YMMV: Scandal

Scandal the band

Scandal the TV series

  • Awesome Ego : Olivia.
  • Base Breaker: Season 4's "The Lawn Chair." While fans and critics agree it was well-written and superbly acted (especially by Courtney B. Vance), many are also uncertain if an episode about police brutality and racial injustice "fits" in a series that shifts from political drama to spy thriller and back.
  • Bizarro Episode: "Run" from season four feels that way, mostly since the bad guys are running a Mind Screw on Olivia.
  • Broken Base: By the end of season three, the fanbase has split two ways. The first group believes that Scandal is as addictive as ever. The second group still enjoys the show, but they think season three's heavy focus into the spy thriller genre with B613 has degraded the political drama elements, they found the Mama Pope plot to be extremely cliche, and the season significantly weakened Olivia's character.
  • Cargo Ship: Mellie and the Fried Chicken. It turns out it was special vegan "fried chicken" made for Bellamy Young.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: A growing risk as the second season progresses. Of course, some of the rotten things done are to save the more sympathetic characters from Hollis Doyle.
    • By Season 4, more than half the cast has orchestrated or outright committed coldblooded murder, and those with clean hands are only a little better. Interestingly, the character with probably the highest body count coupled with evident psychopathic tendencies is one of the most sympathetic (and beloved by fans).
  • Fridge Logic: In season 2, all of "Quinn's" trial and the aftermath. Since the majority of the evidence seems to come from the fact that she ran, it's never clear why Olivia didn't discreetly help get her off earlier instead of moving her. Further, she's only charged with the 7 murders as far as we see, and never identity forgery or terrorism, so it's not clear why a US Attorney is prosecuting her instead of a California DA. Even after the trial, she continues to use the name Quinn Perkins and appears to have no difficulty, for instance, booking a flight under that name. Even if acquitted for murder it is doubtful the DOJ would have let her continue under a fallacious identity.
    • It's possible she had her name legally changed offscreen. After all she'd been through, it would make sense if she didn't want anything to do with her old identity. Season 4 reveals Quinn still has to pay "Lindsay's" student loans.
  • He Really Can Act: Guillermo Díaz has spent a lifetime playing gangsters and criminals and comedy roles, but now plays the deeply wounded Huck very convincingly.
  • Iron Woobie: Abby and Mellie.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Vice President Sally Langston veers into this territory in season three.
  • Magnificent Bastard:
    • Olivia Carolyn Pope, at least once an episode and usually multiple times. She also demonstrates chessmastering and talents in the Guile Hero department.
    • Cyrus Beene.
    • Control probably qualifies.
    • Olivia's mother, apparently.
  • Moral Event Horizon: The President murders Verna Thornton in order to maintain his hold on the Presidency after he learned of the election rigging that put him there, because she was going to speak to a federal prosecutor and completely expose Defiance. Granted, she did hire an assassin to murder him earlier in the season, and had weeks to live at most.
  • Narm: The "GET OVER HER!" line. Particularly for those familiar with Scorpion in Mortal Kombat.
    • In "Where the Sun Don't Shine", it's impossible not to giggle when Olivia keeps calling Cyrus a "bitch baby" to keep him from resigning.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Alissa. Well, two-scene.
    • Fans loved Courtney B Vance's work in "The Lawn Chair," and they were also impressed with Michael Welch's scene where his character, Officer Joseph Newton, rants to Olivia about the difficulty he has as a white police officer in a black neighborhood. It would edge close to Strawman Has a Point... if Newton hadn't killed a black teenager and planted a knife on the dead body.
  • Ship-to-Ship Combat: Olivia/Fitz vs. Olivia/Jake. The debates can get absolutely vicious in some circles.
  • Strawman Has a Point: Vice-Prez Langston is surprisingly reasonable in the season finale. She talks the strength of her faith and how it's not just politicking with her—and then gets threatened with the knowledge of her young daughter's abortion. Ouch.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: In "Baby Made a Mess," Olivia makes an absurdly cute campaign commercial with the ten-year-old daughter of a candidate for the senate. The candidate herself, while smart, isn't very telegenic.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: John Barrowman got a bit of attention when he was cast as a guest star. When he showed up in "Any Questions?" as a fixer Mellie hired, he didn't do that much. The character wasn't even named.