It used to be that Scandal was about the simple love between a president with no eyebrows and the mind-numbingly beautiful political string-puller who fixed his election. But this episode turned this nighttime soap into The Huck Show, and while I doubt
Dexter Huck fans mind, I kind of do.
In terms of a season arc, we're definitely at the "Bad Guys Close In" beat, and that's depressing: The Supreme Court judge got lectured with her wig off. The scurrilous vice president addressed the nation looking very pleased with herself. Olivia was instructed to arrange the funeral of the man she loves. It was bad times for Fictional Scandal Washington.
It was super bad times for Olivia. Harrison yelled at her to "Get her ass back here!" so she could find out her beloved pet serial killer abetted the presidential assassin (Becky) and her magical remote-control sniper rifle. And then dismantled the gun and brought it back to the Parisienne garret that serves as an office for the gladiators. If Olivia had been in her right mind she would have known the best way to handle that was to grab Huck by the scruff of his neck and throw him out the window.
Meanwhile, Cyrus (who by all logic we should not be rooting for as he is a cold-hearted killer but he is also Mr. Katimski so good luck asking me not to like him) had been thrown out of his Master of Whisperers position at the White House and was forced to spend his day glaring at the TV eating grape nuts and the country was in the crazy hands of Madam Vice President who we got increasingly bad vibes from throughout the episode.
Of course, none of this national turmoil and workplace drama superseded Quinn's laser focus on her own goofy problems. I couldn't believe the speed and fury with which she attacked Huck last night, bringing things right back to the Only Problem in the World, that time she was framed for the Cytron bombing. First of all, Huck is the subject of an international manhunt right now for a crime he didn't commit so let him take 5. You don’t have to fetch him coffee or give him a shoulder massage but at the bare minimum don't pace around his office shouting inches from his face when he’s in the middle of clearing his name from High Treason. And also, who does Quinn think she’s fooling? What are you going to do with important conspiracy theory information, Quinn? Even if Huck turned around and let you know the Illuminati conspired to put you in prison and gave you names places and dates, what are you really going to do about that?
Unfortunately when Huck snapped it was on Harrison, who got pressed against a table and then did that move where you punch an inanimate object to show you’re Ready To Go, you could totally be in a fight right now, except not with a person. So awkward, the awkwardest of gestures.
In the approximately 35,000 minutes we spent with Huck last night, he learned his alcoholic girlfriend of about five days wasn’t an alcoholic, she was a murderaholic and trained killer just like him, which of course made him fall more in love with her than ever. Who can resist a stone-cold killer woman named Becky? She’s also way into wall-to-wall scrapbooking, much like the gladiators and David and Carrie Matheson.
It was a little buried in Olivia and Cyrus's cozy wine night, but Olivia dropped the bomb that the FLOTUS had restricted her privileges so she she couldn’t see the president in his hospital bed. Hateful in that Olivia doesn't get to see Fitz, also hateful in that I don’t get to see Fitz with Olivia during the emotionally wracked bedside scene I thought I was going to get last night.
The only person who really had anything close to fun this episode was Abby, who found time for a swift hate-f*ck with David after he turned over some key security camera footage. #Dabbylives! Shudder, gross. And James, who finally got his fat little baby in a last-ditch attempt by Cyrus to get him to drop looking into the Defiance voting issue. There's not a doubt in my mind James is going to get killed over this and leave Cyrus a widower with a baby, and that’s sad, that’s seriously sad.
But don't think the show won't go there! Scandal will go to dark places, as it proved last night when it killed off Huck's vicarious family. I’m still unclear on what Becky was doing with that; surely she could frame Huck without killing the only four people he cares about? Or is she just a psychopath? She needn’t have tried so hard, Olivia’s bestie the Supreme Court Justice was ready to hand his name over to the vice president, which frankly Olivia should have done at the start of the episode: in her words, get in front of the problem. I know Huck is a super-spy who was wronged by the American KGB or whatever but Dabby's footage should've gone to the powers that be instead of them waiting for a SWAT team to break into their drafty tenement office.
Altogether, a devestating and well paced-episode, but if we don’t see Fitz in a hospital bed clutching Olivia's hand soon, I will not be responsible for my actions.
1. Who is Becky working for? (Angry Southern Stereotype Guy?)
2. Why did Abby have angry hate sex with David?
3. How long until James gets taken down?
4. How are they possibly going to justify that Olivia helped rig a national election, which has led like day into night to all this madness?