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Scandal recap: This Isn't Personal

Olivia takes on a new case, and Fitz continues to deal with the hostage crisis and mole situation

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Scandal Recap
Danny Feld/ABC


TV Show
Drama, Thriller
run date:
Kerry Washington, Tony Goldwyn, Bellamy Young
Current Status:
In Season

So, Captain Jake Ballard is not such a creep after all. He’s just doing the President’s bidding. This is the first good thing to happen to Olivia in a while! Of course she’s still not exactly what we would call “aware” of the fact that Captain Ballard is spying on her. Like everything on Scandal it’s complicated and not ideal, but at least it’s not as bad as we thought? Or, this is nuts and video surveillance is just wrong and creepy and invasive no matter what the circumstance.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

With “Boom Goes the Dynamite” we’re officially in the second half, and second arc of Season 2. Scandal’s new focus is the mole in the White House, and the possible connection to Wendy — the info-for-hire dead woman David Rosen woke up next to last week. It’s not exactly a fresh start, though. The old wounds and consequences of everything that went down in the first 13 are still there to haunt our leads. Overall, it feels like we’re easing back into this new arc nicely, mainly because it’s not too urgent yet (Scandal is not amateurish enough to play all its cards at once). It’s exciting to be back in a new mystery unraveling in real-time. And as a little treat, we’ve got ourselves a new scandal of the week with none other than Sam Page (Joan’s awful ex-husband on Mad Men).

At the White House, things are tense. Fitz is still drinking and staying up nights worrying about the hostages, Mellie is using Cyrus to get closer to Fitz, and Cyrus is anxious and desperate to find a way to get his power back. But Fitz takes a break to check in with his old pal Captain Jake Ballard, who, as mentioned before, he’s tasked with keeping an eye on Olivia. Apparently the surveillance has been elevated too — it used to just be audio, now it’s video — and Jake is just doing as he’s told. When pressed, Fitz is evasive with details and motives, telling Jake that Olivia just can’t be trusted. What do we believe? Is Fitz merely keeping an obsessive eye on his former mistress? Or was his confidence so shaken in Olivia post-Defiance that he’s nervous what she’ll do? Sometimes, Fitz just seems like an incredibly powerful, petulant child, while Olivia has handled everything with grace and decorum.

Meanwhile, David Rosen believes he’s being followed. Dodging conviction or suspicion around a murder is one thing. Living with it is quite another, especially when you steal the flash drive of classified information that said victim was murdered for. So, the unluckiest guy on Scandal is getting a little paranoid about what he’s gotten himself into. Olivia Pope and her team seem to be just as nervous for David, and conclude that it all comes back to Albatross — the mole from whom Wendy took the information. On Olivia’s half date (champagne at the Jefferson Memorial, swoon!) Jake tells her that Albatross is just an intelligence community myth. But what better cover to use than one everyone already assumes isn’t real?

NEXT: Get a fake wife, or come out of the closet?