You Can't Take Command

You Can't Take Command

Air Date: May 14, 2015 — Writer: Shonda Rhimes & Mark WildingDirector: Paul McGuigan
Previous Episode: "A Few Good Women" — Next Episode: "Heavy is the Head"

You Can't Take Command is twenty-first and the final episode of the fourth season of Scandal, and is the sixty-ninth episode overall.


Everything comes to a head in the shocking season finale when Olivia and the team finally make some big moves to take down Command, and Mellie’s fate is sealed as the election results are announced.


Damascus Bainbridge has taken time out of his busy schedule to meet with the First Lady of the United States regarding her senatorial campaign. Who is Damascus Bainbridge, you ask? Well, he’s a man of many names. Eli…Rowan…Command… He’s also Papa Pope, as in Olivia Pope’s loving/lethal father. He’s looking to blackmail Mellie with salacious photos of her as well as Fitz’s Operation Remington file. Rowan wants her to get him a certain list of names. The time has come for Jake to testify about B613. This includes details on Operation Remington. After Jake’s initial testimony, Olivia calls Fitz as he’s on his way to sign the Brandon Bill into law. It’s one of those conversations where they talk a little, and then they don’t. These two can say a lot with their silences. Fitz senses something is wrong. Olivia alleviates his fears by claiming she just called to say hello—to say that she’s proud of him. As the phone call ends, Huck comes running up. Something has happened.

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An entire busload of people has been executed. Olivia is barely able to walk after witnessing the bloody carnage. David vomits upon exiting the bus. The dead passengers were the grand jurors in the B613 trial. Elizabeth realizes they were the names on the list provided to jovial billionaire Damascus Bainbridge. A panicked Mellie lets Cyrus know that she’s responsible for the bloodbath. They both agree to keep this from Fitz. Cyrus promises to handle everything once he discovers that a possible exposure of Operation Remington is in the mix. David opts to ditch his white hat. He lives for justice but isn’t willing to die for it. As for Olivia, she’s so angry she’s vibrating. Jake can only watch as she paces and rants about how she wants what’s hers. The only way Olivia can think to takedown Papa Pope is to get some advice from the incarcerated Mama Pope. Maya lets her daughter know that the reason it’s so hard to take down Command is because nobody even knows Rowan exists.

Olivia tells the Director of the CIA about the top secret spy organization that’s run by her father. A Code Bravo Five is ordered. Olivia isn’t sure what that is, but it sounds like good news. Elsewhere, Cyrus pays a visit to Rowan/Eli/Command/Damascus, who says the president’s Chief of Staff now owes him a favor for killing all those grand jurors. After all, he thwarted the attempted exposure of all the scandals that would bring him down. Cyrus meets with CIA Director Lowry warning her not to poke the lion that is B613. A short time later, Olivia and Jake are escorted to adjoining jail cells. After that, Cyrus makes a veiled threat on Abby’s life in order to get David to play ball. The Attorney General produces affidavits for both Olivia and Jake to sign recanting everything they’ve said about B613.

While having a late night glass of wine, Olivia gets a call from her father, who is also enjoying a little vino. Rowan lets his daughter know that all the remaining B613 agents who could implicate him have been eliminated along with all those incriminating files. Maya has been set free in exchange for her denial of the secret organization. Rowan and Command are also dead. This leaves Eli Pope free and clear to live out the rest of his life with no complications. No word on the current status of Damascus Bainbridge.

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Fitz gives a passionate speech in support of his wife in front of a small group on Election Day Eve. Then it comes time for Mellie to give her victory speech as the next Senator of Virginia. While she’s on the stage, Elizabeth spills the details of Mellie’s meeting with Damascus Bainbridge. Fitz realizes that this man is Rowan. Elsewhere, Eli is arrested thanks to Olivia’s team framing him for embezzlement. They couldn’t take command, but they can take Eli Pope. Quinn bursts into Huck’s office. She demands to know why he’s working with Command. She recognized his work on the bus. She knows Huck killed all those people. Quinn draws her gun on him. She chastises him for what he did. Quinn believes the best thing she can do for him is shoot him dead. Huck begs her to do it.

Fitz tells Mellie and Cyrus that he knows about the jurors. He orders his wife to pack her bags and get out of his house. Cyrus tries to play dumb, but the president knows everything. There’s nothing more to say. Fitz fires Cyrus, who can only watch as Elizabeth moves into his office. Jake lets Olivia know that his mission is complete. He has delivered her home safe and sound. Both of his former bosses, her father and the president, asked him to keep her safe. He’s done that. Now it’s time to go. He’s in love with her, but she is in love with someone else. Jake gives Olivia some advice. If she truly wants what’s hers, then she should go get it.

Fitz pays a visit to Olivia’s apartment. There’s no answer when he knocks. Secret Service agents offer to open the door is politely declined. Fitz heads back to the White House. He steps out onto his balcony not realizing that he’s not alone. Olivia is there. Fitz is surprised to see her. They give each other one of their patented “hi” greetings. Fitz asks, “What happens now?” Olivia answers, “Whatever we want.” At the moment, what they want involves lots of kissing.


Main Cast

Recurring Cast


  • Shooting for season four finished on the 29th of April and after filming the last scenes of the episode, the cast watched the Season Four gag reel.

Promotional Photos

→ See and enjoy 64 pictures from You Can't Take Command at Images from You Can't Take Command.

Behind the Scenes


Promotional Video

Episode Clips

→ Watch more videos of Olivia Pope at Category:Videos from You Can't Take Command.


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