The Scandal series finale wasn’t the bloody affair it could’ve been. For the most part, Scandal ended on a happy note with the most hardened villains defeated and the heroes, or at least kind of heroes, getting their happily ever after. Yet the finale wasn’t kind to everyone. David Rosen, who was the last true beacon of morality and justice on Scandal, was killed in the series finale. It was a twist that needed to happen, in the eyes of the cast and crew of Scandal.

Scandal Series Finale Recap: Who Goes Over a Cliff with Olivia to Save the Country?>>> The cruelest thing about David’s death is he nearly made it out alive. David might’ve been one of the few incorruptible people left on Scandal but he never was that forceful. Yet slightly before his death, David stood up to Jake and Cyrus. This act of bravery is also what got him killed. Because of refusing to stand down to both men, Cyrus fatally poisoned David’s drink.

Jake and Cyrus were eventually both defeated in the Scandal series finale. Yet in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Scandal EP Shonda Rhimes said she felt that David needed to die. “He was really the last good, pure person there,” Rhimes explained. “And for that to happen, he was the last hero they had left, and in that sense, it felt necessary.”

Joshua Malina, who played David, chimed in and agreed with Rhimes. “Once I had a moment to process it and think about it, I was delighted,” the actor said of his death scene. “I feel like in the universe of Scandal, it makes all kinds of sense. I’ve always argued that David was among the better people, and the better people don’t fare well in the universe of Scandal, so I thought it made a lot of sense. When I ultimately saw the script, I was delighted about what Shonda had written for me.”

It’s very true that those with a strong moral center didn’t last long on Scandal. Throughout the series, Olivia went from a white-hat pursuer of justice to, if not, a black-hat villain, at least a gray-hat antihero. Scandal had a very specific message about how power corrupts people. David’s death is along the same thematic lines. 

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However, while David’s death might fit into the larger picture of Scandal, it doesn’t work that well from a narrative sense. David being murdered had very little to do with Jake or Cyrus’ ultimate fates. It’s up to Rowan Pope that things didn’t work out for either character. David dying had no impact, one way or the other, on what happened to both men.

It was just another example of Cyrus being an awful person, which Scandal viewers didn’t need, especially so late in the series. Not to mention, it was aggravatingly naive, even for David, to accept a drink (under any circumstance) from Cyrus. David wasn’t always forceful but he was never an idiot and his last act was rather boneheaded. 

But what do you think? Was David’s death a necessary sacrifice for Scandal? How do you feel about Scandal‘s end? What could’ve been done better or even worse?

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(Image courtesy of ABC)

Derek Stauffer

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Derek is a Philadelphia based writer and unabashed TV and comic book junkie. The time he doesn’t spend over analyzing all things nerdy he is working on his resume to be the liaison to the Justice League.