This season has taken a format that we haven’t really seen before. It’s been a series of flashbacks with the focus on one cast member. It has been interesting to watch and just as soon as it started to get boring, they take on one of the shows most confusing characters: Eli Pope.
Most fans of the show have mixed feelings about Eli. He’s either a power-hungry monster or a man who will go above and beyond to protect the things and people he cares for, no matter the cost. Whichever side you lean towards, we can all agree that he is definitely an interesting character. However before this episode, Scandal hasn’t shown us a side to Eli that is outside of plotting and scheming and we got to see that in this episode. Don’t worry, there was still plotting and scheming. If there wasn’t would it even be Scandal?
The episode begins with Eli going about his normal daily activities when he gets a package and in it is a toy dinosaur. Next thing we know, he’s sitting in a lecture on dinosaurs and giving the lecturer interesting looks. I won’t lie. I initially I thought he was going to somehow destroy her but boy was I far from the truth. It turns out that the lecturer was Eli’s first love and her name was Sandra. She asks him to come help her on a project she’s running and we all know how much Eli loves his bones. He jumps at the start and I have never seen Eli Pope that excited. As in genuine excitement. Things are great for a while and he and Sandra rekindle that old flame, that is until he finds a camera and suddenly knows something is up. Just when you think Eli isn’t all that bad, he hold a gun up to the woman he loves and asks her what’s really going on. Unfortunately she’s just a pawn and doesn’t have much information, but his little outburst brings his watchers out of the shadows.
The people pulling the strings eventually come to meet him face to face, and you know Eli, he jumps in straight away with the “I will end you!”s and the “Do you know who you’re dealing with”s but for once command has met him match. They quickly put him in his place and tell him that they want Mellie Grant in the white house. If not, Sandra dies. First of all, WHO are these people and why do they want Mellie? Secondly how freaking convenient that they now choose to give Eli a heart. Anyway back to the episode. Eli goes back to his old habits and his first idea is voter rigging. However that rubs off the wrong way on Olivia and she comes bursting in talking about how if she wins this election she wants tow in it clean and so she undid his rigging. This is of course bad news for Eli and so him failing to secure Mellie’s victory means Sandra is in danger. The group tries to use Sandra to get to Eli but hey, you can’t take command, so he shoots Sandra in the head. They will not hold anything over him. I mean he has no weakness right? Wrong. He has Olivia and the group knows that. They tell Eli that they have eyes on her at all times and all it takes is one phone call and so if he wants her to be safe, he better corporate. Yeah. It turns out that you in fact CAN take command. Who knew?
Let’s just cut to the chase. Eli killed Vargas. There have been theories that Eli killed Vargas but I don’t think anyone thought it would be like this. Not once did the idea of Eli being threatened cross my mind. Once Olivia’s life had been threatened, he knew what he had to do. He recruited Jake, Jennifer Fields and lastly the man who took the fall for him and apparently was B613. After the assassination he had to frame Cyrus that way he would not become president and Mellie could. That brings us to the present.
If you ask me, this was a good episode in general. Getting to see Eli in a different light was something I appreciated about it. I have mixed feelings about this whole story line though. I’m not exactly sure what it is that they’re trying to do here but I have faith in Shonda. Things will pan out nicely.