'Scandal' Characters Suddenly All Seem Really Bad At Their Jobs
So one of the things that makes Scandal so entertaining is the fact that these people are usually really, really good at what they do. Yes, everyone's personal life is almost always a mess, but in terms of their actual jobs, whether it be digging up dirt or running the free world, the characters are usually pretty damn on top of it. But for some reason everybody has suddenly decided to slip up at pretty much exactly the same time. Which is probably not good at all.
Don't believe me? Just take a look:
In comparison to almost everyone else, Olivia is actually still pretty productive. She manages to put to bed a, well, scandal involving vice-presidential candidate Andrew Nichols' former drug use, and she can't really be blamed to much for the fact that Fitz is basically refusing to listen to any of her good advice. But at the same time she has an uncharacteristically tactless conversation with Mellie, she doesn't manage to convince her father to back off his quest for vengeance, and she fails at talking Quinn into coming back to the fold. If there is one thing we can usually count on from Olivia Pope it is the ability to bust out rousing monologues that can get just about anyone to see things her way and go along with her plans. But this week all of that was sadly absent.
David and James
If Olivia was surprisingly bad at her job, David and James were unsurprisingly bad at theirs, which is essentially to be secret investigators/whistle blowers. Whether they are having highly conspicuous meetings beneath an overpass or getting stuffed in a trunk however, it is very clear that they are very, very bad at this. Like they've actually gotten worse since last season, and they weren't very good at this stuff last season. This week James has finally realized that he is in way over his head, but all his freak outs don't make him in over his head any less. And as for David, he's just lucky that, when he got shoved in the trunk of a car while headed to the secret meeting that was an obvious set-up, he was kidnapped by Huck and Abby instead of Cyrus's favorite hit man, Charlie.
Much like Olivia, some of Cyrus' job problems are definitely Fitz-related. It's hard to run a re-election campaign when the president starts undermining your decisions about campaign donors. On the other hand, the fact that Adnan Salif is showing up at donor dinners (when she's not sleeping with Harrison) is entirely his fault since he let her back into the country. And the fact that he's apparently considering her offer of campaign contributions is also a bad, bad idea. Plus, he still hasn't figured out that his husband is the one leaking information about the Daniel Douglas murder to the press. As we've already discussed, it's not like James is any good at this stuff.
Mellie is normally so good at being the perfect first lady it's scary, which is why I'm actually really happy with her decision to take a tiny step outside the lines this week. As we see in flashbacks, the drugs Andrew Nichols is accused of using weren't for Andrew Nichols at all, but for Mellie, who tried to commit suicide by overdose back in Fitz's California governor days. Andrew saved her, and the two of them later fell for each other, but Mellie never acted on those feelings. Which is kind of tragic when you think about how her husband now behaves. But all these years later she and Andrew share a make-out session after a donor dinner, and like I said, it's about time Mellie stopped playing perfect first lady.
Jake is trying very hard to run B6-13, but it's hard. Like, really hard. Which is why things like Fitz's secret service agent, Tom, strolling into Wonderland and dropping off Oval Office video footage leave Jake's mouth hanging open, because who knew Tom was so good at being a double agent. Plus, there's also that time that Quinn finds both Eli Pope and proof that he's been leaking information to the Sally campaign all in one fell swoop, long before Jake's own secret spy agency manages to track that information down. Which brings us to:
The Exceptions: Quinn and Eli
It's highly ironic that the only two people who actually seem to be good at their jobs this week are also the two people who don't have jobs. When Quinn wasn't threatening to shoot Olivia and refusing to go back to Pope and Associates for the hard-to-argue-with reason that one of her co-workers tortured her, she was being a pretty big badass in the hacking department. And Eli Pope might be alone and without resources, but he can still cause all kinds of havoc and deliver the casually chilling monologue over Sunday dinner to make our blood run cold.
And yet none of this really matters, because no matter what else went on this week, everyone would still be bad at their jobs for the simple fact that Mama Pope is not only back, but she's apparently working with Adnan Salif, and no one has noticed. Forget everything else, that clearly needs to be everyone's number one priority right now. Get on it, gladiators!