Recap 'Scandal' Season 4 So You're Ready For Olivia Pope To Handle Season 5

It seems like forever since the last time Olivia Pope was on our TVs, but there is light at the end of the very long summer hiatus tunnel. The wait is over, and Scandal is back for Season 5 with new episodes starting Thursday night. This is amazing news, unless you're like me and have trouble remembering plot details, especially with a show like this one that's full of tiny little puzzle pieces that don't make sense 'til you see the whole picture. And if that's true for you, you're probably also like me in that the week before fall premiere week is full of hitting up Netflix to rewatch the most recent seasons of your favorite shows. But, if you don't have the time (or the emotional energy) to make that happen for your #TGIT favorites, I did it for you with this handy Scandal Season 4 recap.

And, in case you've forgotten, last season was crazy, y'all — even for Scandal. Between the kidnapping plot line, the continued Olivia/Fitz/Jake triangle, and basically anything that happened anytime Olivia's dad, Rowan, was on the screen, it's hard to believe the show got away with pulling off so many insane stories. But, then again, it was just so good.

Here's everything you need to know before Season 5 premieres. You're welcome!

Harrison Is Dead

And, this was the jumping off point for most of the plots that happened in the first half of the season. His death requires Olivia to come back from "standing in the sun" with Jake, and although Pope & Associates has basically fallen apart in her absence, the group slowly puts itself back together... even though Abby is now the White House Press Secretary.

Huck Begins To Reconnect With His Family

This might have been my favorite storyline all season because it's so sweet. Huck starts playing online video games with his son, Javi, to get to know him better, and eventually they start hanging out IRL. Huck even begins to repair his relationship with his wife — which requires him testifying against B613. And speaking of B613...

There's A Huge B613 Trial

After being wrongfully arrested for killing Jerry Grant, Jake decides it's time to take down B613 for once and for all, and Olivia agrees. With David Rosen's help, they bring the case to trial, and Jake testifies. However, as you can imagine, Rowan's pretty pissed about this, and this leaves Jake in, like, nine life or death situations. After inviting Rowan over for dinner, Olivia tries to kill Rowan, but when she pulls the trigger of her gun, nothing happens — and now Rowan knows Olivia would kill him, given the chance. Is there a scarier dude on television? I don't think so.

Olivia Gets Kidnapped

Masked men break into her apartment and kidnap her, leaving to some of the scariest, most heartbreaking scenes of Olivia in captivity. Eventually, Olivia ends up convincing her captors to sell her for the highest bidder, and almost ends up being sold to Iranians until she surprises everyone with her multilingual skills. Surprisingly enough, the guy that ends up rescuing her is Stephen Finch, a former member of Pope & Associates. Olivia gets home safely, but not without a whole lot of PTSD. Oh, and the whole thing? A plot by Elizabeth North to inspire Fitz to go to war with West Angola in order to bring her back, which he totally fell right into. Yeah, she sucks.

Mellie Becomes Senator

After Jerry's death, Mellie's reduced to a potato-chip eating, PJ-wearing couch potato for most of the first half of the season, but then, she finally gets the spring in her step back when she decides to run for state senator. Unsurprisingly, she manages to win the seat... after unknowingly helping Rowan (and, unfortunately, Huck) kill an entire busload of jurors on the B613 case. The season ends when Fitz kicks Mellie out, fires Cyrus, and hires Elizabeth to be his Chief of Staff, which is basically the worst idea in the world — something I'm sure we will find out when Season 5 is back.

Olivia And Fitz Are Together

But, only after Olivia manages to get Rowan arrested for embezzlement. And, really, how long is this going to last?

Scandal, I cannot wait to pop the popcorn and get my gigantic glass of wine ready for Thursday night's episode. Just, please — leave Jake alone. He's too beautiful to get stabbed again.

Images: Eric McCandless/ABC, Giphy (6)