Scandal Premiere Recap: The Born Identity

ABC’s Scandal with its Season 2 premiere answered one big question — Who is Quinn Perkins? — only to, in doing so, leave us with several new head-scratchers.

The season opened a few months after the events of the finale (where David had informed us that a half-dozen federal agencies would be after Quinn if they knew her true identity). And he was right! Lindsay Dwyer (Quinn’s real name) is now behind bars awaiting trial for killing seven people several years ago, in a case of jealous rage gone horribly awry.

Quinn has no idea who did mail the bomb that killed her ex and a half-dozen of his coworkers. All she knows is that she had retreated to a seedy motel, got snuck up on and drugged, then awoke in a D.C. hotel room with a whole new life — one belonging to a “Quinn Perkins” — literally laid out before her.

Olivia staunchly fought on Quinn’s behalf, even as Abby vehemently questioned their colleague’s story/innocence. Huck meanwhile sought out any security camera feeds that might have seen who took Quinn to the hotel and hooked her up with a passport, money and such. But when no leads on Quinn’s alleged abductor turned up, the court case headed south and fast. Quinn even at one point had the gall to fire Olivia Pope… for about seven minutes.

Popular on TVLine

But just as David was going in for the kill, on the case he warned Olivia would “end” her, the always resourceful Ms. Pope placed a mysterious phone call to someone she had not dealt with in a long time. The next day, the judge dropped David’s case — and pretty much everybody smelled a rat, Abby and most of all David included. Understandably, David is determined to find out how things went sideways at the drop of a white hat.

But an even bigger twist was coming. As Huck reviewed the security cam footage he did find, of outside the D.C. hotel, we realized that he himself was caught on tape, lurking outside as Lindsay Dwyer took her first steps as “Quinn Perkins.” The double-whammy: Huck then hopped in a car with Olivia to report: “She took it, everything we left for her. She’s good to go.”

So the new question we’ll undoubtedly not get answered particularly quickly: Why did Olivia orchestrate this grand identity switch? (P.S. First chance you get, rewatch the episode knowing how it ends; Olivia and Huck’s exchanges and actions throughout play out in a new light.)

Elsewhere in the Scandal Season 2 premiere…. Yep, Mellie’s pregnant with “America’s Baby,” though Fitz has had his fill of the media circus. Thing is, his numbers are down because of some yachting scandel-ette, making it quite tempting for him to cash in on this “Fort Knox” of political capital while deciding whether to fight a war in East Sudan. Sensing her husband’s internal debate on the latter, Mel sought to move things along by, during a televised sit-down to announce the sex of their baby, “ringing the genocide bell” and blurting out some provocative comments about the Sudan sitch.

In private afterwards, Fitz railed, “No one elected you! Your opinion doesn’t matter! You’re ornamental, not functional” — which is a curious POV for show that has acknowledged Bill Clinton and thus knows of that POTUS’ mighty missus. Mellie sighed, “You always did know just the right way to hurt me,” and advised Fitz not to take out on his wife the fact that he is his missing “her.”

But apparently Fitz has had enough of missing “her,” so he phones Olivia, who knows she should hang up… but neither of them does. (You can tell it’s a “POPUS” scene because the music, albeit a different cue than last season, comes on and the dialogue slows way, way, way down.) “I hate you”/”I hate you, too” is what they at one point say, and yet….

The Case of the Week involved a green congressman who was caught with his pants down by a hidden camera in his office. But before some Drudge-y blog could post the sex tape, Olivia had Huck do some hacking, steal the vid, and they leaked it on their own and on their own terms, allowing the politico to turn his boner (meaning: mistake) into a boon.

Oh, and apparently Henry Ian Cusick’s Stephen married fiancée Georgia and moved to Boston where he sometimes hangs out with Walter Bishop.

What did you think of the fresh new Scandal that’s brewing?