ConStar Watches Scandal “Everything is Coming Up Mellie”

I don’t even know where to begin! It’s amazing how you can guess certain plot points (and plan to *finally* try to write spec scripts based on them) and STILL be shocked when they actually occur on the show.

Mellie has long been the underdog of Scandal since the beginning. People fight over #TeamFitz vs #TeamJake for Olivia’s affections, but rarely is anyone on Mellie’s team. This season we’ve seen a different side to Mellie’s character (including the ever memorable Drunk!Mellie scene–we’ll all have to go back and watch that for hints!), but tonight’s episode takes the cake!

We flashback 15 years to before Fitz was in the political eye. His father is awful as usual and Fitz doesn’t want to run because of what he did as a marine/Operation Remington. “Big Jerry” continues to berate him and take the credit for everything he is (“That’s all you are is my son…not as smart…I made you…I can destroy you.” ), leaving Fitz unwilling to run for office, despite Mellie and a bearded (in more ways than one) Cryus’ pleas for him to do so. Mellie tries to talk to Big Jerry, but in his drunken state, he rapes her. It’s awful and Bellamy Young pulls off the horror of the act and walking back into her and Fitz’ bedroom just right. The choice of her full length clothing, turtleneck included, and no makeup is a classic but heartbreaking choice. But Mellie soldiers on, dedicated to the cause of getting Fitz elected. Weeks later, Mellie tells Fitz–who’s decided to run for office after Mellie gets Jerry to back him up–that’s she’s pregnant. Fitz knows his father’s going to make them name a boy after him. And the entire audience shudders.

I had a theory that Teddy wasn’t Fitz’ kid (which is still a valid theory, not yet proven), but as @DetroitDelta15 on Twitter thought–what if Fitz is infertile? None of those Grant children could be his. This certainly explains why they have been shipped off to boarding school all this time; Mellie must have a hard time looking at them.

Mellie’s portion of the episode was about sacrifice. She says to Fitz, that he doesn’t understand what she’s given up for him, given away. (Again, I need to rewatch the drunk!Mellie scene for clues in that speech.) What has Fitz given up? For Mellie? For Liv, even? He “threatens” to give it all up for Liv all the time, but he hasn’t. He’s still the president, they are not in Vermont making jam. He’s still married. He still calls Liv. He has it all. Liv gave up her relationship with Edison and is not fully committed to the one she kinda has with Jake right now, because she’s still hung up on Fitz. We see what Mellie gave up for him. When will Fitz have to sacrifice anything?

As if this wasn’t enough for one episode, Shonda Rhimes pulls another one on us in the other half of the episode. While Quinn tries to get down with Charlie from B6-13, the Pope and Associates gang look into Maya Lewis’ death. They determine that someone was brought off the aircraft before it took off; everyone goes looking. They track down someone who might’ve seen the passenger who was taken away, but Quinn kills him because she was distracted by Charlie’s lips. He told her she was drugging the guard, but the poison kills him instead. Quinn has been initiated into B6-13. Clearly by her reaction after the man dies, she isn’t ready, but we’ll see what Rowan’s plan for her is.

Speaking of Papa Pope, he goes to a prison looking for the passenger who got let off the plane. Shoddy prison blanket unrolls and it’s none other than Maya Lewis! Who has been alive this WHOLE TIME! Many fans knew it, but why is she in jail? Why is she under the name Omar Dresden? Why didn’t she seem too surprised to see Eli?

Going back to the theme of sacrifice, I’m sure it will be explored more next week, but it is clear Maya Lewis-Pope sacrificed something. Eli did too, if he loves her. If he doesn’t, he still gave up Olivia, who he clearly loves. They both sacrificed their happy family–for what? Hopefully we’ll find out next week.

Quotes

“How am I? I’m surrounded by murderers. That’s how I am.”

“I’m standing in a graveyard made by people I thought I loved.”

“I love you.” “So what?”

“The pieces of myself I have given away.”

“Our daughter has been asking about you.”

We’ll have plenty of time to discuss Mama Pope’s survival next week. This week I want to know: Are you #TeamMellie? What convinced you? Was it her revealing past in this episode? Or are you yet convinced she deserves our sympathy?

sidenote: I really did think about writing a Scandal spec today and was legit thinking of 1. Quinn trying to kill someone and either doing it and freaking out or killing the wrong person. Either way, she is and will always be in over her head. It also featured Liv discovering Fitz wasn’t Teddy’s dad and Mellie needing Liv to “fix” it for her. That’s as far as I got. Crazy how it just got shot down basically. #sigh #tvspecwriterproblems

 

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ConStar Watches Scandal “Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington”

The last two episodes of Scandal were explosive through and through; this one simmered more before delivering some blows. Even though Mary took up most of the screen time in today’s episode, the scene with Huck and Olivia and Mellie’s scene with Fitz carried the most emotional weight this episode, but let’s start with Mary.

Poor Mary. I had a feeling she would blow herself up if she found out her son was a terrorist. It really does suck because Liv had a choice to tell her the truth, she chose the lie, and her lie cost her. I’m surprised they didn’t give her a wardrobe change towards the end of the episode; but I suppose the soot on her light colored suit speaks for itself. I suppose she who wears the white hat must always be wary of dirt getting on it.

Olivia/Huck/Eli. There was no answer Huck could give that would save the relationship between Huck and Liv: Either Huck kills Papa Pope (I guess I’ll call him Eli now?–thanks cell phone caller ID) and Liv is destroyed or Huck doesn’t kill him and Huck is destroyed. We got treated to the latter, but I won’t be surprised if the former also happens sometime down the road. It’s a no win situation. The bond they had before is irreparably damaged. Eli is awful, but I love him for it; I love what he brings to the show and the depth he’s brung to the characters. And I love the lines they give him, so deliciously theatrical. So clearly he is going to be around for a while. it was never going to be that easy.

It’s interesting to me that Huck never met this man before, so the commands coming from Command were always faceless, yet Huck felt the man’s power over him enough to kill that man (who we’ll get to briefly later). But I guess if I met someone who I was told was God (obviously I’d have to have very good reason to believe such a claim–just go with me here), after listening to him all this time, and he told me to go do something, I suppose I’d just do it too. Out of fear, out of loyalty–there are many reasons why Huck went and did what he did. Let’s not also forget, though, that Huck loves this stuff. It’s his drug. And Eli handed him a hit on a platter. Huck kind of had no control over his actions. Poor, poor Huck. He and Liv are basically brother and sister: they suffer from the same damaging “parental” figure who they can’t escape from.

“He owns me too.”

Yes, girl, even that wine you’re drinking is a product of his influence on you. Huck is back in the hole and Eli is trying to drag Liv in too. She says “Nobody walks away from him,” not realizing that both Huck and Jake are alive because of his love for her (which I still believe must be the one genuine, non evil thing about him). If Liv liked every member of B6-13, I don’t wonder if he wouldn’t shut it down.

[Anyone else catch Eli’s eye twitch when Huck’s gun was in his face? I think he stood his ground, but thinks that Huck is a real threat to him. He’s just aware of his power over him and knows he’s able to make use of it. But I don’t think Eli underestimates Huck. I think he might be very afraid. Let’s not forget that Huck, while possibly unaware–and possibly unwilling to use this tactic–has Olivia. Huck could threaten Olivia in some way and Papa Pope might change his whole perspective on things. Just something to think about.]

Fitz/Liv: I bet that 4th fellow in the office when Fitz was telling Liv about Mary’s son was like “Oh, Miss Pope is about to lose her job or something for hanging up on the president,” not knowing he’s her boo. Also Fitz had to tell Liv that guy was on the phone very clearly so she didn’t slip and say something he wasn’t supposed to hear.

Let’s talk about the quiet, but powerful scene Mellie had. It’s the most imperfect we’ve seen her, if I’m remembering correctly. Her hair is loose, she has little make up on, and she was so relaxed. Drunk!Mellie might be my favorite Mellie. Even a bit of an accent popped out there, especially as she talked about her Daddy’s “hootch.” Homegirl knows what’s up. She knows that if Olivia Pope died, she’d have nothing. Fitz wouldn’t have the time or the energy for her; it would all go in to grief and trying to champion some sort of monument to “Saint Olivia Pope.”

I am spectacular but I cannot compete with religious fervor.

Mellie knows how to run what’s given to her, but a curveball like that would take things out of her hands. As she said,

“As long as she’s still alive she’s your flaw. your achilles heel. She’s the string I’ll pull to make my puppet husband dance.”

Mellie y’all! They both, but she especially, are done playing. They are even over playing for the public; Cyrus was going to have a coronary trying to get them to go to Camp David together. Poor Teddy, he’s going to have some deep emotional scars from them yelling at each other in his face like that. Mellie intends to play the Olivia card to get what she wants; I wonder what she has planned…

Remington UpdateLet’s see: The man Huck murdered wanted to speak to the president about Remington. He though he was the only honorable person involved. Does Jake’s release have anything to do with all the Remington stuff coming out? Why did that man not try before to speak to the president? What prompted him to want to do it now?

I don’t like David and Cy in the same room together. They’re more than opposite sides of the coin, that implies shared traits. I worry Cy will corrupt David, but David shocked me (and twitter) tonight when he showed up and OUT against Cy. I was proud of him. I wonder what this might mean for their interactions in the future. Cyrus is always trying to blackmail or guilt or extort something out of somebody; David isn’t letting that happen. You go, David!

This week and (it seems) next week are sort of back to the case of the week format, but so far it hasn’t lost the serial edge that it seemed to last season after the Defiance arc ended. Is it next Thursday yet?

Quotes

“I’m all killed out today.”
“Wrap it in plastic and put it in a dumpster so it never bothers you again.”
Ok Dexter…

One last thing: Liv’s phone blowing was UP tonight… oh wait, too soon? 😉

ConStar Watches Scandal “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”

I was hoping Scandal season 3 would be good; I wasn’t expecting it to be THIS good! I don’t even know where to begin!!! I’ll try to organize my thoughts to make it easier to read! (but it’s shorter than last weeks, actually! Surprised me!)

Quotes

“I can kill a man with very little effort and a lot of joy but I try not to.”

“You’re evil.” “You’re welcome.”

“I am your father. So I’m going to explain to you how to behave in my presence. You do not ask questions that you can’t handle the answer to. You do not make judgements about things you cannot imagine. You don’t know me that way, you don’t ever want to know me that way; but if you push you will know me well and that would break my heart. Because I’m enjoying these Sunday dinners that you make me pay for. Now, you are on my dime, pick up your menu, order your meal, and tell me about your day.”

“How presidential are my balls now, Cy?”

“We are family, sweetie. We are never done.”

Questions

  • What exactly does (Eli? Rowan? Which is his name? I’ve seen cast members say Rowan, but his cover is Eli…?) he do for B6-13? Is he in charge? Or just one leader of others?
  • Some timeline qs: Liv’s mom dies, Papa Pope “grieves” and sends her away. Is it guilt because he had something to do with it? Or he gets deeper involved in B6-13 to exact revenge because of her death? Is his love for his family the softest thing about him?
  • Who were those muggers at Union Station? Could they be more than muggers? Or simply that plot device to show Liv Huck’s nature?

Thoughts

So I guess Liv is over Verna, huh? I thought in the finale, she said she didn’t know if she could continue knowing that he killed Verna. THOUGH, she DID ask, as someone on Twitter put it, “her main squeeze to find and save her side piece.” So maybe she’s just waiting it out until Jake comes back…?

We’re going to get just the pieces of what’s in the file every episode aren’t we? It will probably be an episode 13 reveal. There was so much in this episode but don’t think I’m going to forget that “Remington” detail Cyrus gave us. What’s in the file?! (also, Cyrus and Papa must have known each other 5 years ago, the way Papa Pope threw his name at Liv at dinner the way he did.)

The scenes with Papa Pope from 5 Years Ago. They were amazing. He went from this picture of a loving dad who was trying to make amends (and I am sure that it was true, as the confidence of his lies must have been based in truth to be so genuine) to showing Olivia the man he really is. I’m skipping ahead a bit but I canNOT believe he said “You don’t know me like that…”! When he flipped on her when she confronted him, I nearly died. No really, I couldn’t breath while he was talking and I started tearing up from crying. But he should have KNOWN she could figure it out: he’s paying for her law degree and she has his genes! Of course she’s going to find out! She’s Olivia Pope! But I guess he hadn’t seen her in so long and was trying so hard on the emotional side that he didn’t think about her logical side (which I’m sure she gets from him). But, as my friend said on Twitter, I wouldn’t walk away from my dad if I just found out he’s a killer. Choose life. And now we know why she broke it off with Edison in the past. They hold a lot of power over each other, those Popes.

Focusing on the Popes in the present: He just suddenly shows up at her office! Huck is there, but I guess, considering the ending, that they’ve never met before, even under B6-13. I guess he’s the shadowy figurehead that no one sees? I’m confused about his position. Is he the leader? Just a commander for one section? It’s interesting how easy it was for Olivia to negotiate getting Jake back. All it took was Sunday dinners again. I suppose we must believe that his interest in his daughter is genuine.

The scene in the office between them was great.

*smiling* “You need to leave.”

Those fake smiles between them for her co-workers was a genius move; I didn’t notice in the first few seconds that their smiles were for show, not until they shot from outside the room with no sound. Brilliant. And it’s so both of them. There are so many ways in which you see the similarities between them; because with as little time they spend together, they just know what to do together. Imagine if they were on the same side, the damage they could do; the power they would have.

Wine: Papa Pope introduces Liv to wine! He’s where her wine-only diet comes from! It makes you think, however, what her thoughts might have been in all those previous scenes with wine. Those scenes have deeper meaning now. Could she have been thinking of her father?

Fitz/Liv: I think Fitz has a bigger game for Liv and the public. He had a proud gleam in his eyes when she was fighting for Jeanine at the press conference. And he told her to “go for the jugular,” why?

Olivia wanted two things: The free Jeanine from the scandal and the free Jake. She tried to appeal to both Fitz and her Dad. No matter how she came at it, there was only ever one solution. Jeanine burns. She wanted Jake more than she wanted Jeanine free; she asked about him more.

Harrison: Harrison is coming to his wit’s end, I believe. The side-eye he gave her when she walks into her office when the interview is about to begin was quick but deep. And Black Girl Nerds on Twitter thought that there might have been a connection between Harrison and Papa Pope that they might have been suppressing. I ran with this idea, here it goes: Harrison is overly good to Olivia; what if he is doing so because he is trying to pull a Papa Pope card and make up for a transgression in the past that affected Olivia? (I always go back to the mother theory since we found out but it could be anything I guess). That’s why we haven’t gotten Harrison’s backstory yet, because he’s atoning for something in his past that directly affects Olivia. (I wonder if she knows about whatever it is and that’s why she kind of snubs him the way she does?)

Huck: FIRST OF ALL, I CAN’T BELIEVE HUCK TOUCHED LIV LIKE THAT! We know he’s crazy, but we all thought Liv was his center; his one person he wouldn’t ever mess with. But she lied to him and kept her dad from him. The person who ruined his life and put him in a hole and made him crazy. Poor Huck. (Though upon rewatch, he doesn’t go for her neck. He’s wringing her chin kind of loosely. But the move still did the damage it intended to.) Now Huck and Liv’s relationship is broken. Who knows if it can come back together. However, now that Jake is back, she is exchanging one Huck for another.

This episode has a lot of people playing someone’s weakness against them. Fitz uses Cyrus’ love of White House power in the scene before he does the press conference. Liv uses Fitz insecurities about the election to (try) to get him to choose her side in the Jeanine situation. Fitz uses the VP’s dislike of sexual immorality against her to get her to leave him alone when she confronts him about lying about Jeanine being the one (“I had Jeanine six ways to Sunday all over this White House…”). Papa uses Jake to try to convince Liv to burn Jeanine. Olivia uses Papa’s desire for Sunday dinner to get Jake released. I’m sure I’m missing more, but there were a lot of power plays used in this episode.

Other thoughts:

  • Didn’t Amanda Tanner get kidnapped from Liv’s house and then murdered?! Liv, don’t leave that girl in your house!
  • Olivia is on the phone, Fitz kicks everyone out the room. ON THE PHONE lol
  • David Rosen’s goatee lol.
  • Ohh that’s why she gave the ring back to Edison the first time! But she only accepts his proposal to blackmail her dad… so it wasn’t going to last anyway.
  • Olivia is flawless even in the middle of the night on her way to the morgue.
Only about 100 words shorter than last week! I surely thought I’d go longer! Thanks for reading!