Scandal seems to be speeding through this presidential election. The second half of season 5 started six months after Christmas just as candidates were announcing their presidential runs, putting it around early summer 2015. Jake’s wedding in last week’s episode was going to have a spread in the September issue of Vogue, suggesting that it was near the end of that summer.
So I’m confused by the fact that we’re already at the Florida primary, which takes place in the middle of March. This basically means that Scandal just jumped forward seven months, skipping over the Iowa caucus and a ton of other major election plot points. Yet the characters all seem to act like no time has passed since Olivia killed Andrew. Don’t think too hard about it or you’ll go crazier than Olivia.
The War for Florida
On the Republican side, Mellie and Susan are in a tight race for delegates with Hollis Doyle a distant third. They all want the endorsement of the governor of Florida to get the state’s 99 delegates. Governor Baker, played by Annie Potts, wants to endorse Mellie, but offers a deal to David Rosen to endorse Susan if he drops a federal lawsuit against a company she has ties to.
However, David is too morally pure to do it and so is Susan, much to Liz North’s disgust. Their mutual refusal to do something unethical starts to thaw the icy relationship between David and Susan.
In the end, the governor actually endorses Susan, but only because David secretly went behind her back and made that deal with the governor to drop the lawsuit. And it was all for nothing, because Hollis Doyle pulls out a surprise win anyway because the two female candidates were embroiled in their own “catfight.”
Abby vs. Olivia
Mellie needs to get to Florida to secure the governor’s endorsement, but her plane is stranded on the tarmac because Air Force One is also at the airport and Abby lies about having mechanical issues. It seems no other planes are allowed to leave before Fitz’s.
This is a bold move from Abby, who is locked in a bitter feud with Olivia over the election. With a push from Marcus, Mellie leaves her plane to talk to Fitz and get the planes off the ground. It works, but not before Fitz tells Mellie that it was Olivia who killed Andrew. Fitz agrees to take off so Mellie can get to Florida and he even accompanies her to get Mellie into the governor’s dinner.
The fact that Fitz overruled Abby gives her a bit of a meltdown in the Oval Office, yelling at Fitz about how she’s in charge. She thinks he blames her for forcing Olivia into killing Andrew. Abby was not built to be this power-hungry monster and she can’t quite handle it.
Losing the endorsement and Florida causes Olivia to have a little bit a meltdown. She throws a glass and then tells Huck that she loved killing Andrew. She also confesses to Huck that Papa Pope threatened to kill Jake if she tried to save him.
After both of their meltdowns, Abby and Olivia meet up to hash out their differences. They finally realize that they shouldn’t be fighting each other, they should be teaming up to take down Hollis Doyle. Wow, two Republican candidates teaming up to take out the obnoxious, blowhard frontrunner? It’s crazy how much this election mirror reality, especially since this episode was written and filmed before Cruz and Kasich’s recent pact.
Cyrus Loses His Family
On the Democratic side, it’s also a tight race between Frankie Vargas and Eddison Davis as voters seem to like both of them. But the real drama is in Cyrus’ personal life. Alex, the candidate’s brother, is still pushing Cyrus’ husband Michael to align with him. Michael eventually confronts Cyrus about him cheating with Tom. Cyrus willingly admits it, threatening Michael’s life if he doesn’t shut up and follow his role, which is apparently to serve as a prostitute for Cyrus and nanny for their daughter.
Michael agrees to work as a double agent, giving Alex a false flash drive that allows Cyrus to make it look like Alex leaked photos of Frankie’s daughter with cancer to the press. Vargas fires his brother, so Cyrus wins again. But he loses at home.
Michael is fed up with how he’s being treated so he left Cyrus and took their daughter with him. There are only two episodes left this season and I’ll be shocked if Michael survives both of them. You don’t mess with Cyrus, especially when he’s sleeping with an assassin.
(Image courtesy of ABC)