We gave it a B+
This darkness. This privilege. This crispy critter of a plane. Scandal is rolling into its big goodbye, and we’re no closer to getting a redeemable Olivia than we were at the beginning of season 6. And even when it seems like she may be moving toward the light, she pulls away. Can this village of good guys bring her back, or will we see her fall into this craziness forever? Let’s discuss.
We pick up exactly where we left off. Olivia has ex-Command (because let’s be honest, he is not her dad right here) sitting on a stool as she explains privilege and how he doesn’t have it. You have to look at this privilege conversation in a larger context: The black woman who has to do twice as much to get half the credit is now standing deep in the darkness, telling the former Command that he has no privileges. If that’s not enough to point out how far she’s gone, I’m not sure what is. She tells him he does need to deliver a message. The message she wants to send to Fitz is to go home. And Rowan delivers it.
Back in the Oval, Mellie is dealing with that Bashran issue and insisting that President Rashad be restored to power. And new-Sally-Langston-elect Curtis Pryce is tearing her up for it. Even President Rashad is like, “Hey, y’all, is that a good decision?” but Mellie tells him to stay, and it’s questionable. It’s hard to tell how much is personal and how much is presidential here. But in the meantime, they pull his niece from Dartmouth (you know, where Shonda and Meredith went). And for now, she’s just kind of stuck with Quinn and Charlie.
Olivia and Jake come to a pretty clean conclusion on Bashran. (Running the country as a soulless crazy woman? Well, Olivia is thriving.) But when she shows up to the Oval ready to solve international disputes, Fitz has already been chatting with Mellie, who is not pleased. When Liv asks what he told her, Fitz says, “Everything.”
Now let’s take a moment to reflect: None of these people are good. If we think that any of these crazies are fully redeemable, then Lord help our souls. But it’s nice to see Mellie and Fitz growing. Both of them. Because I have a feeling, and don’t quote me, it’s going to take an army of people mostly standing in the sun to pull Olivia back into it.
In the Oval, Mellie is freaking out because she knows that Olivia went and killed Luna Vargas like a crazy person. Olivia says that it’s what needed to be done, but Mellie isn’t about that. She shouts, “SHUT IT DOWN.” Olivia shows her teeth in that Olivia way — you know, when she’s both disgusted and uncomfortable — but Mellie isn’t backing down. Hell, she doubles down and insists, “Now get me my war.” Um, okay.
Olivia, in rage mode, heads to visit Rowan, who’s pretty enraged himself since Annie the Dinosaur Skeleton was taken away. She demands to know why he couldn’t do his job, but that only leads Rowan to make his own demands…well, it’s just one: “I WANT MY BONES.” But Olivia isn’t one to budge, simply saying, “No bones for you.” And you can see he’s pretty devastated.
Olivia is kind of gone at this point, and Rowan is not the only one who thinks so. When Fitz sits down with Jake, Jake quickly concludes Olivia is a lost cause. Fitz insists that there’s no way that Jake can believe that, but it appears that he does. But Good Guy Fitz with the gun and the Vermont house and the time to spare isn’t ready to let Liv go. With his good and bad qualities, he might be the only one able to save her.
Olivia has her own agenda in bed with Pryce though, giving him the opportunity to sit across from President Rashad to help promote peace, which is terrifying because cable news has way too much power, man. But if anything is stronger than cable news, it’s Olivia Pope, who convinces Pryce to take Rashad in. But it’s still not enough to convince Mellie to forgive Olivia for the monstrous things she’s done. And that’s only half the battle; America needs a war with Bashran to really turn this around, which is what Cyrus has been doing — convincing Congress to go to war. He’s also been trying to teach Glackland about politics, but it seems like Glackland isn’t as interested in that as he is in Cyrus. Glackland is on his phone while Cyrus tries to pull strings. He’s just texting, right?
Well, I’m a man who isn’t so big that he can’t admit when he’s wrong. While Cyrus is sitting there trying to convince senators to vote for war, Glackland is analyzing it all — the war, that is. He does it with all of the products he’s trying to sell, and this war is not a good product. So Cyrus goes to Olivia’s office to tell her that he’s not going to vote for the war if it comes down to a tie.
Olivia asks him what he wants. Cyrus tells her that he doesn’t want anything, so she says that it will be war for him if he doesn’t vote for one. And that’s when Cyrus peeks into the light a little bit himself. He tells Liv that she can release her B613 people on him, but then what? What’s the end game? And it’s not a hateful or Scandal-y speech. It’s just honest. When that doesn’t work, she goes to Fitz again, but he’s not budging because no one’s going to let her burn this White Hat without a fight. (Recap continues on page 2)