Like everyone else that still watches network TV, I am completely addicted to Scandal. Olivia Pope is my new life coach. She is so smart and put together that she puts the president and ex-super spies in their place with nothing more than perfectly timed side-eye. We can learn a lot of life skills from Olivia Pope. How to speak in measured, assertive tones while holding back beautiful tears. How to wear cream lounging pajamas while drinking red wine without looking like a crime scene. That the sheer nude nail can work on any skin tone. How to give the smackdown to unavailable boyfriends. But we canNOT trust this woman for relationship advice.
Every single relationship on Scandal is a lying, cheating, murdery trainwreck. In a matchup between Harrison and sexy terrorist, Fitz and Olivia, and Cyrus and David, the only winner is the Kleenex box wiping away my tears. In honor of the gutwrenching finale tonight, here are a few of our most favorite horrible Scandal love lessons.
1. Never come clean about anything.
The truth is for the weak. If you do decide to spill your guts, someone will probably die. Maybe three someones.
2. It’s totally fine to never be sober around your partner.
Exhibit A: You’re not an alcoholic if it’s expensive. Liv, Fitz, and Mellie drink wine and scotch like water, but it’s always the good stuff.
Exhibit B: Fitz: “You’re drunk.” Mellie: “That’s impossible — a lady never gets drunk.” I like the way you think, Mellie.
3. No one is perfect.
There are no dealbreakers. Sex tapes aren’t dealbreakers. Murder? Definitely not a dealbreaker. Murdered your mother? Temporary setback, at best.
4. Available men are boring.
He proposed? Dump him. Dump him right now. You need a man that has killed with his bare hands, preferably someone close to you. Also, make sure he’s married. No one likes a clinger.
5. Long speeches always work.
If you have some feelings, express them in a long, rehearsed speech. Maintain near insane levels of eye contact and speak in a loud monotone. Pick one phrase and repeat it. Repeat it. Repeat that phrase until they cry.
6. Dad knows best.
Keep talking to your parents, even if they are sociopathic henchmen of a secret murder club. Especially if they withhold affection while saying things like, “You raised your skirt and opened your knees and gave it away to a man with too much power.” Creepy because of the patriarchy, or just creepy? You decide.
7. Power and manipulation are sexy.
You’re a strong, powerful woman that needs an even stronger partner. As James said of his hubs, “you control everything, which is exactly why I want to kill you and have sex with you at the same time.” Amen.
8. Forget blind dates.
Does your married boyfriend have a BFF? Bang him. If not, you can always wait for your boyfriend’s wife to make suggestions. Or just drink wine until a bloody, psychologically traumatized assassin comes into your apartment and gazes into your eyes.
9. Grand gestures totally work and solve everything, even murder.
Kidnapping counts. Remember that time that time Liv thought Fitz killed her mom? All it took was a little Vermont vacay and the most WASP-y fantasy I’ve ever heard about jam to strip off the pantsuit again.
10. Stabbing is a totally legit response to cheating.
In case things go awry, grab the sharpest office supply tool and go to town. You were never that innocent, anyway.
11. “Today everyone is afraid, everyone should be afraid, the president should be very afraid, and if I were you, Olivia, I would be terrified.”
Well, that about sums it up. I apply this to my love life every day. If you take nothing else from Scandal, take this.
Basically, I’ve come to believe you can have fabulous shawl coats and world domination, or you can have love. Never both. I choose the coats.