Halfway through Scandal Season 3 Episode 16, I tweeted that I was incredibly annoyed with the episode. And I was.
Then I kept watching and my jaw hit the floor in the only way that it can when seeing something so perfectly ill-timed taking place.
Tonight was irony at its finest!
Fair warning for the Fitz-fans among us, I'm going to rant pretty hard about him right now, and yes, I know that's sort of become a thing around here, but if you were able to watch tonight's episode and not want to slap him across the face even harder than Mellie did, you're a better person than I.
Here's a grown man-boy who wants to have his cake and eat it, too.
Wanting Andrew off the ticket I can sort of understand, from a strictly gut-reaction standpoint. I get it. He learns this news, doesn't have much time to process it, and all he can think about is the years he spent wanting to be closer to his wife and being turned away. Then this guy, his friend, comes along, and he's left to wonder if that's why their marriage turned out the way it did.
I get it. But that doesn't excuse it.
He doesn't want to sleep with his wife. Doesn't love her. Is indifferent to her and says as much to Olivia. But Mellie better not sleep with Andrew while Fitz makes no secret of his love affair with Olivia Pope and Mellie sometimes encourages it knowing that it's what Fitz "needs."
I just cannot with him after tonight. I CANNOT!
Fitz, President or not, doesn't get to order people out of the room and then tell Olivia that she's being disgusting when she's speaking the truth to him. The trouble is that Fitz can't handle the truth when it's staring him in the face.
Maybe that's why Mellie never told him about the rape. She knows he can't handle harsh realities.
He does take everything away from her, even if he doesn't know he's taking it. He takes because she gives and it's time people in his life stopped giving him everything. He's such a whiny child!
Fitz deserved every square millimeter of Mellie's palm across his face and then some. If Olivia goes back to him after whatever's coming in the next two episodes I'm not sure there's anything left for me to respect about her character.
I saw shades of Olivia Pope from Scandal season 1 tonight. She handled Andrew in the way only Olivia Pope can, shutting him down by threatening to lay bare every skeleton in his closet. (Can I just say that one thing I love about Andrew is that he calls Olivia on this nonsense? Because I love that.)
We even got a callback to the Gladiators from Abby.
Olivia: What would Olivia Pope say?
Abby: You don't get to run. You're a gladiator. Gladiators don't run. They fight. They slay dragons. The wipe off the blood. They stitch up their wounds, and they live to fight another day. You don't get to run. How was that?
Olivia: That was good.
But Olivia will face the next crisis, courtesy of her own mother, with a trembling lip and a pouty stare and fret while whatever is going to happen happens and then she'll run to Fitz' side and they'll say "hi."
Fitz wins. Again.
Up until the end of the episode, I felt bad for Jake (again, I know). Being Command is weighing on him. It's hardening him and he doesn't like it but he feels powerless to do anything about it.
One does not simply stop being Command, you know?
For a split second when Olivia returned the device to Huck I thought she hadn't gone through with turning Jake's phone into a transmitter. There was a moment where she really wanted to let him into her apartment, particularly when he said that he'd asked her to save him and she'd said no that seemed to be weighing on her after their romp.
But she did go through with it and now she has to pay the piper: Rowan Pope.
There isn't a part of me that doubts that Huck was completely right. Rowan Pope used Olivia to take down B613 knowing that whatever consequence would come would be Jake's fault.
And Rowan doesn't care at all what the consequences are at this point. He just wanted to prove that he's the only man for the job of Command.
This wasn't about putting down the organization of super spies because he loves it too much. It's about getting his power back.
So now Maya Pope is on the loose, with a bomb, having killed several people already, and Sebastian Roche is her bomb-delivering boyfriend. Adnan Salif is along for the ride and we still have no idea how any of these people came together but oh look something shiny to distract us from the things that don't make sense!
After 22 years in prison and completely cut off from all human contact except the guard who fed her and Rowan's occasional visits, doesn't it seem unlikely that she could just pick up the phone and call up her old terrorist buddies and be back in the game? Is no one else but me asking this question?
There's just so much about that terrorist subplot, like WHY she wants to kill the President in the first place, that I almost can't even care about it. It feels so poorly flung together.
One good thing which has come from the Maya Pope story is Quinn realizing that her true allegiance is to Olivia, and whether that's because she knows what Maya is capable of doing, has a thing for Huck, or is just not the same as Charlie deep down, I don't know. But, like Charlie said, we know where her alliance is now.
We might see Quinn Perkins come home before the season ends.
What did you think of Scandal Season 3 Episode 16? Are you as frustrated by Fitz as I am? Did Rowan Pope use Olivia to get his power back?
Here is your first look at Scandal Season 3 Episode 17, "Flesh and Blood."
Miranda Wicker is a Staff Writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.