Watch Lena Dunham's Scandal Character Challenge Olivia Pope


In Thursday night’s episode of Scandal, Lena Dunham played an obnoxious author (stay with us…) named Suzanne Thomas with an agenda to extort a bunch of D.C. politicians. Unfortunately for her, Huck got in the way of that plan.

Meet Sue, aka Lena Dunham. Sue has a book proposal out about her affairs with several powerful public figures, including Attorney General David and Abby’s boyfriend Leo (nicknamed “The Dustbuster” in her book). All these dudes are working with Olivia Pope to handle the sex scandal and to try and silence Sue.

In all, Dunham’s appearance was very Dunham-y and only sustained my belief that Lena Dunham can only
convincingly play herself. I didn’t see any real acting involved.

Luckily, this was a one-time cameo.

When Huck and Quinn head to Sue’s apartment, they see the one of the politicians (nicknamed “Double Stuff” in the book) holding a knife up to Sue, but he’s not about that life. They stop him. But Huck, who now thinks he’s in Mortal Kombat, delivers a quick slice to Sue’s neck. (I most definitely screamed out, “Holy shit!” Why, Huck?!)

Because he’s crazy. And if Sue’s book gets David fired, then that ruins Huck and David’s B613 takedown.

This season of Scandal seems heavier than usual with feminist rhetoric on women and power, especially this episode. When Sue visits Olivia’s office and demands $3 million from the men in exchange for her silence, she also critiques Olivia for bringing up the “whore” discussion. “When did you become so weak?” says Sue. There’s clearly some truth about sexual agency in her monologue that follows (watch below), but Dunham somehow makes it come off pretentious.

Sue also tells Liv, “You and Ruth Bader Ginsburg, that’s all we got.”

“You’re right, but please leave my office,” is what Olivia should’ve said. Sue serves another important purpose here—inspiring Olivia to rediscover her sexual appetite by pursuing a dude in a bar, played by guest actor Brian White. Olivia later proposes that Sue ditch the extortion thing and instead go after her old boss who sexually harassed and fired her.

Later on, Abby’s writing up a potential resignation letter in bed because she thinks Leo’s inclusion in the book automatically threatens her career. Leo is hung up on Sue’s descriptions of kinky sex acts with David, which he thinks says a lot about Abby.

Abby, who’s won over my heart in her new White House position, beautifully breaks down all the double standards to Leo, saying:

“Leo, what happens to you happens to me. I’m good at my job, I am a lion out there. I own that room. They write about that… They also write about me. If I wear lipstick, I’m dolled up. If I don’t, I’m trying to let myself go. They wonder if I’m trying to bring dresses back and they don’t like it that I repeat outfits even though I’m on a government salary. They discuss my hair color. There’s an anonymous blogs saying that I’m too skinny…Apparently there’s this rule: In order to mention my name, they also have to report to the world that there’s a man who wants me.”


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