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Scandal Wiki

I am talking about Olivia Pope. You took her hunting?

Mellie to Fitz

Hunting Season is the third episode of the second season of Scandal, and is the tenth overall.


Tensions are running high at Olivia Pope & Associates due to questions about Quinn's background and when an NSA Analyst - Artie Hornbacher - drops a bombshell, claiming that the government is using a new technology called "Thorngate" to spy on its citizens. Olivia is caught off-guard with how far up this scandal goes, and distracted by her problems with Fitz.

At The White House Cyrus has to try and keep Fitz calm and collected when Olivia's former flame, Senator Edison Davis, shows up. Mellie is happy that things are going good with her and Fitz now, until she learns that he had Olivia brought to him. So she threatens Fitz.

Meanwhile now former Assistant U.S. Attorney David, with the help of his "former" assistant - Alissa - dig deeper into his conspiracy theory about how he lost his case against Quinn and what Olivia's involvement might be.


Olivia Pope & Associates:
  • Artie Hornbacher steals proof of the NSA spying on American citizens, a program called Thorngate.
  • Senator Edison Davis is unreasonably removed from the Senate's Intelligence Committee after speaking with Olivia but not revealing anything about Thorngate.
White House:
  • Olivia Pope & Associates are digging too deep into Thorngate.


Olivia Pope is watching Kimberly Mitchell's show "Battleground" who has Republican Senator Karen Gilbert and Democratic Senator Edison Davis debating about the ongoing problems in East Sudan. As they go to break Olivia calls Senator Davis and critiques him on his wardrobe and his reactions to Senator Gilbert. After a little bit of phone flirting they hang up (see Quotes for more).

The moment Olivia steps into her car in a dark parking garage, she knows she’s not alone; someone is in the back seat. Olivia screams for the intruder to get out of her car, he does as she wishes but not before begging for help regarding a government conspiracy. Olivia guns her car up the garage ramp; she screeches to a halt when the panicked man screams, “they know about the late night calls to the West Wing. Olivia is in shock!

Fitz comes to check in on Mellie as she is folding some new baby clothes sent to her by the Queen of England, a hand embroided antique set; he’s looking for any excuse to not go on the hunt this weekend as he hates shooting (well he’s just not good at it.) Mellie notices the change in their relationship and tells him how nice it is that the two of them are getting along now.

Quinn returns to work handing Harison and Abby with their coffee. Harrison gives her a warm welcome back while Abby gives her the cold shoulder and calls her Lindsay. They are all confused when they see a man standing on their conference room table, where they eat. Olivia explains and introduces the weird man…

Artie Hornbacher is a low-level data entry specialist for the NSA. He stole a program called Thorngate to prove that the government is spying on American citizens. Olivia tosses Huck Thorngate, which is on a thumb drive. There’s a good chance Artie is cuckoo as Cocoa Puffs, but Olivia has the team dig into his story just to be sure. Abby expresses her feelings about not taking Artie on as a client, being a b***h, mostly towards Quinn. Olivia decides it’s time to take this one step further and pays a visit to the NSA, where she meets with Corrine, the NSA Director. She asks questions about Thorngate and Artie and Corrine plays dumb; but Olivia comes to the realization that Corrine is lying through her teeth. Once she left the building she calls the team and orders them to get Artie out of the office and have Huck get him to a safe place. So, as it turns out, Artie is legit.

Alissa shows up at David Rosen’s door telling him that he’s got to come back to work because she is tired of fetching Jane Powell her lunch. David accuses her of missing him; she clarifies and say, “I miss your lunch order,” then she goes on to rant about how Jane is a horrible human being. Alissa tells David that Jane is telling everyone who will listen that he’s gone completely bonkers… then Alissa sees the wall. David tries to explain it, Alissa tells him that she’ll hear him out, if he shaves and puts on pants.

At the safe house, Artie is freaking out thinking it’s the least safe house ever because it has windows. Huck decrepts the thumb drive getting into see Thorngate. Quinn asks how it works and Huck asks for a name, a name of someone that would be hard to crack, Olivia tells Huck to try Cyrus Rutherford Beene. Huck cracks into Cyrus’s computer where the team sees him at the White House, just twenty feet away from the Oval Office. Olivia asks if there’s audio; Huck activates the audio then tries to see if he can see who Cyrus is talking too. He’s talking to Hollis Doyle. Olivia tells Huck to shut down Thorngate; while trying to shut it down it self-destructs. In order to see it again Huck has to hack into the NSA when Olivia asks how long Huck says 22 days.

Olivia asks Artie if anyone else knows about this; he tells her he told no one; so in order to get Artie to tell the truth she threatens him by telling him she can’t help him since he has no leverage, nothing to bargain with. She demands asking who else knows? Artie coughs up a name, Monica Ocampo, she was on the development team of Thorngate. He doesn’t want Monica to come into any danger. Olivia orders the team to find her. So, Harrison and Abby head off to track down Monica. Quinn offers to help them, but Abby being the antagonist she is tells her “we’re good, thanks Lindsay!” Olivia heads off to meet with a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Senator Edison Davis

Olivia meets up with Edison,

. When she asks about Thorngate he acts confused and deflects by trying to ask Olivia out. She tells him not to play dumb and wants to know if she goes public with this knowledge will he back her up, verifying it’s existence. She accuses the government of spying on Americans; he tries to justify it by saying the government is “allegedly” doing this. She reminds him that his committee is responsible for oversight and that he took an oath. They go on to banter more. These two have obviously known each other for many years. Edison warns Olivia to stay away from the NSA.

On their way to Monica’s Harrison tells Abby that he’ll take the lead on this. When Abby asks – with a sassy tone – who made him boss; he tells her, “that tone” explaining that it’s bad cop tone. He then goes on to ask why she’s been badgering Quinn. She – being the sassy witch she is – goes on by saying that “’Lindsay Perkins’ is a lying sociopath.” Harrison realizes she is still being the bad cop; getting defensive Abby says she can be the good cop, she can even be the sweet cop.

Cyrus walks into the oval office and tells President Grant that someone has stolen Thorngate from the NSA thinking they may have a whistleblower; Fitz immediately asks if they’re on top of it. Cyrus tells him there’s a problem, that he – Artie – has got himself some interesting representation: Olivia. Not believing that this is Olivia’s typical case, Cyrus shows Fitz pictures of Olivia meeting with Edison. (Guess the government really is spying on Americans.) Cyrus tries to remind Fitz about Olivia and Edison’s past, but Fitz cuts him off not wanting a “history lesson.” Fitz wants this handled; his mood takes a dark turn from how he was with Mellie – happy – to jealousy now that he’s seen the pictures, Cyrus notices the change. He tells Fitz that he’s “ticking,” that he has noticed that Fitz has been happy lately, or at least, he’s been acting happy. Cyrus knows his boss is a ticking time bomb.

Abby and Harrison show up at Monica’s apartment building; she manages to get them past the manager by telling him they’re setting up a surprise party for Monica. When they get to Monica’s apartment, Harrison is telling Abby that her version of good cop came off as weird off her medications unstable cop. Red alert! Monica is found dead in her apartment from what looks to be a suicide (or as Abby puts it, sleeping pills, classic staged suicide). And to make matters worse, Harrison notices a black sedan parked outside, suggests that maybe Artie isn’t paranoid enough.

The next morning Olivia on the phone with Abby asks her to try and expedite the autopsy to prove that Monica’s death wasn’t suicide. Ding Dong… she gets a surprise visit from Tom & Hal. Fitz is not the greatest shot when it comes to duck hunting. Still, its an activity he must engage in from time to time for political reasons. This particular hunting trip gets personal once Tom & Hal deliver Olivia to the woods, per Cyrus’ orders. But Olivia refuses to get out of the car, until finally Fitz shouts at her to get out.

Back to David and Alissa. He asks Alissa why she’s not at work? She tells him that she called in sick, AGAIN! Lucky for her, Jane is a hypochondriac and a bit of a racist; all Alissa has to do is say cold and Jane hears S.A.R.S. Alissa still thinks that Quinn is guilty; David only thinks so in a “micro-sense.” David tells Alissa to forget about all of the evidence, specifically the voicemail where Quinn viciously threatened to gut her boyfriend like a fish. He asks Alissa what’s the one thing they know about Olivia Pope? Alissa goes on by saying, “she’s well-dressed, a workaholic,” until David interrupts explaining how Olivia doesn’t use her magic for evil but she uses it for good, she doesn’t move heaven and earth and further corrupt the justice system unless she can put the white hat on at the end of the day and ride out of town. Alissa reminds David that all the evidence still points to Quinn Perkins, but David tells her the he’s not talking about evidence, he’s talking about motive, but Alissa tells him that Quinn had that too, she wanted revenge. But David thinks the motive is bigger than a jilted lover, that maybe someone else wanted Jesse Tyler dead along with his six co-workers. Alissa starts to think David might be onto something.

Olivia & Fitz in Hunting Season.

Back in the forest Fitz must first fit her with some proper footwear before they can chat. Olivia would have preferred Tom & Hal to tell her where she was going so she could have dressed appropriately. It’s the most stimulating, fervor-filled, uncomfortably silent shoe-fitting ever. The Cinderella moment ends when Fitz’s fury over the Thorngate situation and Olivia’s meeting with her ex-boyfriend, Senator Davis, boils over. Rage turns to passion as the two of them kiss under a tree. Olivia ultimately pushes Fitz away telling him that it’s over.

Abby is trying to get an expedited toxicology report from coroner’s investigator Noah Elliot of Monica Ocampo’s. Noah shuts her down!

At the safe house, Artie is grieving sadly about the loss of his only friend – Monica – at the NSA he thinks they did this to her. Quinn informs him that there was a black sedan watching Abby and Harrison on the street. Artie wants to get out, get far away. Olivia tells him to snap out of it; that the NSA is operating with the full backing of the White House and the justice department. Olivia believes the only way to keep Artie alive is to go public, on national TV, to expose what the government is doing to its citizens. So Olivia meets with reporter Kimberly Mitchell and her producer Jack Lynn off the record.

Huck is hacking away while Harrison is at the DMV retrieving an extremely long list of every black Lincoln with the letters “R” and “B” on the plate. Olivia and Quinn prep Artie for his interview with Kimberly Mitchell. Fitz meets with Cyrus, Corrine and the Chief White House Counsel where they discuss how to handle the Thorngate situation; he wants to launch a legal tsunami to quash the interview. Huck finally gets into Thorngate but the network got slapped with injunction by the justice department; if Olivia goes forward with her plan then her, the network and her associates could be arrested for treason.

Back at the White House, Fitz is eating dinner… alone, until Mellie shows up after trying not to offend the Queen of England and start an international incident with her thank you note. She notices the difference in Fitz after his return from hunting.

Alissa tells David that she doesn’t buy his theory. He asks which part; she tells him the part where a jilted girlfriend wouldn’t go

David argues his case to Alissa.

on a killing spree. David tells her to look at what Cytron does; contracts with casinos, off shore betting sites, construction companies probably mob owned. Alissa has two words for him “fugue state.” He tells her that this is bigger than Quinn, bigger than Olivia; that he thinks it’s a cover-up and that – even though it’s hard to admit it – they were wrong, about almost everything. Alissa agrees and tells David that somebody at Pope & Associates knows something.

Back at Pope & Associates; Olivia and the team are trying to figure out how to get past the injunction. She comes to the conclusion that the best solution is to fight with the network, "to stiffen their backbone, appeal to their patriotic duty."


Mellie confronts Tom & Hal.

noticing the change in Fitz’s behavior, Mellie storms down the hallaways of the White House to question – more like interrogate – Tom & Hal in her own special way to learn what caused Fitz’s mood to change. They try to protect the president; but Mellie being Mellie still gets what she wants. Hal blinks when Mellie says Olivia’s name.

The network refuses to air the interview until Olivia gives the network exec, Brad Loeb, a personal sneak peek at what Thorngate is really capable of. But Brad caves once he see’s his wife, Julie, on screen talking on the phone complaining about him.

At the safe house Artie accidentally sets off the fire alarm and when Huck opens the window a black sedan pulls up outside the safe house; but Huck doesn't see it pull up. Abby tells Olivia that the coroner finally got to the autopsy report and that Monica wasn’t killed from sleeping pills, but from 1600 mgs of injectable insulin. Olivia asks Harrison where he is with the plate match; but the car doesn’t track to anyone at the NSA or the government, but to a fake address under the name “Will B. Watching.” Olivia realizes something is wrong and calls Huck asking where Artie is. He got away through the bathroom window. Artie skips out of the safe house after swiping the Thorngate drive. He hops into the black sedan that’s waiting for him outside. Olivia realizes that Artie scammed Olivia in order to get her team to decrypt Thorngate. He killed Monica to help with the ruse.

Olivia & Associates confronting the NSA.

Olivia is pacing in her office while her associates – except for Huck – try to figure out how Artie tricked them. Huck comes into her office and tells him he tried everything to find Artie, but all he got were dead ends. Olivia tells him that it’s not his fault that it’s on her, that she made the wrong call. Harrison shouts, “INCOMING,” Corrine – NSA Director – shows up with two agents looking for Artie. Olivia now plays dumb, saying she’s confused and doesn’t know what she’s talking about. Olivia demands for 12 hours to find and deliver Artie to the NSA, Corrine grants her request. In the oval office Fitz tells Cyrus that he wants Senator Davis off the intelligence committee. He says he’ll take care of it. Mellie comes to talk – well more like scream at Fitz – to get over Olivia now. Mellie tells him if he sees “her again, she'l

Mellie confronts Fitz about Olivia.

l blow him away” politically. She reminds him that she’ an excellent shot, better than Fitz.

Huck tracks down Artie. He turns him over to the NSA after only hurting him a little. The Associates are out for a drink; when Harrison asks, “where’s Huck?” Abby knows Huck saved them on this one and thinks they should be buying him a drink. After one last jab from Abby, Quinn finally stands up for herself! Abby realizes that can’t keep hurling digs at Quinn. Quinn and Harrison leave Abby alone at the bar, until suspicious David Rosen shows up asking Abby to buy him a drink because he’s unemployed.

Edison Davis shows up at Olivia’s office telling her that he’s a client now. She asks why, he tells her because the president had him “kicked off” of the Senate Intelligence Committee and is having his behavior looked into by the Ethics Committee. Edison thinks this is happening because of his recklessness to talk to her, about Thorngate. He tells her that he’s now a client of hers, pro bono. She assures him that she no longer has any ties to the White House. When Olivia gets to her car, she finds Huck waiting for her. He doesn’t want her to walk to her car alone anymore. She worries about him and how he handled Artie; he tells her not to worry and that he’s handling it.

In the end, Abby and David are in bed together!


Main Cast

Recurring Cast

Guest Cast


For a full list of cast/character credits in order as they appeared click here: Hunting Season Credits


Olivia Pope & Edison Davis

Olivia talking to Edison Davis over the phone about his wardrobe.
  • Olivia: You're wearing pinstripes!
  • Edison: Yeah, see that doesn't explain the three years of not returning my calls.
  • Olivia: Pinstripes on primetime?
  • Edison: Oh. You joined the fashion police, that's where you've been
  • Olivia: I don't care what you wear, just know no one will hear a word you are saying when your suit is moving vibrating moving across their screen; also you're sighing every time Senator Gilbert speaks. DON'T! It makes you seem condescending and elitist which frankly doesn't exactly matter because I'm way too distracted by the...
  • Edison: Pinstripes. Yeah! So... am I in? Am I finally a client of Olivia Pope & Associates?
  • Olivia: (chuckles)
  • Edison: You agree I'm obviously in need of your expertise.
  • Olivia: Good luck Senator.
  • Edison: You take care Liv!
Senator Edison Davis stopping Olivia as she’s about to walk away after their conversation about Thorngate.
  • Senator Davis: Liv, I don’t know what you’re getting yourself into, but you don’t want to play games with the NSA. Their ball, their bat, their rules!

Olivia Pope & Fitz Grant

Fitz & Olivia in the forest during a heated moment.
  • Fitz: Senator Davis was your boyfriend...and you were seen with him yesterday looking fairly cozy from what I hear. You two screwing again? Is he everything you’ve ever dreamed of?
  • Olivia: Stop walking. STOP walking!
(he goes in to kiss her; they have a passionate moment)
  • Olivia: I am not yours! I don’t show up places because you want me. I am not yours! This is over!

Fitz & Mellie Grant

Fitz & Mellie in the baby's nursery.
  • Mellie: WOW. I am folding these baby clothes.
  • Fitz: You are definitely folding those baby clothes.
  • Mellie: (giggles)
  • Fitz: What?
  • Mellie: Nothing. It's just... (pause) this is nice.
  • Fitz: Yeah.

Abby & Quinn

Abby to Quinn aka: Lindsay Dwyer and Harrison coming into work.
  • Abby: That's two pumps of vanilla LINDSAY.
  • Harrison: She'll grow up and get over it eventually; just ride it out.
Abby and Quinn arguing to Olivia about taking Artie on has a client.
  • Abby: Seriously Liv he’s certifiable, we can’t take this guy on as a client.
  • Quinn: Just cause he’s weird doesn’t mean he’s crazy.
  • Abby: He thinks the NSA is trying to kill him.
  • Quinn: My story didn’t make any sense at first.
  • Abby: STILL DOESN'T!
  • Quinn: Everyone thought that I was crazy, too.
  • Abby: STILL DO!
Quinn standing up for herself to the sassy Abby.
  • Quinn: ...cause I don’t wanna hear it anymore; I’m NOT a murder and I’m NOT a liar, so the sooner you get over it the better. And I go by one name now and it’s not LINDSAY!

David & Alissa

When Alissa see’s David’s wall of craziness about how Olivia Pope made him lose the trial against Quinn Perkins.
  • Alissa: Oh, David.
  • David: Look I know it seems like I’ve gone... (cut off by Alissa)
  • Alissa: ...all beautiful mind? David.
  • David: I can’t go back till I figure it out; how I lost this trial and how Olivia Pope made it happen.
  • Alissa: (sighs heavily) You can walk me through it... ONCE! If you shave and put on pants!
  • David: Okay so hear me out… (cut off by Alissa)
  • Alissa: PANTS!
Alissa about why she doesn’t buy David’s theory.
  • Alissa: The part where you think a jilted girlfriend wouldn’t go on a killing spree; because let me tell you, 'bitches be crazy.'


  • It is shown in the beginning that Kimberly Mitchell hosts a political news show called "Battleground" on BNC, a fake news network station.
  • It's revealed in this episode that Cyrus Beene's full name is Cyrus Rutherford Beene.


Promotional Photos

→ See and enjoy 15 pictures from Hunting Season at Images from Hunting Season.


Promotional Video