Spectacles in Script: Understanding Liv's Choice
I watched the finale. Then I had an angry fit at Shonda (and Liv). Then I watched it again. It only exasperated my anger. Then a month went by, and I was still angry. And then I finally got over it today. Well at least my anger at Liv (Shonda is still blacklisted).
I agree, still salty but in agreement. Also remember and this rings true to anyone who has had this type of relationship, he is still married as hell. what fitz said to her is like the check is in the mail. We will see when it arrived and when I try to cash it if it is any good. I love Fitz, but like most married men in these situations, he is only reacting to the women is his life. He didnt do anything like put mellie out he just chose not to jump through her hoops. Also, his marriage is disfunctional and fucked up independent of his love for Liv. Granted liv isn’t really all that emotionally whole either, but if Fitz were on the up and up he wouldn’t need another person’s love to give him the strength and need to end the marriage. Shonda has never given us any indicator that liv appreciates that yet but most “mistresses” who leave and move on to normal relationships come to appreciate that important distinction. Shonda definitely gets it cuz she talks about fitz being the one who is continually in need of rescue from his own life. There are plenty of folks in bad relationships who leave of their own volition and then move on to healthier relationships.
What everyone else said. I hate the finale for many reasons above and beyond the break-up and spectaclesinscript’s commentary is excellent, but it requires watching the show as if watching a trial (since Zimmerman is going on), where you can only see the main event unfold instead of the events leading up to the main event. Shonda could have and should have shown us that Olivia thought she would be giving something up by becoming FLOTUS. Instead we got a woman who 1. Wanted Fitz to remain president, and 2. Told him to stop getting her hopes up and choose her, while wanting him to remain president. At no point did she indicate that she did not want to be First Lady. In fact, I think she does. As presented in the show, Olivia’s reason for leaving Fitz is that she can’t leave her baby gladiators on their own. It has nothing to do with her wanting to be a gladiator or not wanting to be FLOTUS. Since her reason sucks, it’s natural to look for a better one, but it is Shonda’s job to give it, not the viewer’s job.
I appreciate the argument and having Liv struggle with her decision may have made for compelling television in season 3. But, a finale is supposed to leave you yearning for the next season and what happened in the last five minutes of the finale changed my entire perception of the show. The two images that I am left with are Fitz with his head in Mellie’s lap and Liv making her speech about taking care of her gladiators. To say that I was pissed is an understatement of epic proportions. One of the things that I loved about Scandal is that we finally had a black female character who was both a savvy career woman and in total charge of her sexuality. She is not forced to be the strong asexual black woman who is always taking care of her flock a la Miranda Bailey on Grey’s. Olivia is a fully realized human being who struggles like we all do. Yet, somehow in one episode she renders the man who slept with her on command, a good guy and rejects the guy who “chose” her. I didn’t expect Season 3 to begin with Liv in a white gown and contemplating her duties as first lady, I expected SR to tackle how a president undoes his marriage while in office. Instead, we are given an infantilized President and the strong stoic black woman who just can’t have it all. In short, the same old BS. Also, as far as doubting Fitz’s sincerity about leaving his wife and leaving the Presidency it is somewhat unfair to be critical of that because at every point that he has attempted to do both he has been thwarted by Liv, Cyrus or Mellie. We don’t know what he would sacrifice because at every turn his character is weakened or demeaned by the writers. In short, in light of episodes 219, 220 and 221, I still don’t understand Liv’s choice and I understand the motives of Shonda and Co. even less.