Scandal doesn’t hold back when it comes to the winter finales. Last year Olivia was kidnapped, but this year there’s a whole new kind of tragedy. Olivia and Fitz’s relationship has been rocky all season and in this episode, it all comes to a boil. And if you’re hoping for Olitz to move to Vermont and start making jam, you will be very, very disappointed.

Their relationship is basically over and I don’t see any possible road to recovery. Also, we find out who’s behind Lazarus 1, but that gets handled with one long overdue bullet.

Mellie Filibusters for Planned Parenthood

A budget bill moves Planned Parenthood into discretionary funding, meaning the money isn’t guaranteed, which Mellie objects to. So the former First Lady stands up for women’s rights by filibustering like a boss in the Senate, just as everyone is about to leave for their Christmas vacations. The bigger problem is that, if she succeeds and the bill isn’t passed, the government will shutdown.

The irony is that, as Fitz complains that this is a stunt to raise her profile, Olivia is envious of Mellie. While Olivia is playing the First Lady, planning parties and talking about cookies, Mellie has become the real Gladiator, fighting for feminist values just like Olivia used to do.

Olivia is inspired and enlists the Vice President to help out by having her go to the Senate and ask a lengthy question so Mellie can take a quick bathroom break. During the break, Olivia gives Mellie a pep talk about being the biggest bitch she knows. It works and the filibuster is successful. Wait, does that mean the government is shut down?

Olivia’s Big Secret

During the filibuster, Olivia misses a Cabinet dinner with Fitz. Why? Well, it turns out Olivia had a much bigger reason to help Mellie keep Planned Parenthood funded. Olivia Pope is pregnant! But that’s not all, because a life of domesticity tying her to Fitz forever doesn’t seem that appealing, because she missed the party to get an abortion! Yes, that just happened.

“There Is No Us”

After the procedure, Olivia returns to the White House for the mother of all fights with Fitz. Every ugly part of their relationship is brought up. Olivia is angry that Fitz moved her in and tried caging her as retribution for freeing her father. Fitz is angry that she’s trying to run away. She confesses that she doesn’t want to be Mellie and do all of that First Lady crap because she’s a big dog too. Fitz thinks Olivia only liked him when he wasn’t available, and now that the divorce actually happened, she’s not interested anymore. He’s not wrong.

After a tense scene filled with lots of yelling that includes Olivia shouting that “There is no us! There is no Vermont!,” it becomes clear that their relationship is over. As Olivia predicted back in the premiere, having their relationship out in the open has destroyed it. Hmm…is it possible that’s what Olivia wanted when she outed them? She kind of forced the situation and this is the inevitable conclusion, sort of like a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Anyway, Olivia moves out of the White House and back to her apartment where she curls up on a new, not white couch, sipping wine. She’s free and I don’t see any possibility of her getting back with Fitz, especially if/when he finds out about the abortion.

Who Is Behind Lazarus 1?
Jake follows Tom to a meeting with…Franklin Russell! Yes, Olivia’s former lover who was secretly working for Papa Pope and who tried to kill Jake last season is back and it turns out he’s part of Lazarus 1 and he’s working with Tom. Rowan was right that his “sons” have turned on him and they’re trying to bring back B-613 without him.

Eventually Jake tracks down Franklin at gunpoint. Franklin wants Jake to join his brothers and help be a part of Lazarus 1. But since Franklin was the one who killed Elise, Jake does what he should’ve done last season and kills him.

Elsewhere, Huck has kidnapped Papa Pope and the two engage in some vicious psychological warfare about fatherhood. Huck tells Rowan he failed as a parent, suggesting that Olivia might only be with Fitz just to spite her dad. But there’s no malice and the only reason Huck took Papa Pope was to keep him alive for Olivia’s sake. Once the threat is handled, Huck lets Papa Pope go free.

At Rowan’s house, Jake is there to apologize now that he knows Papa Pope wasn’t behind Lazarus 1. Rowan accepts the apology and invites Jake inside. Wait, are they friends now? Is Papa Pope a good guy? And is this really the end of the Lazarus 1 storyline, because that would be anticlimactic. I have to assume there are plenty of other “sons” still out there Franklin was working with.

David’s Love Triangle

David is so lovestruck by Liz North’s sexual wiles that he buys her a bracelet as a Christmas present, but she’s not interested in their relationship being about anything other than sex. Later when Vice President Susan Ross brings David a present of her own, he decides to re-gift the bracelet to her. This is a dangerous game David is playing, especially when Liz sees the bracelet on her new boss’s wrist and seems to be a bit jealous.

Oh yeah, and Quinn hooks up with Charlie again because she has no one else to spend Christmas with since Huck was busy with Rowan and Marcus is a normal human being with a family.

Scandal is now on a very long break, but will be back February 11 with new episodes and a newly single Olivia Pope, who can hopefully get back to gladiating full-time.

(Image courtesy of ABC)

John Kubicek

Senior Writer, BuddyTV

John watches nearly every show on TV, but he specializes in sci-fi/fantasy like The Vampire DiariesSupernatural and True Blood. However, he can also be found writing about everything from Survivor and Glee to One Tree Hill and Smallville.