Spoiler Alert: Do not read this if you have not watched Thursday’s episode of Scandal, ”A Woman Scorned.”
In a perfect world Olivia and Fitz would end up together. I understand this and I will not fight you ‘shippers. I am one of you, but I’m growing concerned about where this relationship is headed. Although their love theme makes my heart flutter, I did not squee with excitement as the clock ran down on Mellie’s ultimatum and Olivia and Fitz stopped heavy-breathing into the phone and started heavy-breathing together in real life. So I’m going to talk through the mixed emotions I have about this whole development below and hopefully, dear PopWatchers, you can help me work through them:
1. Let’s talk about Fitz’s farcical presidency: Didn’t he, like, really want to be president? Didn’t he want to change the world? Isn’t part of the reason that Olivia fell in love with him his ambition? Most importantly, would their love be as hot if he were just a disgraced one-term president and she was still running the world with her Gladiators? Fitz faces the age-old question of choosing love or your career, except, you know, the ”career” is leader of the free world. I talked to Samantha Highfill about how bizarre it seems to me that Fitz would give up his good favor as president and Olivia would let him. She argued that after being shot, Fitz realized what was really important in his life and well, it wasn’t the presidency. He would have told her sooner, but then he found out about Defiance. Okay, I’ll buy that being the president hasn’t turned out to be all it was cracked up to be for Fitz. But still, Olivia’s the character who made him get his wife pregnant in season 1 to save his presidency. That brings us to…
2. Let’s discuss the character of Olivia: Why would this act of self-sabotage constitute ”earning her”? While Samantha loved the ”earning” line, I thought it was kind of rough. Let’s not pretend they both haven’t done things that are despicable in this relationship.
Plus, what is so great about their relationship is that they both have to choose duty to the country over their own desires. Isn’t that exactly what makes their love epic? That it’s impeded by their great obligation to the country? But then again, I guess Olivia’s obligation to the country was sort of destroyed when she rigged an election. That’s not saying that the whole rigging the election thing wasn’t compelling. The scene where she finally decides to rig the election in the mirrored hallway is one of her strongest moments on the show (also, again, why she probably didn’t mean ”give up the presidency” when she said ”earn me”) and I agree that her relationship with Fitz grounds her and makes her more complex. However, I don’t necessarily think that her love for him in this moment wouldn’t let her see the big picture of what was happening. Even if she can fix everything, she’s still probably going to be outed as Fitz’s mistress. And then what? They go open up a bed and breakfast somewhere? Or she fixes the situation, but in the process destroys their relationship? This seems like a rocky road.
3. Let’s not forget about the kids: As some commenters pointed out, as Fitz watched the clock wind down with Olivia one thing we all should have been thinking about was ”Now Mellie and Fitz’s kids are going to find out about their dad’s affair on national television.” And okay, this is on Mellie too, but does no one care for these children’s well-being? Are we going to see a show in twenty years where Fitz’s son is running for president and resenting his dad? Like for real guys, someone needs to look after these poor kids.
4. Let’s all agree that Mellie should be president: I get that maybe none of you will agree with me on this, but we can at least all agree that Bellamy Young is fantastic. Mellie doesn’t pretend to be a good person (like some people), she knows who she is. And while she might be a Lady MacBeth figure, these days, she could be MacBeth, too. We’ve heard a little about Mellie’s backstory, but an episode devoted to it would be great. In the meantime, I hope the show doesn’t make her the mole, she’s too good for that.
So PopWatchers, is everyone as conflicted about last night’s gamechanger as me? Did anyone else think that Fitz’s big gesture wasn’t really that great? Do we all kind of wish, but know it’s not really possible, that we could have a relationship as passionate as Olivia and Fitz’s, but without all the presidency stuff?