Spoiler Alert: Do not continue reading if you've yet to watch Scandal's season three premiere. Seriously, we meant it, spoilers are ahead! So no going down to the comments and complaining about us ruining your night. House rules!
Quick, someone find us an inhaler because we're still having trouble breathing after Scandal's season three premiere. Seriously, that was one freakin' intense episode of TV that gave us an hour-long anxiety attack. That's totally a compliment, by the way.
Picking up 22 minutes after the finale, "It's Handled" dealt with the immediate fallout of Olivia (Kerry Washington) being revealed as Fitz's (Tony Goldwyn) mistress and the huge reveal that Rowan (Joe Morton), the head of B613, is Olivia's father. And Daddy Pope (which was trending on Twitter)? He is one scary, scary man!
So who leaked Olivia's name? And was she able to handle her very own crisis? Plus, Rowan drops a bombshell about Fitz's time in the Navy...
Daddy Issues: Holy crap, Olivia's dad is a massive [insert every mean name here]. Almost the entire first act of the episode is Rowan belittling his daughter for her affair, especially the fact that she was going for First Lady. "Do you have to be so mediocre?" Wanting to "fix" her situation (We guess it runs in the fam!), Rowan puts Olivia on a plane with a one-way ticket to a new life, which she refuses after Cyrus (Jeff Perry) begs her to stay. (Because her disappearance would destroy Fitz, of course). "I'm a monster, but I'm your monster," he promises.
The Truth Works: After a top secret and seriously awkward pow-wow (in which Mellie called Olivia "a whore," natch), Olivia maps out their strategy on handling the affair: Fitz admits he had an affair, apologizes profusely, puts on a united front with Mellie (Bellamy Young), etc. Damage control 101, basically. But Mellie? Not down with the truth, as it reveals her husband is in love with another woman. The First Lady comes around though after the trio decides that Olivia and Fitz will say they only slept together twice. (Alas, it never gets to that.)
Line of the Night: "Are we gladiators or are we bitches?" We're gladiators, Harrison (Columbus Short)! And OPA proved they were all gladiators by throwing an innocent White House aide in front of the whole President's mistress bus, leaking a video of drunk Communications Aide Jeanne Locke calling Fitz "hot," as well as e-mails in which she describes him as "super do-able." So yes, Liv is in the clear, but not happy about it.
Cyrus Does Some Digging: We finally got to learn a bit about Olivia's past after Cyrus started "a kill folder" on our head gladiator. Basically, she attended a lot of boarding schools, had a well-documented preference for powerful older men ("silver foxes"), and was a party girl after college. "Enough to play the ambitious slut card," Cyrus says. Way harsh, monster!
Who Leaked Liv's Name: Oh, secret service agent Hal. Turns out, our men in black get a little loose-lipped at their local bar and Hal ended up spilling that Fitz was having an affair with one of his trusted advisors to a reporter. But Hal swears he didn't reveal Olivia's name. So who did? Freakin' Fitz! "Who would benefit the most? My idealistic, romantic, optimistic, idiotic husband," Mellie snarls when calling him out for the leak, which she thinks he did to eventually get Liv in the White House with him. Yes, Fitz had his secret service agents leak her name and admits he did it to protect Olivia from Mellie, who no longer has her name in her arsenal against the couple. Game on!
What's In the Folder: The episode's final scene? Rowan brings Cyrus in for a secret meeting, where he presents him with a folder. In it? What really went down on Operation Remington, Fitz's mission with Jake Ballard (Scott Foley) back when they were in the Navy together. Cyrus' response after learning: "Oh. My. God." Gah!
What did you think of Scandal's premiere? Sound off in the comments!