Scandal (2012–2018)
1 user 3 critic

A Stomach for Blood 

The events leading up to the election night, as seen from Abby's perspective reveal a thirst for power.


Oliver Bokelberg


Shonda Rhimes (created by), Johanna Lee (story editor) | 1 more credit »




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Kerry Washington ... Olivia Pope
Scott Foley ... Jake Ballard
Darby Stanchfield ... Abby Whelan
Katie Lowes ... Quinn Perkins (credit only)
Guillermo Díaz ... Huck
Jeff Perry ... Cyrus Beene
Joshua Malina ... David Rosen
Bellamy Young ... Mellie Grant
Portia de Rossi ... Elizabeth North (credit only)
Joe Morton ... Rowan Pope (credit only)
Cornelius Smith Jr. ... Marcus Walker (credit only)
Tony Goldwyn ... Fitzgerald Grant
Paul Adelstein ... Leo Bergen
Ricardo Chavira ... Francisco Vargas
David Warshofsky ... Theodore


The events leading up to the election night, as seen from Abby's perspective reveal a thirst for power.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Thriller






Release Date:

30 March 2017 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shondaland, ABC Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


When Abby throws the coffee mug it hits different doors. First flashback on the left door, second flashback on the right door. See more »


[first lines]
Francisco Vargas: [at the podium] Hello, Philadelphia!
The Crowd: [cheers and applause]
Francisco Vargas: I want to thank you for thinking differently. Thank you for thinking about tomorrow, not yesterday. About progress, not decline. About equality, not bigotry. About love, not hate. About hope, not fear. Thank you for thinking we can really be a nation of the people, by the people and for the people. Hoy si somos una nación de la gente, por la gente, y para toda la gente! God bless you. And may God bless these United States of...
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User Reviews

Aw, C'mon!
20 April 2017 | by asrexproductionsSee all my reviews

I really wish I had the constitution of a TV civilian. I get squeamish when I see dead or dying animals, let along corpses, as Abby does here.

"A Taste for Blood" is the episode of "Scandal" that sort of ties together many of the current mysteries of Season 6 - Did Cyrus (Jeff Perry) actually kill the President-elect? And if not, who did, and why? This episode tells you. Well, maybe not so much the "why" just yet, though it's possible they revealed this in a previous episode and I just forgot, because frankly, this show has taken so many twists and turns this season that it's starting to feel like a parlor game to me, like "Lost" at its most irritating. For some, that may be what makes this show fun. For me, it was just exhausting.

The key character in all of this, we discover, is Abby (Darby Stanchfield), and I won't spoil this episode by telling you why she's important to this elaborate plot, but suffice it to say we learn more - a LOT more - about how she spent that fateful election night when Frankie Vargas (Richard Chavira) was murdered, including some omitted, behind-the-scenes details of things we already saw in earlier episodes. Abby, it seems, was put in an untenable situation, and in trying to untangle herself from it, she put a lot of her friends in danger despite not really planning to. We see all that play out in this episode, including a gruesome scene in which she handles Vargas's corpse and goes to great, and what I found unrealistic lengths to keep the whole charade of the episode going. Abby does many things here that I think most would find downright criminal, and while her character heretofore has been as tainted as all of the leads in the "Scandal" universe, I found myself constantly asking, "are they THIS tainted?" And moreover, "could this REALLY happen?" I realize that it probably couldn't, as couldn't many things in "Scandal" or any other nighttime soap. Still, I always found the series plausible at least, if a bit over the top, and now I'm not so sure it can even qualify as that. I can accept a lot of things done for shock value, but when it starts to feel cartoonish to me, I start checking out, as I did here. I'll stick with it to see how the characters dig their way out of this, but if you've never watched this show before, this episode wouldn't make me recommend it, and that's why I rated it so poorly. Worst of all though, I think it does fit nicely into the extreme tone of this entire season thus far, and that doesn't really make me optimistic for my continuing to watch. I can't help wondering if others might feel that way eventually too. You can't skip this one if you've stuck with Scandal 'til now, but once this runs its course, will you really want to keep going with it? Abby's actions, and the sequence of events in "A Taste of Blood" left me really unsure of how to answer that.

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