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‘Scandal’ Review: ‘No Sun on the Horizon’

Eric McCandless/ABC

Scandal continued with its ‘bat outta hell’ pace to reveal that Olivia is barely hanging on to her own sanity, while other people literally cannot hold onto their own heads. Just another typical day in Washington DC. In “No Sun on the Horizon,” Jake realizes what being head of B613 actually means, Olivia tries to put out fires all over DC, and Sally Langston shows she’s a few fries short of a Happy Meal.

That said, let’s get to the major happenings of last night:

1. Olivia Pope, is that you?

Olivia finally learns the truth about Daniel Douglas’ death, albeit light years behind everyone else, but at least now she knows. Still reeling from her confrontation of Cyrus’s role in this and semi-meltdown with her crazy maniacal laugh, she ping pongs to Jake’s apartment seeking some kind of normalcy. Not a romantic build up, but they appear to get down and dirty in Jake’s apartment after quite a bit of wine (on her part). More importantly, Jake asks Olivia to save him from B613 and possibly run away with him and she shuts him down from all this talk by taking him to bed. While a temporary solution, it keeps Olivia from going off the deep end right at that moment.

Later on, Jake asks her to “stand in the sun” with him, and then promptly realizes that she’s already chosen Fitz. Basically, this chapter of the triangle ended the same way as the previous go round. Not surprising because this merry-go-round never felt any different. Jake and Olivia look great together on paper and consequently they should work as a couple, but they just don’t. Their relationship has never carried the same volume of emotion as watching Olivia interact with Fitz. These feelings lead Olivia to be completely transparent with Fitz and reveal all the details of the murder and cover up of Daniel Douglas’ death to him. It was baby steps, but steps in the right direction of Olivia holding up her end of the bargain to be 100 percent honest with Fitz this time around during the campaign. There’s the old Olivia taking control, ever so slight as it is.

2. Fitz has to grow up

That said, Fitz and Olivia are still in this weird purgatory of their relationship, so much so that every interaction just seems like one wrong word is going to be the spark setting off the powder keg for round 2933729 of fighting. Consequently, it was nice to see Fitz having his eyes opened to everything Olivia faces as a member of his inner circle. Olivia carries the weight of the world on her shoulders, most of the time for Fitz so he can be “above it all.” She finally makes a conscious effort to show him how ugly the world of politics actually is and her role in the center of this underworld.

It’s kind of a major relationship milestone for these two idiots because Olivia is letting him see her not-so-white-hat side while Fitz is being brought down to reality because let’s be real, Fitz is pretty, and a brilliant thinker, and an idealist who believes good triumphs over evil. All of these qualities are perfect for college student body president, not the leader of the free world. At some point, he has come down from the ivory tower and get his hands dirty in his own life…and Olivia needs to let him.

It is interesting to note that while Fitz initially acts like a jerk and refuses to throw the debate like Olivia asks, he does so in the end because he knows she’s right. Just like he knows deep down she’s right about Vermont. They don’t have the luxury of planning for this great love, marriage, and babies. They have each other in the present and they have working together for a common goal one day at a time. And that’s ok, because at least this time they’re being honest.

3. Crazy looks good on Sally

Sally is literally unraveling in front of Leo’s eyes, and her desperation to confess her sin is ruining her chances of running for president before she actually starts campaigning. It’s important to note her desperation is not because she feels guilty over murdering her husband. Nope, she’s upset that God is longer speaking to her, so confessing her sin will please him and he’ll start speaking directly to her again. Say what now? They have meds for this. She now needs to thank Fitz every day for the rest of her life for saving her from the kill shot Tom was about to take at the debate. Yes, Tom was about put B613 ahead of the Oval yet again. Sigh.

 4. Cyrus finally apologizes for being a sociopath

Cyrus is thisclose to going to jail for his part in the murder cover-up, so naturally he tries to have Charlie kill Sally before she can talk, but Jake’s moratorium on all freelance jobs gets in the way. Begging Jake to step in and do something doesn’t even help Cyrus out because Jake just ends up reading him like a book in the library.

In the end, Sally pulls it together and doesn’t reveal her crime or Cyrus’ role, but James and David Rosen continue to close in on proving what Sally, Cyrus and Mellie did.  Just by luck, Cyrus stumbles across the bug planted in his office, and figures out that James is Publius, the person leaking info to the reporter. Somehow, James avoids being murdered in his sleep by Cyrus and actually gets an apology from Cy for pimping him out to Daniel Douglas and setting this whole thing in motion.

 5. Jake finds himself comfortable in the shade

As James meets David Rosen to back out of their deal, someone puts a couple of bullets in the heads of the reporters also present at the meeting. So far, it appears Jake is the shooter, and with all the feelings he’s got going on, you can’t blame him for having a bad day. Hell, he already let Quinn loose to steal the Publius file from Olivia’s office safe, so why not just go for broke and kill James and David Rosen to get rid of the whole issue?

On the flip side, what if he just made it look like he was a raging murderer to get David Rosen and James to back off? Honestly, there are 3942 ways this could turn out. Side note: Quinn deserves to lose a few more teeth, preferably when Olivia takes her heels off and beats Quinn with them.

Overall, this episode remained a solid follow up to last week’s episode. The set up for the longer arc stories involving the is falling into place and should only get bigger as we draw closer to the season finale.

Kate Burton is fabulous as Sally and I was personally thrilled they didn’t kill her off just yet. Mellie impersonating Sally at Fitz’s practice debate was hilarious and spot on AND the sparks coming from Mellie and Andrew made me think of Fitz and Olivia from the first campaign. They have “it” as a couple on this show.

That said, it’s still not perfect. The triangle between Jake/Olivia/Fitz is a fail for me because I don’t see it as a fair one. Jake and Olivia do not create the tension/passion/angst that keep you on the edge of your seat. My biggest issue this week, however, was the reveal of Jake being the shooter.

Since ABC built this up as another “game changer,” I was expecting BIG things. Once you’ve done a surprise attempted presidential assignation, wrist chewing to break out of a prison, and teeth removal with pliers, you have to go big or go home. To me, Jake becoming a murderer (if he really is) is par for course. He’s now head of B613, of course he’s going to kill people “for the good of the republic.” Talk to me when he pulls a gun on Olivia in front of Fitz, because that’s when I need to get the popcorn and wine ready.

About the author

Angela Romack

Angela Romack is writes what you’re thinking about when it comes to your favorite TV shows. If you don’t agree, that's fine. She's okay with being right. Follow her on Twitter at @AngelaMRomack.

  • iheartwilson

    Jake – It was my assumption that Jake was already a part of B613 and most likely has killed people in the past. He’s not as messed up as Huck, but Huck has done more than shoot people. He tortured people as did the people he met with at OPA who all drew guns on each other eons ago.

    With Jake as the leader of B613 now, I assumed wrongly that he would just do the ordering rather than the killing. So what surprised me most was that he showed his face to James and David. There are many reasons that either man could have been shot. Maybe no one was shot. But this is a pivotal moment in the show; it’s a game changer. Whoever lives, his life (or their lives) will forever change.

    Jake was talking to someone throughout the show. Someone is probably being initiated into B613. Having eyes in the district attorney’s office (David) would be good. Having additional eyes on Cyrus’ life (James) would be good, too.

    Whoever did or didn’t get shot, I’m just glad it was the season finale. Waiting one week is torture enough!