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‘Scandal’: Mellie Is Now President, But There’s Another Shake-Up in the White House

Variety logo Variety 4/28/2017 Elizabeth Wagmeister
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SPOILER ALERT: Do not read ahead if you have not watched “Scandal” Season 6, episode 12, which aired on Thursday, April 27.

Last week’s episode bid adieu to Elizabeth North, but this week’s wasn’t a somber funeral of any sort. “Scandal” raced ahead with more chaos at the hands of none other than Liz North’s killer, the Mystery Woman (Zoe Perry).

The Mystery Woman continued to threaten and frame just about everyone, and she confronted new president-elect Mellie (Bellamy Young) to demand that she wants the vice president spot vacated. But for who? Peus (David Warshofsky), of course.

Peus showed up at OPA to finally meet Olivia (Kerry Washington), who was in top form this episode. He told her that he wants to be vice president and she laughed in his face and kept up a tough front, but she later realized that if Jake (Scott Foley) doesn’t step down from his veep post, he would be killed — so Jake resigned.

Sick and tired of the shady organization’s antics, Olivia planned for a drone to fly over the White House to pose a major threat, and her plan worked. The entire White House was put on lockdown and the Mystery Woman was taken into custody by guards who would not let her out of their sight, along with Abby (Darby Stanchfield). While this was all happening, Olivia hosted a secret meeting in the Oval, along with Fitz (Tony Goldwyn), Mellie, Cyrus (Jeff Perry), and just about everyone else, including Rowan (Joe Morton), who is being kept hostage in the White House, thanks to Fitz’s orders. Rowan told the group that they’ve lost and the organization is too dangerous for them to compete with, so he leaves and ends up having a drink with Cyrus in the White House, who casually tries to kill him after he learns that he’s the one who killed Frankie Vargas (Ricardo Chavira).

While Cyrus is trying to pull a fast one on Rowan, Mellie decided who she wants to appoint as her new vice president: Luna Vargas — Frankie’s widow.

The episode ends with Olivia coming face-to-face with the Mystery Woman. She gets her handcuffed and arrested, and Olivia and Abby team up to take down Peus.

And in other news, Quinn (Katie Lowes) and Charlie (George Newbern) are now engaged.

Here, Joe Morton talks to Variety about Mellie’s new VP, the shady organization, and Olitz…

How does Rowan feel about Luna becoming VP? 

I’m not sure that he cares one way or the other. I think that his background is that the White House takes care of itself, and then he just tries to protect whatever they come up with. It makes sense — she seems to be following a lot of the ideas and ideals of Frankie Vargas. I think the idea of having two women in the White House might appeal to him, but I don’t think he spends a great deal of time thinking about what happens in the White House from a political point of view.

What role will Rowan have in Mellie’s presidency, if any? 

That’s going to be completely up to Shonda [Rhimes]. I have no idea. I don’t know that he wants to play a role in the White House. His B6-13 days are over, so he’s no longer in charge of protecting the republic. I think the only concern that he has is making sure that Olivia is protected.

By the end of this episode, is Rowan still being kept prisoner in the White House?

By the end of this episode, he’s certainly being held in the White House. Fitz made it very clear that he’s definitely still a prisoner.

The Mystery Woman has been arrested, but I’d imagine this organization is nowhere near done. Is that a fair assumption?

All that’s happened so far is that we’ve managed to arrest the Mystery Woman. That means Peus is still out there and for sure, he’s going to retaliate somehow — how that is, we’ll just have to wait and see.

Will Olivia go to Rowan to enlist his help with Peus?

I think she feels at the moment that Rowan is of little help. He said he won’t help and that he doesn’t think that anything can be done because these people are too powerful. So I think at the moment, she’s not thinking of him as an asset.

When are we going to learn more about the mysterious organization?

I would imagine we would have to. The more that the White House retaliates against them, the more they have to expose who they are.

Cyrus tried to kill Rowan. Where does their relationship go from here?

You have to remember that Cyrus has just found out that Rowan is responsible for Frankie’s murder so that’s where he’s coming from and why he’s acting out that he needs to avenge this man who would have been an asset to the country. Now, he doesn’t get into any detail — Cyrus never asks, Why did you do it? Cyrus just goes after him. Clearly, if someone tries to kill you, that will put a wedge in your relationship. [Laughing]

I have to ask about Olivia and Fitz. Is there a chance that Rowan could ever become supportive of their relationship?

In a word, no. [Laughing] Rowan looks at Fitz as someone who is weak and indulgent and spoiled, and someone who does not know how to deal with power and never wanted power, but is only in the White House because the people around him stop the election. So there’s never going to be a moment, unless Fitz does something outrageously heroic, that would turn Rowan and make him feel like he’s okay. At the moment, he just looks at him as weak, which is why he refuses to help.

The season finale isn’t too far off. What can you tease about where the season will wrap up?

The only thing I can tell you is that what all of this has been about is who is president of the United States, and now that we know, the only thing left to do, other than begin to govern, is inauguration day. So that’s where we’re headed — if we get that far because it’s going to depend on what Peus and that organization does.

Related video: 'Scandal': A Polarizing Character Gets Brutally Murdered -- See Who Got Killed Off in Shocking a Way!
(Provided by ETonline)

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