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10 Reasons Why People Are Obsessed With 'Scandal'

September 24th, 2013 7:40pm EDT

Scandal Cast From the outside looking in, those who are unfamiliar with the TV obsession known as “Scandal” may not understand why fans are so crazy about it. On the surface, “Scandal” just seems like a show about a mistress and the POTUS with a wandering eye, hands, lips...you get the picture. But don’t be fooled, it’s so much more than that. With season 3 of “Scandal” just around the corner (set to premiere on Thursday, October 3), we thought it was best to help those of you who are fighting the feeling to get hooked, to well, get hooked! So get comfortable and let’s talk. Here are 10 reasons why people are obsessed with “Scandal.”
1. It’s unpredictable
As viewers, we love the idea of unpredictability in TV. We hate cliché storylines and figuring out what’s going to transpire before the hour is up. That Shonda Rhimes is a genius with a pen, because right when you think you’ve predicted the ending, she shows you that you have no idea. Whether it’s sitting at the edge of your seat thinking that Olivia Pope (played by Kerry Washington) will be the next First Lady or scratching our heads in confusion trying to figure out just why Billy Chambers (played by Matt Letscher) is alive and sitting in the back of a cab, “Scandal” will have you doubting everything you once believed was typical TV.
2. An inside look into dirty politics
We know that a lot of these politicians’ hands are not clean when it comes to the real scandals in the political world. But we usually get brought in after everything hits the fan and don’t see how they came to be or how they get fixed. “Scandal” gives us the fly on the wall perspective on just how the scandal’s get handled or at least a close enough perspective if not accurate. We often wonder how the wives of the political figures really feel when their dirty laundries are aired out. Mellie (played by Bellamy Young) plays the wife that is well aware of her husband, President Fitzgerald Grant (played by Tony Goldwyn) stepping out. In fact, she gets mad at Olivia in season 1 for not playing her part and performing her mistress duties. And let’s not forget White House Chief of Staff Cyrus Beene (played by Jeff Perry) running back and forth delivering underground messages and trying to bargain with the President and the First Lady who is threatening to go on live TV to let the country know that her husband is a cheater. Juicy stuff like this makes us all wonder just who the real fixers are in politics, and how we can get their autographs.
3. The clients
The clients that walk into Olivia’s office for her help are not regular Janes and Joes. Olivia has helped people from Senators to madams and they all have a unique story that you want to know everything about. The most memorable client would have to be from the very first episode. A decorated war veteran found his lady friend murdered. He was in a relationship with a man and was willing to go to jail for his friend’s murder even though he had nothing to do with it, all so that he would not be ousted as a gay man. The storyline was powerful because it was on the heels of “don’t ask, don’t tell” and really showed all that “Scandal” had to offer. It wasn’t going to be just another fictional drama, it would be one that we could relate to simply because it connected to current times.

4. Olivia and Fitz
I would be lying if I didn’t say that Olivia and Fitz’s relationship is a guilty pleasure. Guilty in the sense that you know they should not be together but a very small part of you wants them to. Let’s be terrible together on this, these two are hot! The connection between the two characters is magnetic. It’s to the point that when there are intimate scenes with Mellie and Fitz some of us are wondering, what the heck is he doing kissing his wife, ew! Though many would like to say that a big part of the show relies on their affair, I beg to differ. But there is no denying it, fans love Olivia and Fitz even though we know we are so wrong for feeling this way.
5. The dialogue
Dialogue is key when it comes to a great show and “Scandal” has got that down to a science. The mind sticking one-liners and verbal jabs paired with the intense debates that makes you wonder if the characters ever took a breath in their arguments, are worth every bit of the 60 minutes. The shining star of memorable lines that writer/creator Shonda Rhimes also admits was one of her favorites was when Olivia looked Fitz in his eyes while arguing in the oval office and declared “I am not a fantasy. If you want me, earn me!” That scene was simply amazing. The emotion was clearly there, but the dialogue and what it stood for was priceless.

6. The Team (a.k.a. the gladiators)
Olivia Pope’s team known as the gladiators are like her team of superheroes. They each bring something useful to the table and make up a very solid unit. What I adore about them each is that they are flawed in their own way, and flaws make them seem real. Though Quinn (played by Katie Lowes) and Abby (played by Darby Stanchfield) may be annoying sometimes, they are assets and are authentic. Can you imagine watching a show of absolutely perfect characters, no thank you! One of the gladiators Huck (played by Guillermo Diaz) is a fan favorite next to Harrison (played by Columbus Short) who has raked up so many crushes we’ve lost count. I’m still hoping for a happily ever after for Huck. “752” still makes my eyes water.

7. One name: Cyrus
Cyrus Beene is an instrumental character on “Scandal.” Olivia may be the heart of the show but Cyrus is the backbone. Most humans are made up of flesh, blood and bones but Cyrus is made up of stress and nerves. This character is not only funny but level headed and oh so conniving. I once likened Cyrus to an evil unicorn. Cyrus is Chief of staff but is also essentially the President’s right-hand man. Being that he was one of the individuals who devilishly got the President into the White House by rigging the election, Cyrus is like the devil and angel on the President’s shoulder when it comes to making decisions. His emotional blowups are one for the books and he definitely can’t be trusted but we love him all the same.
8. Epic cliffhangers
If TV was a university, Shonda would major in cliffhangers and would be the valedictorian of the class. We’ve seen this with her show “Grey’s Anatomy” and she’s exercised this skill with “Scandal” often. We had to wait months to find out who Quinn really was after it was suggested on the season one finale that she wasn’t who everyone thought she was. And then, Shonda had the audacity to do it again but on a bigger scale at the end of season three when Olivia was tossed into a limo and was sitting across from a gentleman she called “Dad.” Why must she keep doing this to us, and why do we like it so much?! Especially when it takes about an hour after the show has ended to recover from them. Truthfully, those cliff hangers is one of the reasons why we keep coming back for more. It delivers on the shock value and builds that good old fashion anticipation. So much so, it almost becomes a priority to make sure to be in front of your flat screen at 10:01 and not a minute later.
9. The music
As a huge music fan, I just had to add this in but for good reason. Music makes up the soundtrack for great moments both on TV and real life. In the case of “Scandal,” the music is like that extra cast member. Just as dialogue serves the purpose of drawing us in, the music does the job of saying it all when the characters don’t speak. The music on “Scandal” is mostly old school R&B with songs from artists like Kool & the Gang and a ton of Stevie Wonder. Perfect example of letting the songs speak for itself when no words are needed was during the final minutes of Mellie’s deadline before she went public with Fitz’s cheating. Instead of giving in, Fitz goes to Olivia’s apartment and they sit and watch as the minutes fall off the clock with Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s “You’re All I Need to Get By” playing during the scene. It’s the little things.
10. Olivia’s chicness
Olivia’s fashion is impeccable on “Scandal.” With a woman so heavily involved in work you have to wonder what time she has to shop. Yet and still she manages to have the latest and hottest fashion and accessories to drool over. So much so, fans are often seen tweeting Kerry Washington asking her the brand name of the outfits or bags she’s wearing in episodes. Let’s face it, Ms. Pope is the only person who can clean up a bloody crime scene in a white trench coat and not get a spec of blood on herself. And it’s not just her clothes, it’s her office and not to mention her home’s decor. Everything around this woman is chic and screams class. She likes to wear a lot of white and I don’t know if this is something that is purposefully done to kind of make her seem innocent and pure even though she’s involved in so much dirt, but it works!
Season three of “Scandal” is set to premiere on Thursday, October 3 at 10pm EST on ABC. Oh, and Season one and two are currently available on Netflix so if you aren’t caught up, get to it!
Chime in! Are you a fan of “Scandal”? What was your favorite episode so far? What are you looking forward to most for the new season? We would love to hear from some of you who aren’t fans too! What about “Scandal” is unappealing to you?

Related: Kerry Washington, Scandal, Starpulse Exclusives, Drama, Columns, ABC

Photo Credits: American Broadcasting Companies, Inc

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