Can't get enough Scandal? Join the club—really. Tune into H&H for weekly recaps from Kwana Minatee-Jackson and Nicole Leapheart. Need to catch up? Don't miss recaps of 3x07, 3x08, 3x09, 3x10, 3x11, 3x12, 3x13, 3x14, and 3x15. And now, let's dive into H&H's recap of Season 3, episode 17, “Flesh and Blood.”
NOTE: This post may contain spoilers for all aired episodes of Scandal. Enjoy!
Howdy, Gladiators, welcome back! Last time, Liv had pulled the plug (literally) on B613 at exactly the wrong time, giving Maya just enough time to slip away unseen with a bomb that she plans to use to take out Fitz. Cut to Jake going practically postal and storming into OPA, putting Liv in a very “I know you didn’t just put your hands on me” choke hold.
Alrighty then. You got that one, Jake. That one. This week, we open with Liv out of her up-against-the-wall hold and she’s now in the main OPA conference room arguing with Jake about her poor timing and treason over taking out B613 when suddenly Fitz chimes in for them to hush it up with Cyrus by his side. Hmm, I’d like to know who called Fitz and how that hold would go over now? But I digress. These are scenes we are not privy to, so back to the matters at hand and Fitz is mad because Liv didn’t talk to him about her plans and Liv replies that she made the call because it was what he said he wanted. Then salty Jake jumped on in and doesn’t miss his shot to toss across the table that Liv slept with him the night before to put a tracker on his phone. Did you hear that, Fitz, yet another man sleeping with your other woman? And Boom.
Jake then pulls out his last pics of Maya along with an unidentified man, but Fitz knows the man and feels it’s time to call in reinforcements. With the Gladiators looking on from the kiddy table in the back we get the cool strut walk on of Rowan, aka Papa Pope. Jake gets mad because gosh darn it HE IS IN COMMAND. Fitz doesn’t care. When Papa was running things it didn’t take a zipper tug to take the whole operation down...or did it?
Papa takes on look at the pic of the man and IDs it as Dominic Bell, Maya’s handler, bad guy for hire, and Papa’s mortal enemy. He must now work with the team to find Dom Bell. Fitz goes to leave, saying he has to be in Defiance (will that place ever just fade away?!?) first thing in the morning to campaign since there are only six days left to the race. Liv tells Fitz he can’t go since there is a bomb with his name on it.
It’s the next day and we see the odd couple of Quinn and Charlie having breakfast while Charlie listens to static and numbers on the radio. Charlie is still on edge about Quinn and her allegiance and she’s still busy trying to stroke his ego and convince him she’s loyal to him and not OPA, aka Huck and his face licking.
Back at OPA, Daddy is running point while Jake pouts and then in walks Quinn and Charlie. Good, the family reunion can officially begin. Somebody get out the potato salad. Jake makes subtle digs at Papa Pope getting on his antiquated methods totally coming at him with ageism so Rowan forces Liv to make a choice as to who stays and who goes. Silly Jake didn’t the memo about family being forever and is shocked when he’s not picked.
Liv goes after him as he storms off, to try to placate him, only to get a speech from him about how brutal her father really is. He tells Liv her dad is just playing a part and when his mask comes off she’d better run.
We cut to Leo trolling the Lacrosse fields of the private school where the Grant kids go. He makes a deal with a young girl named Mackenzie who has her sights set on Harvard. After the deal is made, he gets a call from Sally breaking the news that a Senator Hightower had died and she wants in on the eulogy.
We cut back to the White House, where Fitz is watching the news and Cyrus is also trying to figure out how Fitz can capitalize on the Senator’s death during these last campaign days. We get a glimpse of Mellie sitting beside them and we see that she can barely sit up straight. She’s clutching her coffee cup like a lifeline and it’s quickly apparent that it’s not coffee in that cup. She snorts out a small chuckle when Fitz tells Cy that he can’t go to the funeral, “because somebody out there wants him dead.” Mellie adds to her snort “you think it’s just out there,” before she walks away. I do enjoy drunk Mellie.
Cyrus whispers to Fitz something about how he will win, otherwise this all (meaning the death of James) would have been in vain. Let’s stick a pin in that one here.
We then get a glimpse of Maya being handed the flip phone trigger for the bomb while a very exuberant terrorist packages the bomb to get it ready for transport. Maya doesn’t have any time for his anti-America ramblings. She just wants to handle her business all the while doing in it fabulous dove grey leather gloves.
Back at OPA, the world’s most uncomfortable love triangle of Huck, Quinn and Charlie are arguing over how to find Dominic. Huck decides to go it alone.
Fitz calls Liv to try and convince her that he should do the Hightower eulogy because Sally is out there getting votes. Even the NAACP. Liv tells him the NAACP is not voting for Sally Langston. She knows because she’s black. So funny.
We’re back in the White House and Liv had brought the campaign to Fitz where he’s doing lots of remote interviews and it’s all hands on deck with Mellie, Andrew and Cy manning the phone bank.
Over at OPA, Harrison has a moment with Rowan where he calls him Papa Pope. Rowan doesn’t like the moniker and just gives Harrison the stink eye. Quinn and Charlie can’t find Dominic, so they tell Liv and Papa Pope. All turn in shock when Huck comes off the elevator dragging a body. He’s got Dominic.
Back at the private school: that girl that Leo propositioned is up in Lil Jerry s room and she’s about to do special ops to get DNA from Lil Jerry. Silly boy, always control the condom.
At OPA, Liv and crew question Dom who is giving up nothing except how Liv has grown since he’s last seen her. Rowan tells Huck to continue the interrogation, but Liv being all Liv warns Huck and everyone to question Dominic, but be nice about it. Obviously she didn’t get the memo on this crew.
Rowan gets a call from Leo who spills it that Mellie asked about a paternity test of Lil Jerry and now he’s holding the evidence, so to speak. In an attempt to win Liv’s trust, Rowan tell Liv about the test and Leo’s plans.
Liv runs to drunk Mellie and corners her about the paternity test. She asks Mel which kid or are both of them Andrew’s? Mellie is horrified and being drunk and all, starts to spill her beverage. Almost. She’s overwhelmed and mad and can’t deal with Liv coming down on her and having the nerve to imply that she was being a reckless idiot. But Liv backtracks and says Mellie is not an idiot and never reckless so she knows something more is up with the test now. Mellie, straight-faced as all get out, tells Liv, “I want his head in the fire and I want to see him burn.” Well, okay then. We know where you’re coming from, drunk Mel. The liquor doesn’t lie. She wanted to give him a piece of news that would destroy him and watch his face when it happens. She talks of living a lie for fifteen years. And being destroyed and tired of carrying the cross. But in a true reckless moment Mellie mutters, “Big Jerry isn’t something I want to be nailed to anymore.” Stop. The. Presses. Did she just say that out loud to Liv? Mel sobers up right quick and runs to Liv telling she will clean this mess up and not utter a word to Fitz. She tells Liv that she owes her everything. Good point there, Mel. Whew, that one scene could have been the show for me.
Back at OPA, there is some banter between Harrison, Abby and Quinn, who is so feeling herself in her B613 leather jacket. The sibling look Harrison and Abby give each other when Quinn makes a comment about them making their own coffee now is priceless. When Quinn comes back I’m sure she will be paying for that one.
Next we see David walking into his office and almost soiling himself when he spots Jake in his chair. I guess since Jake couldn’t find anyone to push around at OPA he had to go elsewhere. David is an easy mark and after some light threats he tells him he’ll need him to do some secret spying to get a lead on Maya.
We then see the bomb being put in place under some basement pipes by the terrorists. They joke about who’s going to clean up the mess of the dead janitor that they have.
Over at OPA, Harrison gets a lead and he runs off while Huck has gotten nowhere with questioning Dominic.
Papa asks for Huck’s gun and Olivia protests his methods. She questions who Dominic really is and Rowan tells her that Dominic Bell is the only man Maya ever really loved. He takes the gun and plays a game of Russian Roulette with Dominic, trying to get him to call Maya. Papa wastes no time pulling the trigger and Dominic blinks, calling Maya. Rowan tells her he will kill Dominic and she just tells Dominic goodbye and hangs up before Huck can trace the call. Rowan is left with no trace and Dominic still alive. He tells everyone to leave; Liv tries to tell him to stop and not to kill Dominic, but smart Huck knows Dom’s life is over. He pulls Liv out of the room and Rowan pulls the trigger and kills Dom.
Next we see David doing a check in call with Abby as he does a facial computer search for Maya and Abby does body clean up to get a hair sample off of Dom along with Huck. At the same time. David whines about Jake possibly killing him. Abby gives sage advice when she tells Jake to just stay useful and he’ll stay alive. But she gives the bullet to Papa Pope and it seems all that sense goes out the window when she calls him despicable. Um, Abby girl, didn’t you just hear him shoot that man? There is plenty of plastic sheeting to go around on this show. We then see Abby paying off the DNA lab dude to say whatever the test it’s a match. Sally gets the results and is Sadly, disappointed. Bummer Sal.
Liv is back home and sad on her couch. She decides to call Jake to whine. Jake being Jake drops that he’s COMMAND a few hundred more times and somehow equates this to his smexy power in bed. Feeling ourselves much, Jake? But once again Liv gives him the old heave ho saying that sleeping with him felt like a betrayal to Fitz and she’s really in love with Fitz. Jake’s left hanging out in the park on that beach once again with nothing. But no, he’s not seeing it, poor dear.
It’s now five days before the elections and Sally has slipped ahead by four points. Fitz is getting antsy. Why he’s even losing in that blasted Ohio? It’s off to Defiance he goes.
Its early morning at OPA and Papa Pope is already there when Liv gets in. He tells her how he’s sorry/not sorry he killed Dom. But mostly he’s sorry. Sorry for disappointing Liv but more than that not sorry since Dom pretty much ruined their lives. Liv tells him it was not Dominic but her mother since she didn’t love him and because she doesn’t love anyone.
We get a cut to the awkward tri of Quinn and her men and they are in the garage fighting of how and where to dispose of Dominic. While Huck and Charlie bicker, Quinn takes things into her own hands so to speak and drives off with the body to get rid of it herself.
Liv calls Cyrus to give him an update she heard the chopper in the background finding out that they are going off to Ohio. Rowan tells her that if she goes with Fitz she may save him since it’s not true that Maya does love one other person. Her. Can she trust her father? Should she go to be by Fitz’s side?
Cut to Harrison finding the spot tied to Adnan’s last transactions. He’s getting all the goods and about to spill the beans when Adnan pull a gun on him stopping him. I’m totally disappointed with Harrison’s lack of Spideysense when it comes to women.
Liv has made it to the ever famous Defiance High School in time to join Fitz and Drunk Mellie front and center on the stage so Maya can see her clearly on TV. Fitz starts his speech and while he’s talking Liv whispers to Mel that the paternity tests have been taken care of with Leo and if she still wanted tests of her own she’ll handle it for her. I have to admit, it was a good wife mistress moment right there.
Now we cut to Huck back in the garage waiting for Quinn to return. She does and they have words about her running off with the Dom’s body along. The words quickly turn onto a kiss and slap fest with Quinn demanding that Huck admit that he wants her before he lifts her on the hood of the car, rips off her panties, and has his way with her. Or at this point I think it’s Quinn that’s having her way and really did Charlie just go out for ice cream? And lastly do you all not see that lady walking right by you? No. Too busy getting busy I guess.
Hey, wait! That’s not a lady, it’s Maya Pope! Security!!! Here comes Maya strolling into OPA and rolling up on Rowan like she doesn’t have a care in the world. Dang it, when are they going to get guard for those doors. At least an intercom system. A lock maybe? What is going on!
Maya looks at Rowan and says, “Bring my baby home.” He promptly calls Liv and tells her that Maya is there and the bomb is set to go off. Liv whispers to Fitz as he’s making his speech and he makes up a lie about the basement sprinklers and everyone having to leave. Everyone gets to getting.
We next see David and Jake. Jake has found out though his computer digging what’s Maya been up to while she was in town.
Liv is back from Ohio because it’s just the quickest flight ever from Ohio to Washington and when she gets into her office she’s all, ‘Oh to the NO,’ as she finds Rowan on the floor and bleeding out. Dang you, Maya Pope! In walks Huck and Quinn who I can’t believe have been at it in the garage in the time it takes to fly from Ohio to Washington, but there you have it. They jump to try and help Liv with Rowan and once again I ask, where the heck did Charlie go?
Cut to Harrison caught once again and he’s sitting and watching the Defiance situation unfold on TV. He tells Adnan that she’s lost but Adnan pretty much laughs that off telling him the bomb was never at the school.
Cut back to Jake and David and Jack is frantically trying to call Liv but she’s not picking up. He can’t get anyone but Cyrus. He tell him he’s found out that Maya Pope killed Senator Hightower, which means the bomb is at his funeral. The same funeral that every big dignitary including Fitz and Sally plan to attend. This funeral is the place to be in Washington that day. Jake tells Cyrus not to let the president go and Cyrus promises the president will be staying at the White House where it’s safe. He says he’s alerted the FBI and the Secret service to have the church cleared immediately. Cyrus hangs up on Jake and is about to make the next call to get the church cleared when he pauses and calls in his assistant and asks him if Sally Langston already left for Senator Hightower’s funeral. When his assistant says yes she did Cyrus hangs up the phone making no call to stop the bomb in the church. Cut to the church and Sally and Leo walking in. Next they are shaking hands with Andrew. It’s a full house of folks that if they were gone would make Cyrus’s life easier.
Cut to Mellie getting an envelope with DNA results and looking visibly shaken.
Cut to Maya walking down the street cool and easy as she flips out her borrowed phone and starts the countdown on the bomb.
Swing back to Cyrus walking down the White House hallway, s satisfied smile on his face as he makes his way to the Oval Office where he lies to Fitz about there being a delay and so instead of going to the church now they can run through the eulogy one more time. Oh Cyrus, you are a very very bad man. And now that your conscience named James is gone. I just don’t know what we’re going to do with you.
I do know next week it’s all going with the season finale as the bomb will go off and I’m sure we’ll all be left with our jaws dropping. Will Maya Pope be stopped? Will Rowan live? Will Sally make it out alive? Is Lil Gerry Fitz’s biological child? Will Jake stay in COMMAND? Where the heck did Charlie go? So many questions and so few answers. Let’s hope we get them all or at least most next week.
Kwana Jackson—aka K.M. Jackson—is a writer of women’s fiction and contemporary romance. Her debut novel Through the Lens is on sale now. She can be found on most days at her blog kwana.com and at any moment on Twitter talking about everything and nothing at all under the handle @kwanawrites.