This Scandal review contains spoilers.
Scandal: Season 6, Episode 8
“Election night, again.”
So just how involved was Abby in Frankie Vargas’ assassination? After last week’s tumultuous episode, Abby was painted in a very negative light as it seemed she was definitely linked to Vargas’ death, Jennifer Fields’ death, and possibly Huck’s as well. At this point though, it is not as much her power that is driving her, but rather, her guilt. Guilt from the turmoil she has left behind from the power she strived to achieve.
Abby has always had a rather confident and proud way about her. Those attributes made her the perfect chief of staff for President Grant. She knows how to take over and lead and do it with efficiency and guts. But, when the right people knew how to twist their words to feed her ego, damage on Abby was done. We started the episode back on election night once more, but Abby’s troubles began a bit earlier than that.
“Are you blackmailing me?”
It looks like Papa Pope wasn’t the only one being blackmailed by the man and woman responsible for Vargas’ death and the corruption that has come from it. Abby too was put under their spell. However, they fed her with exactly what she wanted to hear. She’s the best. She’s too good for chief of staff. She could be the president. Abby fed off this praise and thought, maybe they were right? But eventually we see it was all a ploy to get Abby to be a pawn in their twisted game, just like Rowan.
Abby was continuously blackmailed by this mysterious duo throughout the episode. She was asked to go to the hospital and close off Frankie’s wing, or else they’d frame her for Frankie’s murder. She was asked to switch evidence of the bullets Frankie was shot with, in exchange for her boyfriend’s life. There was no winning for Abby. And after Cyrus was then framed by these same people for Frankie’s death, Abby sought her ex-boyfriend, Attorney General David Rosen, for help…only to find out that the woman blackmailing Abby is romantically involved with him.
This pair have pulled out all the stops and have protected themselves in every way.
Except for one.
“You said it yourself, Cyrus. I’m a force.”
Because of Abby’s guilt, she is determined to set Cyrus free. Even if that meant the cost of someone else’s life just to clear her own conscience. Throughout the episode, there is no doubt of Abby’s constant hesitation and struggle anytime she was asked to do something illegal. But it was too late. She is in too deep now.
When Huck sought her help last week, revealing to her that Jennifer Fields was alive, she took it upon herself to use that knowledge as leverage to get Cyrus released. She finally had one-upped the malicious duo and maybe it worked? But at what cost?
Abby, like Rowan, is driven by the idea of being on top. By being the best. By being the leader that no one else can deny. But, those strengths are also their weaknesses. Power can be threatened and taken away, as Shonda Rhimes so clearly points out here. This season is all about people using power to gain success, no matter the sacrifices and the destructive outcomes.
But when will it stop?
Is Abby aware that after Maggie killed Jennifer Fields, she shot Huck? Was that a part of Abby’s plan too? Does she care? Did her horrific and cruel plan work for Cyrus?
With the season finale coming up in just a couple of weeks, I think we are guaranteed an equal amount of answers as there will be questions. But how will they all be answered?
Until next time!