Kerry Washington, Tony Goldwyn
[Warning: This story contains major spoilers from Thursday's Scandal. Read at your own risk!]
Olitz fans, rejoice!
Thursday's episode of Scandal featured the moment Olivia (Kerry Washington) and Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) fans had always hoped for, but weren't really sure would ever happen: Fitz chose Olivia once and for all!
After Mellie (Bellamy Young) put a deadline on their marriage, Fitz decided to run the clock out alongside Olivia, proving that his heart was with her, instead of the First Lady. Despite the outcome, Mellie didn't falter, going on live news at the deadline and revealing to the nation that the President had been unfaithful in their marriage. Does this mean Olivia and Fitz finally get to be together?
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Meanwhile, after OPA deduces that Charlie (George Newbern) is behind the attack on Huck (Guillermo Diaz), they all suspect Cyrus (Jeff Perry) is the mole, but — twist! — someone else is the mysterious Albatross. Who is it?! TVGuide.com caught up with Goldwyn, who also directed the episode, to get the scoop on the future of America's favorite couple and what's in store for the finale:
Now that the news is out there that Fitz has been unfaithful, what's the immediate fallout like?
Tony Goldwyn: Mellie has taken a nuclear option. She's really blown things up. Fitz is willing to take responsibility for that. He takes what he says to Liv very seriously when he relays to her what Cyrus had said: You have to sacrifice for what you love. Fitz is done. He believes that he's gone so far off the rails in terms of being true to himself that it's only resulted in literally death and destruction. The only path he sees is to get real, and it began with that conversation he had with Mellie where she said their marriage is a lie and when he confronts her with the true story of how they met. Fitz has committed himself to facing the truth. He confessed to Cyrus about killing Verna (Debra Mooney). Whatever the fallout is, he's willing to take the responsibility for that.
When Mellie went on air, she made it seem like they would be trying to repair their marriage. Was that part of her game plan -- trying to force his hand into making it work?
Goldwyn: I think so. At the end of the day, Mellie wants Fitz and wants to hang onto power. Mellie is an incredibly clever woman, in many ways cleverer than Fitz. She wants to have her cake and eat it too.
This reveal is not going to help him get reelected. He's considered giving up the presidency before. Might he consider that again?
Goldwyn: By calling Mellie's bluff in this way, he's willing to consider the fact that he might not win reelection. He's aware that the chance is slim and all he cares about is Olivia. At the end of Season 1, he wanted to resign, and Mellie and Liv got in league and forced Fitz to hang in there in office. That's how Season 1 ended, so I believe he's willing to do it again.
Right now, Olivia and Fitz are in a bubble of happiness. They didn't even turn on the news to see Mellie's announcement. From the beginning of the series, executive producers Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers have stated that this is an impossible relationship because he's the President of the United States. Do you think that still holds true? Or do you think that even when the bubble bursts, they can still have a relationship?
Goldwyn: As long as Fitz remains in the White House, it's going to be tough. I feel so identified with Fitz personally that I have to believe it can work. But it makes this such a great television show that it's impossible and yet we want it to happen. Another way to look at it is that bubble relationships, while they're extraordinary and intoxicating and beautiful, are almost always impossible to sustain. So unless the bubble completely bursts, it's going to be very difficult for Fitz and Olivia to have a functional relationship, but I'm pulling for them.
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How would Fitz feel if he discovered that Jake (Scott Foley) hooked up with Olivia?
Goldwyn: He would be completely devastated. Fitz has really struggled this season with trust. There's a naïve quality within Fitz, this sort of idealistic, optimistic instinct to him. He had idealized Liv to such a degree that when he found out she was engaged in this criminal behavior and betrayed him, it completely derailed him. When Jake came on the scene, suddenly Fitz started to feel that there was someone he could trust. Now that he's reconnected with Olivia and has in Jake a lieutenant that he thinks is the real deal, it'll be very rough on him.
What's going to surprise us about who the mole really is?
Goldwyn: I can't tell you a thing about that! It's so shocking when we find out who the mole is. It's such a big part of where the story is going.
With the mole trying to uncover information about Defiance, might Fitz ever decide to get ahead of the story and reveal the truth about the election being rigged himself?
Goldwyn: No. That's what Verna was going to do. Aside from the fact that it would throw so many people under the bus, Olivia included, it would be devastating for the country to have that scope of a scandal out. That would be far worse than Watergate and it would make Monica Lewinsky look like spilled milk. The fact that he had nothing to do with it and would ultimately bear responsibility for it, it would be too destructive.
What can you tease about the finale?
Goldwyn: All hell is going to break loose. Shonda's been pushing things to the extreme all season, so the last three or four episodes all feel like a finale. The actual finale tops all of them.
Thursday's episode was filled with so many reveals. What was your favorite scene to direct?
Goldwyn: The most interesting one for me was the one between me and Olivia. It was a very interesting challenge to direct myself in that complicated and important a scene. I have directed myself in the past and I find it strange, but that plus a sex scene, was a real challenge. That reunion of him and Olivia when Fitz throws down was a great scene. It was really important to Shonda. This is the coming together of Fitz and Olivia, which we've been waiting for for a really long time — kind of for two seasons. We've never really come together in the present.
Are you happy Fitz and Olivia finally got together? Do you think it can last?
Scandal airs Thursdays at 10/9c on ABC.