Scandal Recap: And the Mole Is…


Any Questions
Season 2 Episode 21
Editor’s Rating *****


Any Questions
Season 2 Episode 21
Editor’s Rating *****
Photo: Nicole Wilder/ABC

I cannot breathe. I stopped breathing regularly at 11 p.m. last night when I found out that the mole was —

Wait, not so fast. At the end of last week, Mellie nonchalantly told the American public that Fitz was cheating on her, so Cyrus spends most of this episode blocking questions from the White House Press Corps with a vague statement about Fitz “considering these allegations to be a private matter between himself and the first lady.” Cyrus spends the rest of the episode yelling – at Secret Service agents who give him a hard time about getting into Olivia and Fitz’s love den, at James for being too gullible to realize that Mellie orchestrated their interview as a way to get to Cyrus and Fitz, and at Fitz for wanting to give up the presidency for Olivia.

Back at Pope and Associates headquarters, David is reeling from the irony that the man who stole the White House could be kicked out of office for cheating on his wife. He has no idea the mistress is Olivia (or that you cannot be arrested for cheating), so everyone sits around tight-lipped and exchanges uncomfortable glances while he throws his arms around emphatically, like they are the only ones who know Mommy and Daddy are about to get divorced. When Liv gets to the office, Harrison tells her that the mole knows about the election rigging; Liv goes to her safe to check that the Cytron card is still there and breathes a sigh of relief. It’s a short-lived relief – by the end of the episode the Cytron card is GONE. The gladiators quickly toss around the idea that VP Sally Langston is the mole, but only as a reason to show off Quinn’s hacking skills.

Mellie hires Doctor Who/Torchwood’s Captain Jack (John Barrowman) as Her Own Private Fix-a-Ho, since at this point she really does need a time-traveling con man to save her marriage. He is onto her whole schtick, and calls her out for crying on cue and acting like she gives a hot damn about anyone but herself. She refuses to name Olivia as Fitz’s mistress, since that is the only card she is still holding, but is truly surprised when Fitz officially decides to give up his presidency for Olivia.

Liv tries to help Fitz get ready for the onslaught, but he refuses to let her get involved. She cannot fix this, remember? It’s one of his terms of condition that she stands down. He does the prototypical masculine face-cradling of her skull as he mumbles into her eyeballs to really drive his point home, and she relents, choosing to focus her efforts on using Charlie to figure out who the mole is instead.

Fitz decides to use his affair with Olivia as a reason not to seek a second term, which sends Cyrus into a tailspin. Cyrus meets with Olivia on a bench, walks with Command in a park, and in the end Fitz decides to run after all when Olivia discovers that he never intended to run for a second term because he was too scared.

Ballard has his usual meeting on the bench in Obviously Greenscreened Park  (they may as well have met on Tattoine for all of the reality it conveyed) with Command (Joe Morton), who smacks Ballard’s wrists for letting Fitz get his genitals close to Olivia. Ballard hands over a picture of Charlie, who he has identified as the man who knows about him and Liv, and reveals that Charlie is also working for Cyrus. Charlie USED to work for Command, so he already knows about Charlie’s work habits and early onset diabetes. Ballard gives Command the tape of Ballard banging Olivia, and wants Ballard to find Charlie; Ballard tries, but his “ye olde radioactive tracking powder” trick backfires, and Charlie runs to Pope and Associates for help. They help him by strapping him to a chair with duct tape and getting Huck to threaten the name of the mole right out of him. When he forks it over, Quinn tells Huck to let Charlie go, which, I don’t know … when you threaten to murder an assassin, you should probably follow through if you want to ever get a full night’s rest again, right? She appeals to the part of him that Charlie didn’t screw up with long-term sensory deprivation chambers and making sure he never saw his family again, and asked if he was a gladiator or if he is seeking revenge, because you can’t have it both ways, and besides, Revenge had a good run, the but second season is dismal and has way too many characters and storylines. Huck chooses gladiator, and Charlie is in the wind.

In the end, Fitz decides to run for a second term after all, saying his marriage is “none of your business.” Simultaneously, the gladiators discover the Cytron card has been stolen; David blames the missing card on Charlie, and Huck and Quinn have to admit that they just let Charlie go, but he has a name – he knows who the mole is, and the mole is BILLY CHAMBERS. Season one, Amanda Tanner killing, VP chief of staff Billy Chambers!

But get ready for the one-two punch: The person who slides into the car and hands Billy the Cytron card is…David Rosen.

DAVID HAS BEEN PLAYING POPE AND ASSOCIATES (and me) ALL SEASON. And of course, of COURSE he would be in on it with the mole – they ruined his career in a shockingly disgraceful manner, and made him out to be a fool. Abby broke his heart. Olivia broke his spirit. And now, as retaliation, David is going to take them out at the knees.

Major Boner Shrinker, First Battalion: Cyrus screaming, “Get up!” at Olivia and Fitz after he barges in on them in her apartment. Fitz was still able to work up a post-coital glow in the elevator, though, as Cyrus went into a mouth-foaming fit.

Best Fake Band Name: James Novak and the Lip-Quivering Sadness (emo)

Shiva the Destroyer Charm School: Cyrus tries to explain to the secret service that he is meaner than Jesus. He really will do anything to get to Fitz. “I don’t care if you got your orders from Jesus Christ himself as he hung on the cross. Jesus is not me! Jesus forgives, Jesus saves – I destroy.” Based on his callous remarks to James later in the episode and overall attitude, this is becoming easier to believe.

Break It All the Way Down:
“I know Olivia Pope usually handles your needs.”
“Olivia Pope handles my husband’s needs.”

New Hairdresser: “I’m your priest, your shrink, your hairdresser. Can you be honest? I’m the first lady – I didn’t get here because someone like you held my hand and called himself my hairdresser. My hair? Is DONE.”

Best Bowling Team Name: The Mean, Slutty Husbands

Taking Sally to (Sunday) School: When VP Sally Langston attributed the axiom “hell hath no fury like a woman scorned” to the Bible, Cyrus exasperatingly corrected her. “That’s not from the Bible. Not everything is from the Bible, Sally.”

Harrison Sinking a Three-Pointer from the Top of the Key: He offered to help her out of the potential mess that comes with being named as the president’s mistress, but she reacted coolly, prompting Harrison to point out the obvious: “Your not the fixer here, Liv - you’re the problem.”

If You See Something, Say Something: Beware the roaming molester with radioactive tracking goo on his hands.

Best Happy Place: “Watching Cyrus Beene unraveling under pressure is my porn.”

Most Unnatural Laughter: Cyrus, with his face-crumpling guffaws.

You Leave James Alone!: He is not “doughy”!

The Real Diaper Genie: Those gray, low crotch, zipperless pants Olivia was wearing did not do her any favors.

The “You Needed to Hear It Straight” Award: Captain Jack for telling Mellie, “I’m very good at what I do. I can move mountains and make miracles. But I can’t make your husband love you.”

Dead Giveaway: Slicked back is the signature evil hairdo.

David Rosen and Billy Chambers, double agent and the Albatross. I CANNOT. What can possibly happen next week? Did VP Langston know Billy was alive? And why did B613 let Huck live? See you then.

Scandal Recap: And the Mole Is…