Fug File: Scandal

Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 16, “It’s Good To Be Kink”

It’s the Lena Dunham episode, ladies and gents, and it is all about the bang — both the ones on her wig, and the sexual kind. scandal-recap-season-4-episode-16-10

Lena plays a brilliant former chemistry major turned ex-EPA employee who has decided to have kinky sex with all the Washington power players she can, and then write a tell-all. It’s like Hannah Horvath Goes To Washington, except without the science brain, and also, Hannah would maybe sleep with just one person and then overthink the rest of it. So let’s call it Bizarro Hannah Horvath Goes To Washington. And this shot of Lena in her lab goggles - from her Car Wash montage – is hilarious to me. She looks so menacing. Like she’s either cheating, or checking to see if Fred has taken a sip of his soy latte yet, because it includes a little surprise she whipped up last night. And the wig. What is there to say about Wig? It begs, “Don’t get distracted. This isn’t Lena Dunham. It’s a character.” But instead, we hear, “WIG ALERT. WE ARE AT WIGCON 1.” But it’s not even at its worst here. And look at me, giving you a cliffhanger like that. Okay. Ready to dive into the Kink Zone? Right-o: The episode opens with Abby being enraged, breaking off a piece of her mind and hurling it like a throwing star at Paul Adelstein’s neck: Read More


Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 15, “The Testimony of Diego Muñoz”

In case you’re wondering, “Diego Muñoz” is Huck’s real name. And you’re crazy if you didn’t think I just sung to myself, of this noted deathmonger, “Where In The World Is Harmin’ Man Diego?” Listen, I NEVER said I wasn’t a total hack.

Also not a hack: Susan Ross, bless her. Let’s start there.

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Abby has groomed and coached her to within an inch of her life, and she’s ready to go out and accept the president’s nomination for the veep spot. The show has at least FINALLY remembered the basics of government, and is acknowledging she has to get confirmed by the Senate and Congress, but the first step is a press conference. And Susan is READY, and I admire her decision not to wear Power Red, nor cut her hair into some kind of shellacked bob the likes of which would make an extremely effective planetary defense shield.

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Mellie has not smiled that wide since the ’80s. She can practically smell the presidency. It clearly has not occurred to her that if they turn this woman into an acceptable VP, she might actually be ABLE to make a run at the White House, and that in fact, ANY TIME AT ALL as vice-president makes Susan Ross more electable than Mellie. In fact, when this started, I thought Mellie was going to suggest HERSELF as VP. The fact that she didn’t, because she is obviously a terrible candidate and it would never work, makes her fantasy about the White House EVEN MORE INSANE.

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Susan turns it OUT at the press-conference… until she actually stops to process what she’s doing, and goes on a tittering digression that ends with a nervous giggle akin to what you’d hear if you sucked up a donkey with a Dustbuster. The media goes wild. Susan Ross’s Laugh is the new Howard Dean’s Barbaric Yawp, and so the White House has to special-order some PR spackle. They really ought to buy that stuff whenever it’s on special and just stockpile it in the basement.

Olivia, meanwhile, is in a bad way.

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 14, “The Lawn Chair”

This episode, thematically, took on the maelstrom that was Ferguson. For recapping purposes I find it hard to weave in and out of that narrative while making capsy comments about Fitz’s relative worstness and Cyrus’s hair and whether people in the White House are stupid. So, the storylines in this recap are NOT presented in order of importance; instead, I’m getting the B-plot out of the way, so that I can tackle the A plot with (hopefully) the sensitivity it deserves.


So, in the vein of Lady Mary Crawley’s raging death vag (band name alert!), the Veep job has a zero percent success rate. Sally “Crispy Piggy” Langston went insane and then murdered her husband, and Jon Tenney tried to overthrow Fitz (I feel you on that one, Jon), but through blackmail and kidnapping. Then Huck gave him a stroke and he’s probably not going to recover from it, so the next step is to nudge him out of the office on grounds of incapacitation, and pick a successor. The Daily Show in this universe would be having a field day about how little anyone wants to step into those doomed shoes. Fitz, to Cyrus’s astonishment, only wants to vet two ancient and dull and crusty candidates, rather than an up-and-comer who could make it the exciting four years Fitz promised. It’s also worth noting that Jon Tenney was NOBODY’S choice EXCEPT Fitz’s, so at this point his ability to judge a good Veep is on par with Huck’s ability to judge when to stop drilling holes into people.

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 13

This episode was better. It could not have gotten WORSE than the last two, but still. We left off with Olivia being sold for an undisclosed cash amount to Iran. Everyone — including me — thought Iran was going to turn out to be somebody covertly bidding for Olivia and then spiriting her out of there and buying her an untainted-by-kidnapping coat.


Nope. It was Iran. Which sent a really posh, well-dressed woman and a couple of cohorts to pick up their BILLION-PLUS-DOLLAR cargo. There is something I appreciate about Scandal having Iran’s representative be a foxy woman, but I wish she had turned out to be a smarter foxy woman.


Because, see, Olivia speaks fluent Farsi. (Of course she does.) So she pulls a scam: She convinces her captors that this woman is saying, into the phone, that this is an ambush and they’re all going to die. Then she says, in Farsi, essentially the same thing to Iran, and that as soon as they take her EVERYONE is going to get extremely murdered. So Iran panics and calls off the deal, and her captors smuggle her out of there — thinking they just skirted an ambush themselves — and toddle back and fire up sheBay.com and send out the word that bidding can resume. No guns are drawn, and presumably, neither side had any actual backup. Hold up there, pals. Do you mean to tell me that IRAN was going to BUY A PERSON WHO CONTROLS THE PRESIDENT for BILLIONS OF DOLLARS, and just send like two people and a pistol to pick her up? Iran must have blown its entire budget on the asset and left nothing for personnel and planning. Oh, Iran. Iran, so far away.

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 12, “Gladiators Don’t Run”

Let me first say: I know it’s exhausting when the person covering a show really dislikes the show. And I’m sorry Scandal has gone that way. I really am. But if it helps, I do at least find it fascinating how far this show has plummeted, in addition to finding it frustrating, so… I guess let’s just continue to hold each other. It’s probably going to get worse before it gets better, if indeed it ever gets better.


We open on Abby sitting in front of a green-screen so that someone can turn L.A. into Washington, D.C. Were you aware that this show, which features the president, takes place in our nation’s capital? Somehow, yes, this has not escaped anyone. Was it this one shot that really tipped you off? No. So I think maybe they need to stop being so slavish with this stuff, because you can see the special effect so clearly around her hair that she might as well be a colorform of herself.

She is waiting, coffee in hand, for Olivia. The two of them must have a standing caffeine date. How long has Olivia been gone, that she’s only just noticing? I think this storyline might have been more effective for me if the show played on how many days missing she is. The problem being, in the last two episodes, I think they have played it so unrealistically with the timeline that they basically CAN’T talk about it.


Olivia isn’t answering her phone, and her mailbox is full, so Abby uses her key to get into Olivia’s house. She sees the Red Wine Stain of Doom, taunting her, making a mockery of the tub of OxyClean that’s probably sitting under the skin just waiting to be used. Jake Ballard is going to be in SO MUCH TROUBLE for not handling this. I hope this is the final straw that pushes Olivia out of his bed: “If you don’t understand how deeply a winesplash cuts me then YOU UNDERSTAND NOTHING. Go stand in the shade.”

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Fug the Show: Scandal recap, season 4, episode 11

Let’s begin this recap with a pressing question I saw mentioned on Twitter. Has Fitz been dipping into the Just For Men?

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It DOES resemble an After shot in a commercial where he runs his fingers through his hair and smiles like he’s in an ’80s sitcom’s main titles. I think this is just a very fresh job, and that Tony Goldwyn has ALWAYS been dipping into the Just For Men — and I say that without judgment; I myself am not immune to washing the grey away. Also, I suspect ABC wants him to seem younger than 54. The hiatus between airings does not correspond to a hiatus in production (it’s more of a necessary breather so that post-production can keep working without bumping up against air dates, which you catch up to surprisingly quickly in TV), so he wasn’t off at a spa for two months or anything getting a full reboot; he just would’ve turned up at work the day after wrapping episode 10 and been like, “Hey, Team Fitz, my rinse has expired.” I don’t have a clean shot of him from the previous episode but I do have one from Episode Four in which his color seems a wee lighter. Also, he just two seconds ago found out that Olivia has been kidnapped by his vice president’s shadowy team of warmongers. If he needs to cope with that by youthanizing himself, well, it wouldn’t be the worst thing he’s ever done as president, given that he is a VERY BAD PRESIDENT INDEED.

I’m glad we worked through that together. Now let’s see what’s been happening during Olivia’s ordeal. Because I have questions, and suspicions that Fitz remains THE WORST at being president.

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