We Really Should Have Seen That Scandal Death Coming

Photo: Richard Cartwright/ABC.
This post contains spoilers about last night's episode of Scandal. Seriously, stop reading if you don't want to know about a major character's death!
Last night, Scandal returned to its Shondaland roots by killing off a surprising character. For some reason, Huck (Guillermo Diaz) has recovered just fine from what seemed like a sure death. But Elizabeth North (Portia de Rossi) wasn't as lucky — poor Liz was mercilessly bludgeoned in an incredibly gory scene.
Yes, it's sad — Liz was an awesome Scandal character. She was a no-nonsense, strong woman who wasn't afraid to get what she wanted. And she was smarter than pretty much every other Republican in the Scandal-verse, other than (maybe) Mellie (Bellamy Young). But there hasn't been much of a place for her in the new world order.
Liz was planning to be Mellie's chief of staff, but it's barely been mentioned this season. Olivia (Kerry Washington), as Mellie's campaign manager, was surprised (and angry) to hear that Mellie had been in touch with her at all. Liz had an important role during the episodes about the campaign trail, but she's been in the background as of late. This season's storyline can easily move forward without her.
But aside from that, Liz's impending death in last night's episode was so obvious it bordered on camp (until we saw her brain all over the carpet). The shadowy Ms. Ruland (Zoe Perry) was hovering behind Liz with a giant weapon for what felt like forever. Click through for a frame-by-frame analysis of the minutes leading up to Liz's demise.