The epic, fast-paced WTF-ness helped propel Scandal to huge audiences over the past three seasons. As we gear up for season four, it helps to remember all of the murders, secret identities, explosions, conspiracies, and craziest moments that paved the way. Do you know how hard it was to whittle this list down to 50 things?
1. The president kills a Supreme Court justice with his bare hands.
2. Olivia and President Fitzgerald Grant are having an affair.
3. Olivia bullies Amanda Tanner to the brink of suicide and then admits she had an affair with the president, too.
4. But then Amanda is kidnapped and murdered.
5. Olivia short-changes the Russian mob by $3 million during negotiations to retrieve a kidnapped baby.
6. Quinn’s reporter boyfriend Gideon gets stabbed in the neck with a pair of scissors when he confronts Billy Chambers, the vice-president’s chief of staff, about his relationship with Amanda, and reveals that she was pregnant at the time of her death.
7. After he murders Gideon, Billy Chambers hijacks a White House press conference to resign by telling the world he has audiotape of the president having sex with Amanda.
8. Mellie lies about having a miscarriage to win over voters.
9. But then Mellie also forces Fitz to get her pregnant so that he can stay in office after all of those pesky cheating rumors come to light.
10. She also induces labor four weeks early to get back in Fitz’s good graces.
11. Surprise: Cyrus was the one who hired Charlie to kill Amanda.
12. Then Cyrus hires Charlie to kill Billy Chambers.
13. In flashback, it’s revealed that Olivia, Mellie, Verna Thornton, Cyrus, and Hollis Doyle all conspired to rig the presidential election by tampering with voting machines. Fitz doesn’t know.
14. Quinn has a secret identity! Her real name is Lindsey Dwyer and she was framed for the bombing of the Cytron building, kidnapped, and woke up with a new identity.
15. Surprise (again): Olivia and Huck are the ones who kidnapped Quinn to cover up the vote-tampering connection to her boyfriend.
16. More flashbacks: Hollis Doyle actually bombed his own company, Cytron, to keep the employee who helped him fix the machine (Quinn’s boyfriend) from extorting more money out of him.
17. Governor Reston says his wife was raped, shoots his wife’s boyfriend, and gets away with premeditated murder.
18. David Rosen and Abby, a domestic-abuse survivor, break up when Olivia pays an ex-girlfriend to lie and say he beat her.
19. Flashback: Liv and Fitz work out the first State of the Union address at Camp David during a megalong bang session.
20. President Fitz gets shot in the head on the way to his birthday party.
21. Huck is framed for the president’s shooting by his girlfriend, Becky, who actually works for Hollis Doyle.
22. Becky also murders a nice family Huck used to watch to feel normal.
23. Huck gets waterboarded and tortured when he’s caught.
24. But then Huck sets up Becky’s capture, and when Pope & Associates hack into Becky’s bank account, Olivia figures out that it was Justice Thornton who hired Becky to kill the president.
25. Cyrus adopts a baby for his husband James to get him to stop investigating the vote tampering that happened in Defiance, Ohio.
26. But Cyrus also almost has Charlie assassinate James to keep him from testifying about Defiance.
27. VP Sally Langston hijacks the White House while Fitz is in a coma.
28. Mellie commits treason when she signs a letter saying Fitz was ready to come back to the Oval Office, even though he’s still in a dead-ass coma, just to get Sally out of office.
29. David wakes up next to a dead woman, covered in blood. (He was framed.)
30. But it turns out a CIA mole killed the woman because she had tons of important documents.
31. It looks like CIA Director Osborne commits suicide in his car when he’s revealed to be the mole, but he’s actually been murdered by Billy Chambers.
32. Billy Chambers is still alive! And he’s the real mole!
33. David Rosen gives Billy the Cytron card — they’ve been working together!
34. But it’s not the real Cytron card — David gives the real card to Cyrus and leverages it into a new job as U.S. Attorney.
35. Jake Ballard almost beats a man to death for taking his picture.
36. Hollis Doyle’s daughter cuts off her own ear and fakes her own kidnapping to get him to give her money.
37. Mellie moves out of the White House when she realizes Fitz still loves Olivia.
38. Olivia and Fitz have angry make-up sex in a closet during a child’s christening.
39. Flashback: Mellie was raped by Fitz’s dad, and now she isn’t sure which one is the father of her firstborn child.
40. A teenage girl basically sells her virginity for a chance to get into the Ivy League by saving some of Fitz Jr.’s sperm and giving it to VP Langston’s team so they can conduct their own paternity test.
41. Cyrus, fond of screaming, has an actual heart attack.
42. The CIA has a special, super-secret spy group called B613 — Huck and Jake were both members — and Olivia’s dad is in charge of it.
43. Huck tortures Quinn by pulling some of her teeth out when she leaves Pope & Associates and starts working with Charlie at B613.
44. We’re told that Olivia’s mom was killed in a plane crash, and — big reveal — Fitz is the one who shot down the plane.
45. But Maya Pope is actually alive! Rowan Pope has had her tucked away in a hole for 20 years, and she escapes by chewing her own wrists open and sneaking out of the hospital.
46. Sally Langston murders her husband, Daniel Douglas, when he cheats on her with a man.
47. … That man being James Novak, Cyrus’s husband, whom Cyrus used to catch Daniel Douglas in the act.
48. Jake shoots James in the face and kills him.
49. Secret Service agent Tom Larsen has been part of B613 this entire time!
50. Rowan Pope used the Secret Service to kill President Fitz’s son with a stolen vial of bacterial meningitis.