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Scandal, Ep. 3.08, “Vermont is for Lovers, Too” trims weak, excess characters

Kerry Washington, Vermont is for Lovers Too

Scandal, Season 3, Episode 8, “Vermont is for Lovers, Too”
Written by Mark Wilding
Directed by Ava Duvernay
Airs Thursdays at 10PM ET on ABC

On this week’s Scandal, Olivia and Fitz rekindle their affair in Vermont, Mellie and Cyrus manipulate James, Josie bows out of the election, and Huck discovers Quinn’s new connection to B613.

After last week’s devastating Mellie-centric episode, “Vermont is for Lovers, Too” is a bit of a cooldown, emotionally. Too bad Mellie’s immediately reduced to the status of scorned wife again, even after last week’s controversial rape storyline, making it that much harder to be on Fitz and Olivia’s side. It’s awful to watch Mellie approach Fitz–knowing full well that a) he’s cheating on her again with Olivia and b) he’s also lying to her about it, again–and tell him they should ask her back on Fitz’s campaign. Seriously, how much is that woman going to be made to suffer before the end of this show?

Back to Olivia and Fitz; sorry, but sleeping with your on-again, off-again lover after accusing him of killing your mother is weird, right? And kind of gross? What is it about Fitz that makes all of these powerful women in his life swoon and throw down their morals for him? Olivia’s been given some of the weakest story material this season, as far as her love life’s concerned. We’ve watched her obsess over Mr. President for two and half seasons now–wouldn’t it be lovely to see her with someone new? Say, Jake?

Let’s move on to better storylines now, like Quinn’s sudden disaster of a life. It should be interesting to see how her relationship with Huck develops in future episodes, especially given his inability to break away completely from B613. Quinn’s always seemed like the lame duck within Pope & Associates, so maybe this unfortunate turn of events will finally force her to become a more intelligent and headstrong woman. The worst thing Scandal could do is allow her to completely succumb to what’s happening to her without a fight–though, if aiming a gun at Charlie’s head is any indicator, she isn’t going to be sucked into B613 quietly.

Anyway, “Vermont is for Lovers, Too” does a nice job trimming the fat, i.e. weak characters like Candace and Josie, who hardly ever rose above dull. Bring in a dynamic new character/candidate or keep the ones we’ve already grown to love/detest so we can learn some more about them; Scandal‘s too fast-paced a show for dud storylines and characters.

Lastly, good things seem to be on their way, especially where Olivia’s concerned. Her best storylines are the ones where men aren’t involved (this season, anyway), and it’d be nice to learn even more about her family, especially given her mom’s extended absence from her life. Liv’s got daddy and mommy issues, so it’s fascinating to discover more about what’s shaped her into the character we know and love today.

Oh, and fingers crossed the Mellie storyline will be brought up again, as it still doesn’t seem like it’s been handled very well. This show can do much better, and it’d be nice to see some genuinely great follow through.

Ashley Laggan

 


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