Scandal’s season premiere ties up some loose ends and (unsurprisingly) brings Liv back to D.C. within finger-brush distance of Fitz.
Let’s bitch it out…
I’m not gonna lie, for a split second as Scandal began, I thought I was watching a Royal Caribbean Cruise line commercial. And then, as Jake (Scott Foley) began ravaging Liv (Kerry Washington) on the beach I thought I was watching the best Royal Caribbean commercial EVER! Turns out, Jake and Liv (aka Julia Baker) have been hiding away in Zanzibar, taking their hands out of each other’s pants just enough to get replenishments.
Unfortunately, along with Liv’s crazy expensive wine comes a letter with a news article about Harrison’s death. A narrative that probably has more to do with actor Columbus Short’s real-life arrests than a planned storyline…alas, we’re now down to only 4 gladiators.
As Liv and Jake head back to DC for the funeral, she discovers not all is as she left it: Huck (Guillermo Diaz), aka Randy, is now the most intense Geek Squad representative ever. Abby (Darby Stanchfield) is the White House Press Secretary. Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) is on a rampage – firing half his cabinet – and Quinn…well Quinn (Katie Lowes) is still boring, so there’s that…
Let’s take a moment to talk about the powerhouse that is IDGAF Mellie (Bellamy Young). Side note: I’m ashamed to say I didn’t immediately remember that the Grants’ son just died…Jerry Jr. was not super memorable. Sorry JJ.
Anyhoo: The White House is Mellie’s home. Why shouldn’t she wander around it in her robe and Uggs, eating cereal straight from the box? Although I detest her overuse (and for me, that’s any use) of the word “panties” this episode, we’ve all had those “only day two for the shirt” times…You’ve got to give it to her, though, even when she’s checked out, Mellie’s still got the best quips. Talking to Fitz about the equal pay debate: “You want to get our party of good old boys to admit that the possession of a vagina doesn’t automatically mean that a sister shouldn’t get docked 32 cents on the dollar? Good for you baby. Fight the power.”
When Fitz finds out that Liv is back in town, Cyrus (Jeff Perry) and Mellie stand in for us viewers: we know what happens next, we’ve seen it a million times. Ugh. Mellie’s one directive: When you see her, you tell me.
As expected, Liv finds a case when she gets back that makes her realize how much she missed “gladiating.” She decides to stay to defend a Congressional staffer who may have killed a Senator in self defense during an attempted rape. During a press conference, Liv not only makes her client sound like Mother Theresa, but also gets in a plug for Fitz’s equal pay for women bill. Nice.
- Was I the only one who was shocked when Mellie revealed that Fitz tried to kill himself?! Was it because of JJ’s death? Liv’s disappearance with Jake? Big Jer’s betrayal? So many questions!
- Due to the fact that I knew Columbus Short was written off the show due to off-camera domestic violence troubles, I didn’t feel as depressed as I would have about Harrison’s death. The character was a huge part of the gladiator team and yet there was really no emotion associated with his death, even the other actors seemed to be phoning it in, having to keep repeatedly stating “Harrison died, it’s a big deal” as if to remind themselves…
- If you weren’t on Team Jake before this episode, look me in the eyes and tell me you aren’t now. I am definitely onboard with Jake’s No Talking Turn rule. Also, if you like that, you’ll love this.
- It was a great touch that Quinn tracked down Liv through her love of red wine.
- Portia de Rossi and her 1980s Working Girl hair…yikes.
- Apparently Liv’s dad “took care of” her mom. Smart Move. I was done with that terrorism storyline before it even began.
- The scene between Abby and David (Joshua Malina) about his nomination for Attorney General was great. Abby gets a solid speech about power and affecting change, and we get some background on what happened to their relationship. Meanwhile, do you think over the hiatus the actors missed talking in only impassioned, snarky speeches? Did they start intensely shouting at their spouses about the significance of taking out the trash?
- Mellie (on her new (non)grooming habits): “It’s 1976 down there”
- Jake: “It’s always his turn, despite the fact that I’m the one you like to ride, I’m the one who makes you moan, I’m the one that reaches you places he can’t begin to touch” [fans self…is it hot in here?]
- Abby: “I have red hair” David: “You have a colorist”
What did you think? Does this meet your expectations after last season’s cliffhanger? Do you hope to see a new gladiator appointed now that the ranks have thinned? Sound off below!
Scandal airs Thursdays at 9pm EST on ABC