Wow. Scandal Season 1 came to a close with Season 1, Episode 7: "Grant: For the People", and it. Was. Awesome. An emotional rollercoaster with twist after twist, and a double whammy at the end just for good measure.
As always, instead of a normal recap format, we will be evaluating each of the characters on one important metric: Were they badass, or not badass?
Olivia: Olivia is the protagonist for a reason. She swept in to help Quinn like a pro. She was willing to admit to the world that she was the one on the sex tape. She confronted Billy about being a murderer without ever losing her cool. She realized she needed to come clean to David and she did. And, most importantly of all, she saw the life she craves, the normal life with a man she loves, dangled in front of her, and she was willing to sacrifice her happiness for the greater good.
David Rosen: To us, David was the other star tonight. Olivia and team cleaned up the crime scene around Gideon, but David was not so easily fooled: He figured out they were behind it almost immediately. He cleverly proved it by calling Gideon's phone (seriously, how did they leave that on? Epic fail, Olivia Pope and Associates). He remained a good friend to Olivia — he could have gotten her in a lot of trouble — but he also didn't bow to her will. He has his own sense of duty and right, and he was willing to go with his gut. He managed to trick Quinn into giving him her prints, but, again, took care of investigating her himself. He's smart, determined, but fair. If anyone on this show is a true good guy, it's him.
Huck: Huck, on the other hand, is definitely not a good guy. But he's a damn interesting one. First of all, he automatically gets badass points for offering to kill Billy in the most casual way possible. "It's cool." Ha. We love that he technically kept his word to Olivia, but still made sure Billy got killed. He is absolutely terrifying underneath that mild mannered persona.
Cyrus: First things first: Cyrus is the one who order the hit on Amanda, not Billy. Wowza. We can't say we never saw this coming. We had suspected it. But last week's episode convinced us we were wrong. Should've stuck with our guts, right Olivia? At this point, we're operating under the assumption that he did it purely to protect Fitz. His speech about how Fitz can't live a normal life because some men are meant to be great, not happy, was one of the highlights of the episode. And, as always, we enjoyed all of his grumpy, grumbly rants as everything fell apart around him. Cyrus is both hilarious and brutal. We approve.
Harrison: "You don't have to answer that." Go-go gadget lawyer skills! We always love it when Harrison gets all professional.
Mellie: We're on the fence about Mellie. Her view of the world is clearly skewed, and we don't like that she gives her husband no credit for having any agency. It's Olivia's fault he slept with Amanda? Really? That said, she did take charge in a way that allowed no room for argument, so we give her props for that.
Billy: Billy transformed into quite the villain this episode. His big move — going to the press — was beautifully executed. He was willing to put himself on the chopping block, admitting his affair with Amanda, if it meant taking the President down with him. Adding that much of the truth made his lie more believable. Dastardly. However, he was eventually outplayed on all fronts. As fascinating as it was to watch his plans unravel, his eventual failure means he's firmly not a badass anymore.
Fitz: Fitz was willing to give up the presidency to be with Olivia. That's very romantic, and we felt for him, but it's not badass. We've been told again and again this man really cares about bettering the country. That this man can better this country. If that's true, than giving up so easily would have been fundamentally selfish. We're glad Olivia was able to be the stronger person.
Stephen: How long did Stephen last before sleeping around? Lame. While he did give Olivia the pep talk she needed to abandon her own happiness, we have to say said talk made little to no sense. How is being unable to keep it in your pants in any way related to deciding not to be with the person you love for everyone else's good? Those are, like, the exact opposite problems.
Abby: Abby was the one who grabbed the cell phone, so we kind of blame her for leaving it on. Beyond that, she just didn't have much to do this week.
Sally Langston: All the Veep did was step back and let the whole thing play out until Fitz blackmailed her into helping him. Totally outplayed.
Quinn: Okay, first of all, has Quinn never watched a medical show, ever? You don't pull the pointy object out! That always makes it worse. Then she spent the rest of the episode being shunted around by the team until, when left to her own devices, she got tricked by David. Her secret identity better be great.
Billy's moment of shell-shocked horror at the beginning of the episode was a perfect touch. He may be a nasty piece of work, but he still has feelings.
We have confirmation Olivia did, in fact, vote for Fitz.
"Fine, we can switch from frenemies to enemies." This is why we love Cyrus.
We have a feeling Olivia and Fitz's Oval Office kiss is going to come back to haunt them.
Blackmailing the Veep with her underage daughter's abortion? Way harsh, Olivia, Cyrus, and Fitz. Necessary, sure, but that's not exactly "white hat" behavior.
What did you think of Scandal's first season? Let us know in the comments below. Rebecca Martin is an editor at Wetpaint Entertainment. Follow her on Twitter@BeccaMartin47. For the latest from Wetpaint Entertainment, Like us on our Facebook page at facebook.com/Wetpaint, or Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/WetpaintTV.