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Scandal Season 4 Episode 21 recap
The show is the same as ever. Command is infallable, and he will always always always catch Liv before she can clue in and protect herself, and also Liv never checks out the goofy people she comes across, apparently. I could swear that the kind of checks and balances that were standard back in season 1 are skated past a lot more often. How else do we get ‘whoooooops, I guess that guy’s not the military lawyer after all?’
But even though the plot remains patently ridiculous, we did get some nice character moments.
Mellie, for example, has always been one of the characters who wears her heart on her sleeve. As temperamental and petulant as she sometimes gets to be, when she’s going through something real it’s very obvious. Her pain over Jerry not only still feels real, but will and should continue to feel that way as she continues her campaign. Not talking about him in the place where he died is Mellie’s first step towards something none of us knew she had going on – integrity. And she multiplies it a hundredfold when she gets legitimately excited about policy, about things she’ll change once she’s elected. She’s the most insincere character, arguably, but she gets great moments of winsomeness in. And I love that she still seeks comfort in Fitz, because that was their son.
I don’t love Fitz, because he shuffles through all his scenes unless he’s deciding whether or not someone else can own Liv, and I continue to be heartbroken that Cyrus Beene isn’t really a character so much as a figurehead who gets to bellow a couple of times a season – but finally, finally – and it really did take all season – they’ve figured out that Abby can work in the White House but still be an asset to Olivia Pope and Associates. Maybe she can get them to start having meetings in an office, too. I miss when this business didn’t just consist of drilling people’s still-beating bodies, and both Abby and David Rosen are wasted this year.
What we did learn was a little more about what it’s like to be inside the crazy head that is Command. I mean obviously he’s a malicious supervillian so we don’t feel bad for him, but the twin principles of ‘excellence at all times’ combined with ‘I am singularly focused on ruining my daughter’ do imply a very particular type of person. “With Russell, Rowan Built A Better Me” says Jake, and you kind of believe it, because Jake is excellent but not the very best at anything, really (which in turn is maybe what allows him to be a human), and that’s not the game for Rowan.
But…but….didn’t Olivia only find out her father was Command two years ago? How did he spend all this time training people to take her down…or is that only specific to Russell? And how could he know that Olivia would be out trolling for a drink that very night; did he just have him on barfly duty for months because of his daughter’s predilection for red wine?
Never mind, better not to ask questions. Better to just sit back and enjoy. Mellie and Lizzie are still enjoyable, and hell, I really love that Vice President. Stealing a member of the U.S. Armed Forces! What will they think of next?
I’ll sit back and be worried about what Rowan’s going to do to ‘Foxtail’, and watch Olivia get more panicky and freaked out, and try not to think too hard about details.