Never underestimate the power of a dramatic assassination attempt in a TV show to get viewers to tune in to see what happens next. Scandal benefited from such a dramatic occurrence with a ratings pay-off for last night's episode. And given everything that transpired last night, including another shocking closing moment, I'd say viewers got what they came for. (Spoilers from the "Happy Birthday, Mr. President" episode of Scandal, ahead!)

From flag-pin related oval office sex to soapy dramatic rose garden arguments over who loves/needs/breaths-for the other more and romantic rendezvous by the Constitution, Olivia and Fitz certainly had their moments last night. Of course, all of them were via flashback, since Fitzgerald was in surgery through most of the episode having been shot… by Huck! That last little nugget of info was dropped on us at the last minute and now we have one week to wait to see how Olivia deals with this revelation.

The good news is, TVLine reports that Scandal drew its largest total audience ever and was up 14% for a season-high 2.5 rating. The series saw a viewership increase last week with "Defiance" earning 6.64 million viewers, bringing it closer to the second season premiere's 6.74 million viewers. "Happy Birthday, Mr. President scored 7.4 million viewers, which is a series high as far as its total audience goes.

Ratings spikes are a good thing for any series, but it's especially good for Scandal, given the uncertainty of its renewal for a second season earlier this year. Its overall numbers haven't been quite as high as the first season, but they're close, and last night's episode pushed the show to an all time high as far as viewers. Hopefully between that and Season 1 being available on Netflix, there will be more people getting caught up and tuning in for the rest of Season 2.

Watch the preview for next week's "Blown Away" here..

Photo Credit: ©ABC

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