With all of the Scandal commercials lately, you’d think the show was returning this week but no. Olivia Pope and her gladiators won’t come back until September for their fourth season though creator Shonda Rhimes did reveal some teasers for next season.
When we left the cast, Olivia was on a plane with Jake going to wherever Papa Pope approves of and the Tender Scandal Piano Song was playing. TV Guide chatted with Rhimes and asked the pressing question: Is Olivia is officially done with President Fitz Grant?
Rhimes: I always think about the finale when she says to him very clearly, "I am in love with another man." And he says, "Let's go anyway." He goes off with her knowing full well that she's very clear about her feelings for somebody else. So, whatever that relationship is, as fun or romantic or happy as that will be, she's very clearly in love with another man. I don't know what that holds for them. They have to face whatever that's going to mean.
She also shared that we will be “surprised” by the time period and location of Olivia and Jake. Will the couple be in Paris, strolling along the Seine? Maybe shivering in a Papa Pope-approve torturous man hole because the plane ride was really free trip to Gitmo?
Speaking of Papa Pope, who resumed command of B613 once his plan to kill the president’s son and blame someone else worked out so well, Rhimes says he will “definitely” be around next season. She doesn’t mention Mama Pope so her murder-for-hire antics are up in the air.
As for the other real pressing question: Will Harrison (read: actor Columbus Short) live another day since there was a gun to his head during the finale?
Rhimes: It's safe to assume that Harrison has met his end.
Elsewhere, Fitz and Mellie are trying to repair their relationship though they hate each other. But now that the secret of Mellie’s abuse at the hands of Fitz’s father is out, perhaps they can call a truce.
Rhimes: It's interesting because we're not just dealing with what happened to Mellie. You have to remember that everything that happens now takes place [after] the death of their child. [Fitz has] the knowledge that, as far as he knows, Olivia's mother was responsible for the death of their child, and that basically, in a weird way, he is at fault for the death of their child. If he had not been involved with Olivia, none of that would've happened. Post the death of the child, he has some care-taking to do. He feels a responsibility to take care of [Mellie]. Whether or not he loves her, whether or not that relationship is viable isn't really a factor right now. He's got responsibilities to take care of.
As for Quinn and face-licking Huck, Rhimes was cagey on his predicament of re-connecting with his family, where we left him in the finale. She merely says his scenario is something we won’t “expect.” Isn’t everything Shonda? Isn’t everything!
Ultimately, this new season will be all about the red haired, finger-wagging know-it-all.
Rhimes: One of the things that we did specifically when we created the show is slowly deploy people's stories. It was purposeful. Season 4 is Abby's season. That was by design. A lot of what we know about Abby happens this season. A lot of what we discover about her and see about her back story will happen as we tell Abby's story.
Rhimes is running ABC on Thursday nights with three shows back-to-back including Grey's Anatomy, Scandal and the new Viola Davis-led How To Get Away With Murder. Gird your loins and your Twitter feed.
No word on Cyrus and who will comb his adorable daughter's hair into those flawless afro puffs. I am worried.
Image via ABC.