Scandal – Mrs. Smith Goes To Washington

Cyrus is doing his level best to get Mellie and Fitz to make some public appearances as part of his damage control plan.  They are barely speaking, however, and when they do, it’s to hurl insults at one another.  Cy isn’t giving up, telling them that they should take a nice trip to Camp David with baby Teddy – talk, share, heal, bond, make the magic happen and smile for the cameras.   Baby Teddy looks as if he’s booking flights to Disney World – anything to get away from his bickering parents.

Pope and Associates have a new client.  Mary Nesbitt drops by to hire the firm for what she calls a family matter.  Before she can go into the details, though, she hands them a retainer check and rushes off to The Hill for a meeting.   As Mary is leaving, a man breaks away from a White House tour and begins to run from the Secret Service.  When he’s caught, he tells them that he wants to speak to the President.  Once his name, Peter Foster, is given to Cyrus, he orders the Secret Service to let him go.  No explanation, just release him.

Quinn looks up Mary’s bank account to make sure that her check is good and finds that Mary’s son is Chris Lawrence, a young man who was killed by the FBI during a raid in Iran.  Chris was believed to be an Al Qaeda operative.   Olivia runs to Capitol Hill, fearing the worst and the worst is what she’s found.  Mary is in the office of a congressman, and she’s wearing a bomb.  She wants the congressman to help her get the FBI file on her son, believing that what it contains will clear his name.  She’s tried to get answers and no one has helped her.  Her son has been turned into an enemy of America.  No funeral home or cemetery will bury him, so he still lies in a morgue, unclaimed and unburied.    Everyone from the President on down has been evacuated while the FBI attempts to negotiate with her.  The broken-hearted and desperate Mary has their attention now.  Olivia makes the decision to go to her client and become one of her hostages.

The Mary situation has reopened an old wound for the White House which Peter Foster called Operation Remington when he was demanding to speak to the President.   The FBI negotiator has made it clear that it’s going to take some time for them to declassify the file Harrison calls Olivia to tell her what little he knows.  An agent, supposedly FBI, approaches Harrison and shows him a video depicting Chris Lawrence as a bona fide terrorist who’s recruiting even more members.   As she leaves, though, Harrison notices that her car bears State department, not FBI, plates and tells Olivia.  She’s getting little cooperation from the anyone else, so she has Abby visit David Rosen to find out about the FBI agent.   While he may not have been happy to help them with the file itself, Rosen does let Abby know that there is no FIB agent by the name of Laura Kinney.  This little lie makes Rosen think that there;s more to Operation Remington and he looks into the file himself.  He then pays a visit to Cyrus to ask him about the raid.  Cy tells him that he;s not going to tell him anything.  The deal they had only went so far as to secure a job for Rosen, nothing more.  David then mentions some names of FBI agents who were there during the raid and who has been promoted in its aftermath.  He tells Cy that he may have made a deal but he still has his conscience.

Olivia has been using everything in her powers to keep Mary alive and get answers for her.   Olivia has literally put herself in the line of fire, standing in front of a window before an FBI sniper could kill Mary, but managed to convince Mary to release six of the hostages as a sign of good faith.  She even called Jake, hoping his connection to the President would help.  That call resulted in Fitz mocking Jake by telling him that he won’t be Olivia’s hero this time.   The confrontation between David and Cyrus did what it was supposed to do and Fitz, with Cy and David standing next to him, calls Olivia.  He begins by telling her that he’s about to give her classified information and before he goes on, says that she can’t respond to what he’s about to say.   She assures him that she won’t say a word and he begins  Mary’s son was not a terrorist.  He was a hero – a CIA operative who has infiltrated a high level a the Al Qaeda network.  Hos work enabled fifty seven other CIA agents to also infiltrate the terrorist organization.  When the FBI killed him they had no idea what he was doing and his death was a mistake – a tragic mistake.  Fitz then tells Olivia that his mother can never know the truth because it would put those fifty seven agents in danger of being tortured and killed.  He asks Olivia to promise not to tell Mary what he’s said but Olivia hangs up on him.  Olivia then turns towards Mary (and we’re all holding our collective breaths) and says “I’m sorry Mary.  You’re son was a terrorist.”   Mary collapses, struck by unimaginable grief.  Olivia goes to her and tells her that she’ll see her through this.  As Olivia, the congressman and Mary start to exit the office and walk towards the awaiting SWAT team, Mary slams the door shut and kills herself with the bomb.

Huck is missing from the group of gladiators – and they really could have used him; Quinn’s hacking skills aren’t quite up to Huck standards –  because he’s been following Rowan/Eli, coming close to shooting him on the streets of D.C.  He’s tracked his prey to a cabin in the woods and waits while Rowan/Eli goes inside.  Rowan/Eli is there to see Peter Foster and pay him for his day’s work.  Peter has had enough, though and is demanding a real meeting with the President.  When Rowan/Eli exits the cabin, he’s met by Huck who’s holding a gun to his head.  Huck can’t bring himself to kill Rowan/Eli and does as he’s told, which is to kill Peter and make it look like a suicide.

Fitz is back at the White House and finds Mellie waiting for him.  She’s been pouring herself some hillbilly hooch and she’s more than a little drunk.  She asks her husband if he wants to have sex – with her, right then and there.  He wants to know why she’s in such a good mood seeing as how Olivia Pope didn’t get blown up.  Mellie tells him that she’s celebrating the day.  If his whore had died, brave and strong, in front of all America, everyone, including Fitz would be on their knees, praying to Saint Olivia Pope.   As she says, “I’m spectacular, but I can’t compete with religious fervor.”  No, she’s quite content to celebrate the fact that Olivia still walks the earth because as long as she’s still alive, Olivia is Fitz’s flaw, his Achilles tendon and Mellie’s weapon to make her husband dance.  Yes, drunken Mellie is spectacular.

Olivia enters her office and is surprised to find Huck there.  He tells her not to worry.  He’s not there to kill her because he’s all killed out for the day.  Olivia panics, thinking that Huck has killed her father.   He tells her no and that’s when we see what transpired between them and in that cabin.  Huck begins to sob that he thought he was free, but Rowan/Eli still controls him.  he owns him,  He couldn’t tie him to a chair and extract the information he needed to find out about his family.  He did what he was told – just as Rowan/Eli expected he would.   Understandably shaken and exhausted by the day’s events,  Olivia goes home and wants to talk to Jake.  She asks him why he’s there.  He could only be there if her father arranged for him to be there, maybe to follow her and keep tabs on her.  She tells Jake that this isn’t a fantasy with a happily ever after.   Jake says her face saved him, she saved him.  Olivia says that no, you’re here because he still owns you.


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