LOL, you know that feeling when you’re president and then you’re not, and then your privilege and preconceptions of race get in the way of treating your new chief of staff like a person, then you fight him, find a gun, consider killing yourself, you don’t, he comes back, and then you go find your onetime mistress, full-time love of your life and wait outside her apartment? No? Well, no one ever said Scandal was relatable, so.
But that’s where we’re at with Fitz and Curtis and Olivia and her smeared lipstick. Scandal! When Fitz shows up to ask for Olivia’s help with a case he’s working on with Marcus involving missing girls, Olivia is annoyed because she has Bashran! She has Mellie! She has that fresh man scent from Curtis lingering on her designer gown! She has things. And Fitz. Can’t. Have. Her. So she closes the door on him. They’re done, y’all.
Back at the White House, Mellie and Rashad are talking about how to get the ball rolling on making the world a little less nuclear, but they keep getting distracted because Bellamy Young is turning Rashad on, and honestly, may even be turning me straight. Bellamy Young is doing such fine work this season as president, and God, don’t you feel like she’s earned it? Olivia interrupts though, because if she’s not getting nookie, then NO ONE IS. Meanwhile, in Cyrus’ office, he’s back and forth on this damn bajillion-dollar painting his nemesis and suitor has left in his office. But the only solution is honestly for Cyrus to give the painting back…right? Right???
At QPA, they dive into the case of these missing girls because QPA is all about wearing the white hat again. These girls are all girls of color, and that’s part of the problem, because if a child isn’t white — an Elizabeth Smart or a JonBenét Ramsey — does anyone care? It’s a real problem, and it’s good to see Scandal stop being about the white guy president with a gun in Vermont and address what’s going on in the world. Olivia talks to Jake about it, but she’s not willing to budge…that’s why she went to Jake, right? Lord. Meanwhile, Fitz meets with Rowan, who says this case with the missing girls isn’t enough for Olivia. She has to fall in love with Fitz again because he is the cheese.
Cyrus heads over to Glackland’s place to discuss that painting, and it turns out there are a whole bunch of complications to keeping and returning the painting. Even though Glackland was AWFUL the first go-round, he’s incredibly charming this time. After the discussion, he invites Cyrus into his place to try out some Virtual Reality software, as older gay men are wont to do, and when the virtual glasses come off, they start getting real…Virtual Real World: Washington, D.C. They have a nice discussion about Cyrus’ career and Glackland’s obvious interest in him, and Glackland insists they do this on the regular. Politics and getting under Cyrus’ skin…Glackland slides his hand across Cyrus’ lap, but that’s enough to launch Cyrus into gear, and the VP realizes he needs to go.
Marcus stops by the White House to check on Mellie, but Olivia has no time for it. He shifts to the topic of the missing girls, but Olivia has no time for that either. As he exits, Olivia asks about Vermont, which Marcus says is “cold and white,” and when Olivia says she means Fitz, Marcus says, “Cold. White.” Marcus is the champion we don’t deserve. In that moment, they get personal — personal enough for Olivia to return to OPA, now QPA, and see all those girls on the window. So many that Olivia can’t take it in. But she does come with a plan: Put Zoe’s mother out there. It’s a lesson on how to make QPA, well, OPA.
As Olivia leaves, she runs into Fitz, who is apparently just out and about these days. He says they should get a drink, but Olivia rebuffs and says they should just see how the summit turns out. And the summit is tense. The prime minister of Dacal isn’t too pumped about turning over his nuclear powers, so he calls out Mellie and says he misses Fitz. And then he insinuates that maybe Mellie used her charms to influence his decision regarding relinquishing his nuclear weapons, which is enough to make President Rashad jump to her defense. The hoops women have to jump through are insane, guys. I mean, even Olivia calls out Mellie’s chemistry with President Rashad.
Anyway, QPA jumps into gear and sends Zoe’s mom out on the front lines. She goes onto Cyrus’ show with Old POTUS Fitz. She makes a good point, but Curtis then blasts Fitz and says that he ignored this issue. Fitz — newly woke and ready to, um, wake others? — decides to go on a tangent about race and the press. While that happens, Rashad and Mellie are having some hooch in the Oval, which is honestly my dream. They touch hands, and the chemistry is palpable, but Bashran! The nukes! The legacy. It’s all at stake, so Rashad leaves. (Recap continues on page 2)