Queen of the Couch: TV Show “Scandal” Foreshadows Real Life Drama

Lindsay Slocum

Life is mirroring art on ABC’s hit show Scandal. With the public disclosure of General Petraeus’s affair and his subsequent resignation from his position as CIA Director, I couldn’t help but notice the situation’s similarities to the show, which is currently in its second season.

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In summary, Scandal is about a political “fixer,” Olivia Pope, who deals with the problems of the DC political elite, which includes cheating husbands, kidnapping, and murder. Pope got her political start when she worked successfully on the presidential election campaign of Fitzgerald Grant. But while working on the campaign, she and Grant entered into an affair, which continues through his presidency.

The details of Petraeus’s affair will most likely never be revealed to the public, but it wouldn’t be hard to imagine it being similar to the affair on Scandal. A leader in the government of the United States has an affair with a woman he hired and resigns when the truth come to light, although on Scandal, the president doesn’t go through with his resignation.

Affairs produce good drama, and that is exactly what Scandal delivers. While the situations Olivia Pope and her team of lawyers fix through their private firm are interesting, they fall short of providing the same drama that an affair with the President produces. The late night phone calls, secret rendezvous, and the constant threat of discovery keep tension high, but makes their every interaction that much more special.

Although this show sounds like a soap opera, its plot is much more complex than your typical daytime soap. The fast moving storyline delves into a new political scandal every week revealing twists at the end of every episode that even the most seasoned television viewer will fail to see.

Currently in the middle of its second season the plot lines are well-developed and the characters established. The storylines move fast and each episode of Scandal covers material that a typical show would take three episodes to tell.

The first season is available on Netflix and the show itself airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on ABC.