SPOILER ALERT: Do not read ahead if you have not watched the episode of “Scandal” that aired on Thursday, Feb. 16.
Following last week’s shocker the revealed Tom Larsen (Brian Letscher) as Frankie Vargas’ killer, this week’s episode was set in jail with Cyrus Beene (Jeff Perry) behind bars.
“It’s been actor heaven,” Jeff Perry tells Variety about his grueling two episodes over the past couple of weeks, which have put his character, Cyrus, through a whirlwind of turmoil.
At the top of the episode, Cyrus has been arrested for assassinating the president, Frankie Vargas, along with Tom. Both are in prison, but they’re being held in different wings of the complex. “He’s the reason I’m in here,” Cyrus tells the guard. “Him and his lies.”
Though Cyrus maintains his innocence, the rest of the White House — except for Abby (Darby Stanchfield) — truly believes him and Tom are responsible for Frankie’s death, so much so that Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) orders the death penalty on his former right hand man.
Meanwhile, back in a more pleasant D.C., Mellie (Bellamy Young) is celebrating becoming the president, alongside Olivia (Kerry Washington), assuming that Cyrus is in jail for good.
Cyrus gets a beating in prison — literally. The guards gang up against him and punch him out, leaving his lifeless body on the ground, and sending him into a hazy dream about a better life when he is president. Turns out, that dream could be foreshadowing into “Scandal” episodes coming up…
In true Cyrus fashion, Mr. Beene comes up with a master plan to have Tom killed in jail because he’s so angry at him. But while Tom is being beaten up, he yells, “I’m innocent.” Tom breaks free and Cyrus realizes that it actually wasn’t Tom who killed Frankie, therefore cleaning his slate, as well.
At the same time Cyrus is realizing his innocence, back at OPA, the Gladiators are hard at work and find evidence that Tom was not even in town the night that Frankie was shot. He was actually far away in Atlanta.
So, if Cyrus and Tom are innocent, then who killed Frankie?
Off-screen, Perry admits that the cast knows who killed Frankie, but the reveal won’t come immediately. In fact, the season has shot through episode nine and even Cyrus still doesn’t know the shooter’s identity.
“Jeff Perry knows, but Cyrus doesn’t know,” he laughs.
When asked by Variety about the possibility of Papa Pope (Joe Morton) being the killer — it’s just our theory, but he has been suspiciously quiet this season! — Perry laughs and replies, “That’s where my head and where Cyrus’ head goes first.”
Is there any chance that Tom was lying and he is actually responsible for Frankie’s death?
“We always check our expectations,” Perry tells us about “Scandal’s” twisty-turny nature. “What I’ve learned about our writers is that they’re professional surprisers.”
Before Cyrus went to jail, he was appointed to be the president. But even now that he may be free, Perry says not to count on him taking the Oval Office just yet. “Cyrus’ personal belief is that he’s very innocent and that he’s not even implicated through Tom, so he sees a little window to actually be sprung from prison. But that hasn’t happened literally yet.”
However, Perry notes that Cyrus does truly trust that Tom is innocent, at this point. “Cyrus, I think, really believes that it’s true and that he got out.”
Leave a comment below: Who do you think killed Frankie? And are Tom and Cyrus really innocent?