Scandal Recap 3/24/16: Season 5 Episode 15 “Pencils Down”

Scandal Recap 3/24/16: Season 5 Episode 15 "Pencils Down"

Tonight on ABC Scandal starring Kerry Washington continues with another exciting episode in an all new Thursday March 24, season 5 episode 15 called, “Pencils Down,” and we have the recap for you below. On tonight’s episode, Mellie (Bellamy Young) makes a public blunder and Olivia (Kerry Washington) must repair things. Meanwhile, David needs guidance on how to proceed with his love triangle involving Liz and Susan.

On the last episode, Olivia’s team persevered without her as she focused on spying on Jake. Meanwhile, tension rose as Susan’s and Mellie’s campaigns intensify; Abby was suspicious of Cyrus’s true motives; and shock accompanies a blast from the past. Did you watch the last episode? If you missed it, we have a full and detailed recap right here for you.

On tonight’s episode as per the ABC synopsis, “Mellie makes a public blunder and Olivia must repair things. Meanwhile, David needs guidance on how to proceed with his love triangle involving Liz and Susan; and vital info about Jake’s new love interest is revealed to Olivia’s team.”

Tonight’s episode of SCANDAL is going to be absolutely incredible and you won’t want to miss even a minute. We’ll be recapping it for you here live.

Tonight’s episode begins now – Refresh Page often to get the most current updates!

#Scandal starts with Sally revealing Hollis Doyle running for president and that she’s hosting the first Republican debate. Olivia, Liz and Hollis debate the terms of the debate. Olivia wants clear podiums. She doesn’t get it.

The network says the frontrunner gets the center podium. The producer says that’s the way it is. Olivia wants a red light and a buzzer and says Susan is friends with Hollis and will let him run on. Olivia says she’s pulling Mellie out and will give a one hour interview to a competitor.

She says good luck explaining that to your advertisers. Olivia smiles and tells Mellie to wait. The producer comes in and says lights and buzzers are fine. She now wants to revisit the podium choices. Fitz rehearses a debate with Susan and he plays the part of Hollis.

Abby and Liz watch and smile. Liz says it was excellent. Abby tells Olivia that Susan is knocking it out of the park. Olivia is dealing with Mellie and she says no one is a bigger pain in the ass but she thinks she’d make a great president.

Abby asks if Olivia hears the rumors She says she’s looking into it. Olivia talks to her ex-fiancee about his presidential hopes. Edison admits he’s running and Olivia says she owes him and won’t do anything to hurt his campaign.

She tells Edison he’ll be a great candidate. He says it’s about time they had a black president and she says it’s time for a woman president. They wish each other luck. David is lurking in Abby’s office and says help me. He says he’s addicted to both women.

He says the sex is good with the good woman but the sex with the nasty women is nasty. He says she’s a biter and says it’s affecting his work and he’s in dirty sex trances all day. Abby kicks him out after he asks her to help him choose.

He’s in the halls and Liz calls him into a room – he’s surprised – he thought it was a dirty sex thing. Liz says she asked David to come into the meeting and says they need to come out as a public couple at the debate and says he should come on stage and hug her.

Susan says that’s a lot to ask of him and Liz asks him directly if he has a problem doing it. He says he will and he wants to do it and chooses to. Liz is ecstatic. She leaves with a smile at Debbie. Cyrus is working the Vargas campaign and gives a pep talk to the team.

Another guy comes in and takes over the pep talk and says we need to take it to the streets – it’s Vargas’ campaign manager from his last election and Cyrus is shocked into quiet while the guy takes over the room and gets everyone cheering.

It’s Frankie’s brother Alex and he comes to introduce himself to Cyrus and asks who he is. Cyrus talks to Vargas and says he needs his brother to respect him and acknowledge that he’s the one in charge. Vargas asks if he has a problem with his brother and Cyrus say no. Vargas says good.

Groups are polled about Mellie. They hear the term too smart, soap opera hair, etc. Huck is there too and makes some comments and Mellie tells him to shut up. Olivia says she seems aloof. Olivia says Mellie is a know it all and says those people in the focus group are the people watching the debate.

Mellie says they are benefiting from how smart she is. She asks if she has to dumb it down. Olivia gives her the look and the nod. Mellie says woman of the people even though she’s a Rhodes Scholar. Quinn shows Liv photos of Jake on public security cameras.

They agree it’s not enough and Olivia says plan B. Quinn goes to an event where Vanessa is and introduces herself as a fellow Smith student. She’s in pearls and a headband. Quinn admires her engagement ring and asks for the wedding details.

Quinn says she has tons of wedding books and would love to refer her photographer. They swap info to get together later. Susan comes to see Abby and notices David’s notebook and she says he came by to complain about juggling his women.

Susan is stunned. Later, she’s practicing the debate again and zones out completely. Liz calls her out of her funk and then she babbles like a nut. Hollis is talking to the press at a gun range. Mellie rehearses with Olivia who says lose the bitch face.

Hollis cooks bacon on the end of his automatic rifle. The press eats it up. Olivia says she wants filibuster Mellie. Susan babbles in her rehearsal and screws up some math. Liz calls David and says your GF is in a death spiral and tells him to forget it.
Quinn updates Olivia on her wedding chat with Vanessa then Alex shows up and says he’s there to help her and says he has dirt on Susan Ross that can help Mellie. Olivia asks if he wants her to scratch his back. She says she doesn’t play dirty.

Alex leaves her his contact info and waggles the envelope at her then goes. Olivia has them check out Alex Vargas. Huck says he ran his brother’s campaigns and won them all – dirt, intimidation, and anything it takes. Marcus says they need a focus group on Mellie again.

Olivia says they need to get her out in public. They take her to Gettysburger in disguise. A guy says she can go ahead of him but she says she can wait her turn like anyone else. Mellie doesn’t want to wear the hat. Olivia tells her what to order, where to sit and to eat it all.

She mentions stopping by Gettysburger on Sundays after church – but it’s closed. The news calls it burgergate. The news says Susan Ross will stomp her. Mellie tells Olivia she’s ruined and Olivia says don’t lie – she says she was improvising.

She asks Olivia what now and Olivia says she’s thinking. Mellie says it’s all Liv’s fault and says fix it Olivia and storms out. Cyrus comes to talk to Alex and Frankie and says Edison Davis is running. Frankie says they already knew it because Alex found out last night.

Cyrus is upset he’s behind the curve and the brother beat him to the punch. Susan sits glumly in her office when David comes to see her. She asks if he’s cheating on her. He says no and asks why she mentioned it. She says you can tell me the truth.

He thinks about screwing Liz and then takes a seat. David says he’s not and that’s the truth. Susan asks why she heard a rumor he’s seeing two women. She says late nights at the office and work obligations and he says that’s what they were and says he only wants to be with her.

He says he barely had enough game to seduce her much less to get with someone else. He asks if she still wants him to come on stage. She hug shim and says of course she does. Liv comes to see Rowan who says her voice mail sounded helpless.

She tells him about Alex Vargas and that he wanted dirt on Edison in exchange for dirt on Susan. Liv says they are third since the Gettysburger disaster. She asks if she should take the dirt. Then she says why am I even asking.

She asks Rowan to give her permission with a lecture on power and not worrying about friendship. She says please say those things so she can get back to work. Rowan reminds her that Edison was nothing but nice to her and says she’s played dirty before.

He says she did that at the expense of someone she loathed – he says this is hurting someone you respect who has never hurt you. He says she wouldn’t be Robin Hood anymore and she says she would be him. Rowan says Mellie imploded because she tried to make her someone she wasn’t.

He says don’t make the same mistake on yourself. Vanessa tells Quinn her meet cute story with Jake and says he knows all her secrets and that’s the bad thing about marrying the head of the NSA and says she had to give him access to her taxes, laptops, everything.

Tom reports back to Cyrus and says Edison Davis is completely clean. Cyrus says keep looking. Tom starts to undress but Cyrus says don’t come back until you have something on Alex Vargas. Poor Tom went from being Rowan’s bitch to Cyrus’ bitch – but literally in the latter case.

Liz comes into David’s office and says take off your pants. She says she wants to sit on him naked. He says is this because Susan is doing better in the debates? She says this is your reward. David says he can’t do this anymore.

She says don’t play hard to get. He says they’re done and she asks if he’s serious. She sighs and says are you sure. He says yes. She says no. He says he’s in love with Susan Ross. She says she’s a second tier muppet and he says don’t talk about Susan like that anymore.

David says he’s sorry and Liz is stunned and hurt. She says enjoy the minor leagues and storms out. Quinn tells Olivia about Jake getting all of Vanessa’s bank account info and says someone accessed her accounts and has been funneling money through them.

She says Jake is using her accounts to fund a Super PAC. She asks if she knows which candidate and she says yes. Olivia goes to see Edison and says her father is more powerful and dangerous than he knows. She says her father is funding Edison’s Super PAC.

She says he’ll ask for a favor. Edison says when a man like Rowan tells you he can make you president, you listen. She says you don’t want him near you. Edison says the Senate is a gilded cage where you can’t make a difference. He says he knows all about her father.

He says the only way to make a difference is to be president. She says he’s getting in bed with a monster and he slams her hard when he says – correction, it’s like getting in bed with a monster’s father. Olivia is stunned. He asks her to leave.

New reports that Hollis has the lead in the polls and will have the center podium. Fitz finds Susan still in the rehearsal room and says she needs to get some rest. She apologizes for being off her game and says it was a silly little personal issue.

She says ask me a question and he asks her about the federal deficit. Susan freezes and then asks him why he cheated on his wife and asks if he knows why he did it. He asks why she’s asking. She says this is part of her debate prep then asks why does anyone cheat?

He asks if she thinks he’s an expert and she shrugs. She says she doesn’t want to be one of those women who falls for the lie. Fitz says people cheat for different reasons but says if you feel like he’s cheating, he probably is. She looks upset but nods.

She says the figures speak for themselves and then answers the deficit question he asked before. She slams both Mellie and Doyle in her answer. She tells Fitz goodnight and says she’s going to get some sleep. She takes off.

Vanessa is at dinner with Jake and his phone chirps. She asks if it’s work and he says he can’t tell her. It’s Olivia and she’s at the restaurant. He asks what she wants. They step into the bathroom and she locks the door then kisses him.

He says Vanessa is right outside. She asks if Vanessa knows how he’s using her brokerage accounts to illegally send money into the Super PAC. She unzips his pants and says he loves Vanessa and says that doesn’t feel like the truth when she touches him.

She says no one will ever ride him like her. She says to tell my father whatever game this is they’re playing, she will win. She walks out and leaves him unbuttoned, excited and frustrated. It’s debate night and Sally is reviewing her notes. She screams at the producer to go away as she paces.

David finds Susan in the hall smoking and he’s surprised then asks if she likes his tie. He says he didn’t know she smoked and she says she quit when she was pregnant with Casey. She says each cigarette takes seven minutes off your life.

David asks why she’s smoking and she says because she’s dumping her boyfriend. She says come on and he’s stunned. She says are you going to make me ask you again. He stares and says for what it’s worth, it’s over and he didn’t want to lose her so he ended it.

He says he loves her and only her. Susan says Liz already told the press he’s coming on stage so he still needs to do that. She walks away. Now David is going to want her more. Well played Susan Ross! Mellie paces because Olivia showed up late.

Mellie freaks and Olivia says just do your best and leave the rest to me. Olivia says she’s got this and everything is going to be fine. Mellie takes a breath and calms down. Sally welcomes everyone to the Republican debate.

Sally reads off the ground rules. Liz asks Susan where David is and she says she broke up with him because he was cheating on her. Liz asks with whom and Susan says she doesn’t know who and doesn’t care. Liz says it’s a shock. Susan cries a bit and says David Rosen is an ass.

Susan says Liz seems really mean but cares and then she cries on Liz’s shoulder. Liz is near tears over this too. Hollis practices his cheesy smile. Hollis asks for water. Olivia meets Alex Vargas to swap dirt. She tells Alex to open it and he sees the name of a rehab clinic.

She says she sent Edison to rehab for pills and then covered up his mess. Sally welcomes the candidates to the stage. Mellie comes out first. Hollis is next and last is Susan. Olivia opens up the folder of dirt on Susan and is surprised by what she sees. The debate begins.