“Dirty little secrets always come out” and the third season of ABC’s critically acclaimed and Emmy nominated political thriller “Scandal,” premiering on Oct. 3 at 10 p.m, promises more gut-wrenching turmoil of forbidden love and suffocating dilemmas that rest on one woman’s shoulders.
Olivia Pope, played by Emmy-nominated actress Kerry Washington, encompasses what all women aspire to be: stunningly intelligent, fearless, beautiful with an incredibly unbreakable confidence that makes her the best, and she knows it. As a public fixer of high-profile scandals, based on crisis management expert Judy Smith, the most powerful and elite figures turn to her to get the job done. Pope, with her team of “gladiators” from Pope and Associates, is an unstoppable force of nature in white with a taste for red wine, but there’s a flaw that consumes her behind closed doors. She’s having an affair with the president of the United States, Fitzgerald “Fitz” Grant, played by Tony Goldwyn (“Ghost,” “Tarzan”).
In season three, Pope has been publically revealed as the president’s mistress and now she has to work to clear her own name, which could not only tarnish everything she has worked for but also impact the president’s run for a second term. Entertainment Weekly called Olivia and Fitz “TV’s sexiest and most dysfunctional couple” while New York Magazine said “You can call it a ‘guilty pleasure’ if we agree to strike the ‘guilty’ part.”
“Scandal” has taken the world of television by storm with critics praising the original concept hashed by Shonda Rhimes, creator of acclaimed shows “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Private Practice” that also have a loyal following. With over one million Facebook supporters, trending topics on Twitter, and recap videos with fans’ hilarious commentary on episodes – for instance Kid Fury’s “The Devil Hates Scandal” or Funky Dineva’s “My Hair is Layed Like….Scandal” videos – the support is gaining steadily with each season. Fans have even written petitions to ABC in frustration for the hiatus of the show during the second season. Don’t believe me? There’s even a “Stop Putting Scandal on Hiatus – Pick up More Episodes” petition on Change.org. The dedication out there is real.
The show alone has made history since premiering on April 5, 2012, with Washington becoming the first African-American woman in nearly 40 years to have a leading role in a television series. She is also nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. A black woman has never won in this category.
In an interview for the August issue of Vanity Fair, Washington expressed why the impact of this character – flaws, brilliance and all – is so profound to the show’s audience and even to her.
“What I think is cool about Olivia is that she fully owns being a woman,” Washington said to Vanity Fair. “There’s a very nurturing sense of ‘I’m going to take care of you — don’t worry about it. I’m gonna be your mom in this situation. You come stay in my office, have a cup of tea, and let my gladiators take care of you.’ There’s something very maternal about it. But there’s also something very executive about her, and I mean ‘executive’ in a presidential way.”
“Scandal” has so many elements that make it extraordinary, like the dialogue, incredible characters like Pope’s right hand-man Huck (Guillermo Diaz), former B613/CIA agent and the openly gay, brilliant yet vicious White House Chief of Staff, Cyrus Beene (Jeff Perry) and orchestrated scandals that imitate real life.
After hearing about it from the “Michael Baisden Show,” Kid Fury, fellow classmates and my former LGBT professor, Michael Tew, I finally watched only two episodes of the second season. Needless to say, the first season on DVD was purchased later that day and ever since I’ve been hooked. When it premiered on television, I hardly moved during commercial breaks. It’s my personal soap opera without the sappy scenarios.
To watch prior seasons before the premiere on Oct. 3, go to ABC.com or Hulu.com.