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‘Scandal’ Recap: ‘Inside the Bubble’


Not bad, that’s what I’m going with this week’s episode.  Is Scandal finally starting to pull it together and get its mojo back? I hope so. Well, I’m guardedly optimistic. If I’ve learned anything watching a Shondaland show, it’s that you have to be very very cautious with your feelings as the bottom will drop out just when you feel safe. The week’s Scandal shows us that Olivia Pope isn’t so well adjusted to being home, F@&$ It Mellie is still around and trying to claw her way out of this overwhelming grief, and Fitz just needs one thing to go right in his life. Also, Quinn went missing and no one noticed for over twenty four hours. Oop.

 Olivia Pope is back to Olivia Pope-ing

Olivia is called by her, and Abby’s (?!) old law school classmate and friend, Katherine Winslow, when her daughter, Caitlin, goes missing after a fight “over college.” Right. As if it would ever be that simple. The funny part of their reminiscing was Olivia shutting down Katherine when she brings up “A night on the town with Olivia Pope,” in front of Huck and Quinn. Things you do in your 20’s should remain there, as they usually involve poor life choices and tequila, or probably champagne in Olivia’s case. I’m not gonna lie though, I do want to know all about the men with whom Olivia made these poor life choices. Because I’m nosy.

Of course, OPA takes the case and learns that Katherine was banging Caitlin’s boyfriend, and Caitlin figured it out as well. More importantly, she’s about to spill the tea to her father. Nothing like keeping it all in the family, right? By the time all this unravels, however, Olivia has already sent Katherine to collect her daughter at the hotel in which she’s been hiding. One small problem, Caitlin is dead. Olivia Pope FINALLY lets her temper loose and throws her friend around demanding to know what Katherine did to her daughter.

Let’s discuss the growing chasm between Olivia and Abby for a minute because THAT’S where the drama is about to go down.  Notice the tone of Olivia saying “You said Katherine was looking for me, so let’s just stay out of each other’s jobs.” It’s sub-zero arctic. Abby has been the only one to call out Olivia on her bs from the beginning, she’s no longer a gladiator, and she’s taken over Olivia’s job at the White House. Whether she admits it or not, Olivia is pissed that Abby has moved on and gets to work in the one place she wants to be and can’t be, the White House. This is an apparent old friendship that is facing the test of people changing and growing. It’s gets especially ugly when it’s your best friend, so I’m definitely ready to see the train wreck that these two women are headed for.

 Mellie is trying to heal

Mellie becomes fixed on a case of a woman accused of pushing her husband off a cliff, and starts to dust off her investigating/lawyering skills to prove the woman didn’t do it. The only problem is she invests all this time and effort in it, and the actual investigation breaks up right as she gives this big presentation to all the bigwigs in Washington. It’s an awkward turtle moment, but Abby steps up and manages to save some face for Mellie by pulling her out for an “emergency meeting.” See, Abby can be helpful if you address her by her real name. I’m looking at you, Fitzgerald Grant.

Fitz is just trying to get one thing to go right

And that’s getting the gun control bill passed and signed into law. He gets David Rosen on the case and while he makes a passioned case to the 4th circuit court where the bill is being challenged, it appears that he is going to lose. It’s nothing new for David Rosen (let’s be real), but this time it’s for his boss, a man who is still grieving for a dead son and just needs a win in anything to mean something again. All the feels when Fitz says, “If I don’t get to be some soccer dad in Vermont, then I need this all to have a point. I need some jerk to not be able to buy an AK-47 and shoot up a school!”

David takes off the white hat and dons a dark gray one to blackmail the judge deciding the fate of this bill and it works. The White House wins, David Rosen is the hero inside the bubble of power, but the judge ends up committing suicide. The white hat isn’t so easy, is it, David?

In other news, Fitz finally calls Abby by her name when he realizes how good she’s been to Mellie during her grieving AND that she’s his way of getting news on Olivia. Their growing platonic relationship is refreshing because it’s Abby coming into her own, so hopefully she’ll stop holding back her opinions and push back at Fitz when he’s wrong. Also, it’s going to piss Olivia off even more at the both of them, so bring on those fireworks.

Jake poked the bear and is going to die

In his loads of free time, Jake has figured out that Rowan is responsible for Harrison’s death. Why this isn’t Huck and Quinn figuring it out, I’ll never understand, but I digress. He pretty much pimps Quinn out to Charlie for 24 hours in a locked garage to get Charlie to reveal all the details of the murder. Charlie and Quinn go back and forth fighting, but I tuned out because it’s Quinn. (Huck and Olivia didn’t even realize she was missing, so I’m not alone.) After hearing all the info Charlie spills, Jake finally agrees to go to the family dinner that Olivia has been asking/begging him to go to.

Side note – Olivia is super pissed off that Jake initially refuses to go to dinner with her at her father’s house and exclaims “I’m done!”  THIS the final straw for her? Jake refusing to go to dinner? Not the concussion he gave her, or the creepy planted cameras in her house, or the choking incident in her office? Oh. Ok. Also, did you notice that she ping ponged right over to Jake’s after her confrontation with Abby? Some things never change.

Back to the dinner at Rowan’s house, Olivia steps out to take a phone call and Jake reveals every single thing he knows about Rowan’s involvement in Harrison’s death to Rowan. And he tells Rowan to shut up in his own house. This man is going to die and I’m gonna say “I told you so.” Rowan murdered Fitz’s son for his comments about how Olivia tastes. Jake thinks he’s going to saunter in and take down Command by running his mouth. It’s going to end well, because Jake is the kid on the playground who always brags about how good he is a dodgeball & has rubber burn on his face in round one.

Cyrus has a very expensive date

Cyrus finally succumbs to the hotness of Michael, the sex worker, for the bargain price of $2500 and Elizabeth couldn’t be happier. Her plan to get the gun control bill stalled is gaining ground as Cyrus keeps dropping his boxers because blackmail is the fastest way to a win.

Like I said, it was a solid episode mainly because of the snippets we’re learning about Olivia. Her past with Abby, and her current unhappiness with life in general. It still feels like I’m waiting for an explosion to happen and the show to get back it’s mojo, but maybe that’s the point. Maybe Olivia wandering in circles after her return until she deals with Fitz is what we’re supposed to be feeling overall. Next week it appears the showdown with Ftiz happens and it’s gonna go down. These two need to get it all out there and if it gets down and dirty, so be it.  There’s some words that need to be said on both sides and if clothes happen to come off, I wouldn’t be mad.

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.

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