Game on, Gladiators! “Scandal” is back on ABC! Season 5 of the hit drama has been on hiatus since November, but the midseason premiere aired Thursday night, jumping viewers ahead six months.
A lot has certainly changed since fans last saw Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington). She’s now apparently back on good terms with her father, Rowan (Joe Morton), and completely over her short stint living in the White House with Fitz (Tony Goldwyn). However, there is one thing she’s not over — losing the power she had at the White House. Fortunately her role as the former mistress of the President comes with some perks. She’s a celebrity around Washington D.C. and has plenty of potential clients.
Fame isn’t the only thing Olivia has going for her — she’s got a steamy, secret relationship! Olivia pretends like she doesn’t want to see Jake (Scott Foley) when Rowan mentions that he’s been staying at his house, but her actions prove otherwise. When she returns to her apartment she finds him outside her door and jumps on top of him in one of the hottest moments on “Scandal.” But viewers can’t really classify Jake and Olivia’s sexy hookup as a loving relationship. It seems more angry and uncaring.
That’s not the only weird relationship that’s developed in the six-month time jump. Fitz calls Abby (Darby Stanchfield) non-stop and at all hours. Cyrus (Jeff Perry) does nothing to help, and it’s because Abby is now Fitz’ “work wife.” She’s going crazy over it, and it turns out that Leo (Paul Adelstein) is completely over it. He wants her to quit, and took a campaign offer in Texas in order to get away from her controlling job!
Leo may have bailed at the right time because Olivia’s new client is about to shake up D.C. Her client is General Diane Peters (McNally Sagal), the head of the NSA – and her home computer was just hacked. What could possibly be on her home computer? Some very important files that shouldn’t be on there, including Project Mercury, a software that screens emails, calls and much more. Needless to say, Diane is in big trouble.
Olivia, Huck (Guillermo Diaz), Quinn (Katie Lowes) and Marcus (Cornelius Smith Jr.) immediately suspect Diane’s boyfriend, Billy, a computer programmer. However, Diane insists that he’s innocent. Unfortunately for Diane, all the evidence seems to be pointing towards her letting a spy or whistleblower into her home. Now it’s up to Pope & Associates to figure out which one he is.
It doesn’t take long to figure out that Billy is a whistleblower. Someone contacts The Post to release the Project Mercury documents. This tips off Fitz, who places a call to Jake in order to stop this thing before it gets out that the United States has been spying on other countries. Although Olivia may have gotten between them in the past, Jake accepts the job.
Huck’s able to track Billy’s cellphone to a house 30 miles away. Marcus and Quinn enter the building to search for Billy, but instead find Jake and Billy’s cellphone. It was all a setup to throw them off his scent. Olivia’s team is now not only at a dead end, but forced to deal with Jake. He doesn’t believe that Olivia should be protecting her client, and rats Diane out.
That’s not the only thing on Olivia’s plate. Mellie (Bellamy young) wrote a book to air out all her dirty laundry, and she wants Olivia’s opinion. And that’s not all she wants from her. She wants Olivia to run her presidential campaign. Olivia’s not interested, but Mellie’s not one to take no for an answer.
Surprisingly, Mellie is the closest that Olivia has been to the White House. But with Diane’s Project Mercury mess on her hands, Olivia must make a call to Fitz. The President isn’t interested in answering any of her calls though.
Diane is under investigation for attempting to leak documents and forced to resign from the NSA. The President already has a replacement — a Navy Seal and war hero, Jake Ballard.
Turns out that Jake is back under Command’s thumb. He killed Billy and planted the evidence to set him up for hacking the NSA. Olivia is horrified. She goes to Rowan’s home and confronts Jake. She’s shocked when Rowan jumps in, telling her that Diane was weak and that the world is a safer place with her removed from position.
“Get yourself some power,” Rowan tells her. “Real power. 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue power.”
That’s right, Papa Pope is back in control and it looks like Olivia might be interested in drinking his Kool-Aid. She calls Mellie to her office and tells her that she needs to rewrite her book if she wants to become president.
“I’ll call you tomorrow and we can get started,” Olivia says.
Looks like the white hat is off!