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Scandal 3×11 “Ride, Sally, Ride” Recap


Scandal is back, guys! How excited are you on a scale of one to a million?

(Personally, I’m somewhere in between twenty and six hundred thousand.) Let’s jump right into the top ten moments of “Ride, Sally, Ride.”

1. Sally Langston starts a shitstorm (say that five times fast)

The episode starts off with a bang, as Sally publicly denounces President Fitzgerald Grant, then announces her intention to run against him in the next election.

The White House loses its collective shit, as Mellie, Cyrus, Olivia, and Fitz’s team scramble to spin this in a way that won’t make Fitz look like a fool. They plan to demonize Sally as a selfish quitter and fundamentalist extremist, among other things, but Sally’s team beats them to the punch during a televised debate where they point out Fitz’s past infidelities and question why he rehired a woman he’d been rumored to have an affair with. All the headlines become focused on Olivia and Fitz, and Sally seems to be off the hook for abandoning her post as VP.

2. All of Fitz’s life choices are questionable

Ugh, Fitz, honestly. Instead of jumping to his feet and brainstorming solutions with his team, he instead decides to pour himself several drinks in the middle of the day, throw a glass at Cyrus’ head, and throw the biggest whiny hissy fit a grown man with his amount of power should never ever have. Seriously, why is this asshole President? Why does he, according to Mellie, Cyrus, and Olivia, simply have to be America’s leader? Because I’m seeing zero leadership capabilities here, just a pity party.

Against everyone’s advice, Fitz chooses an old friend of his for Vice President – another straight, white man who also hailing from Fitz’s home state, which makes him as terrible a choice on paper as he’ll most likely be in action – because Fitz thinks Andrew Nichols is a loyal and trustworthy man. Oh man, is he wrong there.

3. Papa Pope still scares the everloving bejeebus out of me

Olivia tries to reach out to her father, but he’s not really having it. His resulting speech is terrifying, and fantastic, and I rewound like three times to see it again because it was that awesome. One of the top monologues of Scandal, easily. Part of it is transcribed in the “memorable quotes” section of this recap.

The main thing to take away from this scene: don’t fuck with Papa Pope.

4. Not gonna lie, “Publius” made me giggle

A White House reporter gets a text from an unknown source naming themselves “Publius.” The source tells her to look into Daniel Douglas Langston’s death. During the next White House briefing, she asks shiny new Press Secretary James Novak about the autopsy – namely, why there wasn’t one. The questions spark ideas in Olivia and her Gladiators, and Abby and Huck set out to find out more about the autopsy.

5. B613 may be under new management, but it’s still up to old tricks

I’m surprisingly into Charlie and Quinn as a psycho killer couple, which is strange on many levels. (Most of the levels are because they’re a psycho killer couple.) Still, there’s something, dare I say, cute about Charlie taking Quinn on a shopping trip to the hardware store for her very first Murder Tool Box. But yes, Charlie is still addicted to torturing people, and he’s very intent on getting Quinn to join the B613 cause as well, despite new Command Jake Ballard’s refusal.

Charlie and Quinn end up taking a job from a frantic Cyrus Beene to silence any investigations into Sally Langston and her dearly departed husband. This “silencing” involves kidnapping a child and using him to blackmail his medical examiner mother into lying to Abby and Huck. See, this is why I can’t like you guys together.

6. Ride, Sally, ride into the sunset (or to prison, either one)

Man, I kinda love Sally as a character. Abhor her as a person, but dude – every time she says “the Devil snuck inside me” all matter of factly, I can’t help but want to pat her on the head and aww. She’s starting to have second thoughts about running for President, believing that she’s about to be discovered, so her campaign manager Leo Bergen goes to Cyrus to make sure Cyrus isn’t going to do anything like blab about Sally’s murderess status. Which, obviously Cyrus wouldn’t, he’s got way too much self-preservation for that.

7. Harrison’s backstory is slowly plodding along

Is it just me, or does Harrison’s sordid past feel like too little, too late? I can’t even bring myself to care about his mysterious connection to Adnan Sharif, or the fact that he’s frantically running around trying to stop this person from returning to the States, because there’s just so much other juicy shit happening in this show.

Well, whether we need it or not, we’re getting it – and it looks like the story is finally progressing beyond Harrison making worried phone calls, when Sharif herself (it’s a woman!) shows up at Harrison’s office. And then they bang. Of course they do.

8. Mellie and Olivia share a lovely meal together as “Why Can’t We Be Friends” plays in the background

To help stave off the rumors of her husband’s infidelity, Mellie invites Olivia out to lunch in an extremely public venue. They spend the entire time fake laughing with each other, which is ridiculously fun to watch play out. Eventually, Mellie tells Olivia about the next step in her plan to finally put the rumors to bed: Olivia will start very openly dating someone else, anyone else.

Olivia ends up telling Fitz about Mellie’s idea (so we should expect a Fitz-yells-at-Mellie scene sometime soon) and tells him she should maybe probably resign from her campaign manager job so he can maybe have a shot at winning the election. Douchebag Fitz, predictably, tells her he refuses to let her resign, and that she’s not going to fake date someone else. Joke’s on him, because at the end of the episode Olivia has started to fake date (or perhaps real date?) ex-boyfriend Jake Ballard.

9. James tries to be a badass, sort of fails badly

He had me going there for a minute, though. When the plot twist of James still working to undermine his devil horned husband was revealed, I was like YOU GO JAMES. YOU GET HIM. But then he brought his evidence of Cyrus covering up Sally Langston’s crime to David Rosen, and we find out that not only is his evidence inadmissable, but James might have put himself on their most wanted list by leaking said evidence to reporters. Oh, James. Maybe you should leave the undercover spy shit to someone else.

10. Fitz’s new presidential running mate is Mellie’s ex-paramour?!

Haa, so much for loyalty, Fitzy. Your old buddy’s only accepting the VP slot so he can be closer to your wife. I’m already rooting for Andrew and Mellie as a couple, though, because I really need Mellie to stop being sad over Fitz and get some.

But yes, there’s definitely some history between Mellie and Andrew – enough history that Andrew has refused to marry anyone else, because he never loved anyone else the way he loved Mellie. T’aww.

Rating: B-

Memorable Quotes

Mellie: Sexist, but effective.

Abby: Well, yeah, but he’s an age appropriate playboy for the most part so you know, props for that.

Rowan/Eli Pope: You’re skipping around in a field full of bombs and mistaking them for daisies. This, dear, sweet child, is what happened. The married man you can’t seem to stay away from had me abducted, and locked me up in chains and spoke to me about the way you taste while he allowed the terrorist who snaked her way into my marriage bed to clear U.S. airspace. What happened was, the man you screw betrayed me by freeing the woman who gave birth to you as a bargaining chip. What happened was, the man who defiled you also defiled an organization that I gave my soul to build. That is what happened. What is currently happening, is that President Fitzgerald Thomas Grant III has made an enemy. The worst kind of enemy, because I know all his secrets. I know where every body is buried. And the greatest weapon I can use against him calls me “Dad.”

Sally: It is because I have turned my back on the faithful and condoned abortion.
Leo: Abortion? Really? Because when I rank the things you’ve done, sin-wise…
Sally: I did not murder my husband, Leo. The Devil murdered my husband when he snuck inside me.

Andrew: I had my chance, okay? I had my chance and I lost it. I let it go. So I moved on, I married my job instead, and I take great pride in what I’ve done for the millions of Californians who put their trust in me. And hey, down the line, maybe I’ll get another shot at marriage, who knows. But what I do know, is that I am not marrying someone I don’t love. And if that makes me unsuitable for the Vice Presidency, so be it.

Olivia: Lauren, can you leave the door open?
Fitz: Door closed, Lauren.
Olivia: Door open, Lauren.
Lauren: …I don’t know what to…

Cyrus: I’ll give you exactly one second to get your feet off my desk.
Leo: Or what?
Cyrus: Or I’ll cut them off and shove them down your throat.
Leo: I’m size eleven and a half, I seriously doubt my feet would fit.
Cyrus: I’m not talking about your feet, you baby faced twit, I’m talking about your balls. Have they even dropped yet? Will you miss them when they’re gone?

Leo: You’re my enemy. You’d be unworthy of that title if you were that stupid.