ABC's "Scandal" (Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET) is consistently packed with stellar performances and jaw-dropping moments, so it's no surprise that Shonda Rhimes' political drama was the first series that came to mind when debuting our new weekly feature, HuffPost TV's Scene-Stealer of the Week. Every Friday, we'll throw the spotlight on one memorable scene that stood out to us from the past seven days of TV, and the performer who stole the show.
Our inaugural nominee is Bellamy Young, whose drunken take on "Scandal's" steely First Lady, Mellie Grant, provided a hilarious and heartbreaking punctuation point to an already riveting hour. In this scene, Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) found his wife drunk on hooch, celebrating Olivia Pope's (Kerry Washington) survival -- since she knew that seeing her rival martyred would only increase her husband's idolatry. "As long as she's still alive, she's your flaw, your Achilles heel ... Which makes her my weapon," Mellie purred. "She's the strings that, if need be, I will pull to make my puppet husband dance." Chills!
Here's why Young got our vote this week:
Laura Prudom: Mellie is a fascinatingly multifaceted character: self-assured enough to know that she's spectacular (which she is), but naive enough to believe that she's actually an equal opponent in her imagined war with Olivia Pope (which she isn't). Olivia may always have Fitz's heart, but even when her intentions are villainous, it's hard to resist Bellamy Young's masterful transformation from sloppy and giggly to icy and calculating all in the space of three minutes.
Chris Harnick: Bellamy Young plays jilted and crazy so well, she's frighteningly good as First Lady Mellie Grant. She took that a step further this week in "Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington," stealing an episode full of great performances with one simple act of drunkenness.
Maggie Furlong: A drunk First Lady's words are a sober First Lady's thoughts, and Mellie laid it all out on the table this week -- thanks to her daddy's hillbilly hooch -- going from vulnerable to evil to bitter and back again with jaw-dropping perfection from Bellamy Young.
But Young wasn't the only one that left us transfixed this week -- our runner-up is her "Scandal" co-star Guillermo Diaz, whose raw and visceral performance as Huck is one of the most consistently compelling parts of the show. This week, after discovering that Olivia's father, Rowan (Joe Morton), is the head of the covert B613 agency that stole Huck's freedom and sanity, our former assassin was out for revenge. The below scene between Diaz and Washington was gut-wrenching to watch, illustrating just how powerful a threat Rowan is to all our characters.
Do you agree with our pick for Scene-Stealer of the Week, or did another performer stand out for you over the past seven days? Share your choice below!