Monday, April 30, 2012

What I’m Watching: Scandal

Scandal: Season 1, Episode 4 “Enemy of the State” (B)

Things are getting serious fast on this show in a major way, in what definitely ranks as this show’s strongest installment so far. Perhaps the most unsettling and hypnotic scene was the one in which Cyrus told the President the saga of how things were going to go from here, as he’d find himself cast out of office and disgraced, eventually choosing to commit suicide to end it all. That whole situation is marvelously complicated, and I don’t think anyone has a clue just how little each party knows. Cyrus waging war against Olivia after an extraordinarily thorough and eye-opening probe into her employees’ backgrounds isn’t helpful since whoever Amanda called on the phone has now broken into her home and abducted her for some unknown malicious purpose. This show wants to be as sensational as possible outside of its presidential jurisdiction, and having a known dictator enlist Olivia’s services in finding his allegedly kidnapped family is quite provocative. Jose Zuniga is a dependable actor able to portray a wide variety of characters, and he was an effective political leader here, and Valerie Cruz, onetime star of “Nip/Tuck” and many other series since, did a good job as his wife as well. Abby is clearly the most passionate among Olivia’s staff, and she’s got quite the back story to boot. I like how Joshua Malina’s David came to Olivia to ask for a favor to save his favorite newsstand, and, though she didn’t have any time to deal with it, Harrison stepped in to take care of it for him. If nothing else, Olivia protects her friends.

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