Remember last season when Olivia Pope was kidnapped and put up for sale on a global auction block (during Black History Month, no less)? President Fitz Grant had selected his old friend, Andrew Nichols, to be his vice president, but as it turned out, Andrew had designs on Fitz’s wife and his job. So Andrew had Olivia kidnapped to compel Fitz to wage a war against West Angola. Fast-forward, Olivia was rescued and Huck injected a needle into Andrew’s neck that induced a stroke, which rendered Andrew unable to walk or talk …
Well, in this week’s Scandal episode, Andrew comes back from the almost dead to exact his revenge. The episode began with a viewer-discretion warning, so you knew it was probably going to be bloody!
Abby Whelan finds out that Andrew has recovered his ability to speak, and he has spilled all the dirt about West Angola to journalist Lilian Forrester, one of Fitz’s many lady friends, who is planning to run a major tell-all about it. So Olivia visits Andrew’s hospital room and demands that he ask Lilian to pull the interview, but after spending the last year or two in a stroke-recovery unit, Andrew’s got a story to tell and nothing to lose. Side note: Shout-out to actor Jon Tenney, who gave us one ornery stroke survivor! Olivia yells in his face, “This time you’re up against me. The bitch you left for dead!”
Abby calls a meeting with Fitz, Mellie Grant, Cyrus Beene, Elizabeth North, David Rosen and Olivia to figure out what to do. Well, everyone’s trying to figure it out except for Cyrus because Fitz granted him lifetime immunity as part of his offer to return to the White House a few months ago. Elizabeth suggests they kill Andrew, which is the obvious solution, but they all clutch their pearls like they’re above murder, so Abby steps up and calls the shots: Mellie is going to talk to Andrew and everyone is going to shred all evidence connecting them to West Angola.
Mellie tries to woo Andrew into submission with promises of their bright future together, but she recoils when he moves her hand down his drooling mouth and toward his pants. He asks, “Do I disgust you? Don’t worry. The feeling is mutual.”
So Olivia asks her father for his advice. Jake agrees to spy on Lilian for Olivia, but Papa Pope tells her that when her plan fails, killing Andrew is also effective. No, Papa Pope, no!
Huck sticks another needle in Andrew’s neck, but this one just puts Andrew to sleep so they can transport him to an underground White House bunker. When Andrew comes to, he demands $10 million and a book deal to keep him from telling his story. Fitz and Elizabeth agree to put up the $10 million to pay off Andrew, but Andrew rejects the offer. He wants the article to run so he can take down everyone who was responsible for ruining his life.
Fitz decides to fall on his sword and Olivia enthusiastically agrees that it’s the most presidential thing for Fitz to do, especially because, as she says, “We nailed ourselves to the cross so he wouldn’t bleed.” Olivia also smugly offers Abby a job working for her back at Olivia Pope & Associates when it’s over.
Abby is not feeling Olivia’s condescending offer, so she makes a deal with Andrew that causes him to change his story to one that only focuses on Andrew’s affair with Mellie. When Olivia comes to visit Abby to let her know that someone got to Andrew, Abby reveals that it was her. She says, “I run the Oval now. I don’t work for you. You work for me.” Then she lets Olivia know that her security pass will be revoked at the gate. Nothing good can come of Abby vs. Olivia!
So Olivia gets Jake to let her into the White House to visit Andrew to try to talk him out of it one last time, but he’s more vile than he’s ever been, asking questions like, “Do you talk this much in bed?” and calling her a cheap slut and an aging porn star. The next thing you know, Olivia has picked up a chair and bashed Andrew’s head into a bloody pulp. And just when we thought she had come to her senses, she bashes his head in again!
She’s sitting on the ground with blood splattered on her face when Fitz comes and holds her. Abby is standing at the doorway totally shook when Olivia coolly instructs her to send out a press release saying that Andrew is dead and to get Lilian to stop the story. She finishes with, “Never cross me again.” Ouch.
In the final scene, we see Olivia walking up to her father’s house, where he greets her with, “Welcome home.” Yep, welcome to the dark side, Olivia.
Also during this episode, Cyrus and Alex Vargas are still having a turf war over Frankie Vargas’ presidential campaign. To get the upper hand, Alex finds some dirt on Cyrus—Cyrus has been sleeping with Tom, which I’ve been telling y’all for weeks! Alex breaks that news to Cyrus’ husband, Michael, who may or may not care, given that their marriage is a political arrangement. We’ll find out soon!
Akilah Green is a recovering Washington, D.C., lawyer-lobbyist-politico turned TV and film writer and producer living in Los Angeles. She currently works for Chelsea Handler’s Netflix talk show, Chelsea. She has also worked as a staff writer for Kevin Hart’s production company, HartBeat Productions, and as a consultant for Real Time With Bill Maher on HBO. In addition, she co-wrote and is producing Scratch, an indie horror-comedy feature film, and is a regular contributor to The Root. Follow Green’s adventures in La La Land on her blog, Twitter and Facebook.