‘Scandal’ recap: Season 3, Episode 2, ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’

Olivia Pope stares into the face of a stone-cold…White House aide. Credit: ABC
Olivia Pope stares into the face of a stone-cold…White House aide.
Credit: ABC

Ever feel like everyone on a cell phone is calling an assassin? Oh, you’re watching “Scandal”!

In last week’s season premiere, we discovered that the man in charge of the secret CIA hitmen is also Olivia’s father. So presumably she didn’t get that white hat from his closet.

In this episode, full of flashbacks, we learn more about their relationship. For example, he’s an a-hole. They used to have these weekly lunches — he bribed her into them by paying off her student loans — during which she sullenly ignores his questions about her life, and he makes up stuff about his fake job at the Smithsonian where he’s trying to get a new “mastodon, a solitary creature with sharper teeth than the mammoth”, making it “a far more dangerous beast.” But at this point, Olivia hasn’t figured out he works with assassins so she doesn’t know that when he talks about his fake job he uses thinly veiled metaphors for his real job.

But, oh boy, does she find out: She’s already befriended subway-urchin-era Huck by now, back when he looked like a lifesize muppet. She pressures him to tell her his history — because he almost beat a mugger to death, don’t worry about it. And he actually tells the truth. Well, first he jokes that he might have taken karate in high school, which is funny, because he seriously almost killed that mugger. Anyway, he says he was part of a CIA program called B613 that pretends to be a business called Acme Ltd and is colloquially known as Wonderland. It doesn’t take Liv long to put together that her father uses a pen from Acme Ltd, a location she finds on a street called Wonderland.

Later, she makes a phone call — you probably think it’s to an assassin, but no she’s just calling her dad…who I guess is technically an assassin. Wow. The stereotype. Is true.

Okay, meanwhile, Fitz shot hoops with the Dalai Lama. I mean, not in the actual episode. Although I wouldn’t put it past series creator Shonda Rhimes and Co. to pull enough strings to literally get the Dalai Lama to play basketball on camera. In fact, now I’m disappointed they didn’t. You know who could have gotten the Dalai Lama? Olivia Pope.

She’s also the one listening to Fitz talk about the b-ball game over the telephone. The phone, hmm, that means one of them must be an assassin, which isn’t totally untrue, considering Fitz did kill that old woman in a coma. (I will never let you forget.)

Where was I? Oh: the Dalai Lama has a great jump shot.

Fitz and Liv also have to decide what to do about Jeannine Locke, the White House aide accused of being the president’s mistress, who in fact is Olivia, which is why Olivia took on Jeannine as a client. Wait, did that make sense? Nevermind, look at Fitz’s hair.

Everyone wants Jeannine to take the fall, including, eventually, Jeannine, once Mellie offers her 2 million dollars. Before that, though, Mellie tries to frame Jeannine by getting Cyrus to highlight those times when Mellie was out of town, and Jeannine and the President were alone. This results in the episode’s best exchange.

Cyrus: ”You’re evil.”
Mellie: “You’re welcome.”

Okay, we’ve got some loose ends to tie up. Back in lifesize-muppet time, Liv confronts her Dad about the assassins. He threatens her. She threatens him back by getting engaged to someone on the Senate Intelligence Committee. Then she demands he return Huck, whom he’d had captured after Liv mentioned there was a lifesize muppet chattering about assassins in the subway.

In present day again, Dad makes more demands: If Liv ensures Jeannine takes the fall, he’ll let Captain Jake Ballard out of the B613-wayward-assassin hole. (In case you missed previous episodes: Captain Jake Ballard is in a hole.) Then Huck guesses who Liv’s dad is and strangles a confirmation out of her in a dark parking lot, which is a pretty rough thing to do to a friend who saved your life, but then again a light strangle, for Huck, is kind of like when other people say, “Please?”

Jeannine’s the patsy; Daddy Pope delivers Captain Jake Ballard to Olivia’s door; and even after being in the hole, he’s smokin’ hot. Oh, and five years ago, David Rosen had one of those facial-hair loops around his mouth and chin.

Next week: Someone strapped bombs to her chest! See you here after.

Did I leave out any of your favorite parts? Let me know in a comment below.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Metro announces Earth Day New York partnership for…

Metro is pleased to announce we are once again the media partner of Earth Day New York for 2014.

International

Putin fields question from NSA fugitive Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden, the fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor who leaked details of intelligence eavesdropping, asked Russian President Vladimir Putin a question on Thursday during…

Local

Cops release sketch of Madison Avenue jewelry robbery…

Authorities continue to look for a man suspected in a $54,000 jewelry heist at a Madison Avenue store from from last week.

National

Rapper affiliate of Wu-Tang Clan 'cuts off own…

Rapper Andre Johnson, who has performed with New York outfit the Wu-Tang Clan, is in a critical condition after reportedly cutting off his own penis…

The Word

'Mrs. Doubtfire' sequel in the works

Finally, Hollywood is making your dreams come true - they're making that "Mrs. Doubtfire" sequel you've been clamoring for all these years.

The Word

Lawsuit accuses 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer of raping…

A new lawsuit accuses director Bryan Singer of sexual assault against a minor.

Movies

The Cannes Film Festival announces its 2014 lineup

The lineup of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival was announced this morning, promising the latest from a slew of usual (and some unusual) suspects.

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

NBA

Nets-Raptors first round NBA playoffs schedule, TV, times

The Nets tanked their way to the No. 6 seed over the course of the final few games of the season.

NBA

Knicks wrap up season with win over Raptors

The Knicks wrapped up their season as it began — undermanned — but that still didn’t deter them from ending it the right way.

MLB

Adam Warren closes out doubleheader sweep for Yankees

Adam Warren navigated a tricky ninth inning earn the Yankees a 2-0 victory over the Cubs.

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.