Scandal recap: 'Day 101'
Oh hey Fitzy!
After all these years, Fitz finally made it to Vermont, and he’s finally getting to spend that time with Ms. Pope. Oh, wait…not Ms. Pope? MISTER POPE? Oh, great.
Not that it starts that way. It starts with Fitz alone in Vermont. On day 1, he’s given a staff that looks like a political version of the von Trapp family, but Fitz fires them all because, respectfully, he doesn’t want a staff. He just wants to LIVE. Live and drive. And he’s living like a real person…with debit cards and loyalty programs at the grocery store! He burns a few turkeys, though I can’t for the life of me figure out why this man keeps cooking entire turkeys for himself.
Bored with turkeys and the news about Confederate statues, he unpacks some stuff, including a gun in a box. Then he gets bored with that and calls Marcus. In short, our friend needs something to do. Marcus, though, does not. He’s on vacation in Havana and making out with pretty ladies. But he’s not happy with that either, so Marcus comes up to Vermont for some BRO TIME.
Fitz wants to help Mellie out, but he has to wait 100 days. It’s a respect thing, you know, as an exiting president and also ex-husband, etc. etc. The conversation turns to Fitz’s library — in particular, where Olivia will fit into it. People love Olivia. She has to have her own wing because she’s Hillary and Beyoncé and Oprah. But Fitz isn’t interested in that conversation because he just wants a drink. So Marcus reserves them a bar and they head out.
At the bar, their attention turns to the news again: A man is sleeping under that Confederate statue until he gets the attention of the mayor and governor because something needs to be done. After Fitz assures Marcus that they’ll do great things, he decides he wants Olivia to have the same treatment in his library that Cyrus does, because Olivia didn’t define him. She’s not in Vermont. She’s just a woman.
Later, Marcus and Fitz are getting ready for a fundraiser when that man at the statue comes up again. He’s losing his audience, and Marcus suggests that they do something, but Fitz shoots it down because he says it’s complicated and divisive, and very subtly, Marcus says, “Is it?” At the dinner, one of the donors refers to Marcus as Chico, he nearly loses it. And when Fitz tells Marcus to get them another bottle of whiskey, Marcus says, “Get it yourself.”
So at the end of the night, Marcus quits. And when Fitz asks him what his issue is, Marcus says, “Do you not already know?” And that’s when Fitz says that he’s always angry. *STEREOTYPE ALERT.* At that, Marcus lets LOOSE and says that he’s not anything but a valet for Fitz, that he doesn’t know him, and that Fitz turned Olivia, who truly ran the White House, into “another black ho.” It’s a lot, guys.
And Fitz turns around and calls Marcus a coward who rode Olivia’s coattails, then Mellie’s, then his. He says it three times, and just like when you call out for Beetlejuice, TROUBLE COMES FAST. He threatens to hit Fitz, but as Marcus moves toward him, Fitz hits first. It turns into an all out brawl; Secret Service pulls Marcus off, but it’s all but certain that Marcus won’t be coming back to the Grant home. (Recap continues on page 2)
At the White House, Mellie is running around being president and whatnot when she gets a call from Marcus. He’s in his car on the side of the road, and he tells Mellie he’s quitting because Fitz has no respect for him and he’s lazy. Mellie laughs because this is just stage two of a relationship with Fitzgerald Grant. And ultimately, you realize why you’re there and that you’re able to do your part in your own way, which is kind of sad, right? Anyway, Marcus tells Mellie he’s proud of her, and there’s a long silence. You can literally hear how much they miss one another. Finally, Mellie says, “Marcus, thank you for calling,” and he says, “You’re welcome, Madame President. Goodbye.”
Back in Vermont, Fitz has a shiner, and if that’s not enough of a burden, he’s met by quite a visitor: Papa Pope. Oh, and he’s holding that gun from Fitz’s belongings. Does this man not rest? Anyway, Rowan starts throwing around all these questions about whether anyone has placed an appliance at his place or if there’s a new Secret Service agent because they have to watch out. For what? For Command. For OLIVIA POPE. And man, does Rowan have absolutely no faith in his daughter. He mentions how she killed Luna before saying, “Who runs the world? One girl.” But Fitz says he can’t help because those days are over. He’s a Vermont…er now? Vermonter, yes? Help me, Vermont citizens.
Anyway, with Papa Pope gone, Fitz retreats to the front porch with his gun that his dad gave him. That’s not a welcoming sight for Marcus, but he still shows up because we’re all on Team Fitz. And Fitz announces that Cyrus told him that one day when his presidency was over, he’d blow his brains out with that gun. That’s not a chill thing to say to anyone, by the way.
Speaking of unchill things, Marcus admits he said some bad things, and Fitz admits it too because that’s what bros do when they go to the bar. Eventually, Fitz says, “Marcus, is Olivia Pope everyone’s world? Or just mine?” Marcus doesn’t say anything, but Fitz says, “When the 100 days are up, I need to go to Washington for a while, but before we leave, I’d like to do something meaningful.”
And the next thing you know, Fitz and Marcus roll up to that poor guy camped out underneath the Confederate statue. The guy isn’t too pumped to see the former president because, well, he’s freezing. But Fitz tells him the only way to lose is by quitting, and then gives him a hug and says, “You can do this.” He gives him his gloves and thanks him for his service. And then the guy asks for a selfie for the ‘gram because life is a little bit of a joke sometimes. But hey, with 11 million likes on “the ‘gram,” it’s enough get him an agreement to sit down and discuss this statue coming down. And come down it does, because in Shonda’s world, everything is much closer to being okay than it is in real life.
And that leads us to Day 101. Fitz is waiting outside Olivia’s apartment. Olivia is gettin’ it in the elevator with Curtis. And the world has one less Confederate statue. It’s the final season, and y’all, maybe I’m an optimist, but I think we’re heading in the right direction. Hang in there, Gladiators.
Shonda Rhimes’ political drama: Sex! Murder! Olivia’s suits!