Episode 6 – “The Trail” (recap courtesy of ABC.com)
Original airdate: May 10, 2012
SUMMARY –When we last left Olivia Pope, the President of the United States was standing outside her front door. He wants her to listen to the sex tape that was sent to Cyrus. Before we get to that, let’s jump back two years to the day Olivia joined Fitz’s presidential campaign. She makes quite the first impression, as Fitz wants to fire her for her candor. Cyrus convinces him to keep this lady around. It’s during Fitz’s genuine apology to Olivia that he stares into her eyes. It’s at this moment that we know these two are irresistibly drawn to each other.
Olivia lets Fitz and Mellie know that the only way they have a shot at the White House is if they start acting like a real lovey-dovey couple. So, after a wicked yelling match, they begin doing just that. The surge in popularity that follows is distressing to his opponent, Sally Langston, and her right-hand man, Billy Chambers. The momentum in the Fitzgerald campaign stalls once rumors surface that Mellie is having an affair.
Billy tries to get Olivia to switch teams. That’s not gonna happen. Olivia quashes the extramarital rumors with the help of a few of the friends who would eventually become her associates. Then it comes time for the debates. Fitz admits that he’s a man in love with an incredible woman. The voters have no idea that he isn’t talking about his wife. Fitz and Olivia fight their attraction by taking “one minute” to just stand with each other. It’s a very long minute.
Olivia and Cyrus know they can’t win the White House without the female vote. Fitz doesn’t want to use any underhanded tactics to solve this problem. Still, it’s a problem that truly needs solving. A short time later, Mellie breaks down at a campaign event. She tells the press that she recently had a miscarriage. She says her husband wanted to quit the campaign after they found out, but she wouldn’t let him. Fitz is shocked that Mellie would go public with this information. That’s because everything his wife said is a lie.
Fitz lets Olivia know about Mellie’s deception. They hold each other’s hand in the darkness of a campaign bus. When they arrive at their next hotel destination, Olivia joins Fitz in his room. The two of them finally give in to their passion. They have no idea that someone is creating an audio recording of them from a van parked outside. The recording is later delivered Billy Chambers. The person who hands innocently him the incriminating flash drive is a young volunteer in the Langston campaign. Her name: Amanda Tanner.
Billy wants Sally Langston to use the audio recording to win the election. His boss won’t even listen to the flash drive or even ask what’s on it. That’s because she’s already accepted a job as Fitz’s running mate. Back in the present day, Olivia listens to the recording that was sent to Cyrus. She knows she’s the woman on it. Someone has been sitting on this for two years. They needed a name to go with the woman. They needed Amanda Tanner. Olivia and Fitz take “one minute” before he has to head back to the White House. Once again, it’s a long minute. It’s a minute they spend holding each other close.
U.S. Attorney David is looking hard into the death of Amanda Tanner. His assistant, Alissa, agrees with the coroner that she committed suicide. David, however, believes this was murder. The question is… Who in the White House would want her dead? Gideon the reporter is wondering the same thing during those times when he’s not making love with Quinn. He learns that Amanda had a boyfriend.
Billy Chambers shows up at Gideon’s apartment to address the reporter’s allegations that he was Amanda Tanner’s boyfriend. The VP’s right-hand man admits that he’s the one who leaked info to incriminate the president. Gideon realizes this is the man who sent Amanda in to sleep with Fitz. He then lets Billy know that Amanda was 13 weeks pregnant with a baby that wasn’t the president’s. Billy loses it. He grabs a pair of scissors and stabs Gideon in the neck. Blood pours onto the floor as Gideon gasps for his life.