Scandal recap: 'Say Hello to My Little Friend'
Olivia succumbs to Jake -- and cabernet -- as new Operation Remington details surface
Olivia is getting pretty comfortable with turning Jake down. No to bringing down her father and his nefarious agency. No to sleeping in her house. No to making out — well, maybe a little making out. But by the end of episode 4, all those answers turn to a resounding “yes.” So where does that leave Fitz, especially since the trio of Liv, Jake, and Huck have discovered his Operation Remington connection? That remains to be seen, but a lot was uncovered in this hour — and we’re not just talking about Liv’s latest client.
We begin where we left off: With Olivia and Jake holed up in Liv’s apartment. At the end of last episode, Liv was the practical one and Jake the romantic, and nothing has changed. Jake has big dreams about taking down Rowan and obliterating B613. “Olivia, your father would slit your throat and drink your blood if it served the Republic,” he tells her matter-of-factly. And he bristles at the fact that the president of the freaking United States doesn’t know who Liv’s dad is: “How can he defend you if he doesn’t know who your enemy is?”
Olivia, for her part, does the verbal equivalent of shoving her fingers in her ears and yelling “la-la-la-la”: “I’ve never heard of B613, I’ve never heard of you.”
Somehow, Jake thinks this would be a good opportunity to lean in for a kiss, and while plenty of Gladiators would have loved Olivia to forget the real world and give in to the lip-lock, she brushes him off and he’s out the door.
Speaking of the real world, Harrison calls to let Liv know they’ve landed a huge client — so huge that Harrison commences his happy dance to the sweet sounds of Rick James. David and Abby are also in good spirits, seemingly returning from a date, though he’d like the date to last a bit longer and he’d like her firm to help out a recently murdered young girl — though we quickly find out they’ll be on the other side of that fight. And Huck is back in AA for his “whiskey” dependency, but his relapse story is interrupted by a ringing phone from a creeping Baby Huck.
It turns out the big client who inspired Harrison’s dance is an Anthony Weiner-esque senator, but this guy is accused of killing the woman he sent scandalous pictures to. Olivia Pope & Associates aren’t particularly proud of this client, but they need the cash.
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When we meet Senator Meyers, a.k.a. the professor who stole Kelly from Zack in Saved by the Bell: The College Years, he admits to sexting with Desiree Oaks but swears he didn’t kill her. And he’s backed up by his Mellie-haired wife, played by Melora Hardin, a.k.a. Jan from The Office, who stands by her man at a press conference, where David gives his best disappointed-dad look at Abby over her questionable client. And even though Liv swears at the press conference that he made only “one mistake,” the senator’s many mistakes — a string of young girls reading his seedy sexts — are paraded onto the witness stand by the U.S. Attorney.
And there’s another new woman in the mix: Congresswoman Josephine Marcus of Montana, played by Friends alum Lisa Kudrow. Her first line out of the gate is a doozy, as she tells Fitz to “tame his cobra” and focus on the issues. Fitz is distracted, however, by a headline that Pete Foster was found dead. We know Pete was running his mouth about Operation Remington, but did Fitz personally know him?
Liv & company are pretty sure they’re losing the senator’s case, so they start to build a case against the victim instead. Jezebel would have a field day. “Slut-shame a dead girl? All aboard,” Abby chirps. And the anti-girl-power continues with Mellie, who is happy for Kudrow’s congresswoman helping to break the political glass ceiling in public — but the minute she’s out of earshot, it’s another story. “Give any piece of trailer trash a push-up bra and a microphone, and the stupid flyovers will eat it up like fried Twinkies.” While that one-liner is incredible, it’s also picked up by a live mic. Oops.
Baby Huck tries to make up for her AA intrusion, but Adult Huck is not having it. “I’m not a client, Quinn; you don’t fix me,” he says. She’s not convinced AA will fix him either, but she really wants to understand the high of killing someone. Huck storms off into the parking garage only to encounter Jake, who pitches his Rowan takedown to his fellow B613 brother: “He owns us, just like he owns Liv.” But Huck’s not buying it. “No one takes down Command,” he argues. “No one’s ever tried,” Jake counters.
The problems keep mounting for Senator Meyers, meanwhile, who has yet another sexting accuser on his hand — he messaged this one just the previous night. His stand-by-your-man wife is losing patience and makes a run for it.
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Fitz is fixated on Pete Foster’s murder, and when he finds out Pete’s sister doesn’t have enough money for a proper funeral, he makes sure the onetime naval officer is buried at Arlington National Cemetery. He tells Pete’s sister that he never met her late brother, but it’s clear that’s not the case. Huck is also lurking at the service. Did he know Pete prior to their final encounter too or is he feeling guilty about his relapse?
James is back to complain about Cyrus not giving him enough access after seeing a gravedigger’s Instagram pictures showing Fitz at a private funeral for a down-on-his-luck Navy vet. “I could have produced a segment on the president’s heart, at a time when the only organ people care about is his penis,” James quips. But Cyrus had no idea about the service, and he goes straight to Rowan to see why he was left in the dark about Pete’s death. “Pete Foster killed Pete Foster,” Rowan says. Jake, meanwhile, has planted Radio Shack’s worst microphone on Rowan to try eavesdropping on the diabolical duo, but he’s thwarted by singing schoolchildren. Also, he’s sitting, like, 15 feet away. A) Technology is much better than that now. B) This is government intelligence’s best and brightest?
While things aren’t really going her way in the senator case, Olivia isn’t giving up hope yet. She tells her team to buy some more time to search for the suddenly missing Mrs. Meyers and completely ignores the TV in the background calling Olivia Pope a “punch line.” Then Jake storms in yelling about Pete Foster and how only 85 of 86 missions are accounted for — Operation Remington strikes again! And lurking Huck also strikes again. Once Liv clears out of her office, Huck is in there looking at all the documents Jake left behind. He starts Beautiful Mind-ing it all together, but he doesn’t entirely let us in on what he’s learning.
The Mellie-Josephine storyline is shaping up to be a good one (we might have to start calling Kudrow’s character “Joey,” because Mellie v. Joey has a good ring to it), but the congresswoman is letting the comments slide this time. Cyrus warns Mellie that she’s creating a star out of the Democrat. Fitz steps in to defend his estranged wife, and they share their first tender moment in months — until Mellie tears her hand away from his. Is there still love there? Cy, for his part, sics his puppy aide Ethan on Montana to find out everything there is to know about Josephine.
This is barely worth mentioning, but David once again insists he’s done with Abby. (Darby Stanchfield’s EW Pop Culture Personality Test tells a different story, though). Let’s just always assume they’re a couple until one of them dies or moves away, okay?
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Mrs. Meyers is still missing, but Olivia uses the one personal tidbit she knows about the senator’s wife — that her daughter is doing a school project on Elizabeth Cady Stanton — to track her to a hotel. The Fixer Sixth Sense. The two broads share a glass of red and talk about a hot dude’s thighs before getting down to brass tacks: Mrs. Meyers would rather send her husband to prison than protect him. But there’s a way she can tell the truth and keep her husband out of jail. As she says on the witness stand: “You don’t go to jail for being a cheating, lying bastard; you go to jail for being a murderer, which he’s not.”
Continuing the lurking trend of this episode, Quinn tiptoes in on Huck while he’s looking at Pete Foster’s autopsy photos and starts hitting him with all sorts of creepy killing questions. “It’s not polite to sneak up on people,” says the man who knows of what he speaks. But Quinn claims she just wants to give Huck someone to talk to — outside of AA.
Speaking of AA, we cut to Olivia holding her largest wine glass yet when there’s a knock at the door. She sees Jake — poor, sweet Jake — through the peephole and says one word: “No.” But he’s brought a friend this time: Huck. They’ve gotten to the bottom of Operation Remington. They know Fitz was the pilot. They know… everything? Not quite. But now Liv knows a lot too, whether she wants to or not.
Ethan has returned from Montana with cowboy boots… and a scandalous tidbit about Congresswoman Marcus: She got pregnant at 15. Cyrus is pleased and ready to tell anyone who will listen about Josephine’s abandoned baby.
While she preached telling the truth to Mrs. Meyers, Liv finds out from the senator that his wife, in fact, lied: She wasn’t home the night of Desiree’s murder. Liv puts the pieces together and realizes she’s not her husband’s alibi; he was hers. Jan! What would Michael Scott say?
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After her umpteenth sneak attack, Huck has finally tired of Quinn’s curiosity. “All these questions you’re asking: They have answers, but you don’t want to know them,” he tells her, urging her to stop asking questions while she still can.
Hey, what do you know? Abby is outside David’s apartment and he’s letting her back in. I guess he was never really out, huh? (See above rant.)
Olivia and her huge wine glass are back (this thing is seriously a fish bowl on a stem), and as she downs 60 ounces of cabernet, Jake (yes, he’s back in her house) asks: “Are you all right?” Does he even know this woman? Wine signifies nothing. It signifies… Tuesday. “I don’t know what I am,” she responds. Jake tries to crack jokes, but Liv just buries her head in her hands. But she pulls it together and allows herself to snuggle up into Jake’s nook as he promises, “I’m not going anywhere.” SWOON. He leans in one more time for that kiss, and this time, she reciprocates. Oh, does she reciprocate.
Then the phone rings, and OF COURSE it’s Fitz. And she ANSWERS. And Jake just has to sit there and listen while she talks to the other man in her life, THE PRESIDENT.
But Jake knows how to play this situation. “More wine?” he asks loudly, knowing Fitz will hear him. And hear he does, abruptly cutting off the conversation which was set to be an emo one. Fitz’s night is far from over: He exits his presidential limo and storms into the office of one Rowan/Eli/Olivia’s-dad-but-he-doesn’t-know-that-yet. What a cliffhanger!
So how will Fitz and Rowan’s face-off shake out? What more don’t we know about Operation Remington? And are you wishing Liv would dish out some more “yes” or some “hell no” to Jake? Sound off in the comments below!
Follow Katie on Twitter: @ktatkinson.