sleeping with Joke & Russell which NEITHER are convincing at all?

    • AddieM says:

      As opposed to Fitz who send 40+ soldiers to die unnecessarily for one woman…plus if you are old school where do you stand on adulterous r/ships coz i’m guessing you want Liv with Fitz, yes!

  22. Mary says:

    The only thing I don’t like. Is jake might die. In my book, no he may not I love that guy. Looking forward to his scenes.

  23. Rae says:

    It would be nice is Jake was finally killed off. I don’t think he adds anything to the show. Olivia’s relationship with him is unhealthy. Like all of her relationships with men. Olivia needs to be single for a while to work out what she wants.

  24. greysfan says:

    I love Scandal but i actually hope he is dead. I’m over him as a character. The same with Liv’s father. The actor is amazing no doubting that but its time someone put a bullet in her father already.

  25. K b says:

    hate to break it to you boys and girls but Scott Foley has confirmed himself that he is leaving the show and was shocked by the ending. he’s probably dead or will be leaving the show after they fake his death and he testified against b13. since he will have amunity and a new identity he will depart as John Doe

  26. Cooper says:

    I don’t give a flip how much she likes him, gets his non-acting ass off Scandal & put him somewhere/anywhere but there. When he wasn’t a regular, his acting was much more believable, but when SR chose to “force” that non chemistry relationship with OP, that’s when he began to suck & a blind man could see it.

  27. Tracey says:

    He’s not dead but he killed Scandal.

    • Cooper says:

      Tracey he DAMN sho killed Scandal. ROTFLMAO. When you look at the ratings EVERY SINGLE TIME SR made the show about B613/Rowen/Joke “professing” to be in love, the ratings would tank each time. But when they got back to the “original” Scandal storyline that EVERYONE fell in love with, the ratings spiked again.

    • herman1959 says:

      COLD! (and funny).

  28. cocon1262 says:

    If Jake isn’t deas, he should be. I like him but this back and forth thing needs to end. And this new guy sleeping with Liv makes her seem slutty; not the intelligent, poised and polically astute woman she is. He came from no where. There was no introduction of his character. He’s just there. Shonda, I absolutely love you for your creativity, privacy.and the fact that you don’t cave. So please allow yourself to be guided by whatever made you the dynamo you are. Your ideas and ingeniuity are ever evolving. So go back and rework the vision you had that launched you into your timing to show the world what you have. Keep the show smart and please don’t cave in to ratings. Your creativity establishes ratings. Do you Ms. Rhodes because this is your hour.

    • cocon1262 says:

      I’m sorry for the typos. Got some nailike extensions yesterday, but I think I may have to.cut them down. The last sentence was to read,” So you do you Ms. Rhimes, because this is your hour.”
      Sorry and thanks

    • I honestly believe initially Shonda had a clear vision of where she wanted to go with this show. Then Olitz happened–and blew her completely off course. She didn’t know how to write for them. In an attempt to take her show back, she messed up resorting to stale soap opera tactics. If she wants Scandal to survive she will have to stir up her talent juices and write Olitz as a couple. If she can’t do it; she needs to let go of her ego and hire it out. A good start will be to get rid of Jake NOW.

  29. Brian says:

    He should be dead because the actor adds nothing to this show and he has no chemistry with any of the actors including Kerry. So why continue wasting the “other guy” role on him? But because Shonda has thing for this actor, he obviously isn’t dead.

  30. Cheryl Manning says:

    Olivia and other Gladiators staged Jake’s death to fake out and draw out Papa Pope. When they catch him, Papa gonna be thrown in cell next to Momma Pope.

  31. Beth says:

    If Jake is really dead I’m so over this show. He’s the best thing on if and Olivia’s only chance is snapping out of it.
    This show has gone off the rails the entire cast should be in prison!

  32. NotASpoilerFan says:

    Thank you for the spoiler. As an italian guy who have to wait some times before being able to see the show, this really pisses me off. Was it really impossible to use a title spoiler-free? Something like “Is [spoiler] really dead”?

  33. THNKS FOR THE DMN SPOILER EHJGERUGERUGER

  34. Cheyenne says:

    He’s alive — for now. But I’m betting he dies from his wounds by the season finale.

  35. She cannot kill him simply for the fact that I want Olivia to end up with Jake instead of the President.

  36. David4 says:

    I wis he was dead so Olivia Pope will kill her father.

  37. Kermit says:

    Or, a fast one to distract from speculation that Derek is getting offed on Greys?

    (I know, I know.)

  38. Muzamba says:

    Of course Jake is dead! If he had any hope they would have rushed him to the hospital. Why do we like to keep hoping despite the obvious truth? If Scanal has taught us anything it’s that anyone can die. Look at who has died so far. The show will end with Liv killing her dad after he kills all her friends. She will wear her white hat and just as she steps into the sun Melly will call out her name and say “You once asked me what I want, well it has always only ever been this.” And she will shoot Liv between the eyes. Melly will go to her lifeless body, pick up Liv’s white hat, put it on and say “You were never worthy of this you b….” and walk into the sun as the credits roll.

  39. Devil says:

    Regretfully (VERY regretfully) he is very much alive. I can’t understand why ABC doesn’t push and make SR get rid of useless character Jake (alongside very bad actor SF) and move the show along with some good storytelling (they were capable of it is S1 and 2, where are these writers now?).
    Scandal is boring and predictable now. They will get cancelled after next season at this rate. And n, Jake is not dead (yet, I hope!)

  40. Krak says:

    SR will never kill her pet. NEVER
    She completely killed her own show and everything that made the success of scandal to keep her toy boy

  41. Mine says:

    I wonder why those people talking about the toxic Olitz relationship started watching Scandal. In the beginning the will they won’t they was the most important storyline. Oh or were you watching a different show when you tagged along somewhere along season 2? Get your facts straight and don’t say that stuff when Olitz was the pull that hooked millions of viewers. If Olitz is definitely over too many people will stop watching. Don’t you ever forget that..

  42. Lori Tate says:

    I hope he’s not dead, it looked as though he was killed but one of the perks of Scandal are the twists!

  43. Lori says:

    Jake is not dead. Shonda would kill Olivia before she would kill her pet Foley. I’m not trying to be mean but imo SF is a sub par actor at best. I wonder if the man ever took any classes to work on his craft because he could use it. I rarely watch the show live because I watch the blacklist now but I catch it on dvr if I have time and it has been deleted. Shonda has much love for sf, fine that is her prerogative but to show such blatant favoritism for him and his character at the expense of the lead character is to the shows detriment. Olivia was dumbed down so Jake could be the smartest in the room, Jake killed her God daughters father who was also her friend but it is all good smh. I could go on and on about how Jake makes Olivia weak and stupid but that is just how shonda rolls. Shonda will never kill Jake only try to elevate him because shonda loves her some Scott.

  44. Susan says:

    SDA says, Jake is the reason I watch Scandal. I like him with Olivia best. He’s so compassionate. Please, please don’t kill Jake. Kill Papa Pope.

  45. L Jackson says:

    I don’t understand all the love for Jake Ballard. #GoodRiddance

  46. Sc says:

    I want Hollis Doyle, Tom, and Ride Sally Ride back. Jake isn’t make or break for me. But Olivia has to be in the White House and Abby needs to be at OPA.

  47. shawn says:

    Scandal has lost it punch, still a good show but she puts more time in htgawm the scandal

  48. My Wanio says:

    Jake is quite a favorite of a lot of fans and it would be a heavy loss to the show to see him go. Certainly hope he is brought back to the living cannot see Olivia without him.

  49. Lisa G says:

    Not sure if he is yet! Scott Foley and Shonda R. is working on a new show together. If not now, then later! Eventually, he will be killed/written off.

  50. Peg Lamb says:

    I truly hope Jake survives. He is one of my favorites. The loss of his character would leave a huge void in the series!