Optics: Is Scandal’s Mama Pope Being Punished for Having an Affair?

Maya Lewis, a/k/a Mama Pope, lives. We called it last week in a previous “Optics article, “Is Olivia Pope’s Mother Still Alive?” We were, therefore, not shocked when Scandal 307 revealed that she was, in fact, still alive. Mama Pope has been locked away in a federal detention facility under the alias of “Omar Dresdan.” Her cruel husband, Rowan, a/k/a Command of B-613, a/k/a Eli Pope, has kept her locked away in isolation for the last 20 years. He visited her to tell her that their daughter, Olivia (Liv) Pope, has been asking about her. But why has Rowan kept his wife locked away for the last 20 years? Was she a terrorist? Was she a spy? We don’t think so. We believe that Rowan is punishing his wife for having an affair. Mama Pope was first mentioned in Scandal 301 – “It’s Handled,” when Liv told her father that her mother warned her about him. Mama Pope would tell Liv that her father would destroy her. Already, we know that Rowan/Eli and Maya had a very rocky relationship – they were not a happy couple. Maya knew how dangerous her husband was. More clues about Maya would follow in this episode. We learned that she “died” in a plane crash in 1991, when Liv was only 12 years old. Shortly afterwards, Rowan sent Liv away to a Swiss boarding, Surval Montreux. Already dealing with the pain of losing her mother, Liv would not see her father again for many years. Both events have left Liv with very deep emotional scars. Scandal 301 – Mama Pope Warned Liv About Her Father Video courtesy of YouTube channel ScandalousGladiators Scandal 306 – “Icarus,” finally put a face on Mama Pope, played by Khandi Alexander, In a flashback, Liv remembers her final moments with her mother: Mama Pope is on her way to London, to help her boss get settled in. She seems very happy to be going on this trip. She tells her daughter that she will be in London only for a few days, and that she will call once she lands at Heathrow. She tells her daughter that she loves her, gives her a warm hug, and walks out the door. Immediately, the red flags went up for us. Why would Maya be so happy to go to London to help her boss get settled in? Was Maya‘s relationship with her boss more than a professional one? Were they having an affair? Was Maya planning to run away from Rowan, her very dangerous husband? Scandal 306 – Liv Remembers Her Final Moments With Her Mother Video courtesy of YouTube channel ILuvOlitz2 Scandal 307 – “Everything’s Coming Up Mellie,” revealed some additional clues about Maya. Fitz has the Secret Service investigate Liv‘s parents after Liv tells him that her mother was one of the passengers who perished on board the plane he shot down, Global Airlines Flight 522. Maya worked as a secretary for a venture capitalist, Neil Hastings. Fitz also learns that Rowan, Command of B-613, is Liv‘s father: Scandal 307 – Fitz Learns About Liv’s Parents, Maya Lewis and Eli Pope a/k/a Rowan Video courtesy of YouTube channel ScandalousGladiators Again, why would a secretary be so happy to go to London to help her boss get settled in? We believe Maya was having an affair with her boss, Neil Hastings. We believe the two were travelling to London together on that doomed flight, but Rowan found out about the relationship and decided that both Maya and Neil were to be punished. Maya probably planned to be in London only a few days, to set up house. She would probably have returned a few days later to take Liv back with her to London, and away from evil Rowan for good. We don’t believe Maya would have willfully abandoned her daughter just to run off with a lover. Neil most likely perished when the plane was shot down. Maya would suffer a far worse fate:

  • She would be be taken off the plane before it took off;
  • With her lover now dead, her identity was destroyed after being locked away in isolation under an alias, and declared legally dead;
  • She would be permanently separated from her beloved daughter, Liv.

Make no mistake, Rowan is evil. He is cruel, even sadistic, to those who cross him, especially to those who are close to him. Remember when Jake told Liv that Rowan would have him taken from the “Hole,” beaten mercilessly and tortured, but kept alive so that the process would be repeated? Jake was Rowan‘s right-hand man. Rowan derives pleasure from seeing those who betray him suffer. He knows their suffering ends once they die, therefore, he makes every effort to prolong their lives so that their suffering continues. We believe he has done the same thing to Mama Pope, only in a far more cruel way. But Rowan‘s punishment of Maya was far more elaborate.  Rowan probably waited for and received a golden opportunity to kill three birds with one stone on Global Airlines Flight 522. Omar Dresdan was probably a real terrorist who planted a dirty bomb on that flight. Rowan had to eliminate the bomb threat by killing all 329 passengers on board as collateral damage, thereby averting even greater loss of life if the bomb had detonated over London. The real Omar Dresdan was most likely killed when the plane was shot down. Rowan allowed Maya and Neil Hastings to purchase tickets for and board the flight. He had Maya taken off the flight before take-off, and Neil Hastings killed when the plane was shot down. There would be no justification for having the US Government shoot down a plane just to appease a cuckold. Rowan used a genuine terrorist threat to conspire against his wife and her lover. His plan was not only diabolical, but genius. Why did he really send Liv away? Liv probably reminded him of MayaHe probably did not want to answer any questions Liv had about her mother’s death.  We also believe he sent Liv away because he instituted a “no family” rule for B-613 agents. With his wife and child now hidden away, now he could lead by example. As we have learned from Scandal, dirty little secrets always come out. Liv will eventually unearth the truth about her mother and father. We believe that once she finds out, her inner lioness will be awakened and she will once again be a force to be reckoned with. We hope that Liv is reunited with her mother, and that the two can rebuild their relationship. Liv needs that. Rowan, however, better hope that the bullet that kills him will not come from a gun fired by his own wife, Maya Lewis a/k/a Mama Pope. Can you smell the sweet karma in such a scenario? This is just our theory. Only time and Shonda will tell why Maya has been locked away by Rowan for so long.

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