Annalise Gets Ready For The Hearing
In the first hour of the Scandal–How to Get Away with Murder crossover event, Annalise got Olivia to agree to help her with her class action suit. Thanks to Olivia’s skills as a fixer, Annalise will now be able to present her case to the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C.
As the Murder part of the crossover begins, Annalise’s opposing counsel goes on TV and tries to discredit both Annalise and Olivia prior to the hearing. Alas, her interview has the opposite effect and everyone of note comes out offering to help Annalise with the suit. Olivia advises Annalise to accept help from someone because if she loses this case, it will set criminal justice reform back decades.
Alas, Annalise decides to ignore Olivia’s advice and try the case on her own. She also decides to invite her parents to D.C. to see her in action. Annalise’s mom is happy about seeing her daughter go before the Supreme Court. She is also happy to meet Olivia and to see Annalise and Olivia working together to fix a system that has been broken for her entire life.
Olivia, however, is worried. She’s worried that Annalise might lose the case and, if she does, it will reflect poorly on Liv’s reputation. Annalise tells Olivia that this case is about her doing something that matters and if she wins, it will mean more than anything else ever has. She knows Olivia feels the same way, which is why she asked that Olivia be present at the hearing.
Unfortunately, since Olivia is right that Annalise’s life is a hot mess, things start to fall apart quickly. First, Michaela and Marcus — an associate of Olivia’s — realize that the opposing counsel is working with one of the Supreme Court justices to sway the court’s ruling against Annalise. As if that isn’t enough of a challenge, Annalise then takes a call from Isaac’s ex-wife who tells Annalise that Isaac overdosed three days ago. Isaac is alive, but barely and Isaac’s ex blames Annalise for what happened. She tells Annalise that Anna ruined Isaac the way she ruins everyone. Her words play into Annalise’s worst fears and she ends up having a breakdown/panic attack before the hearing.
With Annalise in such a bad state, Michaela calls in Olivia to help. Olivia tries to talk Annalise into pulling herself together, but Annalise is convinced that she needs vodka so Olivia has Michaela and Marcus go find some. Meanwhile, Olivia talks to Annalise about why she took on this case. She didn’t do it for her clients or for Nate or for anyone else – she did it for herself. Olivia’s pep talks works and Annalise is able to get it together without the aide of vodka.
Annalise Gets It Done
The Keating 4 (plus Oliver and Nate) are all there for the hearing, along with Ms. Pope and Annalise’s parents. As the hearing begins, the Supreme Court Justice working with the opposing counsel challenges every one of Annalise’s claims before she can even finish making them. He eventually backs Annalise into a corner where she has to declare that race is the determining factor in this case. He then tries to convince his fellow justices to ignore the race factor because Annalise didn’t file the class action on the grounds of discrimination, but Annalise delays their decision when she asks for time to prepare her rebuttal.
During her rebuttal, Annalise uses the Justice’s own words against him, as he previously ruled that race is very much a factor in their failing justice system. Annalise is then able to make an impassioned argument about racism and inequality in the justice system. “Some may claim that slavery has ended, but tell that to the inmates who are kept in cages and told that they don’t have any rights at all.” (I wish I could quote Annalise’s entire speech here because it is incredible.) Annalise’s words clearly have an impact on those in attendance, but it remains to be seen if it’s enough to have the court rule in her favor.
Not only does Annalise make a powerful, moving argument in court, but she also impresses when addressing the media after the hearing. She even manages to give Connor a shout-out for his work in the case. While we do not get to learn the Supreme Court’s ruling in this episode, Olivia tells Annalise that her sources believe the court will rule in Annalise’s favor. Olivia and Annalise then bid one another farewell as Olivia heads back to Washington. (I knew it wasn’t going to happen, but I wanted Annalise to invite Olivia to stay in Philadelphia. After all, everyone back in Washington seems to be against Olivia so she could use some new allies.)
Scandal Recap: Will Annalise’s Class-Action Case Bring Olivia Pope Back?>>>
Frank Finally Fills Laurel In
Early in the episode, Frank tells Bonnie that he talked to Laurel’s mom and she claimed that she only met with Wes to offer him money to stay away from Laurel. Frank wants Bonnie to look into Wes’ accounts to find this supposed money. Bonnie agrees to do it, but she doesn’t trust a word Laurel’s mom says and she wants Frank to tell Laurel the truth. Alas, Bonnie finds no trace of this blackmail money so Frank searches Wes’ apartment. He doesn’t find the money but he does find a USB drive. Later on, he plays a recording from the drive for Laurel. It’s a conversation between Wes and Laurel’s mother, but we only get to hear a snippet of their chat in which Laurel’s mom mentions Wallace Mahoney and Wes’ troubles with the police.
In Other Developments…
Annalise was initially hesitant to invite her mother to the hearing because of her mother’s declining health. Her mother has one of her “episodes” just before the hearing, but Olivia offers to look after Ophelia so Annalise can focus on the case. This gives us a lovely moment between Olivia and Ophelia where Ophelia recognizes that Olivia is always fixing things for everyone else instead of taking care of herself. Ophelia understands that because she is the same way and she thinks the whole would’ve collapsed by now if women like them weren’t around to clean up the mess.
Since Nate Sr. is the face case for the class action suit, Nate gets the warden to agree to let his father go to Washington for the hearing. Nate Sr. is clearly impressed by Annalise’s performance at the hearing and he has a nice exchange with Ophelia about how brave her daughter is.
In the first hour of the crossover, Michaela went with Annalise to Washington which is where she met Olivia’s associate, Marcus. Marcus and Michaela hit it off instantly and that connection continues to grow in the second hour of the crossover. Michaela is obviously charmed by Marcus, but she lets him know that she has a boyfriend. Alas, despite how much Michaela says she loves Asher, she ends up sleeping with Marcus. Connor and Laurel call her out on it the next day, but Michaela swears it was a one-time mistake and asks them not to tell Asher. However, it seems like Asher himself might have picked up on some of that chemistry between his girlfriend and Marcus. How will Asher react if he learns that Michaela cheated on him? (I know this show loves to complicate things, but Michaela cheating on Asher feels like it came out of nowhere. From everything we’ve seen, Michaela and Asher were in a good place in their relationship and I find it hard to believe that Michaela would be so quick to act on her attraction to Marcus.)
Though Annalise had a great day in court, as the episode comes to a close, Bonnie calls with bad news: Simon Drake has awoken of his coma.
What did you think of this episode of How to Get Away with Murder? What did you think of the Annalise-Olivia team up? Do you think the Supreme Court will rule in Annalise’s favor? What will that recording reveal about Wes’ conversation with Laurel’s mother? Can Annalise keep the Keating 4 out of prison if Simon’s story doesn’t match theirs? Should Annalise cut ties with her former students since they only ever seem to drag her into their messes? Will Simon even remember what happened the night of the shooting? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.
How to Get Away with Murder season 4 airs Thursdays at 10/9c on ABC. Want more news? Follow our HTGAWM Facebook page.
(Image courtesy of ABC)