New Show Recap: Scandal 3×13, “No Sun On the Horizon”

“Time for the slaughter, piggy piggy! Time for the slaughter, you filthy cloven beast! I see the signs of the devil branded into your flesh!”

Really, that’s all I need to tell you about this week’s Scandal, but I guess I should give you a little context.

I’ll Have the Cloven Hooves to Go

Sally’s campaign manager, Leo, is worried. His client needs spiritual guidance, so he’s called in Sally’s long-time minister. Leo pumps the minister up by negging his skills (a surprising tactic, but Leo’s style seems to be irritating people into submission), then sends him into the room with Sally, who is LOSING.HER.MIND. She is ranting about sin and Satan, and using a lot of porcine imagery. Clearly, she’s overwhelmed with guilt about killing her husband, and also quite hungry, since she is also saying things like:

“Time to make the bacon! … Yum, yum, crispy piggy! Yum! Yum!”

Sally, I hate to burst your Beelzebubble, but it’s poor form to discuss Satan as delicious.Very off-message, as Liv might tell you.

A Shot of B613

The bar for deranged babbling and maniacal laughter has already been set so high in this episode that it would be easy to forget that Jake is talking crazy, too, delivering a rambling monologue about B613 to an unseen new employee. Wow, all it takes is two weeks on the job at B613 to make Jake start talking like Captain Kurtz in Apocalypse Now? (This explains a lot about Rowan.)

Are You There, God? It’s Me, Sally

After conferring with her minister, Sally is calm and determined. She is going to confess. But if she does, Cy is going down too, and with him, Fitz. But Sally wants to hear from God, and he’s stopped talking to her since she killed Daniel Douglas in a rage.

Liv Learns the Truth

Liv is in ethical and emotional freefall. It starts when her friends and colleagues persuade her that Sally Langston killed Daniel Douglas and that Cy covered it up. She says it doesn’t make sense — why would Cy not get in touch with her to cover it up? (It smacks slightly of wounded professional pride.)

Finally she confronts Cy, who caves immediately. Liv’s response is to laugh uproariously: it’s going to be an all-singing, all-dancing, all-murdering debate! Cy begs her not to tell Fitz. She protests that she wants to walk in the sun, and that means being honest with Fitz. Liv’s metaphors used to impress me; now, though, she just seems maudlin and melodramatic.

Liv Brings Burgers, Talks Paper, and Has Sex

Stunned in the wake of Cy’s admission, Liv visits Jake at his place. She begs him to act normal, to give her a normal evening. He’s game and starts talking about the paper company (Acme Paper Company, the front for B613. Motto: “Meep! Meep!”) he runs, but admits to Liv that he hates his job. He asks Liv to run away with him. Her response is to gulp down some more wine, and have sex with Jake, but rather than just enjoying it for what it is, she tells Jake to take advantage of her. Why is Liv so...passive? She’s like a deer in the headlights with the men in her life. Why does he have to take advantage? Whatever happened to just throwing a handsome spy down on the couch and having passionate, consensual sex with him? That’s what my Granny used to do, and if it’s good enough for her, then it’s good enough for Miss Olivia Fancypants Pope.

Take a Number

Although she refuses to lie to Fitz, Liv talks to Sally, who is resolute. (It is to Kate Burton’s infinite credit that she is able to make Sally’s faith look genuine and thoughtful during much of that conversation, considering all the ig-pae alk-tae she was spouting before.) Many people do not like to find this out. Cy asks Charlie to kill Sally, but Charlie isn’t freelancing anymore, so Cy asks Jake. Jake also refuses.

Meanwhile, Liv asks Fitz, who has been amazing in the mock debates, to throw the real debate. While she’s waiting for POTUS to decide, Jake approaches her and asks Liv to join her in revealing the truth about Sally. He realizes that she has already thrown her lot in with Fitz. Poor Jake. Poor increasingly disturbed Jake. Poor increasingly disturbed, increasingly bitter Jake. Nothing bad will come of this rejection, I can tell it.

As I predicted, nothing bad comes of this. It’s just a coincidence that Jake’s first action after learning this is to give Quinn her first real job, which is finding out everything OPA knows about Daniel Douglas’s death. Fortunately, OPA has everything laid out very, very clearly, all the way down to sticking a helpful label on Sally’s picture identifying her as the murderer. Based on what Jake finds, he realizes that the truth can’t come out, so he makes his own arrangements to take care of Sally if she spills. His lifeline is handsome B613 mole Tom, who will kill Sally, and in turn be executed by his fellow Secret Service agents. That’s what I call commitment to a bit, Tom.

And it’s Showtime

Fitz gives Sally the foot in the door she needs by answering a question arrogantly and saying he is proud of his moral failings (or something like that, it’s enough for Sally to latch on to as a sign that she is in the Lord’s favor again). It’s interesting to me that Sally’s sign from God that she is on the right path is that Fitz acts like a pompous jackass. (Sally’s God likes the sure things, it seems.)

Sally Langston at the podium
God speaks to Sally through the miracle of Fitz’s jackassery. Thanks for not phoning it in, God. (Photo credit: ABC)

At this point, Liv is such a mess that I keep on writing “Liz” instead of Liv because although she’s similar to Olivia Pope, she’s most definitely NOT the same person. She is still in thrall of Fitz, although she tells him after he throws the debate that she no longer believes in Vermont and that they should just enjoy what they have together, twisted though it is. And what better way to enjoy what you have than making out with POTUS next to a window in the Oval Room?

Olivia Pope in a lovely cream jacket with a black lace print
Liv’s jacket is quite lovely, although I suspect the costumers are increasingly challenged by Kerry Washington’s pregnancy. In the “who asked you” department, I’m predicting she’s having a girl because her face is so full. (Photo credit: ABC. Pregnancy Prognostication Credit: Encyclopedica Moronica

Beene Down, But Not Like This Before

After being dissed by Jake and otherwise feeling off his game, Cy discovers that James is Publius, but rather than getting angry, he apologizes to James and James accepts it. That’s all it takes — an apology. James, I do not understand you. A placated James heads off to his scheduled meeting with David to say he’s out.

A slice of pie topped with ice cream
Humble pie a la mode. (Photo credit: Rei via Wikipedia)

Meet Rhymes with Indiscreet

People in Scandal always seem to be showing up for clandestine meetings that everyone knows about, or getting tricked into attending meetings where they are slated to be assassinated. Does no one learn anything from this? David Rosen doesn’t, considering that he was just stuffed into a car trunk at his last top secret get-together. And James, well, he’s married to Cyrus Beene. He should be used to this by now. Sure enough, the journalist and NSA sources they were meeting with get shot. They turn to see Jake handsomely approaching with a gun. He fires, but we don’t see his target. CLIFFHANGER.

Unfortunately, I find it hard to believe that Jake would actually assassinate either one of these two. So I’m betting he shoots someone else. Then again, Shonda does take risks and likes to shake things up. So in that case, I’m hoping it’s James. He and Cy are caught in a rut, and boy, oh boy would it be interesting to see Cyrus Beene back in the dating pool.

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Moretta

Moretta will take that applause. Her Twitter is https://twitter.com/GobezMoretta.

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