Scandal: The Mess & Mediocrity
Ok so here goes round two of my attempt to post this. As most of us who are on tumblr regularly and follow most of the prime-time tv shows, knows the trouble that Scandal has been in for the last few seasons, and as someone who was once an avid fan of the show I thought I would throw my two cents in.
1. There can be no argument that the first season of Scandal was great, we finally got to see a black woman be not only the lead of a prime-time drama series, but she wasn’t a cliched, stereotyped character and the icing on the cake Liv was based on an actual person. Olivia was strong, assertive, knew what she wanted and was a great friend, who had the respect of most people she came into contact with. I was a fan of Kerry Washington from her independent film days and more so , from her first mainstream movie outing in Save the Last Dance, where she delivered one of my favourite movie lines ever “keep it up and I will law all your s***t bare, don’t act like you ish don’t stink”, classic and applies to so much, and is very ironic, but I will get to that later.
2.Season one was filled with political intrigue, interesting back stories, great main and guest characters, and the acting was awesome. But then, but then, we got into season two and we see the adulterous relationship between Liv and Fitz start to ease into the forefront of the story, eventually it becomes clear that Liv’s relationship with Fitz affects all aspects of her life. Liv starts to ask Fitz for more and more presidential favours, somethings that to this day still peeves me, because she has no issue asking him to betray his position in office, the people who elected him there (oh wait they didn’t) and to break almost all federal laws.
3. Season 3 comes around and I begin to see the wheels start to lift completely off the tracks. In almost every scene that Liv has the is delivering some of the most overbearing, contrite, sanctimonious monologues I have ever heard. KW starts to rely on this one expression that irks my soul, trembling lips like she is about to hit the highest note in a Whitney song, with eyes wide open like she is high as a kite. Every scene with Liv and Fitz turns into an argument, she berating him for not being man enough and standing his ground while asking him to compromise his ethics, and him walking in circles, stressing that his love for her knows no bounds, and therefore he will stand his ground and give in to her demands.
4. Season 4 and the train has flown off the tracks heading straight for tv-ville populated by the true fans of Scandal known as Gladiators. S4 the worst thing that could have happened to this show happened, Jake and BS13 became a things, instead of being just a little side story, BS13 and Joe Morton over took Scandal, we see that Liv has some clear family issues, and is inexplicably attracted to Jake (shudders), it becomes clear that Jake was a plant from JM and is only using Liv for some nefarious means. It was when we finally got to see Mama Pope come onto the scene and she is played the the truly fantastic and underrated actress Kandy Alexander, and what do we get, a woman who takes a huge chunk out of her own wrist like she was auditioning for the part of a Walker on The Walking Dead, like ‘what da heck?’ (I honestly thought I was watching the wrong show for a few seconds), stupseee.
5. Season 5 was the beginning of the end for me, we see Live comeback from sitting in the sun with Jake from State Farm, and it is clear that he is her poor substitute for Fitz, whom she hates to love and loves to hate, oy vey these three tire me to my very t.v. bones, the back and forth is ridiculous and I was barely hanging on by my fingertips in hope the show was going to improve, but then one of the biggest slap in the face to fans and the armed forces happened. Liv gets kidnapped for reasons that I am still not fully clear on, besides as a petty swipe at Fitz. We finally see Liv sporting her natural hair and its when she is being held hostage, is looking all kinds of disheveled, and spouting more stupid and ineffective monologues to her captors who essentially laugh in her face.
The thing that killed me was that the only way the writers could see a way out for Liv was her to have her offer to have herself sold on the black market because she is such a hot commodity. I mean really it was 2015 and here we see a black woman put herself up on the fricking auction block during Black History Month (and correct me if I’m wrong but I also think MLKs birthday was around the time of the airing of the ep also), AND we also at this time have a black man sitting the in the actual White House as President, I mean really Shonda, really? I was so disgusted by this, and while all this tom foolery was going on, Fitz sent soldiers into another country to start a war, costing lives and families all for the sake of his side piece, and somehow we were supposed to buy this as some grand romantic gesture and not the war crime it actually was. This episode was the last one I watched in its entirety because I was just so fed up with the shoddy, predictable, trashy and mediocre writing of this show. I was so fed up with the over dramatic acting, needless drama and angst from teenagers posing as adults, and I was just fed up with the mess this once great and important show has become.
I apologise for the extremely long post, but this is something that I have wanted to get off my chest for a while, and after chatting with Redorkulous (check out his tumblr), I felt even more compelled to make this post, but there will be a second post where I speak more to the character traits and schenanigans of the individuals in the show, because trust that I have a lot to say about Live, Jake and Fitz.