Watch Episode 2 Of “Scandal” Now + Tambay’s Early Thoughts On The New ABC Drama

Watch Episode 2 Of "Scandal" Now + Tambay's Early Thoughts On The New ABC Drama

If you haven't already noticed, the second episode of Scandal, Shonda Rhimes' new ABC drama series starring Kerry Washington, is online, even though it doesn't officially air on the network until this Thursday, the 12th.

I watched it very early this morning on ABC's website, after I finished watching episode 1 (also on ABC's website) and noticed that episode 2 was also available.

But it's on Hulu as well, so you have options, whichever you prefer; I embedded the Hulu player below with episode 2.

And now that I've seen 2 episodes, I can say that I'll return for a third; I usually like to give new shows 3 episodes before deciding on whether I'll continue watching them or not. So far, I'm engaged, though with a few concerns…

WARNING: Potential spoilers ahead…

One of my early concerns was whether Kerry Washington had the presence to give this real life firebrand of a human being (however fictionalized on screen) life and be believable. I initially felt that the role needed to go to an actress I'd consider more of a force, given the woman she portrays (and I'm going based strictly on descriptions here; I've never met the real Olivia Pope/Judy Smith). 

I also expected an older actress, given the real-life character's age, her achievements, etc.

But Kerry is handling it (pun intended) for the most part, especially in the second episode, which I'm thankful I watched, because I wasn't entirely convinced after watching episode 1.

I'm also not a big fan of the rapid-fire dialogue which, at times when it happens, feels self-conscious, forced and unnecessary . But I suppose that's Rhimes' style (I haven't been a regular watcher of her past shows). Maybe it'll grow on me; maybe it won't. But I find myself rolling my eyes more often than not when it happens. It could also just be the delivery by the actors that isn't working for me, and less Rhimes' writing. I'll pay closer attention from here on.

And I guess the young up-start the firm hired in episode 1 essentially serves as the audience's POV into this new, hetic world, where everything happens quickly, as decisions are made with haste, followed by rapid action, making it a little difficult at first for the audience to make sense of everything that's happening, and what the different relationships are, etc. She asks questions, she gets answers, sometimes; and as that happens, the audience also learns something new about a person or a situation.

Good enough; but she's a tad irritating. I won't mind seeing even less of her.

Also, I really don't need to hear just how good Olivia Pope is at her job anymore, or that she's the best at what she does – whether from her, or from her employees, or from people she's worked for. I got it! She's good at what she does; she's the best; ok now, show me, stop telling me. 

I really do hope she doesn't do something stupid like get involved with the president again; I can't stand that dude. I don't know whether it's the character as written, or if it's the actor who plays him, or a combo of both. Maybe it's because I remember him most as the creep from Ghost (the movie), and so when I see his face on my TV screen, I remember Carl Bruner :)

However, like I said, I'm engaged, and I want to see more; I hope it only gets better from hereon. I'm curious to see where Shonda Rhimes will take these characters and their individual stories; forget the individual cases they'll likely be assigned from one episode to the next; it's probably a given that each will be "handled" by the time the episode ends, which reminds of another concern I have: that they seem to have everything under control – they have all the contacts, the reach, the technology (or access to it), the smarts to "handle" likely any scandal; it's all a little too tidy for me and I'd like to see them sweat a lot more, and maybe even lose from time to time. I think that'll keep things more interesting.

Granted, we're only 2 episodes in… so I'm basing all my thoughts on those 2 episodes.

I'm not sure if ABC plans to pre-release every episode online before it airs, although I seriously doubt that; but I'll be checking out their website occasionally to see if episode 3 suddenly turns up as well, and of course, I'll share it here.

Deadline reported earlier today that the show's premiere numbers were "ok" but "decent." And as expected, I read some dumb-ass racist comments on other sites I was pointed to, lamenting the fact that it's a show with a black lead. While it was easy to dismiss them, they did make me wonder if the numbers would have been stronger if this was a show based on a real-life white woman *fixer*. Were the numbers just "ok" because SOME white audiences skipped it for that reason – audiences that may have very well tuned in to watch had the opposite been true? 

Is this going to be a case of race actually playing a factor on how succesful the series is? Meaning, if black people don't watch it, it's doomed? And if black audiences don't *support* it en masse and it's canceled, will the tune being hummed be the familiar one about "black shows" (or shows with black leads) on network TV not being produced because black audiences don't support them?

Now I'm curious what the audience make-up looks like…

I've also heard some say that its 10pm time slot doesn't help, and it should be moved to an earlier time, maybe an hour earlier – 9pm. But its lead-in (Grey's Anatomy, which airs at 9pm on Thursdays) was meant to give it a boost.

Alright, enough from me; here's episode 2 titled Dirty Little Secrets:

This Article is related to: Television


Comments

Orville

Wow why don't people give Kerry Washington a chance! I have read a lot of complaints about the lack of diversity on American television. Now finally Shonda Rhimes has an attractive slim and talented black actress Kerry Washington in the lead role. I am really rooting for Scandal to succeed and I am very pleased that ABC has done a lot of marketing to push this show. Why can't people give Kerry a chance? Geesh. I am also glad Kerry's character Olivia Pope is not a negative stereotype of a black woman. Olivia is hard working, intelligent, and Kerry gives a nuanced performance.

misha

Ok, I want to like this show…I really do. But the dialogue is awful, the stories are cliche and Kerry is giving a less than convincing performance, imo. I would agree that she's trying too hard, which makes it difficult for me to buy into Olivia as this great, accomplished "fixer" or to feel any real simply for the character. I'm one of those who thinks the role should have went to someone like Sanaa Lathan. I think she definitely has the screen presence/gravitas to pull off such a role. Having said that, there are a few things I like about the show, including a couple of the supporting characters and the subplot involving the president. The latter has held my attention more than anything else thus far and I'm definitely with Sandra in saying the president oozes sex appeal. Sorry, tambay. :)

Muse

I love it. It's like a combination of Torchwood office politics and Luther badassery.

Akimbo

Between folks saying Kerry needs a boob job, people being called "fucking children," and someone finding a way to make this about what's wrong with black women, this post officially needs a chaperone. I like the show, though I agree that characters talk themselves up a bit too much. Also, I hate the redhead; in real life, she's the chick who fakes her own kidnapping or stabs the"other woman." More showing and less telling is needed, but otherwise, the concept is great and Kerry acquits herself well. So far, I'm still in.

Jenny

I think Shonda Rhimes reputation based on her other two current shows (Grey's and Private Practice) plays a part in the viewership of Scandal. IMO she targets a younger female audience so the storylines and dialog largely come across as juvenile and silly. She also writes women as whiny, flawed and can do no wrong. The men on her shows are even written worse because they are clearly written from a female standpoint. Real men can be a lot worse than the way she writes them but she still manages to make the ones on her shows look bad. But this is only my opinion. I wish Scandal well and have nothing against Shonda Rhimes.

Cherish

I liked the 2nd episode better than the first (though the hot scene between Olivia and the Pres was still great). This story-lines had better pacing and didn't feel like everything but the kitchen sink was crammed in. I still don't LOVE the show as yet. I agree that Kerry W. feels too "young" for this role and doesn't come off as force to be reckoned with. But that appears to be casting all around these days, where actors who are (barely) in their early-to-mid 3os are cast in powerful, leadership roles when in real life it takes another 10 years to attain that level of success. I also agree with Tambay that people shouldn't be saying Olivia Pope is the best all the time, the writers should just show it. I like the relationship storyline between her and the President, but I think the writers introduced it too early as it undercuts Olivia, especially since she kept saying her guts always right, and in the first ep she was already proven wrong. The first 3 or 4 episodes should have just focused on how great Olivia is at her job, then once that's established we can learn about the love story with the Pres and watch her missteps because of her feelings for him. Anyway story telling on TV is so fast paced these days, nothing is left to breathe and develop. But I like the show, as long as Shonda rhimes doesn't Shondarize the show too much, it can be really good.

Jayson Jay

I don't care for any of Rhimes shows and this is no exception. To me it's not horrible but it's not good either. It's something I could play in the background while on the computer.

CareyCarey

Just peeking in to see what a the fuss is about. Well, first, I just don't get it. I mean, I don't do much TV but I thought I might be missing something, but ooooh no, this is sad, horrible, a waste of brain cells. Really folks? But listen, for sh*ts and giggles I'm going to do my arm-chair critics thing on this… ah… this… ah, guilty viewing pleasure. First, lets start with Kerry Washington's acting. Well, in short, if she's one of the best we have to offer, we-are-in-trouble WITH A CAPITAL "T". I don't know, but maybe it's this role. She just does not exude power, control nor confidence. Now, moving on to her looks (I gotta go here), I wouldn't kick her out of bed but what's up with her lips? And how come the sister can't have her hair laid out? You know, flowing, shining and looking like she has a professonal hair stylist. Then again, Shonda Rime's hair always looks like it's sitting atop a mannequin, so I understand. Seriously y'all, I just being brutally honest. Come on, if Kerry is going to "fake it up", she could add a couple of… can I say it… plump boobs too. Know what I'm talking about…? Anyway, I was looking for the POWS & WOWS, the HOOKS & CROOKS I'd love to hate in this not so thrilling TV series… but PLACID wins by 2 whole lengths. The acting sucked ( the worst actors can read lines) and the storyline? Geez, so Lifetime is not the only network pimping the oldest profession? But controversy is a big seller, so looking into the future, i can see Naturi Naughton & Loretta Devine appear in an upcoming episode. OOOOH YEAH, can't you see it… dueling Client's Lists and a super delicious catfight between Loretta Devine and the gray haired madam. Now that's a hook we all can enjoy. Listen, I have to admit that whenever I see two girls or women fighting, I patiently waited for one of them (or both) to snatch off the other's bra. Yes-yes-yes, that's what Scandels needs, snatchin' wigs and dangling titties (black & white, fat, flat, swinging to the knees)… real viewing pleasure… a real Scandal! But wait, I didn't intend to go here but I gotta. You know, "THAT" first kiss! So, let's see, we get a black woman in a leading role, and one of the first things I see is her kissing on… can I say it… Mr. Charlie! Yeah… TWEEEEEEEEET–> *)*(^##!!##… MUTHER#*#^!!##666##:-(!=*!!! noooOOOOOooooo!No Scandals, no Shonda, No Kerry, bring back Mary J Bliege and that Chicken commercial. At least we can sing along while we're getting fed a hot plate of mess.

Haq

No ones surprised that she can solve and make go away all these issues but still be dumb enough to fall for a married man and be manipulated by him? Soooo stupid. Black women all weak for the white man. Dumb as hell.

sandra

LOVED IT! LOVED IT! LOVED IT!LOVED IT!LOVED IT!LOVED IT!LOVED IT!LOVED IT!Why are people so hard on this show? I guess being a "Shonda Rhimes Production" comes with added pressure/extreme expectations, but my God! Considering that pilots are NEVER perfect and that characters and chemistry will be developed down the line, I give this pilot an 8/10! Loved the chemistry between Olivia and the Prez. I was ok with the introductory rapid-fire dialogue because it drove the point home to the new girl that she wasn't in Kansas anymore so to speak. I'm already hooked.

julius hollingworth

kerry washington,shonda rimes loving it.

future.diplomat

I really wanted to like this show, but the rapid-fire dialogue is way over the top and Kerry Washington just doesn't command any sort of presence onscreen (the way she "power walks" from scene to scene is almost laughable).

I'll be back though, because every time I see a black woman onscreen, I know I must support her so that we can get more and more black women onscreen. Ratings games, and all that jazz.

Gigi Young

LOL…you're the second person who's mentioned giving the side-eye to the President bc he's played by the guy who killed Patrick Swayze in Ghost (and coincidentally, that was also my first exclamation upon seeing him on my TV).

I admit I'm watching this for Kerry and Shonda. I'm not into procedurals or crime dramas, but so far, this doesn't seem to be any better or any worse than Criminal Minds or Ghost Whisperer (of which I've seen bits and pieces of over the past month, since my family keeps the TV tuned to ION).

Marissa

Juanita you stay out of this! She said Kerry was trying too hard IE overacting and there was none of that in the performance! I'm an actress I know overacting when I see it and Kerry did a great job! There was tons of criticism about her casting you must have turned a blind eye to all the hate before the show aired. And how can you call me a child when you cursing, insulting me and getting all hype. Girl go sit down somewhere and mind your business —–>

Marissa

Nicole girl what are you talking about? Kerry didn't try too hard. She was good in the first episode and even better in the next one. So many people were expecting and waiting for her to fail and now you're all grasping at straws because she didn't. She portrayed a no-nonsense, cut throat business woman perfectly! Not everyone can fit into Shonda's universe, this was a role unlike any other Kerry has played before and she did a great job!!!

Scandalised

I like the concept, and I like the execution somewhat but I really wish they'd talk a little slower. Especially Columbus Short. Normal people – no matter how good they are at their jobs – don't talk that fast!

Nadine

Can we also mention that the show has gotten solid reviews nationally and that comments on the Internet should not be seen as co-equal?

robin

I love this show I can't wait for episode 3 because (spoiler) Gideon, the reporter from the end of episode 2 is about to raise hell and I want to see how Olivia handles this.

Nicole

I saw episode 1 and I had some of the same concerns, Tambay. I was also concerned that there were too many cliche story lines. And I didn't like the fact that she was/is romantically involved with the POTUS. That was a little too convenient for me. I'm wondering how her relationship with the Prez will affect how she does business in DC? I guess the blanks will be filled in later.

Also, I thought Kerry tried too hard to be "tough". To show that Olivia is no nonsense. They used too many words instead of letting it show in how Olivia handled things and carried herself. "She's the best." "My gut is never wrong."(which isn't true because it was wrong about the President…but I digress)

I'm willing to give the show another chance. We'll see what happens.

And I'll be glad when the day comes and a show with a black lead can fail and it not be used as and argument against having other shows with black leads. One day…one day.

Nadine

Well.. just check out the hulu boards. Mostly White females freaking out…and can someone on S&A please post http://www.hulu.com/watch/346082/scandal-meet-the-women-of-scandal#s-p1-sr-i1 where Judy Smith, Shonda and Kerry give more background to the show…

Marissa

@THE BLACK POLICE: Nikki doesn't allow racism or extreme hate posts so they were likely deleted.

@ Tambay: thanks for your review. I agree with a lot of ur points. I'm not familiar with Shonda's past work so the rapid-fire dialogue (especially in the opening scene) was a bit much. I, unlike most, never had doubts about Ms. Washington's suitability as I'm familiar with most of her work and know she's got the presence and talent for the role. I've read some people wanting an older actress with experience in these position of power parts (like Sanaa Lathan or Angela Bassett) but I think going with a fresh face and an underused talent was the better choice here.

Re: ratings: Even more important than the ratings for the opener are the numbers for the follow up because it indicates how well received and how much WOM on either end played into things.
It seems to have good reception from what I've noticed so I think it will be in good shape.

TR

Thank you, Tambay! I had the same thoughts after watching episode 1, about how "tidy" everything was, and how the characters seemed to have total control over their whole sphere. *Yawn* How boring! And as far as the white-start up character, I started to wonder, Ok, is she just a device to explain things, or is she the real protagonist here, the way in "Entourage," the story was more about E, than about Vince. Hopefully not, but only time will tell.

Vivia

I've enjoyed what I've seen thus far. I want to back as much of Shonda's work as possible. The story line had a few shockers that were cool. I'm a little uneasy about them posting the 2nd episode before its air date.
I'm also not really feeling the super fast lingo, but thank goodness for DVR FF & RW. I do wish the president was a little more attractive but hey maybe he'll grown on me, maybe not.

The Black Police

Tambay, can you please direct me to where these racist comments are? I didn't see any on DEADLINE so I assume they are somewhere else.

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