Less than 60 seconds into Scandal, I already felt drained as Fitz threw another tantrum about his mistress potentially having another boyfriend. I will say that while Olivia Pope has long displayed bird-like behavior (Fitz, too, I'm gender neutral about my use of the term "bird," folks), I appreciated her hearing Fitz's metaphor about a fox in the hen house and shouting, "I am not a hen!" repeatedly. Sounds like someone has been listening to Changing Faces' "That Other Woman" and is accepting that she deserves better than a jealous married boyfriend. Well...for five minutes, anyway.
I could go on about Fitz and Liv, but I won't, because they get on my damn nerves.
Instead, let's shimmy over to Mellie Mel's story arc, because that's where the best action was last night. Liv advised against Fitz choosing Andrew Nicholls as his VP candidate, and we found out why: Given he was immediately embroiled in a scandal centered on alleged drug abuse inside of the governor's mansion during Fitz's first term, he probably wouldn't be a good pick. But, Fitz's assertion that Nicholls was loyal also proved true as he was willing to take the fall—citing a back injury that required access to pain meds, fast.
However, we found out that it was Mellie who ordered the pills. During various flashbacks, we learned that Mellie attempted suicide, only to be saved by Nicholls. When he tried to find out why the then-First Lady of California would want to take her own life, Mellie blurted out, “Because my father-in-law forced himself on me and I don’t know if my son is his, and sometimes that makes me not want to be alive."
These two have clear chemistry, though Mellie has exercised considerable restraint in not giving into her desires.
Okay, she had a bit of break as she kissed him after a fundraiser, but good for her! Unfortunately, she scurried away before the two could properly disrobe and do what needs to be done: Screw each other on Fitz's desk in the Oval Office. Too crass? Whatever, this woman deserves a break, and Nicholls, who gives "Rick Perry with a working brain" teases, is a good one.
Fitz is already the worst person on this show, but will he ever know just how much Mellie has sacrificed for his political career? I found myself asking this - again - after Fitz rudely dismissed his wife for daring to inquire about his allegiance to the woman he didn't marry. I hope this happens this season because I am sick of watching everyone else on this show have guilt, but not the two who deserve it the most.
For instance: Huck felt guilty about his treatment of Quinn, so he kept bringing Olivia coffee throughout the night with the depressed Huckleberry Hound eyes. To be fair, he did add, “You should have never given me someone to love. Monsters eat people Liv, its what we do." Indeed, and thankfully, Quinn and a few others let Olivia have it, too.
Yes, Quinn is annoying, but in reality, she owes nothing to Olivia Pope. Remember, kids: Lindsay Dwyer was minding her damn business until she was framed for the murder of her boyfriend who helped rigged the election. Olivia did welcome her back to Olivia Pope & Associates, but if your co-worker tortures you and licks your face while doing so, is that the place you want to go back to? And it's not like Olivia Pope & Associates have been managing crises lately.
Jake gave it to Olivia, too, letting her know that while she can ask for favors, she doesn't run B316. More, if she's going to exploit his feelings for her to make him her beard, the least she could do is stock the fridge with beer and chicken wings. Jake is right: Wine isn't beer and popcorn isn't food.
While Jake's at it, he ought to hire Quinn because after she proved her hacker skills are top notch, he needs to fuck with her 'cause he knows she got it. Quinn's not completely useless as opposed to someone like Cyrus' husband James, who at this point, just needs to die. You married your man for better or for worse, so if you're going to snitch, snitch. Don't send David Rosen to do your dirty work, i.e. meet with your media connect to out VP Sally murdering her big gay husband.
If not for Abbey overhearing a conversation between James and David, David would've been taken out by Cyrus' mercenary, and Abbey would be single again with her red hair not looking as good as it has lately. Yes, Abbey, I've noticed.
Now, for the biggest chin check of the night, we go back to my beloved, Mellie. What nerve Olivia has to try and counsel her about the assumed affair with Nicholls. So thankfully, Mellie told her flatly, "You actually think that we are the same." Sit down, Liv—and Mellie, you need to heed the words of Christina Aguilera and tell Fitz, "Let me get mine, you get yours."
P.S.: This happened in the last 30 seconds of the show. Olivia's mama is working with Adnan, who is now trying to get inside of the White House and also trying to get Harrison to do dirty work on the side. Then Hollis returned to meet with VP Sally, whose strange behavior pushed him back into the direction of #TeamFitz. ADHD TV, for real.
You know, Shonda Rhimes, I truly adore and admire you, but I have to ask: Is your crew basing its storytelling methods on Twista's flow? Love this show, but sooner rather than later, can we go back to a simpler time when Olivia Pope & Associates actually helped people instead of just watching numerous scenes that basically go, "TAG, YOU'RE IT!" week after week? It's too much in one hour.
Written by Michael Arceneaux (@youngsinick)