Alright, as promised, session 2 of the weekly S&A Scandal Talkback, now that episode 5 has aired (last night), and I'm sure most of you have seen it. I watched it this morning.

If you haven't seen that episode yet, then you may NOT want to any of this.

So… Amanda Tanner's dead. She was kidnapped in episode 4 as we all know, but I certainly didn't expect that she'd be killed; so that was a bit of a surprise to me. 

Oh, and by the way, she was also pregnant with what we thought was Prez Fitz's child, but it appears that it's actually NOT his child as is revealed in the end.

And he receives a blackmail letter (which Cyrus tells him about), but no one knows who the sender is.

So the question is: who's the third party in all this that we don't yet know about? Whose face have we yet to see? The mysterious caller at the other end of Amanda Tanner's phone line? The person responsible for her kidnapping and, now, death? Who's "Charlie" the dude Huck tortures for answers on Amanda Tanner's body's whereabouts?

Questions… questions… questions… who's got answers?

I think Prez Fitz's wife has dropped the occasional hint that leads me to believe she's not as innocent as she might seem; and she continues to do just that in episode 5; recall the scene in which she tells Fitz something like "there's no one in this building [the White House] who won't go to extremes for you." And then the camera lingers on her face a few extra seconds, as she cracks a smile that looks like it's hiding all kinds of pain. I think she knows about Fitz's affairs (including his relationship with Olivia Pope, and probably Amanda Tanner). Is she in anyway the mastermind behind some of these occurences?

This episode also introduced us to Vice President Sally Langston. Why now, with 2 episodes left? Fitz needs her support on the passage of the Dream Act (she holds the deciding vote) as we learned in episode 5 last night. What other role might she play in any of the show's developments? 

And how about the ending, with Fitz showing up at Olivia's apartment. What could possibly happen next? I hope she doesn't go you know where, and preferably makes sure he does not get into that apartment. 

As noted in a post yesterday… in next week's episode, we'll learn about how Olivia's relationship with the Prez was started, how her team was assembled, and the contentious primary race between Fitz and Sally Langston, who's now vice president, in an episode that will contain mostly flashbacks. 

So I expect that next episode, next week, will likely fill in some holes for us before the season finale the following week, which I'm sure will be explosive, ending with a shocker of some kind. What that shocker will be, I don't know. But I'm sure it'll leave us anxious for the next season.

That season finale episode's synopsis reads: 

When Quinn finds herself in a fix that's both tragic and compromising, Olivia and the team rush to help. Meanwhile, Cyrus turns reluctantly to Olivia when Billy Chambers makes an announcement that shakes Fitz's presidency to its core.

What could this tragic and compromising fix be that Quinn finds herself in? In her last scene in episode 5, she's at Gideon's doorstep, weeping, and he embraces her. I'm guessing the predicament she finds herself in will be a continuation of that night, and may involve Gideon. 

And what could this core-shattering announcement from Billy Chambers be? Maybe he breaks his silence and reveals all he suspects of the Prez's affair with Olivia? Or could it be something else that's connected to the aforementioned mysterious hand?

Finally, let's hope that some time between now and the end of the season, ABC will renew the series for a second season.

I should note that The Hollywood Reporter says last night's episode saw a "small bump" in ratings, calling it "the most consistent midseason drama for ABC," averaging 2.1 rating with adults 18-49, and 7.4 million viewers.