Scandal certainly gave us one heck of a winter finale. And it is one that yet again leaves us asking the question: â€œWhere is Olivia Pope?â€ Only this time, weâ€™re not going to find her on a beautiful island with a handsome man.
But before we get to that, letâ€™s start with Cyrus. Whatâ€™s so interesting about this character is that despite how awful he can be, even purely evil at times, itâ€™s impossible not to feel sorry for him when things go badly.
Just after we learn that Elizabeth North knows it was Cyrus who had bugged her phone, photos of Cyrus having sex with Michael are released. Obviously, thatâ€™s a problem politically because the photos are of two men, but even worse, Michael is a prostitute. Good thing Olivia Pope has a plan. She suggests Cyrus and Michael get married, because America is always willing to forgive for love. Michael is willing, because as we learned last week, he actually does care for Cyrus. But Cyrus says the plan is cruel and unfair, and that he wonâ€™t disrespect his late husband, James, in that way.
Instead, Cyrus insists to Fitz that he is going to resign. He calls himself a â€œpunchlineâ€ and says that Fitz should knock him down to build himself up. With tears in both of their eyes, Cy resigns and Fitz hesitates to accept it. Itâ€™s a touching scene that reminds us of the close relationship that Fitz and Cyrus have.
For a moment, I actually believed thatâ€™s where the story was headed and that Cyrus was leaving. But letâ€™s get real. Olivia Pope isnâ€™t going to let that happen.
She interrupts Cyrus as he is packing for Europe, disgusted that he is giving up and referring to himself as a â€œgay stereotype.â€ But like I said, Olivia isnâ€™t going to let Cyrus give up so easily:
Olivia: When did you decide to let them ruin you? So your lifeâ€™s unfair. So what? Thatâ€™s how it is. So theyâ€™re mean-girling you in the press? Theyâ€™re calling you names that hurt your little soft spots deep inside? Well, so what? Thatâ€™s how it is! So you lost someone you loved? You lost the one person who felt like family? Well, guess what? Grow the hell up! Because that is how it is. The Cyrus Beene I know doesnâ€™t hide in his half empty closet and wet his pants like a little bitch baby! The Cyrus I know is a patriot! He bites the bullet, and he does what it takes to serve the republic at all costs. So I wanna know right now, in this moment, who you are!â€
And thatâ€™s the speech that lights a fire under Cyrus, who now insists that he is not, in fact a â€œlittle bitch baby.â€ He and Michael announce publicly that they are getting married, and Cyrus returns to The White House where he belongs.
Aside from lighting a fire under Cyrus and fixing his political problems, Olivia has her own issues to deal with. She realizes that she is being replaced in The White House when she watches as Fitz, Cyrus, and Abby celebrate the victory of clearing Cyrusâ€™s name. Olivia watches from a distance, and even though a guard tells her she is free to go in, she chooses not to. The look on her face says it all. Abby is replacing her. In fact, in many ways, Abby has already replaced her.
Emotionally, it makes sense this would send her right to Jake. Back at her apartment, the two of them act like a normal couple, which they so rarely are able to do. Olivia puts on music and dances around the living room, encouraging Jake to join her. He finally does, and Jakeâ€™s dance moves are nothing short of adorable. The scene is a lot like â€œdance-it-outâ€ scenes on Greyâ€™s Anatomy, only it is filled with much more tension. Jake stops dancing, just for a moment, and watches Olivia in awe. Then he says â€œman I love you.â€ Oliviaâ€™s response is that she doesnâ€™t want to choose between Fitz and Jake. She chooses herself. They kiss, and Jake heads to the bedroom to a blanket so they can have sex on the piano (and who doesnâ€™t want to see that scene?) but as he leaves her in the living room in the final moments of the winter finale, itâ€™s clear that something terrible is about to happen.
He returns to find her wine has spilled on the couch, and sheâ€™s gone.
Presumably, her father has taken her. After all, she did try to kill him earlier one of the most uncomfortable, suspenseful scenes weâ€™ve seen on Scandal.
Earlier in the episode, Rowan is waiting for Olivia when she gets home, and he is pissed. He continues going on about how Olivia has forsaken him, with Olivia standing there looking both angry and terrified. And as soon as she gets the opportunity, she shoots him. But the fun isnâ€™t loaded, and now Papa Pope is even more pissed. He completely loses it, surprised that his daughter would be willing to pull the trigger on her own father. But rather than hurting her, he walks out on her.
Rowan: No matter how hard you try to deny it, you will miss me when Iâ€™m gone.
So now that she has been taken, the easiest conclusion is that her father has something to do with it. And ultimately, that may be the case. But all the political details and tension between Fitz and his new Vice President, and the argument about whether or not theyâ€™ll be going to war, is actually the reason that Olivia is gone.
The Vice President, Andrew Nichols, is proving to be more villainous than we could have imagined. He asks Fitz who the one person is that heâ€™d do anything for, and Fitz realizes that heâ€™s done something to hurt Olivia.
-Huck might actually get his wife to believe his stories now that Charlie helped QuinnÂ get some of the B613 files. Thank goodness. Huck is far from perfect, but Iâ€™m dying for Kim to hear him out, once and for all.
-Where can I get a deck of cards with Scandal characters on them? Seriously. Thatâ€™s on my Christmas list. Jake and Quinn both have their faces on â€œkill cards,â€ which means they are both in danger. Charlie wasÂ sent to kill Quinn, but after they have a bloody brawl with â€œEndless Loveâ€ playing in the background (creepy, anyone?) he admits to her that he wouldnâ€™t have been able to go through with it.
-Mellie is amazing this season. In a confrontation with Elizabeth North, she proves why.
Elizabeth: Iâ€™m sorry, did I do something to offent you? I thought you and I were on the same page?
Mellie: Because were both screwing Andrew? That doesnâ€™t make us friends. It just makes us both at risk for the same STDs.
And from the sounds of things, Mellie is planning on running for office as soon as Fitz finishes his term. That, I would love to see.
What did you think of the winter finale? Leave your thoughts in the comments!
Scandal airs Thursdays at 9/8c on ABC.
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