Without a doubt, 2014 was the year of Shonda Rhimes.
The ABC uber-producer took over the coveted Thursday night lineup and had viewers glued to their seats with “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Scandal” and this year’s breakout hit “How to Get Away with Murder,” all airing back-to-back.
ABC hasn’t stacked three shows by the same executive producer into one night since Aaron Spelling took over Saturday nights with “T.J. Hooker,” “The Love Boat” and “Fantasy Island” back in 1982.
The 44-year-old screenwriter, director and producer has helped shape the television landscape this year, in no small part thanks to her snappy dialogue and addictive characters.
TheWrap counts down ShondaLand’s best moments of 2014 below:
15. Jake vs. Fitz
Jake (Scott Foley) compares his “equipment” to that of the president’s, telling Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington): “I am the one you like to ride. I’m the one who makes you moan. I’m the one who reaches you in places he can’t begin to touch.”
14. How to get away with … extra credit
After Laurel (Karla Souza) gets a job offer from her boyfriend, Frank (Charlie Weber) tries his damnedest to keep her from leaving. Translation: Laurel and Frank get down to business right on Annalise Keating’s (Viola Davis) porch. The steamy sex scene had fans cheering … and secretly hoping Laurel finally dumps her boyfriend for good old-fashioned bad boy Frank.
13. Don’t mess with Red
It’s been a rough season for Abby (Darby Stanchfield). The new press secretary for President Grant (Tony Goldwyn) — simply known as “Red” — couldn’t seem to find her footing. When her abusive ex-husband shows up in Washington, Abby becomes paralyzed with fear. But then she comes back to her senses, gets a gun, and goes all Gladiator on his ass.
12. The naked truth
All hail to first lady Mellie Grant (Bellamy Young), who, without a hint of apology, tells her husband she’s let herself go below the belt: “One thing I do not do now is wax. It’s 1976 down there.” After losing her child, Mellie runs around the halls of the White House in Uggs, a robe and a shirt that’s “only been worn twice in a row.” But even while she’s grieving, “Scandal’s” first lady still manages to throw some grade-A shade.
11. Voodoo penis
Connor Walsh (Jack Falahee) has no problem sleeping with anything that moves … if it can score him points with his boss Annalise Keating. His talents in the bedroom are so legendary, his tricks always come back for more. When Asher (Matt McGorry) notices a guy salivating over Connor, even though Connor didn’t recognize him, Asher can’t help but be impressed. “What do you have, some kind of voodoo penis?” he asks Conner. Connor’s mischievous smile makes it clear the question is rhetorical.
10. Sex, lies and videotape
President Fitzgerald Grant asks Pope to find and delete his daughter’s sex tape before it goes viral. Making matters worse, the first daughter can’t remember who she had sex with. Pope not only fixes the problem, but she delivers one of the best lines in TV history. She calls Chief of Staff Cyrus Beene (Jeff Perry) to tell him she just saw the tape. And it’s not just any old sex tape … it’s “the dirtiest sex tape I’ve ever seen in my entire life.”
9. Someone have a gay fiancé?
Poor Michaela (Aja Naomi King). As hard as she tries to one-up Connor, it just doesn’t seem to work. When she asks him whether he has daddy issues, Conner shoots back one of his all-time classics: “Someone have a gay fiancé?” Turns out, she does.
8. Smelly Mellie
There’s only so much a man can take. When the first lady has a hard time getting over her grief, Fitz let’s her know he’s had enough. In one of the best ShondaLand monologues, Fitz tells Mellie he may have put up with “Drunk-Mellie,” “Smelly-Mellie,” “Screw-Everything-to-Hell Mellie” and “Eat-Everything-That’s-Not-Nailed-Down Mellie,” but he’s not about to be lectured by the likes of her now.
7. Black Hair 101
Dr. McDreamy (Patrick Dempsey) doesn’t get why people keep staring at him and his adopted African-American daughter. It’s the 21st century after all. But just as he’s about to give some nosy white woman a piece of his mind, Dr. Bailey (Chandra Wilson) takes him aside for some “Black Hair 101”: “Daddy has nice hair,” she tells McDreamy. “Maybe perfect hair. And for whatever reason, his daughter’s hair is 31 flavors of wrong. It’s hard on the eyes,” she tells him. And then she finishes with a line only Bailey could deliver: “Do your baby’s hair!”
6. Epic catfight
In what was probably one of the most epic showdowns in ShondaLand this year, Mellie lets Elizabeth North (Portia de Rossi) know all bets are off. This after she discovers her lover, Vice President Andrew Nichols (Jon Tenney), is also sleeping with North. “I thought we were on the same page,” North tells Mellie. Without missing a beat, Mellie shoots back: “Because we’re both screwing Andrew?”
5. “Inside Cyrus Beene”
Say what you will about Cyrus Beene, he’s got some of the best zingers on television. When he finds out his lover, a male prostitute, betrayed him, he pummels him with this gem: “You are now the most famous gay hooker in gay hooker history. You could write a book. Sell it to Hollywood. Play yourself in the porn version, ‘Inside Cyrus Beene.’”
4. Hell hath no fury like a woman robbed of an orgasm
When Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) meddles in Dr. Herman’s (Geena Davis) affairs, literally, Herman (who’s dying of a brain tumor) tells her to back off. “I don’t know how many orgasms I have left in my life, but it may be fewer than flavors of ice cream, so I can’t spare any,” she tells her. “Stop stealing my orgasms!”
3. That eye-watering move
Connor Walsh is apparently really good in bed. So good, in fact, he has a move which involves the derriere that apparently can make people’s eyes water. No one really knows what that involves exactly, but it had everyone talking the next day. That sex scene wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea, however. One Twitter user complained to Rhimes that her “gay scenes” were “too much.” Rhimes quickly shot back, “There are no GAY scenes. There are scenes with people in them.” That response had gay eyes everywhere watering with joy.
2. Bitch baby
Olivia Pope sure gives a good pep talk. When Cyrus quits his job as chief of staff to avoid a male-prostituion scandal, Pope reminds him he’s no “bitch baby.” It’s a Shonda scene you have to see to believe. So, we watched it five times, just in case. “The Cyrus Beene I know doesn’t hide in his half-empty closet and wet his pants like a little bitch baby,” Pope tells Beene. The scene then drives straight into crazy town with Cyrus repeating after Pope, “I’m no bitch baby!”
1. The top Shonda moment of 2014 goes to:
There is no question this scene takes the cake. The week leading up to the episode, ABC promised viewers their “jaws will hit the floor with Viola Davis‘ last nine words.” And boy, did it live up to the hype. Davis delivered the best line in recent TV history when she calmly turned to her husband and asked: “Why is your penis on a dead girl’s phone?”
You can watch some of the best Shonda moments right here.