Snake in the Garden is the seventeenth episode of the second season of Scandal, and is the 24th overall.


Hollis Doyle's daughter is kidnapped; Jake and Olivia take their relationship to the next level; Cyrus is determined to get back into the president's good graces; Mellie tells Fitz that he needs to make some changes. Olivia is threatened by the Director of the CIA, Grayden Osborne after he realizes her team is talling him; Huck continues to train Quinn and their friendship bond grows stronger. David walks into his apartment while it is being ransacked; he assists the team with their latest client. Fitz is looking forward to his weekend with his kids, but will Mellie tries to get in the way of that.


Olivia Pope & Associates:
  • The team works with the devil – Hollis Doyle – when his only daughter his kidnapped
  • David stows away in the OPA office when he comes home to find his apartment in the middle of being ransacked.
White House:
  • Cyrus continues to try to get back into Fitz’s good graces; having Jake looked into.
  • Fitz tasks Cyrus to look into CIA Director Grayden Osborne as the mole.
  • Mellie continues to probe Fitz’s secretary – Lauren Wellman – to change his schedule for the weekend.


The team is shocked to learn that their latest client is the devil himself—Hollis Doyle. His daughter, Maybelle, has been kidnapped. Her abductor wants $20 million. Hollis doesn't believe the tearful video message from Maybelle for a second. He thinks she's staging the whole thing, as she's a drug addict. Hollis doesn’t want to pay one cent to get back his bloodsucking little girl. The team learns that Maybelle's apartment has been ransacked and her ex-boyfriend, Justin, has been MIA for six months. This feels like a genuine kidnapping to everyone but the victim's father. Not even the severed ear that's sent to Hollis can convince him.

Olivia begins negotiations with the kidnapper, who says Maybelle will lose something far less cosmetic than an ear if he doesn't get his money. Hollis tries to convince Maybelle's mom that this is all a hoax. Things change when a new image is sent showing his daughter missing her ear. Huck and Quinn find the apartment where the mutilation took place. There's a lot of blood, but no sign of Maybelle. Hollis now knows this is for real. He orders Olivia to pay the ransom. All he wants is to get his baby back. Olivia advises they pay half the money now and the other half after proof of life is established. The kidnapper agrees to the terms.

The kidnapper instructs the team to go to an old rural gas station. Once Olivia gets a visual on an injured Maybelle, the rest of the money is transferred. Hollis is grateful to have is baby back until Huck notices something odd about the severed ear. The wound was self-inflicted. Maybelle truly did stage the kidnapping. The girl is offered a second chance to start fresh with her family. Olivia says do-overs like that just don't happen. Hollis gives his daughter a choice. She can have the $20 million or she can come back to her family. Amazingly, Maybelle opts to take the cash. Hollis and his ex are devastated.

Quinn pushes Huck to find a new family to watch as they continue to tail the Director of the CIA. When Osborne realizes he's being watched, he confronts Olivia. Jake watches part of their conversation via hidden video until his transmission is lost. He is asked by Fitz to look into the mole problem. He breaks into Olivia's apartment to make a copy of the flash drive she's hiding. He also reconnects his hidden camera. Jake lets Fitz know that CIA Director Osborne is the mole. Of this much he is certain.

Cyrus has Charlie dig up info on Jake. He ends up learning about a secret mission Fitz was part of in Iran years ago. He uses this info to get back into the good graces of the president. They've both done things that only history can label as heroic or villainous. Cy's plan works. Fitz gives him the scoop on Osborne, who adamantly denies being the mole. He would never betray his country. Cyrus lets Osborne know that the president no longer requires his services.

Olivia wants to break a date with Jake because she still has Fitz on her mind. A passionate kiss from the new man in her life is the first step in making her forget about her forbidden love. Speaking of Fitz, Mellie asks his secretary - Lauren - to clutter up his schedule so he won't have time for a weekend visit with his kids. Fitz is furious until Mellie breaks the news as to why she did what she did. She says he's changed so much that his kids would rather stay at boarding school. They can smell the booze emanating off him. They just don't want to see their dad. Fitz looks like he's been punched in the gut when Mellie tells him that he's become just like his own father.

In random news, David takes up residence at the offices of Pope & Associates after his place is ransacked. Harrison isn't fond of him brushing his teeth in the kitchen sink. Abby, on the other hand, doesn't mind having him around. Huck finds a new family to watch, but it's not for him. It's a father and daughter that Quinn can latch onto since the relationship with her own dad is so strained. Back at the office, the team sees on the news that CIA Director Osborne has been found dead in an apparent suicide. Later, Jake meets with an unidentified man who says everything was staged perfectly. Everyone thinks Osborne was the mole. He wasn't. So, who is?

~ Special Thanks to for providing the recap for Snake in the Garden [1] ~


Main Cast

Recurring Cast

Guest Cast


For a full list of cast/character credits in order as they appeared click here: Snake in the Garden Credits



Promotional Photos

→ See and enjoy 17 pictures from Snake in the Garden at Images from Snake in the Garden.


Promotional Video

Scandal 2x17 Promo 'Snake in the Garden' (HD)

Scandal 2x17 Promo 'Snake in the Garden' (HD)


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