Review: ‘Scandal’ Episode 4.12 “Gladiators Don’t Run”

**Spoiler alert** If you haven’t seen Thursday’s episode then GO WATCH IT ALREADY!

Recap: 

Attention World: Olivia Pope is for sale, today only! Exclusive to terrorist members only!  

The episode starts with Abby waiting for Olivia, who see still doesn’t know is missing. She thinks Olivia is avoiding her, so goes to her apartment to find the wine stained couch. She immediately goes to Pope & Associates where Quinn and Huck refuse to say anything because “You’re not a Gladiator anymore,” Abby. Fitz gets a team together to find a way into the auction. Telling Cyrus and Mellie, “We can win this. Who has more money than the United States?” They name a few like China and United Arab Emirates, but Fitz still wants in.

Olivia seems to be safe. Ian and his team set up the auction, while Gus (the guy she cracked in the skull in “Run”) doesn’t like the new scheme. At the White House, the plan to get Olivia back involves getting into bed with some terrorists. Jake doesn’t fully trust that the White House can save Olivia; he decides that Quinn, Huck and himself pool their money together. Quinn laughs saying she has no money because “It doesn’t matter how many times you reinvent your identity, Sallie Mae will find you.” Truer words were never spoken. Then Huck lets out a tiny secret about having two billion dollars; which is left over from shutting down B613.

Things take a sudden turn for the worse with Olivia when Gus shoots Ian in the head. It is right after Ian agrees to let Olivia have the final pick between the highest bidders. Gus declares he is in charge now and the auctions starts. Cyrus attempts to get Andrew to sign his resignation, but he threatens to spill how the US got into a war over the President’s “sidepiece.” To get in the auction, Jake approaches Maya AKA Mama Pope in lockup who eventually helps connect with a known drug trafficker. The only catch is that Huck has to assassinate a couple of guys for the guy first. Jake walks in when Huck is still in the middle of savoring his bloody kills. Jake makes him stop, but has to decapitate a guy himself for proof they got the job done.

Cyrus and Fitz try to look for evidence about Andrew’s fake assassination attempt.  Cyrus approaches Elizabeth for information. Andrew threatens Mellie; telling her that the world will know about their affair if he is forced out of office. Olivia tries to plead with Mike and Pete, the two tech guys, to help her. She tells them that Gus is not to be trusted, and that they will surely serve the same fate as Ian. Her speech doesn’t work because all they see is dollar signs. Abby, still distracted with Liv’s wine stained couch, tells Fitz she is worried. He lets her into the loop, FINALLY! She goes off on David; thinking her should have been the one to tell her. He doesn’t agree because he is a big jerk. (Just kidding, his reasoning is justified.)

Mellie and Fitz have a good talk about what they want in the future. Fitz says that he wants Olivia, home and safe. Mellie declares she wants to be the leader of the Free World. Which means that they are going to have to let Andrew get away with his actions because the world won’t forgive her infidelity.   Fitz agrees, for now, to let Andrew walk. Jake approaches Quinn about Huck, but she thinks that he is going to be ok. Jake isn’t convinced. Huck finally gets them into the auction, but it quickly shuts down. Gus has decides to sell Olivia directly to Iran. Fitz finds out about it, but demands that they still try to extract Olivia, even though the head of the CIA wants to neutralize her. Fitz didn’t slap her right in her face for saying that, but probably thought about it.  While Jake and Quinn discuss who could have bought Olivia, Huck goes off about how she is good as dead.  His rant sends Quinn into a rage, where she basically attacks him.  Everyone is on edge, we get it.  Fitz is feeling guilty over his choice to go to war. He wants to make sure the sacrifices made were not for nothing. He tells Cyrus they need to get Olivia back otherwise it was all for nothing. Cyrus promises they will.

 My Thoughts:

I have to admit something. After seeing the ad for this week’s episode, I thought it was going to be kind of lame. I don’t know why, but I thought Olivia would be on some sort of auction block, or there would be a live feed of her in a bikini or something creepy like that. Thankfully, Scandal rarely disappoints and this episode was actually one of my favorites of the season. Let’s talk about some crucial moments in the episode:

Huck:

I still can see Huck, covered in blood, with those intense crazy eyes.  After seeing how he handled Olivia’s disappearance last year (when she went off with Jake), we know that he has a hard time functioning without her. Her kidnapping has taken a toll on Huck and someone needs to get him into rehab STAT. It has been a growing problem, but if Jake is worried then we should be worried. Jake has more than enough blood on his own hands, but he was majorly disturbed with how Huck tortured the drug dealers. Though they both have worked for B613, there is a major difference between them. Jake’s murders have always been quick and efficient; probably so that he doesn’t have to think about them so much. Huck does it slow because he loves to savor his kill. He needs Liv to help him control his urge, so let’s make that happen and save her already.

Olivia:

This whole kidnapping business has been one big rollercoaster ride for Liv. Right when she has found a way to feel in control something bad happens. This week, it was Gus shooting Ian in the head. He hated the new plan even more than he hated Olivia. He didn’t like that Ian had let Olivia has some control so, he took care of the problem. She tried her best to get Mike and Pete on her side, but her inspiring speech did nothing for them. Part of me believes that Iran didn’t really buy her, but someone pretending to be “Iran.” Papa Pope, maybe?

Fitz and Mellie:

My favorite part of the episode was Fitz and Mellie’s talk about the future. I feel like this whole season they have really come to be a great team. It is a mixture of the past year’s events, their son’s death, Mellie’s affair with Andrew, and finally Olivia’s kidnapping that has made helped them open up with each other. They have gotten past deceiving each other. Mellie has finally declared (out loud) that she wants to be be the President of the United States one day. Though Fitz really wants Andrew to pay for everything he has done, he is willing to let him go to give Mellie that chance. As she pointed out, the world won’t forgive a woman for infidelity, even though they have forgiven countless men for doing the same thing. On a side note, I honestly think someone (**COUGH** Cyrus) should get back to his old ways and have Andrew “taken care of.”  I mean, we haven’t seen Charlie in awhile, I am sure he isn’t doing anything.

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