Fug File: Scandal

Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 5, episode 1: “Heavy Is The Head”

They might as well have called this “Killing Bex Porter.” I don’t know yet if we’ll stick with Scandal recaps, but I had to cover The One Where They Kill An American From Iowa Who Had Married A Foreign Prince. I mean, they even had Abby talking to Liv all about how she can’t imagine what it feels like to become the most famous woman in the world, all because of who you fell in love with; I am sure this was all a coincidence, but… y’all, couldn’t you just have Liv reading The Royal We at her desk one week? Throw us a real bone.


Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4 finale

I read somewhere that Shonda Rhimes says she quite likes writing herself into a corner and then giving herself the summer to figure out what the hell to do about it. Of course, last summer she wrote Columbus Short into a corner in case he needed to be fired (which he did); this season, she wrote a couple other people into a box, so we’ll see whether it’s sealed over the summer or if she leaves open the flaps.

Last week, Rowan posed as a billionaire interested in donating to Mellie’s campaign. Which is not that useful in the end because THIS week is the election and it all happens in what feels like twenty-four hours.


Nonetheless, Mellie loves people who flatter her, so she devours his abject praise of her genius and looks quite beautiful doing so. I was surprised for a second that she’d never seen him before, but — even though at this point it feels like B-Overt is the worst-kept secret in the universe — I forgot she doesn’t know anything about anything. You know, it might even surprise me MORE that Fitz didn’t just tell her. I get the vibe from him that he’s a crappy secret-keeper, the kind who would be like, “Oh, no, totally, I will take that to the grave,” and then spill it to whomever is brushing her teeth next to him that night.

Rowan, by the way, picks “Damascus Bainbridge” as his pseudonym – because… he fancies himself the cradle of civilization? – and somehow nobody thought to themselves, “Wow, those syllables in that order are MADE the HELL UP.”

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 21

Tell me, Fug Nationals: Does this disclaimer always/often run in front of Scandal?


Because I watch it next-day on Hulu, and this is the first time I’ve noticed it there — or at least, the first time in a while. It certainly wasn’t present during some of the more awful recent episodes, which means I was steeling my stomach for some cruel and unusual gnarliness in this one, and that’s saying something in a show that had a woman eat her own wrist and fetishizes both murder and in particular the slaying of families. But in the end, what happened was no worse than usual. That said, I am so, so sorry that my Grossitude meter is calibrated to these settings.

Anyway: Florence Popeindale is hard at work nursing her patient.


She isn’t doing the most tender job, but that’s because she no longer wants to have sex with him (my editorializing — their scenes now have all the heat of a cold shower). She DOES wheel in a TV and give him the remote, so she must at least still LIKE him as a human being, because if she didn’t she would set that thing to Dr. Phil and then put the remote in the fridge.

Across the hall, two horrible people are being abusive to another horrible person. It’s a Bad Triad.

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 20, “First Lady Sings The Blues”

Let’s get right to what everyone is wondering about:


Yes, the OPA conference table DOES still look good with a mostly dead body lying on it. And let us also compliment the work of Russell, who not only stomped the yard right out of Jake, but then cleaned it up so that Quinn could arrive at work, meander through the building, turn on some lights, read the papers, and not even SMELL the coppery stench of O-positive until she turns on the light. Not even when she WALKS IN THE ROOM. No, she notices nothing until it is illuminated — this, from a person who once helped make people leak death. Say what you will about Huck, but had he been the one to walk into the office, he’d have smelled the aphrodisiac in about ten seconds.


Seriously, it is immaculate in there. No signs of a struggle or anything, except for the forty five marks on Jake’s torso that are leaking beet juice. However, in a wonderful turn of events, Quinn nearly blows off Huck’s face, because when he bursts in she thinks he might be the assailant and fires wildly into the air. Olivia’s neighbors must REALLY LOVE HER. Actually, they MUST, because nobody reported the gunshot. I typed “gunshit” first, which also feels true.

Quinn decides, after feeling up the table and taking out Jake’s phone, that he’s totally dead. But Huck actually touches the body and concludes he is only MOSTLY dead, and rams the Scandal equivalent of a miracle pill down his throat: He hauls off and cracks Jake on the chest to kick-start his heart. It works. And every single person in the world who has ever taught CPR is going, “OH MY GOD DO NOT SLEDGEHAMMER SOMEONE IN THE STERNUM.” I assume. I mean, I guess if times are extreme and your ex-boss and ex-girlfriend’s father has hired a lackey to slay you and then leave you for dead on enviable handmade wood furniture.

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 19, “I’m Just A Bill”

Well, Susan Ross may be a bit of a Mary Sue right now — she is too awesome to be true — but her parts of the episode had panache and life, which only underscored how grim the rest is. With apologies to Scott Foley, who can only do the job he is given, whenever Jake opens his mouth I just zone out and wait for it to stop.

Let’s begin, though, with that wine cardigan.


Olivia was swaddled in this massive grey blanket of a sweater at the end of last weekwhen Papa Pope made an unwelcome return to her doorstep, popping up behind her new fling, Russell (from Stomp The Yard). What ensues is one of the prototypically irritating Scandal scenes, where Papa Pope exposits for us that if Olivia doesn’t put the kibosh on the Bust B-3.14159 scheme it will bring down the Republic AND the president she cherishes, and then Olivia climbs up on her high horse and unfurls a large banner that says, “I DON’T CARE ABOUT SAVING FITZ. I CARE ABOUT JUSTICE.” At which point Papa Pope responds with a maniacal monologue that made me want to put my fist through the television:

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Fug the Show: Scandal, season 4, episode 18, “Honor Thy Father”

Did you enjoy one blessed week fee and clear of B-Ieber? Because it’s BACK, and it’s opening its gaping, salivating mouth and preparing to chow down on the remaining four episodes of this show.

We begin in David Rosen’s office, where almost nothing good ever happens, if you think about it.


Jake refuses to sign his immunity deal and help bring down B-ReathofStaleAir, because he was once Command, and a whole slew of other boring reasons about death and danger and The Great and Powerful Oz. David Rosen vows to do it without him, and sets about rounding up the three most powerful members who once worked with Jake and could therefore feasibly be leverage to force him into joining their ranks. David is extremely confident that this is a brilliant plan to dismantle this irritating vortex of suck, which is your guarantee that it will fail spectacularly and explode in his face. Because not only does nothing good happen in David Rosen’s office, but in fact, nothing good happens TO David Rosen. Period. He is the Ziggy of Scandal.


And sure enough, we learn Jake has a bug under David’s desk — like, RIGHT under there, where his leg would totally have brushed it by now if it weren’t a total plot contrivance — and is cocking his gun and ready for action. Who is doing security in these government buildings, and why aren’t they routinely swept for bugs? Oh, wait, of course: B-Everywhere.

Speaking, too, of cocked guns and action:

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 17, “Put A Ring On It”

This episode was much better — it felt like a step back to the Scandal of yore, albeit slightly marred by the fact that it’s HARD to backtrack when just last week Huck was cutting the throat of a young woman so casually, for selfish motivations that he made sound so urgent (and yet also so appalling). Cut bait on B-Exhausting, y’all, because your characters flourish more when they’re not under that weight.

It focuses on Cyrus. If you’d wondered how things were going with his contracted concubine, the answer is: not well.


It would seem that Michael is becoming a self-sabotaging drunk. He got caught on camera getting frisky with another man at a bar, which pokes holes in the story that Cyrus and his prostitute fell in love and are deeply committed to making him the male Julia Roberts.


Michael seems somewhat apologetic, but Cy is enraged, and the two of them spit all kinds of insults at each other because Cyrus wants no part of Michael AT ALL — not in James’s sacred bed, nor his sacred closet, nor his sacred bathroom if at all possible — and Michael feels trapped and bored and unloved and REALLY freaking envious of this awesome boardroom table, which he now knows he cannot live without. Me too, Michael. Me too.

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