So I owe this blog two weeks and my verdict on this one is...meh.
Last week, Abby's job was threatened because her new boyfriend Leo (Sally Langston's ex-fixer) and her ex-boyfriend David Rosen both had (kinky) sex with a chick who's about to publish a tell-all on her dalliances. She likes to pick up strangers and play roughhouse with them, and now she's written all about it, complete with code names Olivia knows the press will crack in no time.
Let me start by saying 1) it's great that Liv & Co are back to working cases with, you know, scandals, and 2) I don't know why Abby's still working at the White House.
She commands no respect with Cyrus or the Grant family, and every time we see her she is get clobbered by the press. So I'm like...*blink*. Let her lose this job. Let her pack her shit and go back to OPA where she belongs. With Stephen gone and Harrison dead, Abby's currently the sanest member that crew has left and they need her there.
But of course, it's not that simple. America is a sexist country. Anything that happens to Leo happens to Abby; when the book comes out she knows no one will take her seriously every again.
So now Liv & Co. have to rush to stop the book. First, they try intimidating Sue, the author, to not publish it. And for a moment, a startled Sue gives in. But then she shows up to Liv's office demanding $3 million to keep quiet. After all, Liv did just tell this woman she couldn't write about her own sex life.
First, let me say this scandal was really lame. A tell-all book about sex? Really? That's the best Shondaland could come up with? Even Sue's not buying it.
And Sue, of course, is right. But this creates a new problem. If Abby's job is in jeopardy just for sleeping with Leo and David, imagine how much jeopardy David's job is in. And Huck/Diego Munoz is worried he can't get his immunity deal and go home to his family if David Rosen loses his job.
So even when Liv finds out Sue's broke and unemployed because she rejected her boss's sexual advances and he blacklisted her, even after Liv helps Sue find a new gig and abandon the book deal, Huck slits Sue's throat (in front of Quinn) to make absolutely sure she never talks. And Quinn covers for Huck by reminding Liv that if any of this comes out, Abby's career is fucked.
Ironically, Cyrus of all people has scraped together $3 million to silence Sue so he can keep Abby. Deep down, the writers claim, he likes and respects Abby...enough to fork over that much change. Yeah, right. This was a let's-try-to-validate-Abby's-job-at-the-White-House episode and it failed in that regard.
4 x 17 "Put a Ring on It"
This is a Cyrus-heavy episode. Remember Michael, the sex worker who nearly ended his career so Cyrus followed Liv's advice and got engaged? Apparently Cyrus has pushed the wedding back four times since then, and now, due to a new scandal with Michael having an affair, he has to tie the not.
This episode does not get a "meh" from me; Jeff Perry is an excellent actor and when the writers focus on him they produced gold.
Liv steps into fix things, getting Mellie to announced she's hosting the gay Republican wedding at the White House. As the day approaches, Cyrus starts to flashback to his last two marriages and sees just how awful he is when it comes to marriage. We meet his first wife Janet and learn about her slow deterioration over sixteen years of an abysmal marriage. We then get treated to some flashbacks of his marriage to James, but we don't really dwell on that because we witnessed that disaster over a course of three seasons. Remember when Cyrus almost had Charlie put a bullet in James?
And since Cyrus despises Michael, he decides with Liv and Mellie it's best if he just throws the former sex worker under the bus and plays the broken-hearted, jilted lover card. But then...he meets Michael's parents.
Mind you, Michael hasn't spoken to his parents in years and really doesn't want to start now.
The video excerpt isn't on the web yet, I will come back and add it as soon as it is. See, Michael's parents are paid to show up and smile at dinner in front of the press, pretending they love their son and support the happy couple. Cyrus gets to witness firsthand just what a shitty set of parents Michael has. His father goes off on Michael, about how disappointed he is, how they sent Michael to all those camps (you know, the bogus ones that claim they can make people stop being gay), and how disgusted he is with Michael and Cyrus. It's vicious and heart-wrenching, especially when everyone keeps telling Michael to eat his food and smile for the cameras.
Thankfully, Cyrus is also at this dinner and witnessing the sheer abuse Michael endures speaks to what little is left of his heart. So he decides to go through with the wedding, but before he does, he sits Michael down and does what he should have done with his last two spouses - Cyrus is completely honest. He lets Michael know that they may never love each other, and that his job comes first. He lets Michael know that he is so very deeply flawed, and apologizes in advance. But more importantly, he lets Michael know he will not leave him alone, that is he a good person, and that Ella, his daughter, needs good people in her life.
And with that, they get married.
And it's great...except the wonderful separation between Pope and State is crumbling and not-so-subtle hints of Olitz are on the horizon...thus ruining a perfectly good episode.