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'Scandal' Season 3, episode 3 Recap: 'Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington'

'Huawei': A foreshadowing name?

Chinesepod's Carlie discusses the meaning of the name 'Huawei' in light of the recent national security concerns of the Whitehouse


Based on the previews for this episode, we all knew that Shonda cooked up a good one. The episode starts off slow, with Cyrus trying to convince Fitz and Mellie to go to Camp David to show the American public that they were working on their marriage. Of course, they never make things easy for Cyrus, so they declined and continued to bicker. Meanwhile, at Pope and Associates, the Gladiators bring in a possible new client named Mary, whose son Chris worked for the FBI. Mary believes that he was killed by the FBI, and that her son is completely innocent. In the White House, staff discovers an intruder, who announces he really needs to speak with the President, but they are able to tackle him down. Of course Olivia is in the building on her daily White House run, but walks in on more chaos. It's the governor, a few other people and Mary, and she's strapped with a bomb. When she notices Olivia, she immediately starts to explain her issues with the government. Mary knows in her heart that her son was not a terrorist and did not deserve to be killed, and since no one listened to her before, she thought she'd try another way to get their attention. Olivia tries to console her, but Mary is so hell-bent on her son's redemption that she held everyone in the room hostage instead. The one thing Mary demands: that Chris' FBI file be declassified so that she can see for herself. An FBI officer (played by former Ghostbuster Ernie Hudson) begins to communicate with Olivia from outside the White House, working on Mary's demands. They've moved Fitz and the First Lady to a bunker, and word gets back to them that there is not only an intruder, but also a bomb threat. Fitz, who is forever thinking of Olivia, tries to leave the bunker because he finds out she's in the White House. When the White House gives an update on the first intruder to Cyrus, he tells them to let him go. The kicker: he seems to know the man, because he calls Ronan and says, "we have a Remington problem." Back at the hostage situation, FBI agents are done playing around: they are ready to take Mary down. They risk blowing up Olivia and the governor by shooting Mary through the window. Olivia rushes to put an end to this, and puts herself in front of the window instead. This gets the attention of President Fitz, and makes the FBI stand down. All Olivia wants at this point is the file for Mary, and when she's denied a phone call to Fitz, she makes a call to Jake, who gets the message through to the president (she got her boyfriend to call her other boyfriend to get what she needed). Harrison, who desperately wants information on this file, is given evidence by an FBI agent that proves Chris actually was a recruiter for a terrorist group. Even though it should've been obvious that an FBI agent wouldn't willingly give up that kind of information on the street, Harrison realizes that the FBI agent was a fake to steer them from the truth. Eventually, Fitz gives into Olivia and tells her on the phone what we've been waiting for: that Chris was a hero, not a terrorist. The catch: Olivia is not allowed to tell Mary this. The world must continue to believe that Chris was a terrorist. Olivia, who tries to "wear the white hat" as often as possible, doesn't want to lie to Mary, especially after all she's been through. The most heartbreaking is when Olivia actually lies to Mary, telling her that her son was indeed a terrorist. Mary breaks down, FBI forces Olivia out of the room (she still wants to help Mary) and goes in to take her down. The room blows up, sending Olivia to the floor. In the aftermath of the chaos, Quinn informs Olivia about Huck, who was not shown for most of the episode, and what he has been doing. Worried, Olivia goes back to her office, but finds Huck there. Huck says, "I'm all killed out today," which indicated to Liv that he killed her father Ronan, but it was actually Remington (the first White House intruder) that he killed. Huck is still very much under the control of Ronan, who set up the kill, and only time will tell if Huck is able to break his addiction. Olivia goes back home, finds Jake in her apartment, but after the day's events, she questions whether he still has ties with her father. One thing's for sure: Father Pope is in control.