We gave it a B+
Maya, Maya, Maya.
This whole finale is about mothers, in a sense. Maya trying to protect her daughter. Quinn — well, let’s not ruin that for you quite yet. And of course, there’s Luna. Luna trying to protect her children from the spotlight and the dangers of being presidential children. Luna, trying to use the death of her husband to push a nation forward. Luna, trying to, in a sense, be the mother of America. But let’s start with Maya. That’s the best place to start.
They thought she was gone, but then again, is trouble ever gone in this town? Rowan has sent Jake out into the field to take out Maya, but of course she isn’t there. She’s Maya Lewis. But they do discover that she has the plans for Mellie’s inauguration parade route, so it appears that Mellie is already being targeted. Mellie takes it like a champ, announcing that everyone in Olivia’s family has wanted her dead at one point or another. OH, MELLIE.
Olivia tells Mellie that maybe they should have her swearing-in behind closed doors since we’ve already nixed one PEOTUS this election. Quinn jumps on the case as the new head of OPA, and the team can’t help but notice that she’s working on making the office home. It’s wonderful seeing Quinn get her due. She’s been keeping this team together for more than a minute.
Busy with some sexy time, Maya is in a hotel room with a Secret Service agent, but Jake shows up and is able to nab Maya. It’s almost too easy. She tries to get a guard to help her, but the guard stays quiet, leading us to an amazing Maya line: “So much for Black Girl Magic.” This woman is too much. She says that this is still Rowan, and he’s putting Olivia in jeopardy by locking her up. Who knows what the truth is anymore.
Regardless, Maya in chains deserves her own spin-off. Locked in chains, she gives what could become an iconic speech (it’s a night for incredible Shonda speeches) about being a black woman and how it’s entirely thankless. Guys, it’s the kind of stuff Emmy nominations are made of.
Olivia leaves her mother’s side and goes to OPA to give Quinn intel on the case because she believes her mom has hired someone to kill Mellie, no matter what Maya says. In her cell, Maya is in peak crazy form, but with those speeches, it’s hard to tell who is crazy these days. She launches into a story about their time as a family. Maya pulls herself up on the table and starts screaming, “Don’t you remember?!” It’s a lot. Rowan joins her in her cell, and these acting powerhouses go head to head. These two accuse each other of putting Olivia in jeopardy, and it’s the worst mommy and daddy fight of all time because it’s not just a marriage at stake. It’s also… you know, America. But they find common ground, even after Rowan’s talk about his past love. They find that common ground over Olivia and that vacation they spent together so long ago.
That leads us back to OPA, where Quinn is bringing Abby in for some questioning. She got information on the bank accounts that might be used to pay off Mellie’s would-be assassin. Quinn isn’t there for Abby’s apologies… just her papers. But Abby confesses that she just wants to help, and Quinn invites her back in because this crew, y’all. Off a cliff together, full speed. Elsewhere, Olivia goes to visit Rowan, who is having some special bonding time with his dino skeleton. He says he just needs some time with her because he couldn’t let them take her, and it’s hard to tell if he means the skeleton or Maya. It’s a metaphor! A double entendre! All Maya is at this point is just a skeleton of the woman he used to love. It’s deep.
(Recap continues on page 2.)