Now that Season 3 is over; the viewers are left with plenty to speculate about. Olivia Pope took her father’s offer to disappear, she took Jake with her; Olivia’s mother is captured and thrown into the black hole; the first couple’s son fell on the floor (and later died) during a last push campaign rally; Fitz found out that his wife was raped by his late father, but he is re-elected to spend another 4-year in the White House; Rowan is re-instated as head of B-6-13; Huck found out about his family whereabouts; but can SCANDAL climb back up from the slope of mediocrity? It depends.
Both Seasons 1 and 2 got an A+; Season 3 got a…
Well, let’s watch.
Season 3 of SCANDAL is a real downer. Executive Producer Shonda tried so hard to outdo herself, she blew it. For starter, B-6-13, the rogue agency that doesn’t exist, that’s not accountable to anyone, was exposed. Furthermore, the president – who was not supposed to associate with B-6-13 stormed into Rowan’s office – took charge and placed Jake at its helm, a post that doesn’t fit Jake’s character a bit. Rowan’s character on the other hand rhymes (no pun intended) with the post. Besides, how in the world was the head of such a secret operation – that knows everything before it even happens – taken by surprise? And replaced? Ms. Shonda tried too hard to make Jake fit B-6-13 head; Jake had to kill to prove he is ruthless and worthy. That still didn’t work; it comes across so fake.
Even the popping in and out of Olivia’s father (Rowan) in various scenes is quite annoying. It would have been nice if Olivia found out that her mother was still alive but Ms. Rhimes worked too hard to bring scandals to SCANDAL; that didn’t work out too well. Introduction of new characters (cast members) to provide some context into the main casts’ past was a good idea, to keep pace with how that was done in the previous two seasons. It was however very ill conceived. SCANDAL started from being “scandalous” to “mediocre” to downright “trashy”; yes, I say trashy. Mellie’s (the president wife) was caught on her knees giving a blow job to her lover (Governor Andrew Nichols, the next vice president to be) by her daughter. It was simply trashy. Ms Rhimes could have easily conceived another show, appropriately called “TRASH”. I digress.
But what makes Season 3 so “Not SCANDAL” is the absence of Olivia Pope. No, I don’t mean what you’re thinking. I mean the Olivia Pope who had clients coming into her office or calling in with problems that needed fixing, the Olivia Pope who rallied the team, profiled the clients, gave instructions, directions on what to do to help those clients, the Olivia Pope who hid in secrecy in her office to make a phone call to make problems (seemingly unsolvable) disappear, the Olivia Pope who walked in and out of the office to make things happen, the Olivia Pope who retreated to think things through when faced with a serious challenge, the Olivia Pope who kept everyone’s secret, secret no matter what and most importantly the Olivia Pope who sneaks out for a fling with the president while her office is in full operation mode.
That Olivia Pope was missing in Season 3. Season 3 got a grade of C-, and I am being generous.
Can SCANDAL be salvaged with another season?
In the next post, we will take a look at what the famous producer – Shonda Rhimes – needs to do bring SCANDAL back from slowly slipping into complete mediocrity.
Follow Mike Ducheine on Twitter: @mducheiney
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