Scandal Season 4: Why Killing Jake Ballard Is the Worst Possible Decision Ever

Scott Foley
Jake Ballard (Scott Foley) is likely dead on Scandal. ABC/Nicole Wilder

In the words of Carole King, “Where Shonda Rhimes leads, we will follow, anywhere that she tell Us to.” Okay, maybe that’s not a direct quote, but you get the gist. But the potential death status of Jake Ballard (Scott Foley) on Scandal has us questioning Ms. Rhimes’ sanity. 

In the final moments of last Thursday’s episode, the ever-hunky Capt. Ballard walked into the Pope & Associates office, calling out Olivia’s name. Turns out, it wasn’t the Washington, D.C. fixer who texted him, but rather a part of the villainous Papa Pope’s plot, involving Olivia’s latest beau Russell (Brian White), to lure the former B613 command into a deadly trap. Russell snuck up on Jake in ninja gear, stabbing him in the stomach multiple times. Now, the advocate of piano-top sex is no longer going to be able to show off his glistening six-pack. (Way to go, Russ!) Basically, Olivia should just give up on dating because her men always have bloody strings attached.

Scott dead

In the promo for this week’s episode, “First Lady Sings the Blues,” we see a seemingly dead Jake lying on the conference room table as Russell tells Rowan, “Ballard has been eliminated.” 

A woman (either Quinn or Olivia) can then be heard desperately crying, “Jake’s dead! Jake is dead!”

Scott and Tony
ABC/Mitchell Haaseth

Let’s all say a quick silent prayer that this is an elaborate (and very cruel) dream sequence, in which Olivia is imagining the worst case scenario. As much as we’d like to hope for the best, Scandal has taught us better. 

So now we have to come face-to-face with the possibility that Rhimes has actually lost her mind. Not only was Jake the dreamiest man in D.C. (sorry, Huck), but he was also clearly the best fit for Olivia (sorry, not sorry, Fitz). 

First off, it takes an incredibly strong man to be willing to leave a private island paradise with a wine delivery service for Washington, D.C., all for his lady (especially one who clearly loves pantsuits more than him). And once he left the tropical paradise, Jake remained fully committed to Liv. When she got kidnapped, he worked tirelessly to help get her back, and he didn’t send a nation to war in the process (cough, Fitz, cough). 

Scott and Kerry
ABC/Nicole Wilder

And in his final days, he was willing to put his life and career on the line for justice in David Rosen’s plot to destroy B613. There was also an icy distance between Jake and Olivia, which downplayed the emotional significance his death could have brought. 

If Jake’s gone, what future does Liv have to look forward to? (And don’t say that stupid house in Vermont, because Millie’s campaign and presidential run will delay that until long after Huck and Quinn have a love child). 

No amount of fancy red wine and Gettysburger could have prepared us for this. 

Tell Us: How do you feel about Jake dying on Scandal?

Scandal airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

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