At long last! After two months, Scandal's back tonight, Thursday, February 27th at 10 PM ET on ABC.
If you want to be totally surprised about what's ahead for the rest of the season, DO NOT READ THIS!!!!!!!!!!!
Is the former Gladiator playing Charlie or is that romance the real deal? The actress previews the return of ABC's political thriller.
What does the future hold for Scandal's now former Gladiator, Quinn Perkins (Katie Lowes)?
After Huck (Guillermo Diaz) forcibly removed the newest addition to Olivia Pope & Associates from the Scooby gang, Quinn will look to take her new skill set to another employer -- quite possibly the now Jake-led B613 as she stands by Charlie's side.
The Hollywood Reporter caught up with Lowes to preview what to expect from the final eight episodes of season three. Plus, is that romance with Charlie the real deal or might she be manipulating the master manipulator?
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What kind of fallout might Huck face for torturing Quinn?
When we ended the midseason finale, Huck tells her she's not a Gladiator anymore and strips her of all her OPA responsibilities. She feels like she can't go back to work and like she's not welcome there. So she runs into Charlie's (George Newbern) arms not only because she does like him but she has nowhere else to go. The beginning of this first episode back, we'll get a look into what that means for Quinn. What does that mean when she only has Charlie on her side and that's her new identity? Where will she find a new home? Where will her new responsibilities lie, and what kind of Charlie-like jobs is she going to get herself involved with?
What's Quinn's next goal? Does she want to be a part of B613?
She does. Huck opened something within her that she can't get anywhere else. Once Quinn tortured somebody and once she's been tortured, that's the world she lives in. She's not going to feel that kind of risk and that kind of high in any other place of employment. She's looking to Charlie to either help her get into B613 and help her on a job that maybe Cyrus would employ him on. Charlie is a free agent who goes wherever the money and the jobs are. Quinn is a more loyal character than that. Right now, she's looking for anything. She wants to be employed and find her sense of purpose. Without Huck, she wants to find where she fits in. The girl has to pay her rent! It's that simple. She has a very specific set of skills. Quinn is going to look for where to work, but she wants to find a more permanent home than be a free agent like Charlie.
At the same time, she's putting all her faith in Charlie -- who plays both sides and isn't really trustworthy. He's responsible for ruining her life.
He is the one who put that syringe in her hand! I don't think she'll ever forget that. Quinn is aware that he's playing both sides. But Quinn knows she has a bit of power over him. Charlie hasn't had many relationships in his life and this is the closest he'll ever get to one, even though it's completely messed up. We don't know who here is trustworthy or not, but this is the closest thing he's ever had to responsibility for a relationship and somebody's feelings and whereabouts. We're going to get a lot more into that in these final eight episodes.
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How real is Quinn's romantic relationship with Charlie? Is she sleeping with him to use him? Might she be playing him?
I think there's definitely part of that. I think it's both. There's no easy answer. Quinn knows her power over Charlie comes from sleeping with him and making him feel invested in her s~e~xually and personally, but I also think her eggs are all in that basket and she really needs him. She does likes him a bit because he's the only person in her entire world right now who understands her needs and understands where she's at. She can be 100 percent herself with him. It's not like she's dating a normal guy that she has to pretend that she's not into torturing people, hacking and wanting to work for B613. I don't know how a normal dude would really feel about that set of skills! But for Charlie, he's super turned on by it! There is some sort of sick, twisted respect and feelings for each other. I think their s~e~x life is probably a bit weird and kinky and this is closest they're going to get to a relationship.
Are we going to see how "weird and kinky and twisted" their s~e~x life is?
You may or you may not see that! All I can say about that is in these last eight episodes, Quinn goes further into this rabbit hole with Charlie and where she belongs -- if it's at B163 or if it's somewhere else with Charlie. He's not going away anytime soon.
Jake, a former Gladiator, is working for B613. Could that give OPA -- and Quinn -- some pull with the group?
You will definitely see that play out. Jake (Scott Foley) and Quinn have a history -- we've had scenes together at OPA and they did play for the same team at one point. We're going to see if Jake running B613 means, "Hey, come aboard and work with us!" or is if it's going to be, "Absolutely not; you're not ready for this or you don't have what it takes." And where does Olivia play into all this? Does she want Quinn to go with Jake or not? There are so many pieces to this puzzle -- you'll see how they all fit together.
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What about Quinn and Olivia's relationship? Huck effectively acted for Olivia in booting Quinn from OPA.
Quinn feels that Olivia (Kerry Washington) is an extension of Huck. Huck is her protector and her guard dog. So if Huck is kicking her out of OPA, Quinn believes Olivia is kicking her out -- unless Olivia shows up and does something about it, Quinn took that as, "Nobody wants me."
Can Huck and Quinn come back from this? If they do work together again, how will their relationship have evolved
That question has been on my mind since we came back. Guillermo is one of my closest friends and one of my favorite actors to work with on the planet. I don't know how you come back from that. But those questions are answered. You will see things, maybe not in the beginning, but they're coming.
Fitz's re-election will play a major role in the back-half of the season. Can we expect Quinn to be involved in some capacity? How will this be different from Defiance?
It plays a huge role in the last eight of the season. All roads lead to Fitz (Tony Goldwyn). Every single one of our band of misfit toys will be involved somehow, some way. Everyone in their heart of hearts does not want a repeat of Defiance. Fitz holding office for the last four years -- which was not true to what the country wanted -- is not a good thing. No one wants to repeat the same mistakes. That's not to say it's not going to be a dirty, twisted, insane road to get there.
Scandal returns on Thursday at 10 p.m. on ABC. Hit the comments with your theories and head back to THR's The Live Feed on Thursday after the episode for our weekly postmortem.