In ‘A Few Good Women,’ the ladies of Scandal band together to address sexual assault in the military.
Let’s bitch it out…
The B613 Hostage across the Hall
This is not to be confused with the B613 agent in Liv’s bed, or the B613 agent in the JAG uniform (more on that in a minute). Russell (Cornelius Smith Jr.) is being held hostage in Lois’s old apartment, with Huck (Guillermo Diaz) and Quinn (Katie Lowes) babysitting. I am so OVER torture porn in Scandal. I do, however, appreciate Quinn’s rant that she could never get abs like Russell, no matter how hard she tried. We’ve all been there.
Jake (Scott Foley), meanwhile, is recuperating in Liv’s (Kerry Washington) bed and discovers Russell (Sidenote: it DEVASTATES me that Liv got blood over that gorgeous white coat). He lets Liv know that Russell will never give up details about Operation Foxtail because they were trained the same way. “The only difference is that I’m in love with you. Command would call that a defect. Russell does not have that defect,” Jake says very matter-of-factly. This is the point where I’d fall a little more in love with Jake, if he didn’t just remind us of how creepy it is that Liv’s dad sends all these men to study her every move and seduce her. Ick.
The best part of this plot line is the bonding that occurs between Rowan’s golden boys, Jake and Russell. They reminisce about Rowan’s manipulation, with Russell doing a KILLER Joe Morton impression. I was certain Jake was either going to kill Russell or let him go at the end of their chat, but Jake ultimately ties Russell back up and leaves him for Huck.
Susan Ross Continues to be Awesome
On a tour of a naval ship, Susan (Artemis Pebdani) meets Ensign Martin, a young officer with bruises on her wrists. Susan determines that she was raped (which turns out to be true, but her deductive abilities initially seems like quite the leap). Susan brings the Ensign to the White House, where Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) and Cyrus (Jeff Perry) refuse to step in, since the military handles their own judicial matters.
Susan calls for backup in the form of OPA. Liv, naturally, doesn’t hesitate to take the case and gets Ensign Martin to give up the name of her rapist: a four star admiral close to the President. Yikes.
Meanwhile, a JAG lawyer Virgil Plunkett (Dan Byrd) is assigned as the prosecutor on the case. The Navy obviously selects a green, starry-eyed lawyer who had never tried a rape case before, which means that Liv literally has to write notes to Virgil to prompt him to ask questions during the Admiral’s deposition. This does not bode well. During the deposition, I half expected the Admiral to start screaming “You want me on that wall, you NEED me on that wall.”
Liv ultimately tries to prove the Admiral was on the ship during the rape, which he denies. This prompts her to use her secret weapon (her relationship with Fitz) to get the security logs to prove that the Admiral’s aide used his ID card to cover his tracks. The Admiral confesses and Ensign Martin is allowed to return to her ship. Justice!
The Virginia Senate Race
Meanwhile, the new Mellie (Bellamy Young) / Fitz relationship continue to be my favourite. There’s an honestly and acceptance (like when Fitz mentions Liv’s call and Mellie replies “that’s good”) that strengthens their bond. Mellie needs to find a way to win the female vote in her Virginia Senate race, which leads Elizabeth (Portia de Rossi) to urge her to go to Springfield, where her son died, and give a speech focused on JJ. As Fitz watches Mellie struggle with this, they comfort each other and reminisce about how old JJ would be now, and what colleges he would be applying to.
When the press starts asking Mellie questions about Ensign Martin’s rape case, she is shocked that Fitz doesn’t intervene. It’s nice to see Mellie address a political issue because it’s the right thing to do, not just to win. The look in her face as she finds out Fitz wasn’t going to take action is heartbreaking, no doubt because she was thinking about her own rape.
In the end Mellie decides to go to Springfield and throw Fitz under the bus (as he had previously told her to do). During her speech, she publicly disagrees with the way the administration had handled things and calls for an independent tribunal to process sexual assault cases in the military. The crowd loves it and Mellie is back in the game.
As Mellie leaves the stage, she greets one of her big donors: ROWAN! Also, her Secret Service refers to her as “Foxtail.” B613’s secret operation has to do with Mellie!
But wait, that’s not the only big reveal…our green JAG lawyer Virgil shows up at Liv’s neighbor’s door. When Huck answers, he incapacitates him and frees Russell. B613 is EVERYWHERE!
- I know B613 is all powerful, but NO ONE noticed that Virgil Plunkett (best name ever, by the way) looks completely different? There’s not one person he would have seen in those JAG hallways that recognized him?
- Liv worked for the White House for years and she never knew Mellie’s secret service callsign? How often do they change those things?
- I would like to see a show about what happened to Ensign Martin after her return to her ship. Was she praised for her courage or was she blacklisted for being a whistleblower?
- Cyrus: “You stole a United States Servicewoman?!?”
What did you think? Were you as shocked as I was that Virgil Plunkett is B613? What do you think they want from Mellie? Do you care? Sound off below!
Scandal airs its season finale next Thursday at 9pm EST on ABC