After a bit of backstory last week, we return to present day on this episode. It often feels a lot like old times, though, especially when Liv and Fitz are bickering and making up. Though their relationship status has shifted around over the years, these two can be counted on to always find one another again. It’s just that this is the final season, so there’s a bit more urgency to the proceedings.
Love and/or lust isn’t just in the air for our favorite couple, however, as all of our DC heavyweights seem to have been afflicted with the fever this week. Since it’s not spring, get ready for some fall fever, Scandal-style.
Déjà vu all over again. We go briefly back in time once again to start things off, though. Liv and Pryce’s make-out session interrupted when they find Fitz at Liv’s front door. This is reminiscent of last season, when we sat through endless replayings of the same scene, in that case the night of Frankie Vargas’s assassination. Here’s hoping this is the last time this particular scene is played out; it was sufficiently shocking the first time, but it’s worn out its welcome and shock value, so enough already.
Liv and Pryce awkwardly stop making out when they see Fitz, before Pryce clumsily shakes Fitz’s hand and swiftly makes his exit. Liv wants to know what Fitz is doing there, assuming it’s personal, but Fitz says he’s there on business. She’s cold and unreceptive. He gives her a file with information on missing girls and says he needs her help. She says he’s not supposed to be there. He says she’s in a unique position to help and shed light on a troubling situation, but she just tells him to talk to QPA about it and goes inside.
White House and personal matters. Mellie has gotten Rashad and Nazari, the leaders of the disputing nations of Bashran and Dakal, to DC to discuss a nuclear treaty. She meets with Rashad in private before the summit and is hopeful they can reach an agreement. She also is still clearly interested in maybe at some point working out her own personal agreement with Rashad. They’re interrupted by Liv, who’s also optimistic about the summit. After Rashad leaves, Liv brings up Fitz, and Mel says she knows he’s in town and that he called to ask about the kids. Yeah, those invisible Grant kids. Whatever became of them, especially the youngest who would be, what, like, four or five now? Who looks after him, anyway?
An aide tells Cyrus that, due to rules around the giving of gifts to White House officials, he can’t keep the extremely expensive Cezanne that Fenton Glackland gave him. When Cy goes to tell Glackland, he’s invited into the eccentric inventor’s lab for some fun with virtual reality glasses, or whatever those things are. Doesn’t matter, they’re clearly just a flirting device for Glackland, who then comes on to Cy. He makes a proposition that Cy teach him about politics as a way for the two of them to get to know each other better. His forwardness seems to spook Cy a bit, and he hastily leaves.
Liv asks Jake to look into what Fitz is up to. They had an agreement that he was going to stay in Vermont while she was Mel’s chief of staff, but now he’s back in town. He says he’s there working, and he’s on official business, but she says it doesn’t feel right.
Fitz has indeed taken his cause to QPA, where they look into all the missing girls. There are 219 of them, all teens or younger, all recently gone missing, and all girls of color. Quinn says they need to look through the bios and find one, a poster girl quite literally, and spotlight her story to bring attention to the matter. Eventually, Zoe Adams of Baltimore is picked.
Taking care of business. Liv, in her office, is told Marcus is there to see her and Pryce is on the phone. She says to show Marcus in, and whenever Pryce calls, tell him she’s unavailable. Hmm. Marcus wants to see Mel and asks for Liv’s permission. She says no without even look up from her desk. Then she asks him how Vermont is, and he says “Cold; white.” She asks how Fitz is and gets the same answer. They both get a laugh out of that, and Liv relaxes a bit, before motioning for him to sit. Marcus says Fitz still talks about her and obviously misses her. Liv questions his motives for being in DC, but Marcus asks who cares what Fitz’s motives are and it’s irrelevant if he can focus attention on this problem.
That seems to get Liv to think seriously about the matter for the first time. She drops in on QPA to see how the Gladiators are handling things. They’re not there, so Liv looks at all the photos of the missing girls. They’re taped up on the glass, all 219 of them, and Liv looks overwhelmed. It’s at that point the Gladiators walk in, somewhat stunned to see her. Liv tells them they need more than just a poster child, they need a spokeswoman, which would be Nora, Zoe’s mom. Liv says she’ll make sure Nora gets plenty of press. It’s Liv taking charge in her former digs, just like old times. On her way out, she runs into Fitz, who’s coming in. He asks her out for a drink. She seems receptive to that and looks like she might say yes but instead tells him “Let’s see how the summit goes.” They exchange sweet smiles as they part.
The summit. Mellie gets Rashad and Nazari together at the same table, but things don’t get off to a good start. Nazari doesn’t like the treaty, thinks it’s biased and accuses Mel and Rashad of conspiring against him. Mel tries to smooth things over, but Nazari just keeps being nasty, and he and Rashad throw some insults at each other before Mel calls for a break, so everyone can cool off.
Mel and Liv retire to the Oval. Mel is frustrated. She thinks Nazari is being difficult and they should be confrontational with him. Liv takes a more measured approach and says Nazari is being careful and skeptical, and he can’t be blamed for that. Then she adds that maybe Mel is siding with Rashad because of some personal reason, which Mel denies.
Let’s not reminisce about that. Nora the poster mother goes on Pryce’s show to talk about her daughter and the problem of missing children. Accompanying her is Fitz, who has apparently taken on the role of Gladiator this week. Since Fitz is there, Pryce takes the opportunity to call him out on not doing anything for missing kids while he was president. As if that’s the only thing wanting about Fitz’s presidency. The list of Fitz’s screw-ups in office would fill volumes. We know. We were witnesses. But he fields the criticism skillfully, saying he didn’t address the problem because, like most people, he didn’t know the magnitude of it. He says his foundation will be taking on causes like this and while the while foundation is based in Vermont, his work will take place to a large extent in the big cities like DC, where he’s thinking of moving.
That last part is thrown in casually, probably not even noticed by many. But Liv is watching at home (sipping a huge glass of wine, of course). She sure noticed and gives that statement the side-eye.
A break for some flirting and girl talk. Still on a break from the summit, Mel shares a drink with Rashad. She says they can’t be seen by Nazari as colluding, because he’s definitely sensitive about that. As they talk, there’s more chemistry between these two, which Mel tries to ignore.
She goes from that get-together to Cy’s office, where a somewhat jaw-dropping scene occurs. As Mel walks in, she sees the Cezanne, assumes it’s a copy, then looks closer and is surprised and impressed to realize it’s genuine. He says it’s a gift from Glackland. Mel is beyond amused by that, giggles like a teenager, plops down on a chair, and tells Cy to spill everything. It’s obvious Glackland really likes him, Mel says, and she wants all the details. It’s like a slumber party!
Cy sits and sighs and says that it doesn’t matter, because Glackland is “beneath him”. Huh??! He seriously did not just say that. Cy, have you, you know, met yourself? With all the dirt he has on his hands he’s going to talk about someone not being as good as he is? Besides, this is a guy who married an ex-hustler, and he’s worried about status? Speaking of Michael, Cy brings him up, saying that he can’t go from having a hot young partner like that to someone like Glackland. Again, huh???! Is he under the impression that he’s some gorgeous kid who deserves the same? A mirror, Cy; go check one out and come back to reality.
Mel is the voice of reason. She counters that anyone who gifts an original Cezanne can’t be too shabby. You just said a mouthful, Mel. Then she admits that she has a thing for the Bashrani president. This is news to Cy, who raises an eyebrow. Hee! She says she finds Rashad really alluring but knows that getting involved would be a bad idea. Then they share a laugh at their predicaments.
Having it all, again. Liv drops by Pa’s paleontology studio, where he’s cleaning some dinosaur bones. He mentions that he saw Fitz on TV, talking about staying in DC. Liv seems intrigued by that possibility, so Pa tells her she can’t be command and be in a relationship. She reminds him that this is not his B613, she’ll run it her own way, and that may include a private life. Pa says that’s not possible. He says her getting ‘boy advice’ from him is pathetic, but apparently he’s all she has left. She says nothing and turns to go. As she’s leaving, he says she should choose having a life over B613.That she should look at the life he had as command, and learn from him.
Summit interruptus. Mel, Rashad and Nazari are back at the table, and things are going smoother. The two warring leaders seem to have found common ground and look close to agreeing to a treaty, when the door bursts open. Security agents rush in and start hustling everyone out. There’s a coup underway in Bashran. At the moment, Rashad is no longer president.
Liv goes to see Jake in the B613 lair. He insists that if they had more agents, they would have seen the coup coming. Why didn’t the CIA have any idea, I wonder? And is the new B613 just Liv and Jake? That hasn’t been spelled out, but it sure looks that way. No other agents have been seen or mentioned. Liv intends to run a secret global spy agency with just two people? Good luck with that. Jake says that if he wasn’t so busy tagging along after Fitz for her, he might have known the coup was coming. Then he says she needs to decide whether she’s command or “someone’s girl”. He seems to be echoing what Pa was saying. Liv doesn’t like hearing it any better from Jake.
Liv then goes to the Oval, where Mel is pacing. She says they may have to send troops to Bashran. Liv says that would be a mistake,since it would undermine foreign policy. Mel disagrees and wants to give Rashad sanctuary. Liv says he’s no longer his country’s leader, so he’s not entitled to special protection. The U.S. has no use for him. Mel seems a bit shocked by the heartlessness of Liv’s words and says if they send Rashad home, the rebels will kill him. Liv says that’s not their business. They should stay out of it and avoid a possible military conflict. Mel says Rashad has been fair with them throughout the negotiations and was ready to agree to a nuclear treaty. He’s a friend of the U.S. and worth fighting for. Liv says she’ll think about it.
Olitz, again. Meanwhile, there’s still the matter of the missing kids. Fitz shows up at Liv’s door, saying that just as the issue was getting some attention, the coup knocked it out of the news. He wants her to get Mel to hold a press conference. Liv says she’s his ex, so he should ask her. He says he knows Mel checks with her about everything, so he’s coming to her first. Liv is stressed out and irritated by the day’s events and asks him why he’s really there. Fitz shifts gears and says because he loves her. She’s running the world, like he once did, so he understands what she’s going through. Then he says that everything that went wrong during his presidency happened when they weren’t together. They should face the fact that both of them are better together than apart. Liv looks a bit annoyed, but maybe that’s just because she’s not happy with herself for giving in. Which she does. She grabs and kisses him.
The next morning, presumably after an all-night nookie session with Fitz, Liv goes to see his ex. The POTUS asks what she decided. Liv carries two folders and says she made two briefs they have to discuss. Mel admits that she does have personal feelings for Rashad, but that doesn’t sway the fact that she wants to do the right thing. Liv gives her the first file, which she says contains information about military movements that her generals are going to need if there’s involvement by the U.S. Mel says she wants this to be her decision, but Liv reminds her that she’s never alone; she’s Mel’s chief of staff and will always be at her side and have her back. Mel asks to see the other folder.
??? Then there’s a rather inexplicable scene where Quinn visits Nora, who sees her and assumes there’s bad news. But Quinn has good news; Zoe has been found alive and is coming home. How this was accomplished isn’t addressed. Maybe this matter was covered in the second folder? Or was that about another option in the Bashran situation? It isn’t stated.
Cy’s love life, however, is unambiguously addressed. He goes to see Glackland and tells him he’s keeping the painting, buying it for $20 because he can’t accept it as a gift, then says he’s mulled over the offer to teach politics to Glackland, and is accepting. Apparently Cy has decided to go ‘beneath’ himself. Ugh.
Pa’s in trouble. Liv drops by QPA and tells the Gladiators that not only is Zoe back home, but the FBI is starting a special division to deal with missing people of color. It was a job well done. On the way out, she gets a call from Jake. He tells her what he’s found while digging into Fitz’s activities. Seems Fitz was true to his word; he went right up to Vermont after leaving office and stayed there, avoiding politics and DC, like he said he would. Then he got a visit from someone…
The next time we see Pa, he’s walking into his empty lab. The dinosaur bones he fussed so much over are gone, but his daughter is there. She says she knows he talks to the bones sometimes when alone in the lab, but that’s not the only one he’s been talking to. She shoves a chair in front of him and tells him to sit.
So Pa’s visit to Vermont has been uncovered, and he’s about to be interrogated. And what of the political situation with Mel’s potential BF? A preview of 07.05, “Adventures in Babysitting” –
Olivia and Mellie assert their power as never before; Cyrus works on congressional approval to declare war on Bashran; a close watch is kept on President Rashad’s niece.
Will Liv be able to put aside her romantic urges long enough to get the business of state done? Will Mellie? Will Cyrus? Such drama…