'Scandal' Season 5, Episode 9 recap
Katie Lowes and George Newbern in “Scandal.”
Who needs Vermont when you have your very own country to rule?
Because that’s exactly the situation Olivia (Kerry Washington) finds herself in when we open on the fall “Scandal” finale: she’s America’s princess, complete with red dresses and puppies and Christmas carols.
Even people asking for her help just want the White House’s cookie recipe.
Down in the chambers where some real lawmaking happens (yes, I laughed when I typed that just like you laughed when you read it), Mellie (Bellamy Young) is staging her own filibuster to save “those pesky women’s issues” from being cut from the congressional spending bill.
The junior senator from Virginia has the floor, gentlemen, and she will be heard.
Papa Pope (Joe Morton) doesn’t like the burger Huck (Guillermo Diaz) brought back to his hostage, but he does like screwing with his captor’s mind. How, you ask? Just ask about Huck’s son and you’ll find yourself with his hands around your throat. Nice and simple.
Fitz (Tony Goldwyn), in his infinite wisdom, assumes that Mellie’s filibuster is a way to show him up, because, well, of course he does.
But this time, and for possibly the first time, Olivia shuts him down: “Maybe it’s not about you.”
Cornelius Smith Jr. and Katie Lowes in “Scandal.”
So the leader of the free world storms out like a sulky toddler.
What do you mean that runaway second election seems like a bad idea in retrospect?
In her only storyline that’s not “lovesick puppy dog chasing after David Rosen (Josh Malina),” Susan Ross comes to Mellie’s aid with a lengthy question so the former First Lady can, ahem, relieve herself somewhere other than the Senate floor.
Because Shonda Rhimes is still trying to convince us that “Scandal” is about scandal, not lovestruck politicians who don’t know how to lead, we come to the reason that Mellie’s crusade was so important: Olivia is getting an abortion.
Fitz doesn’t know about the baby or the procedure or the secret hooch in the closet, but he does know that she missed their dinner, and that, folks, is the beginning of the end. Because for all of their glitz and their glamour, Olitz can fight like the best of them. And when they fight, they spiral. And when they spiral, they finally tell the truth.
And then, we end the first half of “Scandal” season 5 just like we began: Olivia, on the couch, with her popcorn and her red wine.
John Prosky in “Scandal.”
– “Looks like Olivia. Sounds like Olivia.” Or, you know, a Stepford Wife.
– Joshua Malina and egg nog will forever remind me of “Sports Night.” Please tell me I’m not the only one.
– I’m still not sure of the endgame for David and Liz, other than a love triangle to replace Fitz-Olivia-Jake, but it’s far from a compelling storyline.
– “We now return to ‘It’s a Wonderful Life,’ already in progress.”
– Kerry Washington, at her best, is phenomenal. And tonight, she was at her best.
– “Did you shoplift Christmas?”