Thursday, December 12, 2013

REVIEW: 'Scandal' Goes For Some Straight-Forward Answers in 'A Door Marked Exit' & is Still Amazing

ABC's Scandal - Episode 3.10 A Door Marked Exit

Now that the truth is out there, things will never be the same and everyone will have to face the consequences of their actions.

I've enjoyed the third season of Scandal even though I believe it has been wildly inconsistent. These last string of episodes have had a clear focus and drive. I appreciated how well "A Door Marked Exit" resolves most of what the first half of the season set out to do. It still left several interesting things dangling - Jake now being in charge of B6-13, Mama Pope back in D.C., Quinn and Charlie. But it was also pleasant to see this show - known for all its twists and turns - to be pretty straight forward in its final episode of 2013.

The show is operating under two very distinct yet separate narratives right now - Olivia and team discovering the truth about her mother and Cyrus & Mellie dealing with Sally Langston. Both are well crafted stories but it is astonishing how distant they are. Olivia is never pulled into the Sally kills her husband story and Cyrus and Mellie are never really pulled into the Mama Pope stuff. That's all perfectly fine. But it also doesn't fell like everything happening on the show is all building up to the same grand moment like the best parts of the second season did. The Defiance arc was the show's best string of episodes because it pulled all the characters into it with clear cut emotional stakes for everyone. Those emotional strings are still being pulled for all the characters - some more than others - but they also are pulling them into several different directions.

And that's all still perfectly fine for me because I enjoy spending time with all of these characters. The show does keep putting them in situations that pushes boundaries and forces them to say some not nice things to each other. Joe Morton gets to go on a two and a half minute rant about how Fitz is a boy and not a man and is amazing. Cyrus gets to give a subdued speech asking James to stay and that's amazing. The fight between Sally and her husband that started the episode was powerful stuff and more than enough proof that the show's editors should be Emmy nominated. It's all very fascinating and intricate character work with well deserved emotional payoff.

Some more thoughts:
  • I'm still sticking with the Quinn and Charlie stuff even though it's my least favorite part of the show.
  • There's also the chance David Rosen could be a part of the main plot in the second half too!
  • And that's it until February 27!