I really tried! I'm on episode 4, season 2 and I've been trying hard since the pilot. But it's ridiculous! First of all, it's exactly like Grey's Anatomy and that's not a compliment. (Cyrus is totally Cristina and the only difference between Fitz and Shepherd is the actor who plays each although there isn't much of a difference there either). Secondly, I find it very hard to swallow its pro-imperialistic view on the world. "Leader of the free world" in every episode aside, it's been twice now that it's presented "third-world" countries as the epitome of utter evil, no explanations needed. First it was East Sudan, now it's the made-up state of Kurkistan whose diplomat is a sociopathic killer who waves a passport when confronted with his murderous ways.
Also. No way is a president or any high-ranking politician actually idealistic. He would have waded through piles of dirty money to get there. The hollow reciting about "this great nation" and "man of the people" injected here and there as if to remind the viewers it's a show about the White House and not a soap opera, sound helpless and completely out of place. It's sugary and unnecessary.
Another thing. The plots are paper thin. Weak mysteries with poorly built twists. No explanations as to motivation or sources of information. Friendship comes first in the supposedly cutthroat world of legal circles in DC? Come on. Like when they didn't even question them when they cleaned out that murder scene in season one, when Quinn's boyfriend was murdered, let alone arrest them for obstructing justice, even though David knew perfectly well they'd done it! A lot of the developments are there merely for convenience and little to nothing is done to offer any believable explanations. Like they're banking on the emotional overload to obscure the gaping logic holes.
The emotional overload is another thing that grates on me. I hated in Grey's and it doesn't hold up better here. The continual grandstanding by virtually every character is tiresome, the teenage drama that is the love story is absurd. They're grown people one of whom runs a country and the other helped him get there but they can't control their emotions! Like at all! They suffer when they see each other! He gets irrationally jealous and that affects his judgement! They can't help themselves when they're together! Ugh. I just can't buy it and it's neither romantic nor tragic, just really forced, IMO. Plus the constant reminder, in pumped up superlatives, of how super utter uber great the leads are. Olivia is the best of the best and is never wrong. Fitz is a Rhodes scholar and has a PhD. Mellie was first in her class in Harvard and Yale law. Cyrus could be running Harvard if he wanted, he had the job. It was the same in Grey's - they were all the best! Of the best! In the country! All of them! Everyone wanted them! Every single one of them! And we needed to be reminded of just how omgamazinglygreat they are every other episode, just in case the gandeur wore off. Like a kids party where you have to give a prize to everyone lest someone cries. That's how the writing process seems to be constructed to me. And it's the definition of a lot of telling and no showing.
And lastly, the characters. So far, mere plot devices with the exception of Olivia, Cyrus and perhaps Mellie. Everyone else is a carton cutout: Harrison is the cocky one, Abby is the sceptical one (hate her lines), Quinn is the newbie, Huck is the super duper emotionally troubled one and the way they have Olivia watch him like he's a wounded puppy every time they talk is painful to watch. David is used mercilessly for plot development and nothing else. Fitz is nothing more than a McDreamy transplant.
So basically there's nothing I like. I expected I'd be raving about it with everyone else. What am I doing wrong.