As if you have forgotten, season two ended with Olivia being named as the President’s “mistress.” (Let’s put that in quotes, because as POTUS Fitz often reminds us, Liv is so much more than that.) Amidst all of the reporters and papa-papa-paparazzi, Liv is shoved into a car with Mysterious Man. Liv says, “Dad?” And every American is like:
Now, on to season three:
The media is freaking out about the Olitz scandal, and OPA’s phones are ringing off of the hook. The Gladiators unplug all of the phones, and we see an interview with the reporter that broke the story.
Back to the car with Olivia and Mysterious Man, who will now be called his actual name – Rowan. One of the first things that Olivia says to her father is, “Why did you try to have me killed?” [Wait, so Olivia knows what her father does? She knows that he is B6-13? She knows that he wanted to kill her? She never acted like she knew that her father was trying to kill her?? – I AM SO CONFUSED!] Then, Rowan responds, “I didn’t try to have you killed. I tried to have Jake Ballard killed.” [Wait, WHAT??????? He better not kill Jake Ballard! But, he had ample opportunities to kill Jake if he wanted to. So, that girl assassin that broke into Olivia’s apartment was there to kill Jake? Huh? I AM SO CONFUSED!]
We see where Olivia gets her fast-paced-monologue skills when Rowan gives a speech at how much trouble Olivia has gotten herself into. There is no hope for her. Even though she has friends in the White House, the White House will destroy her. She should have strived for something better than First Lady – Secretary of State or Chief of Staff. He even has the gall to refer to THE Olivia Pope as “mediocre.” It is decided that Olivia needs to disappear. [Isn’t it odd to see Olivia look so defeated and belittled when she is always so strong and powerful? Isn’t it strange that a father can still have that effect on such a strong grown woman? Just a thought…]
Olivia gets on the plane to disappear, but first she calls Cyrus. He tells her that they are on the same side and he will help her. She cannot run. He says that if she disappears, Fitz will think that Cy had her killed – and we can’t have that. Cyrus using some Ross lines from the F.R.I.E.N.D.S. finale convinces her, and she gets off the plane.
Her father is not very happy about this and starts yelling at her. Liv’s phone call with Cyrus must have brought her gumption back, and she stands up Rowan. When Rowan asks her, “How stupid can you be?” She answers, “I am many things, but stupid is not one of them!” Yeah, you go, girl! She gets back in the car and tells the driver to take her to her office.
At the office, the reporters and papa-papa-paparazzi are out in full force. She can’t get out of the car, and some cameraman actually manages to get in the car with her to take a picture. But have no fear – Huck to the rescue! Huck gets Liv out of the car, and with an endearing, “Take my hand,” he leads her through the crowd and into the building.
Olivia wants everyone to go back to business as usual, but bad news: all of their clients fired OPA. Uh oh. Olivia will not accept the mess that she has dragged herself into, so Harrison wrangles up the other Gladiators and convinces them that they are going to have to fix this on their own to help out Liv.
Back at the White House, Cyrus is trying to convince VP Sally Langston to take some public appearances and speak in support of POTUS Fitz. She says that she is not going to support a man that broke his marriage vows. Then, in one my favorite scenes in the episode, Sally and Cyrus engage in a very intellectual and witty argument.
Sally: I will not be surrendering that piece of my soul. I am the Lord’s witness…
Cy: No! The people. The people, Madame Vice President… The people elected you to be the President’s sidekick, not the Lord! The Lord did not fill out his voter registration card. So guess what. The Lord does not have the right to vote in the United States of America.
Sally: I am done with you and your superiority and your rudeness. I have never once mentioned how I feel about your godless homosexual lifestyle and that poor, sweet brown baby that you have dragged into it. I keep my personal opinions to myself. But you find any opportunity each and every day to belittle me and my desire to serve the Lord. You have no respect. Not for me. Not for the voters I handed you on a platter the last election, the voters I will take with me when I go.
Daaaanngg, Sally … Anyways, then Fitz talks to Sally alone and convinces her to help him out a little because he is trying to own up to his mistakes and do the right thing.
A news station airs a cell phone video of POTUS Fitz leaving Liv’s apartment building, so Cyrus instructs the staff to start a “kill folder” on Olivia Pope. I do not like the sound of that! They go through her childhood, family, schooling, and dating history, until Cyrus finally says, “Enough! Enough to play the ambitious slut card.” Uh oh.
Olivia gets a call from Rowan, and they meet where all sketchy conversation have to happed: a parking garage. Liv promptly asks, “Where is Jake Ballard?!” [Okay, so … Olivia knows that Jake was B6-13. And now she is asking her dad where he is. So she must have known this whole time that her Dad was B6-13. Why didn’t she reach out to him before when she knew that people were trying to kill her? Does she simply have a terrible relationship with him? Maybe she thought he was dead or something …] Rowan won’t tell her where Jake is, just that he is in a heap o’ trouble because “no one refuses an order in his business.” He says that Olivia can choose not to accept the way that he does business, but then he says, “I do my job so that fatty can watch reality tv, eat fast food, stare at the Internet … and never use their teeny, tiny brains to think about the freedom that I make possible! They never think about it so they sleep like babies at night.”
Then, Olivia gets some secret sealed folder out of her safe, calls some secret number, and gives them some secret code and password. A bunch of unmarked cars come a pick her up. What is going on?! She is lead to a bunker, where Fitz is (im)patiently waiting. And we get a beautiful “Hi” scene. And I am squealing at my tv right now.
Fitz is not very happy that Liv “pulled the fire alarm” because she can never get another code. So apparently, the Providence code was put in place in case there was an attack or extreme emergency, and Liv needed to be brought into the bunker. But now, if that happens, she can’t go to the bunker and will not be safe, and Fitz is very upset about that – in a very caring and worried way.
Liv tells him that they need to come up with a plan, but they have to wait on Mellie – she needs to be in on the plan. At one point in the negotiation talks, Mellie calls Liv a “whore” and then this happens:
Then, Fitz gives a really funny look to Mellie, like “Yeah, you better listen to her.”
They all agree on a narrative that is “all true, but just not the whole truth.” It involves Fitz and Liv only sleeping together twice – once after the inauguration and once after the assassination attempt. It never happened again and only those two times.
Mellie exits the bunker, which leaves Olitz alone. Fitz knows that deep down, Liv is really upset about all of this – her name being out, the paparazzi, and having to belittle their relationship down to “just sex” only two times. Fitz wraps his arms around Liv in an attempt to comfort her. Liv breaks down for all of 10 seconds, recomposes herself, and exits the bunker.
Fitz calls Sally into the Oval. He tells her that when he and Mellie make a statement to the press, she has a window. He instructs her to take that window, condemn his actions, and rise to the top of the party. Wait, so now Fitz is sabotaging his reelection? Huh?
So, the affair is going to be confirmed. Fitz’s approval ratings are going to tank. He may not be reelected. Olivia is going to be the new Monica Lewinsky – a national joke. It’s all about to go down. Or is it….?
The Gladiators are all standing around a disc. [What’s on the disc!?] Someone says that it’s not too late to back out now. Quinn has a suggestion:
Oh, Quinn… When everyone doesn’t immediately jump on board with Harrison’s plan, it’s time for another Harrison-Gladiator speech. “Are we Gladiators – or are we bitches?” Everyone says that they are Gladiators, so they secret-disc mission is a go. Harrison passes the disc off to Cyrus.
A video of redheaded Communications staffer, Jeannine Locke saying that POTUS Fitz is hot is aired on all the news stations. The video, along with some faux-confirmations by upper-level White House staffers and some emails confirms that Jeannine is the mistress and not Olivia Pope. And somehow, everyone thinks that this solves all the problems.
Fitz still had an affair. So, this may solve problems for Olivia, but not for Fitz’s reelection campaign. It was still an affair. AND, what about that tape of Fitz leaving Liv’s apartment. No one cares about that anymore? The investigative reporters in the Fictional USA need to get their act together and start asking some questions. Somebody needs to get Will McAvoy and Mac McHale on this [that's a Newsroom reference - you should watch it.]
Hold up again.
Mellie has figured out that Fitz leaked Olivia’s name to the press. WHAT?!? Why, would he do that? I am still a little bit iffy on this topic, so if anyone has any insight, please comment. So, apparently Fitz leaked Liv’s name, so that Mellie couldn’t. He knew that Mellie still had that card to play whenever she wanted. So Fitz “set Liv free” by leaking her name. But, who really cares who leaked it – it got out. I guess, if Mellie herself told the press, then Olitz couldn’t control the situation because Mellie could tell the whole story – and who wouldn’t believe the First Lady. Anyways, Fitz confesses that when he went back to Mellie at Blair House and laid his head in her lap, that was just a move to make Mellie think that he was coming back. Well, that’s good because no one liked it when Fitz crawled back to her.
So, Liv is going to represent Jeannine Locke. Not sure how that one is going to work out, but I guess that we will find out next week.
Oh, and Rowan brings Cyrus in, says something about the republic being in danger (he really likes that phrase), and shows him the redacted information on Fitz and Jake’s classified Navy mission. Cyrus seems shocked. WHAT’S IN THE FOLDER!!!!??!?!?!?!? So, all this mess with B6-13, Jake Ballard, etc. doesn’t really have anything to do with Olitz affair, and more to do with Operation Remington? Ooohhhhhh…….. Nope, still confused.
Jake Ballard better be back next week. I miss him. Here he is, just in case you forgot what he looks like:
And here’s this gif just because I think that it’s funny, and Shonda is really confusing me right now.
(Warning: That gif may show up at the end of every Scandal episode.)