Last week, we found out more about Papa Pope than we ever asked for or wanted to know. That set up this week’s foray into the life of Huck. Don’t worry, it’s much tamer than expected for the most part. Turns out, Huck is just a plain old sucker for a damsel in distress. In his own unique, screwed-up way, of course, but he’s just an old-fashioned guy. One who sometimes tortures and kills for a living, but hey, everyone needs a hobby.
For now, we’re through with the flashbacks we’ve seen so many of in recent episodes. Finally, Scandal is back in present day.
More sparring and making out. Huck is with that new GF of his, Meg, and they’re doing what they always seem to be doing, bobbing and weaving. Literally. If you remember, she’s the friend of the not-so-late Jennifer Fields (who’s actually still alive, but Meg doesn’t know it). She assumes, like the public at large, that Jenny was murdered, and Huck thought it important that she learn to protect herself. So every time we see them, they’re having a sparring session, with Huck giving helpful tips and Meg occasionally landing a good shot. They’ve recently also moved on to becoming romantic partners, so these sparring sessions have a habit of turning into make-out sessions.
When that happens this time, they’re interrupted by Charlie and an irate Quinn. She’s been trying to get in touch with him, but he turned off his phone to get some quality time with Meg. Quinn says Liv is missing, and no one can find her. Huck steps away and makes a phone call while Quinn and Charlie have an awkward conversation with Meg. When Huck gets off the phone, he says a hasty goodbye and leaves without answering any questions.
Turns out, he was going to meet a bedraggled-looking Liv in front of a seedy cafe. She has one thing on her mind: asking him to kill Papa Pope.
The mission, should he choose to accept it. Back at OPA, Liv lays out the facts. She tells Huck that Pa killed Frankie Vargas, and Jenny is alive. She goes over how Pa made Jenny incriminate Cyrus then ordered Jake to kill Jenny. It was an order not carried out, as Jake instead spared Jenny and stashed her away in hiding. Liv says Jake believes that Jenny may be the key to figuring out Pa’s plans. Pa showed just how far he will go in killing Vargas. He’s a danger to everyone and must be stopped.
But Huck is hesitant to take out someone he still refers to as “Command”. Old loyalties die hard. Besides, he says, something is off about this whole thing. Killing Frankie didn’t seem to benefit Pa, or anyone for that matter, so why do it? The whole situation doesn’t add up. But Liv isn’t interested in solving any mysteries. All she knows is that Pa definitely killed Vargas, and that’s all that matters. Huck, because he’s loyal to Liv, and likely also because he likes indulging in a little mayhem now and then, says he’ll carry out this mission if she really wants him to. But she has to be one-hundred percent sure. Is she absolutely sure this is what she wants? She says she is.
In the metro. That leads Huck to go to his trusty toolbox full of devices and retrieve his favorite sniper pistol and silencer. He spots Pa in the street and follows him down into the Washington Metro. There he loses sight of him and starts trotting along, desperately looking around and peering into trains. Really, that’s his spy technique? Because even I think it looks cheesy and obvious, and I have zero espionage training. Eventually he finds Pa, and after a train pulls away they’re left alone on the platform. It looks like a secluded area, but they’re still very much in public, even though no one else is around.
Pa says he’s not armed and Huck draws his gun. Pa says they only have two minutes until the people who are following him show up. Huck asks if Pa killed Vargas, and Pa says he did, but he he wants to explain why. Then he tells all about how he did it to save the woman he loved, and now Liv’s life is in danger. He adds that Liv’s life depends on him now, and anyone who kills him is effectively giving Liv a death sentence. Huck looks doubtful, but Pa’s explanation has so far prevented him from pulling the trigger. Then Pa says a train is about to arrive, and two people will get off. He describes Boris and Natasha from last week (they still haven’t given this nefarious duo names, so I’ll keep calling them that). Huck and Pa step into the shadows as the train pulls up, and just like Pa said, off step Boris and Natasha. They look around for Pa, don’t see him, and leave.
That’s enough to convince Huck that Pa is telling the truth. He asks who they are. Pa says he doesn’t know, but he does know that whoever is watching Liv for them is on the inside. It’s someone she trusts, someone close to her; a traitor, hence the episode title. Pa says Huck needs to find out who the mole is. Pa would do it himself, he says, but he’s being watched too closely. He asks Huck for his help, and tells him to “trust no one”. So we’re going all X-Files now, are we? I think Scully and Mulder would fit right into this show at this point. The truth is out there!
Huck walks into OPA, fresh off this conversation, and the whole gang is there. He eyes both Quinn and Charlie with suspicion.
Dysfunction is all around. Later Huck is listening in on Quinn and Charlie at home. I’m not sure how he got their place bugged so fast or what that device is he’s using, but it won’t be the last WTF moment in this episode. The happily dysfunctional couple discusses its upcoming wedding. Then Quinn remarks how crazy Meg looked when they met her today and that it appears Huck has another weird, whacked-out GF. Quinn laughs and says he seems to attract those. Charlie says she’s jealous and reduces it to a catfight, which ticks Quinn off, and she throws him out. Huck looks a bit hurt about Quinn basically calling him a psycho magnet, but he doesn’t have long to feel sorry for himself. After Charlie leaves, Quinn makes a phone call; she assures the person on the other end she’s alone then asks if a place has been found to put Jennifer. It sure sounds incriminating to Huck.
Quinn leaves and when she gets to the location, goes up to a door and knocks. As she does, Huck comes up behind her and puts a gun to her head. The door is opened by Jake. Huck takes all this in, including seeing Jenny in the background, and thinks he’s just stumbled onto a whole nest of moles.
Huck pushes his way in and holds all three at gunpoint. He deems Jenny to not be a threat, and she’s banished to the bathroom while he questions Jake and Quinn. He says Liv is in danger and tells them what Pa said. Jake asks if he thinks one of them is the mole, and Huck says he doesn’t suspect Jake. He thinks it’s Quinn or Charlie. Quinn seems both hurt and insulted by the accusation. She denies it, says maybe Huck is raising such a big stink to deflect attention from himself, because he’s the mole, and then draws her gun. So now Huck and Quinn are both waving their big ol’ guns in each other’s faces. Jake must be feeling left out.
Jake asks who’s threatening Pa, and Huck says all he knows is it’s a woman. Jake thinks he knows who it is and takes out a photo of Sandy. She’s someone from Pa’s past he was spending a lot of time with up until the election, then she vanished. Quinn says she’ll track Sandy down to try to get some answers. Then Huck and Quinn stare each other down and slowly lower their guns. For now.
GF troubles. At OPA, Huck and Quinn are working at their computers. Things are pretty tense between them, and Quinn breaks the silence to ask if Huck is going to apologize for thinking she was the mole. She says she thinks maybe Meg is the mole. After all, Huck doesn’t have a great track record with girlfriends, and she brings up Becky. A refresher: Back in Season 2, Becky tried to frame Huck for shooting Fitz. She was almost successful, and as a parting blow, she killed Huck’s ‘family’, the one he had been watching over and become obsessed with, in his own neurotic and scary, yet ultimately harmless way. He was able to track her down, and she was arrested and is currently in prison. They had met at an AA meeting, and Huck thought she was just a normal girl drying out. Becky totally played him, Quinn says, and maybe Meg is doing the same thing.
When Huck gets home, who’s there waiting but Meg. He did give her a key to his place, so she thought it was okay to come by anytime. Huck looks really shocked she’s there, so she says maybe she should go. He backs down and says he’s happy to see her, and they start making out. Later, Meg uses the afterglow to bring up Liv. She says maybe Liv could help her find out who killed Jenny. Huck says he’ll bring it up to Liv and see what she says. Meg says that if he doesn’t mind, Jenny was her friend and she’d like to talk to Liv about the matter herself, face to face.
That incident coming after Quinn’s talk sends Huck on a mission. He visits Abby in the White House. Hey, Red, long time no see! He tells her he needs access to a prisoner. He also mentions that Jenny is alive. She makes a phone call, and soon Huck is in a prison visiting room, sitting across from Becky. He asks her how she was able to get past his defenses and play him for such a sucker, way back when. What weakness did she sense in him? Becky says she’ll play along and help him, but only if she gets something in return. Her sister is dying, and she wants to see her again. She has limited time to do that now, and in fact, her sister may already be dead. She’s not sure, because it’s so hard to get information in prison. She just wants to see her sister one more time.
Huck looks genuinely touched and says he’ll help her any way he can. It’s then that a little smile spreads across Becky’s face as she says she doesn’t have a sister. She was playing Huck again, just like she did in the past. It’s so easy, she says; he’s so gullible, such an easy mark for a suffering, pretty girl with a sob story. So, who’s playing him now? Becky gives a twisted smile as she asks if his current squeeze acts all sad and damaged for him. Huck walks out.
Paranoia, justified. After that lovely meeting, Huck calls Liv from his car. He asks if she knows about Sandy. None of them knows Sany is dead at this point, so he’s asking if Liv knew about her relationship with Pa. But she doesn’t care about that, and asks for confirmation that Pa killed Vargas, which Huck gives. But he explains Pa did it protect Sandy, the woman he loves. Since Pa has fallen in love, Huck says he’s a different person. People can change, and love has changed Pa. Ugh. Really, Huck? For a guy intimately familiar with the dark side of Pa and what he’s capable of, Huck sure has a short memory. Liv isn’t buying any of this. She says Pa is who he’s always been; he hasn’t ‘changed’, and if Huck can’t get the job done by morning, she’ll find someone who can and hangs up.
Huck puts the phone down, and we see that he’s following Meg. He’s watching from across the street as she sits on a park bench. She’s all alone and looks sweet and innocent. He seems mad at himself for distrusting her and starts the car. But as he’s about to pull away, who shows up and plunks herself down on the bench right next to Meg but the evil Natasha! Well played, show. Didn’t see that coming. I had my suspicions about Meg from the get-go, but having this scenario thrown in our faces is another matter entirely. The two women exchange pleasantries as Huck watches, a look of total shock on his face.
Not a great date. Later, at home, Huck calls Meg and asks her to come over. He has good news. Liv has agreed to talk to her about Jenny’s case. As he says this, he’s readying a syringe; it’s apparently truth or consequences time for Meggie. When she arrives, Huck manages a bit of small talk then shows Meg the needle. He says she can talk, or he can force the information out of her. She can start by telling him who the woman in the park is. Meg looks terrified and says she doesn’t know what he’s talking about. She’s never seen the woman before. She just came and sat down next to her. She says again she doesn’t know what this is about and asks Huck not to do this. He waves the needle in her face and says it was a mistake to trust her. So Meg says to go ahead and be a monster if he must, but to look in her eyes first; if he sees someone you can’t trust, then he can do it. After a moment he relaxes his grip on her, and she takes the opportunity book it out of there.
After Becky was gracious enough to administer that test, Huck just failed with flying colors. He tipped his hand by telling Meg, twice, that he didn’t want to do this, but she was forcing him. Implying, correctly, that she could be persuaded to force him not to. Which she did.
You always hurt the one you love. In a parking garage, Huck meets up with Liv, Quinn and Charlie. Liv is not in a good mood. She asks Huck when he was going to tell her about his meetings with Pa. Then she shows him Sandy’s body, stuffed in a car trunk. Charlie says he found it in an old dumping ground that B613 used to use back in the day. Not only is there that link to Pa, but the car was covered with his fingerprints. Liv says Pa didn’t save Sandy, he killed her. But Huck is convinced Pa is telling the truth; after all, that woman is following him, Huck saw her with his own eyes. Quinn says Huck also thought there was a mole at OPA, and Charlie says it’s nothing to be embarrassed about, being played by Pa. Liv says Pa killed Vargas, he killed Sandy, and now he’s playing with Huck’s head, and it has to stop. Huck keeps pleading his case, how people can change, how Pa is a prisoner and needs them to help him. Pa needs their help, he says, so what is Liv going to do? After a brief silence, Liv turns to Quinn and tells her to finish the job. Then she tells Huck to get rid of Sandy’s body.
????? What happens next, I can’t even begin to explain. As Huck is burying Sandy, he seems to feel something in her neck, so of course he gets out a knife and goes spelunking. He digs out some kind of chip. It leads to a whole treasure trove of video, of Pa and Sandy and Boris and Natasha. Just about everything we’ve seen is there, including Pa shooting Sandy and Natasha’s threats against Liv. Whether all of this stuff was embedded on the chip or the chip led to somewhere all of this stuff was stored, isn’t clear. It’s sketchy and happens quickly, and it’s as if the show is implying that it’s not important how this footage appeared, just that it did appear and it’s key to the plot, so just accept it. Everything in the video seems to confirm what Huck has been saying about Pa.
Huck shows the footage to Liv, who views it in silence. Then she gets on her phone and calls Quinn, who at the moment is trying to get Pa in her crosshairs, and tells her to stand down.
This week’s shocking ending. Liv and Huck show up at Meg’s door. She tells them she tried to file a police report, and the police told her Huck didn’t exist. Hee! Don’t know if she’s making that up, but it sounds plausible. She doesn’t want to let them in, so Liv tells her Jenny is alive. Then she says Huck needs to forgive himself, and he needs Meg’s help.
Meg agrees to go with Huck. He takes her to where Jake has stashed Jenny, so she can finally see the friend she thought she’d lost. Huck and Meg are all smiles as Huck opens the door, and when Jenny walks in, she seems happy to see Meg. Things go dark very quickly, though. Without a word, Meg draws a gun and shoots Jenn dead. Then she turns to a startled Huck.
Then we cut away to Meg meeting up for a progress report with Natasha and Abby. Wait, Abby?? Our Red, former Gladiator turned Fitz’s chief of staff, old bud of Liv’s, that Abby? Yep, that Abby wants to know where things stand. Natasha says Jenny is dead. Abby asks about Huck. That’s when we cut back to the previous scene, in time to see Meg pull the trigger. She shoots Huck three times, and he’s on the floor bleeding as the episode ends.
Is this the end of Huck? I hate being spoiled, so I have no idea, but this show hasn’t killed off a major character in quite a while. The last time was at the end of S3, with Harrison, and that was because the actor was becoming such a public mess IRL, not due to any problem with the character. Jake has come ridiculously close to death but miraculously survived. So, we’ll see.
And what about Abby? Has Red joined the dark side, hanging out with evil folk like Natasha? We’ll likely find out next week, in what appears to be an Abby-centric episode. A preview of 06.08, “A Stomach for Blood” –
The events leading up to election night are retold from Abby’s perspective, revealing a formidable thirst for power and the explosive secret she’s been keeping.
Abby, we hardly knew ye!