Scandal has never been afraid of a controversial subject. In the past year alone the show has tackled executive privilege, police brutality and a Bill Cosby-esque sex scandal.
On Thursday's fall finale, the show made a stand for Planned Parenthood as Mellie Grant (Bellamy Young) performed a 16-hour filibuster to stop a spending bill from passing that would virtually defund the women's health organization. Her marathon speech included listing off real-life government items that aren't considered discretionary spending - including private jet costs and talking urinal cakes - until the clock ran out.
The Planned Parent Action Fund responded with a statement on Thursday applauding Shonda Rhimes and the show for taking a stand. "We applaud Shonda Rhimes tonight — and every Thursday night — for proving that when women are telling our stories, the world will pause and watch. We just hope those in Congress — and throughout the nation — who are steadfast on rolling the clock back on reproductive health care access are taking note," it reads.
The Senate floor wasn't the only place where Planned Parenthood's services came up in the episode. In a shocking turn, Olivia (Kerry Washington) decided to abort the baby no one knew she was pregnant with to escape her First Lady prison life in the White House.
"This episode wasn't the first time one of Rhimes' characters had an abortion, yet tonight we saw one of our favorite characters make the deeply personal decision that one in three women have made in their lifetime," Planned Parenthood says.
While Planned Parenthood is thankful for the storyline's signal boost for their cause, there's a conservative counter attack claiming the finale was nothing but "an hour-long commercial for Planned Parenthood." The Media Research Center made their own detailed statement about the episode, claiming that Planned Parenthood has always been considered discretionary funding by the government instead of being moved there in new legislation. They also claim, "the abortion behemoth will survive without government funding," despite Scandal quoting in the episode that abortions only count for three percent of the organization's services.
Did Scandal go too far with their Planned Parenthood storyline?