Spoiler Alert: Do not read if you haven’t seen Scandal Season 5, Ep. 17 – “Thwack!”
“I never tried to kill you. I know how to kill people.” — Huck
So, just to make sure I’m following everything correctly, this half of the season began with Olivia realizing Jake and her father were up to something sinister, forgetting that, remembering it again, vowing to take them down and then, the moment she finds herself in a precarious position turning to them for help and then doing exactly what they would have done, leading her to become the latest boarder at Rowan’s Home for Misbegotten Murderers? Is that how everyone else saw it too?
Yes, just two weeks after vowing to take down Jake’s dastardly plan and only one week after pledging to campaign cleanly, Olivia found herself facing some harsh truths that forced her to quickly forgot both of those promises. Former Vice President Andrew Nichols was recovering nicely from his Huck induced stroke and he was ready to tell his truth. Well, at least the parts that didn’t implicate him as a criminal, traitor and all around dick.
And so, the motley group of adversaries from all sides of this upcoming election gathered together to protect their communal hides. They tried bribes, they tried threats and Abby even tried putting on Cyrus’s hat for some last minute backstabbing and scheming, but unfortunately it just didn’t fit her that well.
When dying Supreme Court justice Verna Thornton thought to confess her and conspirators’ sins before her death Fitz stepped up for the team and sacrificed his own morality by snuffing her out with a gentle pillow to the face. This time it was Olivia’s turn to step up. Unfortunately there were no pillows to be found. Instead, Olivia had to be resourceful with what was handy, namely a metal chair and the built up rage of her un-dealt with PTSD.
And here is where I need to take a minute and make a compliant that is becoming all too common. Really, ABC, another disclaimer? I’m glad that this time the disclaimer didn’t precede an innocuous abortion scene (or reference) and yes, maybe that level of violence before 9 p.m. warrants a warning. But talk about draining the suspense out of the episode! When there’s multiple disclaimers preceding the show and the scene itself, its not hard to guess that Olivia’s wiles won’t be winning the day this time around.
This moment had the potential to be truly shocking instead of expected. A better use of your time and money would have been in the editing of this episode. That scene loses nothing if we don’t see Andrew’s bloody, smashed in face. In fact, focusing only on Olivia as she commits the murder might have even been more powerful.
Backseat directing aside, this does mark a somewhat interesting turn of Olivia. She’s officially crossed a line, not so subtly marked by her taking refuge with her father, but who wants to guess that next week she realizes they’re up to no good and vows to stop them?
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