Shonda Rhimes’ political thriller always leaves you guessing, but entertainment editorial director Jace Lacob and staff writer Emily Orley take a stab as to what might happen by the end of the third season. Let the wild speculation begin!
1. Maya’s bomb explodes on the campaign trail, leaving the fates of several characters — including Fitz — unclear as the show goes on its summer hiatus. CLIFF-HANGER!
2. Fitz is killed when the bomb goes off, widowing Mellie in the process. Olivia is understandably distraught, as her actions lead to Maya being able to plant the bomb.
3. Fitz is killed when the bomb goes off and Cyrus runs in his spot on the Republican ticket. He becomes the first openly gay man to win the presidency.
4. Adnan turns on Maya and traps her in a room with the bomb. Adnan becomes a member of Olivia Pope & Associates and Harrison’s girlfriend.
5. Andrew nobly saves Fitz from death, but is himself killed in the process. This gives Mellie even more reason to hate her husband and to feel like he has “taken everything” from her.
6. Fitz is killed when the bomb goes off. Because Sally is the sitting vice president, she ascends to the Oval Office as Fitz’s successor. Olivia is distraught and vows to get Sally kicked out of office.
7. Realizing that she failed to stop Maya when she had the chance, Quinn sacrifices herself to stop Maya’s plot and is killed in the process. Charlie kills Maya in an act of vengeance and ends up joining Olivia Pope & Associates.
8. Maya plants a bomb in the White House. Fitz, Andrew, and Mellie are taken to the secret bunker in the basement, but since Olivia already used her clearance to get down there once, she is left upstairs and thrown against the wall in the bomb blast. Everything goes black.
9. Charlie dies saving Quinn from the blast. Quinn rejoins OPA, though her passion for Olivia’s mission has been tempered from her time with B613 and with Charlie. She wants nothing to do with Huck.
10. Quinn attempts to sacrifice herself in order to stop Maya’s plot, but Huck saves her at the last moment.
11. Feeling betrayed, Charlie attempts to kill Quinn when he realizes that she has been plotting against him and B613. She is saved by Huck.
12. Charlie attempts to kill Huck, believing him responsible for Quinn’s loyalty issues. Quinn kills Charlie in order to save Huck.
13. Quinn finds Maya and the bomb. She is able to kill Maya but, with the clock ticking, cannot figure out how to dismantle the bomb. With only 60 seconds left on the timer, she is forced to call Huck for help, and he walks her through how to stop the timer.
14. Huck finds Maya, but instead of killing her, he kidnaps her and takes her to an empty storage house. He calls Quinn and gives her the first opportunity to drill into Maya’s side as an apology.
15. Fitz is killed in the bomb plot; Andrew and Mellie launch a campaign to retake the White House in the next election. In a surprising twist, Andrew picks Mellie to be his running mate.
16. Fitz is killed in the bomb blast and Andrew fills his spot on the Republican ticket. He runs and wins the presidency. Suddenly, a year has passed. Andrew, Mellie, and Teddy, now one happy family, are all playing in the Oval Office.
17. Andrew and Mellie run away together and are therefore nowhere near the bomb blast when it goes off. Guilt overtakes them.
18. As Command, Jake sacrifices himself to protect Fitz from the blast. He dies, horrifically.
19. Jake still sacrifices himself to save Fitz, but is only horrifically injured.
20. The bomb never goes off! It’s a smoke screen to divert attention away from Maya’s real mission.
21. Lauren discovers the bomb while waiting for Fitz backstage on the campaign trail. She is able to dismantle it and save everyone. She finally insists that she is given a raise!
22. Maya and Eli are both killed, freeing Olivia from their tortured history. In the aftermath, she packs a bag and disappears from Washington without telling anyone where she is going.
23. Eli kills Maya in front of Olivia. Unable to deal with her hatred, he turns the gun on himself.
24. Maya murders Eli in front of Olivia. Olivia draws a gun and shoots her mother, killing her. As Maya bleeds out, she asks her daughter for forgiveness. Olivia shoots her again.
25. Maya stabs Adnan when she attempts to flee the country without her co-conspirator. Mama Pope doesn’t stand for that.
26. B613 is vanquished forever, and the truth about this insidious espionage agency is brought out into the light.
27. Despite the fact that the public believes B613 has been shut down, Eli reclaims his role as Command, acknowledging that someone has to protect the Republic at all cost.
28. Jake is revealed to have been secretly working with Maya and Adnan all along, which is why the two haven’t been brought in by B613. Jake wants Fitz dead and helped engineer everything that happened this season.
29. Eli makes good on his promise to destroy his successor and has Jake kidnapped; Jake is thrown in the hole as Eli reclaims the role of Command.
30. David Rosen discovers the existence of the bomb and, unable to get in touch with anyone at OPA, tries to stop it from going off, but he is killed in the process.
31. Jake realizes that David Rosen is a loose end, one that connects him to the murder of James Novak, and kills him in order to prevent anyone from discovering his involvement. Abby discovers his body and screams. Cut to black.
32. In a surprising twist, it is Sally who is killed when Maya’s bomb goes off, leaving the seat of the vice president open. Fitz must appoint a new vice president and, going against Olivia’s wishes, appoints a new VP who is not Andrew.
33. Quinn tells Charlie to stop calling her “Robin.” (“It doesn’t make you Batman,” she screams.)
34. Quinn and Olivia reconcile when Quinn provides valuable information that takes down Maya Pope. But Quinn says that she doesn’t want to return to OPA.
35. Quinn and Olivia reconcile under the same conditions, but Quinn does return to OPA and tearfully offers Olivia cup of coffee, promising never to leave again.
36. Quinn and Olivia reconcile. Quinn demands a promotion and full dental coverage.
37. When Fitz tells Mellie that he is going to divorce her, Mellie shoots Fitz.
38. When Mellie tells Fitz that she and Andrew are going to be a couple, Fitz proposes to Olivia, even though they cannot get married.
39. Olivia tells Fitz that she can’t be with him anymore, that Vermont will never happen, and that he has to make his marriage to Mellie work. She hands him a jar of homemade jam.
40. Olivia tells Fitz that she can’t be with him anymore, that Vermont will never happen, and that he has to make his marriage to Mellie work. He dies when the bomb goes off. Olivia realizes that she’s lost the love of her life.
41. Olivia has sex with Jake in order to save the country once more.
42. After a near-death experience when a bomb goes off on the campaign trail, Fitz and Mellie realize they can’t waste any more time being miserable together and they get divorced. Mellie marries Andrew and Fitz marries Olivia and they take his helicopter to Vermont to look for houses.
43. Publius II, an unknown source, starts leaking information to journalists all over town. The truth about Daniel Douglas Langston’s death is revealed. Sally and Cyrus are taken into custody. No one knows where Maya or the bomb is located.
44. In the aftermath of the bomb blast, Olivia and Fitz flee D.C., heading to parts unknown.
45. Olivia wears a white coat.
46. Olivia convinces her mom to not detonate the bomb by giving her a very expensive bottle of red wine.
47. Olivia drinks a large glass of red wine after saving the Grant administration and Fitz’s life. There’s a knock at the door. Olivia answers it. An unknown assailant shoots her.
48. Jake discovers the bomb and dismantles it. Maya, making a getaway, is stopped by Olivia. She tells Olivia that the bomb was simply a distraction and she is working for a terrorist organization that is going to attack Washington D.C. at an undisclosed time and place. And then she disappears.
49. Jake, Quinn and Charlie trace the bomb to the campaign trail. Jake calls Olivia to protect her, revealing his true feelings for her. Olivia is able to help stop the bomb from going off. But Olivia goes looking for Jake and finds him with a gun to Eli’s head. Olivia must decide if she’s going to kill Jake to save her father or let her father die. Cut to black.
50. Olivia finds Maya and pulls a gun on her. But Eli enters and makes Olivia put down her weapon, promising he’ll protect her. She does, and he reveals that he has been working with Maya the entire time to take down B613 and the president.
51. Eli’s time “working” in the basement of the Smithsonian has actually been spent investigating every move Maya’s made in the last two decades. The bomb ends up going off, seriously harming Fitz, Mellie, and Andrew, and their fate remains unknown. Maya returns to her hotel room to gather her papers and flee the country, but Eli is one step ahead of her, waiting in the room. He kills Adnan and calls acting President Langston. He offers her Maya in exchange for funding of a new organization that he will head up: B614.
52. The bomb is dismantled and everyone thinks they’ve walked away unscathed. But the real bomb drops when Mellie’s rape is leaked to the public. Fitz watches the news unfold in the Oval Office and immediately tries calling Mellie, but the phone just keeps ringing.
53. The entire third season of Scandal is Olivia Pope’s dream. She wakes up in a state of delirium to discover that she is in the hole!