In tonight’s mid-season return episode (titled “Run”) after the holiday break, details of Olivia’s abduction from her own home are seen from her point of view. To get you all caught up, here’s a refresher of last year’s winter finale, which aired on November 20th, in an episode titled “Where the Sun Don’t Shine.”
Jake and Fitz are still at each other’s throats and Papa Pope is in the wind. Fitz has sent all of his man power after Rowan, but to no avail. Instead of finding Big Pappa, they find Olivia’s Mama who Rowan had said he killed. (We all know that he didn’t kill her, apparently he’s obsessed with her, visiting her every day.)
Mama Pope seems crazed and deranged as usual. Either she’s lost her mind from living in that death hole for so long, or she actually doesn’t think that Liv is on to her and her conniving ways. But oh, Olivia is most certainly on. She orders her boys to charge her mother with murder, terrorism and treason, and then she tells them to hunt down her father and kill him. Clearly someone is not trying to play nicely with her makers.
Liv isn’t the only one whose world is crumbling. Huck and Quinn go after Javi after he witnesses them kill Dan Kubiak. The boy is obviously traumatized, and Huck’s ex-wife is enraged that Huck has been in contact with the boy after she explicitly told him to leave them alone. It’s not looking like Huck is ever going to have a relationship with his child; perhaps he should have listened to Liv when she tried to reason with him. (Shonda just let Huck be great.)
Back at 1600 Pennsylvania Fitz is trying to figure out what to do about Angola. He wants retaliate for the attack because doesn’t want to seem weak. However, Fitz really doesn’t have the heart for a war.
After cleaning up the mess, Quinn tells Liv about the twisted triangle of Kubiak, Lizzie Bear and VP Andrew Nichols (I really miss Sally Langston, she was a terrifying delight). Liv has barely hung up the phone when Lizzie marches her self-righteous self into OPA to tell Liv she knows was Cyrus Beene bugging her phone, and not the virus that Liv told her it was. Ms. Girl is not happy that she’s been lied to, and she basically lets a Liv know that she will destroying Cyrus.
Liv rushes off to the White House to tell Cyrus that ish is gonna hit the fan, but it’s already much too late. Liv can barely finish her sentence when Abby rushes in saying The Times has been asking her about sexy pictures with Cyrus in them.
On the defensive, Liv briefs the President’s inner circle about Cyrus and Male Escort Michael. She also lets it be known that VP Andrew is screwing Lizzie; tragically poor Mellie is caught surprise. (She really thought her and Blandrew had a sweet thing…smh.)
The press is having a field day, a Republic Chief of Staff is having a tawdry affair with a hooker “Chief of Staffs” one headline reads. At first the White House tries to stall, but then David Rosen gets wind of what’s happening which means congressional hearing and resignations. (Why must David always be the white hat wearing tattle tell? He has got to start wearing more black.)
Basically all of this is unacceptable. We all know we can’t have Fitz in the White House without Cyrus, and I suppose Fitz realizes this as well because he tells Liv to fight for Cyrus.
Liv’s big plan… “Pretty Woman: 2014 edition”, she wants Michael and Cyrus to get married. (Basically Cyrus would “own” Michael as opposed to “renting” him. There are all types of gag orders, prenups and contracts at play.) Michael says yes (obviously he’s set for life, the man gets something like a million a year for 3 years.) Cyrus however is not here for it. He calls it “cruel and unfair.” (I’m not sure why he’s pissed at Michael, he knew he was for sale so what did he expect.)
Jake has finally been let out of his cage and he’s in the streets trying to track down Rowan. He can’t seem to figure out how their failed capture of commanded went wrong. But, Jake isn’t the only one on the hunt, someone is after him as well.
Jake figures out that Rowan is trying to tie up loose ends, which means that he’s killing everyone that was every involved in B613. Quinn, Huck and Charlie are all at risk. Quinn tries to be nice and warn Charlie, which results in a hot and heavy tumble in the sheets. (I really don’t see it for Charlie and Quinn is so disturbing.)
While Quinn is getting her groove back, Huck discovers that the only time Lizzie, Kubiak and Andrew had met up previously was the night Caitlyn was murdered at her father Jeremy Winslow’s law firm. (I’m really enjoying this case being woven throughout the season, I wasn’t convinced at worst but, it’s turned out to be a really nice slow burn.)
Determined to find out why the group decided to meet that night, Quinn uses Kubiak’s nasty dead finger to access the law firm.
Concerned Rowan will attempt to kill her, Jake tries to give Liv a gun for protection. Liv resists saying, “My father wouldn’t kill me.” To which Jake responds, “I’m sure he thinks the same about you.” (Liv and Rowan’s relationship is beyond sick, I can’t even begin to try and understand it) Jake tries to offer her an out, Turks and Caicos is only a plane ride away. But Liv done, (if you didn’t notice, she’s wearing black.) She responds, “The sun went down a long time ago and its not coming back up.” (Does that mean she and Jake are over?!! Has she chosen Fitz?)
As Liv is slipping into the depths of despair, Lizzie Bear and Useless Andrew are in the VP’s office sucking face. They don’t realize that Kubiak is dead. Meanwhile, everyone on earth is calling for Cyrus’ resignation. Cyrus feels like it’s time for him to bow out as well. He’s become a “joke and a punchline.” He wants Fitz to publicly condemn him and build the Grant Administration back up.
(Cyrus could never leave the White House!! What is he going to do?!! Is he going to learn how to plait hair?)
David Rosen, (who is delighted that he can finally be put to work) is on a warpath. He’s subpoenaed Abby, trying to figure out if she knew about Cyrus’ affair. Instead, he finds out some information he didn’t want to know. Apparently Abby was with Leo Bergen on the night in question. David was not too pleased to hear that. (He should have minded his own business.)
Back in the land of yuck, Quinn and Charlie have resumed their sexual relationship. Their happy time is short-lived however, because Quinn discovers that Charlie was sent (presumably by Rowan) to kill her. Enraged, Quinn proceeds to kick Charlie’s butt, he returns the favor.
At OPA, Huck is helping Jake track Rowan down. (Ya’ll know Rowan can’t be reached, so why even try.) While Jake is off following some safe house lead, Rowan is sitting up in Liv’s apartment, gun in hand talking about sentimentality. Apparently he will not be going quietly. Rowan knows that Liv wants him dead. Apparently, Liv doesn’t care that her father knows she’s sent her men to kill him. (I was scared for her though.) She tells him. “You’re a sick, lonely man who only knows how to lie and call it love.” HE tells her she’s disgraced him by sending in her “klan of good ole boys” to him. (Whew, we can always count on Shonda for a word.)
Rowan goes on to tell Liv, “There would be no Olivia Pope if it wasn’t for me.” He is pissed and it’s terrifying. He tells her she’s the one isn’t right. As they go back and forth at one another until it becomes apparent that they are looking into a mirror. (Are they the same person?)
In the middle of Rowan’s rant (whilst I was clutching my pearls) he lets go of his gun, and Liv picks it up, turns it on him and pulls the trigger. …… Trouble is, the gun was never loaded.
Rowan is disgusted and Liv is terrified…and quite frankly so am I. He leaves her with this tidbit, “No matter how hard you try to deny it, you will miss me when I’m gone.”
Quinn and Charlie finally tire from beating the crap out of each other. They want to try and have a friendship, but Quinn doesn’t forgive Charlie for ruining Huck’s life. (Remember Charlie is the one who told Command that Huck had a family, that’s why he got thrown in the hole and lost everything.) But Charlie wants him some Quinn and he has just the leverage to get what he wants. Apparently he’s the one who stole the B613 files from the storage unit, and replaced them with blanks. Desperate for his ex-wife to know the truth, Huck takes the B613 files to her and begs her to read them.
At the Pentagon Mama Pope is looking haggard and weary. Liv knows Maya knows something about Rowan’s plan and she wants to know what it is. Maya says as calm as a cucumber, “Girl, you need to move on.” (Maybe Liv is the crazy one.) Maya says, “He ruined you.” Liv begins to tear up and for a momement, I think Maya will try and comfort her. How wrong I was! Maya shouts, “Cry me a river Livy, whatever!” That right there was the creepiest thing that ever occurred on “Scandal.”
Liv pulls herself together and goes to see about poor jobless Cyrus, whose apparently running off to Europe. Liv is not having his cowardice and she tells him to get his ish together. She yells at him a bit and he decides to go through with his sham marriage to Male Escort Michael. He tells Fitz, “I’m marrying a whore, at least I know what I’m paying for. (Perhaps Michael will be the one learning how to plait.)
Irritated that Fitzy doesn’t want to go to war with Angola, Lizzie she runs into Mellie’s office to try and manipulate her again. However, Mellie is on to her foolery and she’s let’s Lizzie know she is also aware that she’s been sleeping with Andrew. Mellie proceeds to tell her what it is, and put the woman out of her office. (Remember, Mellie is nothing nice to mess with when she is scorned. Lizzie should watch her back.)
Finally getting some work done, Quinn discovers that Jeremy Winslow’s law firmed managed a West Angola’s company’s American assets. It seems that Andrew knew the bomb would blow up all along. And yet, Huck and Quinn still can’t figure out where Liv fits in to this game of puzzles and lies.
Liv has lost it, she’d thought she’d found a place again working with Fitz and Cyrus in the White House, but that was temporary. Abby has already found her footing there. She resolves to ignore all of her problems and drink, dance and eat. Jake goes to her apartment and finds her listening to Stevie Wonder and ignoring the fact that her world has come crashing down.
Giving up on trying to make her discuss Rowan, Jake tells her he loves her. In response, she tells Jake she is choosing herself, not him or Fitz. Olivia tells him, “You can dance with me or you can get off my dance floor.”
Jake decides to dance, and all seems to be ok at least for the moment.
However, as we’ve come to learn in Shondaland, calm and quiet are never a good sign.
At the White House, VP Andrew enters the Oval Office to have little chat with Fitz. He’s pissed about the lack of war in Angola. He makes it be known that he expected as much, he knows Fitz could care less about him, but he does know that there is one person on earth that Fitz would run to hell and back for.
At Liv’s Jake has gone into the bedroom to retrieve some blankets and pillows for their evening frolic. By the time he returns to the living room, Liv is gone. All that is left is a wine glass and a red stain on her florescent beige couch.
The Winter Finale was insane. I loved the slow burn of it all, I felt nervous the whole time because I knew something was off, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. How did you will about it, will you be returning to it in January? In the meantime, I have so many questions.
- Does Papa Pope have anything to do with Liv’s disappearance? If not then she’s out of luck because I’m pretty sure he disowned her.
- Do you think Huck’s ex-wife will embrace him after reading the files? I still don’t see her letting him see her child.
- How long can Cyrus and Male Escort Michael’s marriage really last? Cyrus is never going to forgive the man for setting him up, it shall be miserable. (On the bright side perhaps poor Ella will finally get some attention.)
- How long do you think it will take for Maya to break free?
- Where is Rowan going? I’m convinced he will try and kill both Jake and Fitz. Come to think of it, he probable has something to do with Liv’s disappearance.
- Is Mellie going to destroy Andrew? I hope so it would be a delight to watch.
- Are Quinn and Charlie actually going to be a thing? Because gross.
- Will Liv ever choose between Jake and Fitz? I really need a decision by the season finale.
- Is David going to man up and get Abby back now that he knows she’s not pining after him? He’s such a wimp.
- Where do you see this season going? Every time I think I have a handle on it, I am proven incorrect.
New episodes of “Scandal” return tonight, Thursday, January 29th on ABC. Watch a promo below:
Aramide A Tinubu has her Master’s in Film Studies from Columbia University. She wrote her thesis on Black Girlhood and Parental Loss in Contemporary Black American Cinema. She’s a Black Cinema geek and blogger. You can read her blog at: www.chocolategirlinthecity.co or tweet her @midnightrami