This is my second review of this episode, the first one I wrote was partly deleted so I’m sad but I will take this as a good thing so lets begin. This episode doesn’t let up from the 100 but is a continuance of its brilliance. Bravo Shonda and the Writer and the Cast and Crew, this is Scandal we know and love. I never doubted this show and the story but it’s so refreshing to see it play out before our eyes.
I wrote an entire recap of this episode, scene after scene but as I looked at it I felt that I was just typing what we all can see. Something I do not wish to do.
Scandal’s protagonist and main character is Olivia Pope. We are introduced to her by Quinn Perkins but it was always Olivia’s story interacting with these other characters that made us feel a connection with her. Loving a person who you are not supposed to love is something most can relate to on some level, being a advocate and fighter for the unjust, these were all godly and beautiful traits that made us view Olivia as perfect and in many ways she was at one time, but nobody is perfect even someone as perfect as Olivia Pope. For the past 6 seasons we have seen the rise and fall of not just Olivia Pope, but almost every character, like Cyrus said those who stay in Washington tend to become corrupted as the leeches come out and absorb the last drop of humanity you have. We have witnessed acrimonious crimes from everyone but the beauty of scandal is not to showcase the disembodiment of human values but the will to overcome them and live.
Olivia has been on quite a self journey this season, she has endured more than what we truly see and there have been times where I wondered if and when she will come back to us and fight to live and not fear the unknown, the fear of failing and not being able to clean up the mess. A women that once prided herself on being a ‘fixer’, a person that honored wearing ‘the white hat’ had been deduced to a criminal, a whore, and a liar. Olivia has lied, cheated and killed for the White House, killed for the power she believed it would bring her. Olivia thought that love would heal and fix her but her issues run deeper than love but requires self love, something we know she has yet to accomplish. But throughout this ordeal Olivia has watched love and time pass her by while she remained stagnant like a record, something had to change. Olivia has to change. The dream Olivia had where saying ‘no’ actually meant saying ‘yes’, changed her perspective about life and love. In her dream, Olivia said ‘Yes’ to love, yes to being a person, yes to living a authentic life, and finally yes to having hope. The dream that Olivia is holding onto in her mind, that it is possible has brought a resurgence of life and light back into her. But as we already know; it’s hard. It’s not easy picking the pieces of up after you worked endlessly to destroy them. This is where we find Olivia.
Olivia is trying to clean up the mess she has made, the mess she has allowed to spread. But every sweep of the hand leads to a further mess. We see Olivia telling Mellie that she needs to concede and let Cyrus take his place at the oval. Mellie cannot win this election, she is now tainted. No good can come from Mellie winning and that they (Olivia and Mellie) must put on the ‘White Hat’ and do what is right once and for all. While Olivia is ready to change, some our not. To which Mellie remarks that Olivia needs “to get off your cross.” Reminding Olivia that she is not a good person after all she has stole a few elections and murdered someone. Olivia and Mellie have grown close to one another in the absences of Fitz, both looked at the other and saw themselves, neither required the other to be good or apologize for their ruthless behavior but Olivia is just now getting a taste of this pseudo friendship forged by personal gain and greed. Already Olivia has begun to incur disappointment and pain as she works cleaning up her mess.
Olivia has found herself back at the white house, telling Fitz that Mellie is understandably upset and that this is a trying time for her having to give up on her dream but she believes she will get through this. But Fitz sees through Olivia’s transparency and commands Olivia to ‘come here’ the same sentiment Olivia said after Big Jerry’s funeral. Olivia takes solace and comfort in the one person who can give it to her. Olivia no longer shields herself from his open invitation but walks into the embrace and after a moment of silence she admits “I wanted this. I needed this.” Fitz then responds that Olivia “deserves this” which causes her to quickly remove herself from the hug for two reasons. 1) Olivia doesn’t deserve this office, she doesn’t deserve the oval after what she has done, it is hard to come back after such darkness and Olivia is not worthy of this oval, yet. 2) she doesn’t deserve this right here. There is a obvious change in Olivia and FItz’s dynamic since he came to her and told her that he forgave her, there is a tangible spark flying between them but Olivia can’t allow herself to think to deeply into this moment with him, so she leaves bidding Fitz goodnight.
With each step Olivia makes towards working on herself, she is faced with a deeper and harder obstacle. Cyrus newly free from prison is trying to adjust to the world he is reentering and the world he just left. Olivia finds herself at Cyrus’s hotel door with suits intact, and demand that he become a gladiator in a suit and fight for his dream and become President.
Cyrus got his ass beat in jail, not to mention his reputation is ruined but he also appears to be suffering from some PTSD. And you expect him to forgive you Olivia after you told him to pay his dues. There was a choice, Olivia had the information needed to exonerate Cyrus and to free him from the the charges he did not commit but Olivia opted not to, instead she choice to watch him burn for a crime he is not guilty of, but that is not to say that Cyrus is not guilty of sins and crimes, but prison while was horrendous does feel like a satisfying restitution. Olivia has conjured in her mind that because she has seen the light that everyone else must too, but not everyone is wanting or willing to change. Cyrus reminds Olivia that she had an opportunity to save him but she decided to turn the other way. Good for Cyrus, Olivia feels guilty of course but just because she is Olivia Pope does not mean she warrants forgiveness automatically.
While Olivia is able to conjure through her issues and forge through the shame and regret, there is one obstacle that has proven more difficult to surpass. Rowan. Olivia floats into Rowan’s prison and he quickly reminds Olivia that ‘it has been far too long since they last talked’ and it has. Rowan’s influence over Olivia is thawing and he is aware of his borrowed time if he doesn’t act now, like Olivia said ‘survival of the fittest’. As Rowan talks about a fossil, the fossil he and Sandra were working, Rowan chokes back emotions with the mention of Sandra, but why was Rowan welcoming of love yet he denies his daughter the very same feeling? As Rowan talks he brings his last piece that he will fix (Olivia) and request that Olivia joins him in the box a subtle reminder that Olivia is imprisioned just like him and that if she continues the crusade of justice then she will have to watch Rowan die because the only reason they have kept him alive is because of the influence he has over Olivia. Instead of being smart prey, Rowan will be extinct something he does not approve or desire. But Rowan is right this isn’t about ‘winning’ Olivia, while she has made progress she is still one track minded, winning is not the goal but living. Olivia is desperately trying to turn back the hands of time and reset her dreams that have failed to be met yet, but as she is doing this she is failing to miss the life she had let go in the process. Decisions are easy to make but it is the consequences that are hard to embrace, some much time has been spent focusing on these frivolous things that she is missing the gift that life could bring. But to my surprise Olivia comes out of the box (temporarily) and tells Rowan he will see her soon, because after all it is ‘survival of the fittest’
With her faith tested once again, Olivia looks to Fitz as inspiration, her unbeknownst muse guiding her through these obstacles. Olivia once again comes to Fitz and tells him about Mellie and how this isn’t her acting this way but it is. This is Mellie, selfish, entitled, opportunist looking for the easy way instead of the right way. Olivia moves closer to Fitz invading his personal space as she is telling him gently that she went to see her father, but Fitz doesn’t wish to hear it and rightfully so. Olivia reminds Fitz that she forgave Abby and that people do terrible things and while this is true Olivia should never expect or ask Fitz to forgive the man who has purposely attempted to destroy his life by not only killing his son, but ruining his relationship with Olivia.
I’m annoyed with Olivia at this moment, somehow Olivia has deduced Rowan to something he is not and now she expects Fitz to turn the other cheek and save a man who has made it his mission to ruin his life just because he fell in love with his daughter.
Fitz is showing up for Cyrus and fixing his life. That’s my boo. Fitz is not just talking but practicing what he preaches, ‘they don’t have to be these people anymore’ Fitz can be the man he was always destined to be, honorable, compassionate, integrity these virtues that Olivia responded to in such a profound way. For the Fitz and olitz haterz, have you not seen the light cascading on those perfect curls, or how Fitz is surrounded by light and even bringing life and light back into people. *cough cyrus* *cough Olivia * this is done for purpose, you see Fitz has wrestled with his demons and has been in the eye of the storm for 8 years that even with the destruction around him he can still see the light at the in end of the tunnel. So him opening the blinds and letting light into Cyrus’s room is on purpose. Fitz is the source of light in this depleted and dejected group, he is the unsung hero.
I don’t deserve to be president. You don’t spend a decade in Washington without committing a few sins. I have committed more than a few. I was thrown in prison and it made sense. When my friends abandoned me and my husband left me. That made sense. It all made sense. So what if I hadn’t killed Frankie? I lied. I pursued my own agenda. I let my daughter down. Prison then a treason charge. It was a relief because I knew I was unworthy except three days ago, I was released. Cleared. Told go out there Cy tell them you deserve to be president but I know I don’t. Because nobody deserves to be president certainly not the people that often try to be president. Except for Frankie. He was different. The people saw it. It’s why he won and maybe it’s why we lost him. In his absence I offer you something far more meager. My flaws and my service. Frankie Vargas loved this country he embodied the best of our values: humility, kindness. Unworthy as I am. His hopes has become my compass.
This monologue is perfectly symbolic of the people watching: Fitz, Abby, and Olivia and can easily describe all of them and the struggle to be worthy. Yes. This is scandal. As Cyrus talks you can see the proud look on Fitz, Abby and Olivia’s face as they watch Cyrus admit the truth about his sins. No, he didn’t kill Frankie but he has killed other people and that itself is not something to forget. It’s when you are down and out that you gain a deeper appreciation of what life has to offer. This is the same music Fitz had for his state of the union speech. The mood is infectious and our spirits are high and suddenly the light has returned and everything appears clearer now. Cyrus appears strong and ignited but the test has truly yet to come.
Cyrus speech is beautiful and speaks to everyone watching, most importantly Olivia and Abby who have reunited and are sitting across from one another. The alternate reality while was a dream does put life and family into perspective for Olivia. Like her alternate reality Olivia is now surrounding herself with people with a positive influence on her( Fitz and Abby) and removing those who chose to stay in the darkness and refuse to change(Mellie and Jake ) this is growth and I’m happy to see Olivia on this path of redemption. Yes, many of these characters are looking to redeem themselves for the sins of their past. But seeing the error of there ways is why some will prosper as the others will perish. But interestingly though Olivia wasn’t off with her alternate reality dream, Mellie is forever consumed with her own personal greed and gain that she fails to see the moves being played in front of her and also is accepting of the ploys just as long as she wins. In the dream Mellie sold her soul to Cyrus and Rowan to become president but now it has come into fruition but this time the stakes are far more terrifying.
Mellie calls Olivia in shock at seeing lizzy bear dead by Peus and Real Bitch and she tries to apologize but Mellie this is on you. You got in bed with the devil, so get your ass a pillow and blanket and lay in the damn bed! I hate it when people come to Olivia after the destruction to be like “you were right” of course she was right, you have blood in your eye because your team Me. Everyone in this group places Olivia on this ridiculously high pedestal where they see her as their savior but who saves Olivia if she is saving them?
Here comes Angela in the residence telling Fitz that she is going to be arresting Olivia and taking her in for questioning since she found her name linked to Tom with the swiss bank account. Fitz tells her that she is looking at Olivia for personal reasons and this girl has the nerve to call my baby a ’boy’. Yeah Fitz was diverging but come on girl. Angela needs to show some respect, that is the president and you are going to call him a boy and act as if your job as the FBI director is superior than the president. Take yo ass out of here, With that baloney! But this moment serves meaning to something far greater than the two of them but what Olivia means to Fitz, he has been dating Angela yet his heart still lies with Olivia. Fitz tried to remove Olivia from the ring of fire but he wasn’t successful and the idea of Olivia going to jail for others causes Fitz to go into a tail spin.
Fitz brings Olivia to the oval to tell her about Angela looking into her as being a suspect for Vargas murder and that she will be placing Olivia under arrest since they found the money. Fitz is trying to calm down the situation but Olivia is happy because then it will cause the FBI to look into this scandal and with Mellie’s campaign manger arrested for framing Tom then Mellie won’t be able to become president.
Olivia, what are you doing? Did Jake choke you again and cut off your oxygen supply, are you having a heat stroke from always wearing those hot ass coats? This isn’t logical thinking. Fitz can’t stand the fact that Olivia is placing herself on the cross for her father who shot Frankie, but what Fitz doesn’t know is that Olivia is not just sacrificing herself for Rowan but for everyone, Mellie, Abby, Huck, Cyrus and finally herself. This is Olivia’s way of paying her dues and bringing equilibrium back into this world. It’s a symbolic gesture for Olivia looking to seek redemption for her horrible sins and guilt. Olivia owning and taking responsibility for her actions is the best thing but this isn’t the way to do it and Fitz is able to see that. Fitz notes that Olivia is always the smartest person in the room until now. To which Oliva says she’s sorry. This is the second sorry I have heard from Olivia in this episode. She said it to Cyrus and now she is saying it to Fitz. For a person who never truly apologized before she seems to finally see the devastation and her part in it all but this isn’t just Olivia’s problem or burden to bear.
I really want to dive into Olivia and Fitz’s dynamics during this moment. Something has changed between them where they are in each other’s orbit once again but there is this ease to them that makes me nostalgic. Olivia walks to the window and as Fitz is talking about her soon to be warrant she appears to be taking this all in, and seems happy at settling the score but there is no good deed without punishment. Fitz is adamant that Rowan is the one whose head they need on a spike not Olivia’s. Olivia counters that Rowan is old and weak, but was Rowan weak when he killed Fitz’s son? Was Rowan weak when he told you that you were dead to him? Was Rowan old when he gave Abby your personal information regarding your abortion? Was Rowan weak then? Because he most certainly was not when he killed the President-Elect, you see Rowan was going to kill Vargas regardless of Olivia because the last thing he wants is to be extinct. But Olivia saw this as an act of kindness, a sacrifice her father did to save her but is that really so? Olivia is changing and she wants her father to change with her for the better because if he can change after all these years of being despicable and cruel then maybe just maybe there is hope for her too.
But none of this right or just. Olivia will be in prison for the rest of her young life while the people she knows will continue to move on with theres. Olivia will pay the ultimate sacrifice by giving up her life and her freedom, her chance at happiness for a chance at redemption which would not be redeeming considering Vargas would still be dead and nothing will be resolved, this wouldn’t stop Peus but just be a minor bump in the road.
If Olivia is in jail, then Fitz would lose her forever and the hope he still has for the two of them. Fitz isn’t just referring to losing Olivia as a lover, but he values her life, her existence is important and the idea of squandering it for nothing is absurd. Again the question comes back to who will save Olivia? Does anyone care about her existence? Fitz’s outburst causes Olivia to stop and look at Fitz and see that her feelings for him aren’t one sided. This moment parallels to 3x17 when Maya was plotting to kill Fitz and Olivia needed him safe otherwise how would she survive ? How can she live knowing that the man she loves is dead when she could have saved him, she pleaded with Fitz and he went ahead with campaign causing Olivia to show up for him and save him. This is Fitz’s turn saving Olivia from herself. Just like Mellie told Olivia “get off your cross”, Olivia does need to get off her cross. Now isn’t the time to play martyr. Now is not the time to give up. It’s time to fight.
Did someone say Omaha?!? Fitz done got Broad fired and is taking over the investigation. So Broad, whose the
now! I’m gonna pack her some moisturizer and leave in conditioner cause she gonna need it in Omaha! I just want to applaud Fitz for doing the right thing and taking charge, not only did Fitz handle Angela but he also handled Olivia. Yes.
The alternate reality showed how circumstances plays a role in how we present ourselves to the world but also shows that some things are simply inevitable. Mellie is being voted in and just as she appears somewhat happy at becoming the president she sees the blood under her chin and is brought back to reality that she is now trapped as she was in the dream. Mellie didn’t win this election and she doesn’t deserve it but it’s like the old saying goes “be careful what you wish for”. Destiny has also seemed to have come full circle for Olivia as she runs to her dad only to find him handcuffed with orders from the White House. Angry and outraged Olivia swarms to the residence yelling at Fitz for arresting her father when she asked him not to and as a finale dig she tells Fitz that choosing between her dad and him he will lose, but Fitz ignores her rant and tells her “are you gonna stop yelling at me” as he turns on the screen to show Olivia her dad safely tucked in the oval. Rowan looks up at the camera and you can see his displeasure and his knowing glare but Fitz turns the tv off and turns to Olivia who has her head down in relief, regret, and this unexplainable love with tears in her eyes at what Fitz has just done for her. She’s obviously overcome with emotion as she lets out a audibly sigh of relief and remorse. Fitz hates Rowan no doubt about it but he loves Olivia more than he hates him and so he saved him to save Olivia. That’s love people.
You see. Olivia was still under this preconceived notion that she can’t have it all. That she must always chose between one or the other. She doesn’t have to chose and the beauty of it all is that Fitz never asked her too because he knows and respects that for whatever reason Olivia loves her father and he wouldn’t force her to pick aside but simply stand by her side through it all. But the problem with this is all stems from Olivia. Olivia is a hypocrite she told Fitz that he doesn’t tell her what to do yet she expected him to follow her orders and then finally she brings up having to chose between the two most important men in her life, that Fitz is the one making her chose between Rowan and him, yet it is actually Olivia that is making Fitz chose. And Olivia sees it now just how much he loves her. As Diana Ross ‘ain’t no mountain high enough" plays through the background it does correlate to the actual setting. Olivia stares at Fitz tenderly as she tries to control her feelings but she looks at his lips and you feel every bit of yearning she has to be with him. The wheels are turning in Olivia’s head as she looks at Fitz, all of these missed opportunities to seize life, regretful choices that she made in the heat of the moment, all those moments when she could have done something but she didn’t.
Olivia jumped to conclusions, voicing her contempt to the man that has always loved her despite her not loving herself. Fitz has never tried to steer Olivia in the wrong direction but subtly guide her through this journey we call life. Held back by this forceful magnitude called opposition.Focused on proving herself right by ‘winning’ Olivia has lost sight of the person she always wanted to be. Decisions are quick to make but it’s the Consequences Olivia. In this process of ‘winning’ Olivia has yet to see how much life has passed her by. After all this time, Fitz is still the one. She is at his mercy. She feels vulnerable because of him, like he carved her open and placed the light inside her so he could find her even when life becomes dark and she can’t see the way. How can she not be moved by this man sitting beside her. This intrinsic feeling burning inside her that now is the time to seize the moment. Looking into his benevolent eyes it has drastically altered her state of mind. Throwing caution to the wind Olivia grabs Fitz’s face in her’s and kisses him passionately, breathlessly.
@dontfrget What sweet torture their union always brings. Her lips dance along his soft petals slowly erasing all others with only her lips as his solitary token. The unshed tears threatening to come down at the taste of his lips merging with hers. This sudden moment of realization that this is finally happening after being parted for so long. None of this could have been predicted, Fitz wasn’t expecting anything from Olivia he most certainly wasn’t expecting her to kiss him, overwhelmed by Fitz’s act of love and general concern for her wellbeing, Olivia seizes the moment. You see in her dream that felt like reality, Olivia tried to give Fitz freedom and happiness, a choice to let him make his own decisions. We all know Fitz’s monologue was everything Olivia wishes to say but can’t find it within herself to speak. Fitz tried to give Olivia freedom, a choice, happiness and she squander it because she wasn’t ready to face the obstacles that life would take. Fitz has saved Olivia from making the biggest mistake of her life. Life has given her a second chance. The familiar curve of his lips morphing with hers is a painful reminder of what she was just willing to give up. Olivia has sacrificed for others isn’t it time she does something for herself. I mean how many second chances can one person get?
Like in the dream where Olivia is guiding Fitz into the room, that no one is privileged to see inside, she is now doing the same but this time it’s not a dream. For once Olivia is doing something for herself.
Finally a little piece of happiness has found Olivia once again. The test has yet to come.
. -How did the decision come about? Was it yours? Or did the producers feel the character had run its course?
PORTIA DE ROSSI: No, actually it was my decision. Toward the end of last year, I started an [art curation and publishing] business and I realized that the business was going to be very time-consuming if I was going to make a success of it. I had emailed Shonda [Rhimes] and told her that I had reconnected with my original passion of incorporating business and fine art. I asked her if it would be okay if I could do less shows and perhaps even leave the show. She was incredibly gracious and so lovely, really supported my decision to start a new career. Quite honestly, I just thought, I’m 44 years old and I thought that I have a chance to start something completely new that could be a 20-25 year career or more that didn’t involve — I won’t say acting at all — but quite as much acting as I have been doing this past 20 years. I just wanted to try something different and Shonda and Betsy [Beers] were completely supportive of it.
-We didn’t see Elizabeth in the alternate reality episode. In fact, we haven’t seen much of her at all this season. So was that you just wanting to branch out?
Yeah, and I really truly, truly am such a huge fan of Scandal and I truly love the show, the cast, the crew. It was one of my favorite jobs as an actor in my entire career. It was a challenging role and I really loved my experience on the set everyday. I really feel very honored to have worked for Shonda. I think she’s a brilliant woman and I just feel so grateful that I had the opportunity to work on the show, especially because I was such a fan going into the show. It really was a dream of mine to do what I’ve done for the past three seasons. Yeah, I really just wanted to try something new. I’m not saying that I’ll never act again. I might do something in the future, but I really want to see where this can lead, this new business venture; I just want to give it my all.
We will miss You ❤️
As a #portiaderossi fans we are so proud of her for her an amazing performance on #Scandal . .
Thank @shondarhimes and #Scandalabc cast and crew for #lizziebear ❤️
#tgit #kerrywashington @kerrywashington @scandalabc @scandalmakeup @tonygoldwyn @realtomverica @guillermodiazreal @joshmalinasjoshmalina @bellamyyoung @darbysofficial @portiaderossi #ellen #ellendegeneres
TG is sleeping with makeup artist that used to work at Scandal. Not sure if she's still there but her name is Jennifer and there are pics of them together. When Scandal got the EW fan award with the cast and crew present, she was the woman on KW's right side. Just so you know...
Well my name is Jennifer. I pretty good at makeup. Perhaps I’m this makeup artist. And she was at an event that happened years ago? And there are pictures of them? Well shit I’m sold.
I mean, come on. Somewhere there’s a picture with Tony and the woman who licked his neck. Is he sleeping with her too? Tony has a few pictures with Richard Lagravanese. Maybe Tony’s door swings both ways. Baby go do something productive and stop reaching.