The episode gets underway with Olivia watching Senator Davis on television debating with a Republican senator. Olivia calls him and tells him he should be wearing pin stripes on television. We are given the sense that Senator Davis will be the client of the episode. But, the Scandal writers are always a step ahead of us.
When Olivia gets in her car to go home that evening, she knows that someone is in her back seat. “I got some problems and I know you fix problems,” says the slightly awkward Artie from the back seat.
Olivia forces him out of the car, despite his yelling about the government spying on American citizens. She stops her car when he yells that they know about the late night phone calls.
Oh, yes, the late night phone calls Olivia has been receiving from the White House. President Fitzergarld Grant can’t end his evening without first talking to Olivia Pope. But, Olivia has stopped taking his calls. They both know that this relationship cannot keep going on. It’s not good for themselves, for others around them, or for the country. It has to stop. But it’s not easy.
Cyrus can tell that Fitz has not been talking to Olivia. “You are a bomb in a teddy bear ready to explode. How do I defuse the bomb?” Cyrus knows that the President is only acting like he is happy.
Mellie,on the other hand, is fooled. Fitz walks into one of the many rooms in the White House, and finds Mellie folding baby clothes from the Queen of England. Fitz sits in one of the wing back chairs in the room and reads over a report while Mellie folds clothes. “This feels nice,” she says. Could this be the beginning of reconciliation?
Back to Artie. Artie has stolen a program from the National Secruity Administration (NSA) called Thorngate. Thorngate is a program where the government uses citizens’ laptops, cell phones, and other technology to spy on them. It is all very Orwellian. Huck is able to tap into the program and the group is able to watch and hear Cyrus on a phone call. With a few strokes of the keyboard, Huck is able to also pull up Hollis Doyle, who is on the other end of Cyrus’ phone call. But then, they are met with the blue screen of death.
Who else knows about Thorngate? Artie tells them that the only friend he had was a girl named Monica. Abby and Harrison check in on her, and find her dead with sleepy pills by the bed and a note. They suspect, and it is later confirmed, that it was a staged death. There was a black sedan outside the apartment building. Harrison was able to get part of the license plate before it sped away.
Cyrus informs the President there Thorngate has been leaked and that Olivia is on it. President demands that Cyrus deals with it. The next thing we know, the Secret Service shows up at Olivia’s and take her away. Fitz is hunting with a group of people put together by Hollis Doyle. The Secret Service take Olivia there. The two stand in the woods and yell at each other. Fitz tells her to stop working with Artie and let this Thorngate thing alone. Olivia is convinced that Fitz is pissed that she stopped taking her calls.
Then, for about thirty seconds, they make out. The Secret Service watching, turn their backs to them. Then, Olivia pushes back and yells, “I’m not yours. This is over!” But is it? Will Olivia really be able to stay away from Fitz?
Olivia fights back and makes plans to go public with Thorngate. Fitz tells his people to go nuclear on it. They are able to shut it down by fining the network. If the interview is aired they will all be tried for treason. Once Huck taps into Thorngate again, Olivia makes a presentation to the network by showing them that Thorngate works and is real.
Harrison tracks the license plate number down to a fake name, “We’ll Be Watching.” Olivia starts to put the pieces together and discerns that it is not the government behind all of this. It’s Artie. They were all used by Artie, who also killed Monica. “He wagged out tail for two days,” Olivia says to Justice Department, “He wagged yours for sixteen years. Who knows what secrets he stole.”
Huck is the one who tracks Artie down, because of a watch Artie stole from Huck. “I warned you not to touch my stuff,” he says to Artie. Huck shots Artie with a tranquilizer. “When it wears off, we’ll talk.” What Huck does after that is not clear. He meets Olivia in the garage as she is leaving to go home. “No more walking to your car alone,” he says. Olivia inquires if she opened a door that he isn’t able to close. “I’m handling it,” Huck says. Which we know is true, as he has joined an AA group.
Other things we learned in this episode:
- Quinn Perkins is back on the team.
- Abby doesn’t think Quinn should be around. She calls her Lindsey throughout the whole episode.
- Abby doesn’t think they should take Artie on as a client, which proves to be true. But, plays into some feelings Abby has about Olivia’s gut.
- Olivia has a past with Senator Davis.
- David Rosen continues to go all Beautiful Mind and gets his assistant Alyssa to help him on his growing wall of conspiracy. David visits Hollis Doyle to try to fill in some of the gaps, but it turned away by Hollis.
- Mellie is trying hard to have reconciliation with Fitz. Fitz is not playing though. “Get over her!” she yells at her husband. “You see her again, I’ll blow you away.”
- Quinn finally stands up to Abby and tells her that her name is Quinn!
- President has Senator Davis removed from the Intel Committee.
- David shows up at a bar and sits next to Abby. They sleep together.
Everyone is hunting for something. Mellie desperately wants to the marriage that she thought she had. Fitz is hunting for a deeper, truer relationship with Olivia built on more than sex. Cyrus is hunting for the President he elected. Senator Davis is hunting for the relationship he once had with Olivia. And Artie was hunting to expose his government, claiming they were behind things that he was actually behind.
For importantly, David Rosen is hunting for the truth in the case that was taken from him. And Abby is hunting for the truth behind all the secrets, especially Olivia’s.
What are you hunting for?