Scandal recap: 'Mama Said Knock You Out'
Harrison gets played, while Olivia cleans up yet another mess
Hey, remember Fitz and Mellie’s kids? Well, probably not, because while Jerry and Karen have been mentioned in past episodes, this is our first interaction with the duo. And it isn’t exactly one big happy family when they come home from school to help out with their dad’s campaign. Mellie treats their visit like one of Fitz’s campaign stops, coaching him on facts about their kids’ lives before they sit down for dinner.
Over at Pope & Associates — man, it’s nice to see the whole gang at the office again for a change, teaming up and not divided on individual tasks — they’re working on finding where the money to fund B613 comes from. They’re also trying to find Adnan, whom Harrison hasn’t seen since she asked for his help in the parking garage. One Gladiator isn’t too pumped about this group effort: Huck. As a former member of B613, he thinks trying to take them down is a suicide mission; he’s just interested in saving Quinn.
Quinn, meanwhile, is lying to Charlie about her confrontation with Huck — you know, the one when he MADE OUT WITH HER and scalded our eyes. Why is she keeping this tidbit from Charlie? Probably because she knows her B613 boyfriend would kill Huck in an instant if he found out. B613 vs. B613: Sounds like Shonda’s setting up a bloody battle over Quinn.
Fitz is having issues of his own, as Dmitri Blanco, who works for a known terrorist, popped up in Baltimore and then promptly went missing. Who is he hiding out with? Olivia’s mom has to be involved. As he heads out of the meeting, Fitz tells Cy what a beautiful funeral it was. Ugh. I’d almost forgotten about James’ death. TV, you’re KILLING me lately. Also, Liv asks for some extra time with Jerry and Karen to prep for the interview, but Fitz doesn’t want to stress his kids; he just wants to get freaky with Olivia while his kids are in town. Speaking of getting freaky, Andrew plants a kiss on Mellie the minute he enters the room. Man, the first couple must really trust their deadbolts.
NEXT: Quality time with the kids
Liv gets that time with the kids after all (at least someone is spending time with the kids), and they seem a lot savvier than she thought they’d be. When Jerry starts asking questions about viewership and just how live the interview is, it’s pretty clear he’s not worried about putting his foot in his mouth; he and Karen have a plan. Olivia immediately calls Abby to take a closer look at Fitz’s darling children. As she rounds the corner, Liv spies Mellie and Andrew leaving the same room a little more disheveled than usual. “Stay away from her,” Liv tells the VP candidate. “The last thing this campaign needs is another sex scandal.” Andrew’s response? “Glass houses, Olivia.”
Olivia calls a pause on the B613 investigation to look at the Grant kids instead (“What are we looking for … a preggo townie?” Abby asks). Huck is happy that OPA is going to lay off B613 — and so is Olivia’s dad. “Stop digging,” he warns his daughter. “We both know what B613 does to its enemies.” So instead of poking around, Liv just asks Rowan for help instead. And he hangs up.
Mellie helps Karen pick out an interview outfit, but her daughter is more interested in why her parents are still together. “He’s a cheater,” she says. And so is Mellie now, who just knowingly responds: “Nobody’s perfect.” Back in the Oval Office, Fitz is palling around with his wife’s … hmm, what do you call a male mistress? Mister? We’ll go with mister. “Good guy,” he says to Olivia as Andrew leaves the room. Yup, a real standup gent.
Adnan is alive, and she’s still in the clutches of Maya Pope. And of course they’re involved with Dmitri, but he didn’t show up to a meeting so now Ivan is spooked. When that worries Adnan, Maya sets her straight: “You’re looking for a way out of this, but there isn’t one.”
NEXT: Why all the lies, Quinn?
Charlie and Quinn have turned into The B613 Bickersons, arguing over how the Huck altercation went down even as they’re both spattered in blood and standing over a body. Quinn keeps lying to Charlie, whose solution is that they should shack up. Meanwhile, that body they’re standing over is the very Dmitri who missed his meeting. Now Quinn is hoping to drill some information out of him. For his part, Huck is beating up an anonymous B613 agent and telling him to make sure Command returns his calls. Um, does OPA really want to go after B613 after all?
The team did dig up some dirt on Jerry, who anonymously runs an anti-Fitz (and anti-Dad) Twitter account. But it only had a couple thousand followers and Huck already took it down. Oh, and he bought a Reston for President shirt online too. Was that his plan for a stunt during the live interview? When Karen goes to cry to Mom about Dad rifling through their stuff, she walks in on Mellie with Andrew. Oh, the therapy bills…
Shockingly, this isn’t the biggest issue Liv is dealing with at the moment. Adnan has dropped by the OPA offices, and she’s spilling everything about teaming up with Maya. Well, not everything — she wants a guarantee of immunity before she says too much. Abby, time to call in the nine-billionth favor to your man.
Mellie is running damage control with her daughter, saying she didn’t see what she thinks she saw. Oh, but she goes into detail about what she saw: “You were on your knees with Uncle Andrew.” Yeah, hard to backtrack on that. Karen refuses to stay put in this den of lies (a.k.a. The White House) and instead packs her bags to head back to school.
When Jake pays a visit to the Oval Office, Fitz tells him he wants Dmitri out of B613’s clutches. But Jake refuses. “I am the commander in chief,” Fitz barks. “And I am Command,” Jake retorts. “Which means you don’t tell me to do anything, because I’m not your bitch.” Heard and understood, Jake — but Cyrus might need to hear it again, because he comes storming into the office, grabs a priceless presidential vase, and aims it directly at Jake’s head. It looks like word’s traveled to Cy about how his husband actually died. After the attack, Cyrus sits down with Fitz and explains why James got wrapped up in a deadly task.
NEXT: ‘You’re nothing but the help’
Maya calls her daughter out of the blue and tells her she wants Adnan back. When Liv calls her mom a terrorist, Maya says she’d rather be that than what Olivia is. “You think you’re family, but you’re nothing but the help,” she says cruelly. Adnan, meanwhile, still has a bone to pick with Harrison. Instead of running away with her, he had Olivia bail him out. “Maybe this immunity deal is our chance to be together,” Adnan says. “All this deal means is that we’re even,” Harrison replies. Then Adnan decides to drop her lady garments to get her way. Spoiler alert: It works.
Mellie — scotch in hand — insists that Olivia cancel the interview, which leads us back to how we started the episode. The interviewer says there’s no wiggle room, so Liv sits down with the kids to try to get them TV-ready. When Fitz walks in on the conversation, Karen lets the cat out of the bag about her mom: “She’s doing it with Uncle Andrew, Dad. I saw her.” (It’s probably time to drop the “uncle,” wouldn’t you say?) Fitz marches right down the hall, into a full conference room, and decks Uncle Andrew then and there.
Jake meets with Quinn and Charlie, and they deliver all the intel on Dmitri and where he’s set to meet Ivan later. Huck, meanwhile, requested a meeting with Jake, but he sends Quinn instead. That makes things a little awkward, because he called the meeting to ask Jake to let Quinn go. All of a sudden Quinn is talking about tongues — Huck’s tongue on her cheek, Huck’s tongue in her mouth — and she’s running her tongue all over him. NO. Just NO. Commenters, if you find this at all pleasing, explain your reasoning below. Because…NO.
Adnan and Harrison are also getting frisky in the OPA offices, but he was right to be skeptical of her intentions: All of a sudden, she’s injecting Harrison with some sort of fluid and he passes out. “Now we’re even,” she says.
Command meets Command: Jake visits Rowan at his Smithsonian office to tell him to back off whatever he’s investigating with B613. But Rowan doesn’t receive lectures; he gives them. “You. Are. A. Lone,” Rowan says, not up for a bonding session. Jake isn’t intimidated: “Thanks for reminding me that when I kill you, I need to do it all by myself.”
NEXT: ‘You ruined our marriage’
Fitz and Mellie are having it out over her affair with Andrew, but she isn’t taking his judgment. “Let’s not pretend that you’re the victim here,” she tells her philandering husband. But Fitz has his own ammo, saying that after Mellie had Jerry, she told her husband she was no longer a sexual being. Sadly, the viewers know that has nothing to do with Fitz and everything to do with his dad. But he doesn’t know that, so he heaps the blame on his wife: “You ruined our marriage.” The subtext of this scene is almost too much to take.
After Fitz barked at Olivia (and barked at his wife), she tried to just go home and leave behind the mess of an interview. But Cyrus stops her: He’s emotionally unable to clean up the mess, but she can. So she heads back in, and she isn’t hearing Fitz’s apology. She just tells him he needs to be the fixer this time: He needs to fix his family, “Because it is not my place,” and there are only 20 minutes until this interview goes live. So he fixes things. He holds Mellie’s hand. He stops yelling at his kids.
When Quinn arrives home from her latest slobber-fest with Huck, Charlie has made himself at home — literally. He broke his lease and moved his stuff into her place so he can keep an eye on her. Um, not OK. But if she protests, dude could kill her, so put on your best happy face, Quinn!
Abby and David head to the OPA offices to grant Adnan immunity, instead finding an unconscious Harrison on the floor. Adnan is back with Maya, and this time she’s armed with all the president’s secret files, straight from Olivia’s computer. When she hands them over to Ivan, we see that Jake and Tom have the hotel room under surveillance. But they decide to let the trio go about their business and see how this plays out. So…Jake wants Fitz to die, yes?
Back at Interview Central, we get our first glimpse at Cyrus and James’ adopted daughter, Ella, and she’s WALKING! Wasn’t this child an infant like six episodes ago? Please fill me in, Gladiators. I mean, Teddy is still a baby when Olivia hands him over to the presidential family for their big interview. The tough questions!
Rowan calls up Olivia to let her know that B613 is funded by all the government departments, not just one. While he makes it seem like he’s helping her because they’re family, we all know Rowan just wants to take Jake down. The presidential interview is live in 5…4…3…2…1…
And that’s it! We’ll have to wait until next week to see how that interview plays out. But let’s talk about what we did see — namely, more Huckleberry Quinn action (guh-ross), the reveal of Mellie and Andrew’s affair, our first glimpses at so many children (Jerry and Karen! Ella!), and Harrison getting played by Adnan. Share all your thoughts in the comments, and let us know what you think about the beginnings of this B613 takedown. Does it have promise?
Follow Katie on Twitter: @ktatkinson.