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S&A "Scandal" Talk-Back Session #4 (Who IS Quinn Perkins? You'll Have 13 New Episodes To Find Out)

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by Tambay A. Obenson
May 18, 2012 9:37 AM
141 Comments
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And that's a wrap folks! 

It suddenly struck me how "post-racial" we could say the show is, in that Olivia Pope's race/skin color is really of no real bearing on the series' various narrative threads. It just is; we see her, we know she's a black woman, but it's not *announced*. Other than the visual reminder (can't wash it off, as the saying goes), you actually almost forget that she IS black; and that's also a credit to how connected and engaged you are as a viewer of the series, with all the various parts in this assembly line working well together to keep you occupied otherwise.

Whether all of that's a good thing or bad thing I'll let you all decide for yourselves. 

It's obviously significant if only because, for one of the very rare few instances in television history, America gets to see a black woman in this capacity, and with her skin color being almost akin to a prop. Now, who knows, showrunner/creator/producer Shonda Rhimes just might intro a scenario next season in which Olivia's race is indeed pivotal to a specific episode, or a narrative thread that stretches across multiple episodes. Or maybe not. 

Would you want her to do that?

And by the way, I'd say the same thing about Chief Of Staff Cyrus Beene's sexuality; he's gay, and we are told that, but, like Olivia being black, Rhimes doesn't *announce* it; it just is... you know... life... a sea of diverse, complex human beings.

We assume that the series takes place in the present-day; I don't know if at any point, it's dated - I can't immediately recall; my point being that Rhimes paints a portrait of a world - a USA specifically - in which matters of race and sexual orientation are of little concern to the people who populate this universe. And so it's not improbable that one wonders if this is a representation of an America as it exists today, or is it a futuristic one, minus all the CGI :)

Or an America as Rhimes would like it to be.

But I can only assume the controversy that must have surrounded the appointing of Cyrus - a seemingly openly gay man - as White House Chief Of Staff; especially with the pairing of a Vice President who's from the so-called Bible Belt, who espouses conservative, Christian values... or is all that just BS as well, and she's just as power-hungry and unscrupulous as the others, willing to do whatever is necessary to reach her ultimate goal of becoming President of the USA?

But, yes, it's a wrap for season 1 of Scandal, a show that apparently has a huge chunk of black America hooked - likely primarily female. Out of mere curiosity, how many of you dudes have kept up with the series? Also, how many of you women have not, and maybe don't care for it enough to do so? Not that every black woman is somehow obligated to watch it by the way because it stars a black woman; just asking...

A number of questions were answered (the most crucial being who really had Amanda Tanner killed); and of course, as you'd expect with any season finale, a cliffhanger - who is Quinn Perkins?

So who IS Quinn Perkins? And looking back on the previous 6 episodes, where any hints given at any time that might help answer that question? I can't immediately think of any.

In response to that question when asked by TV Guide, Rhimes herself obviously wouldn't give anything away, except to say:

I think you're going to find the answer very interesting. I'm still deciding [when we'll reveal it].

Obviously Olivia knows; she knows everything, and she did hire Quinn, so it's no surprise. Given the resistance to finger-printing her, and Olivia's knack for picking employees with *questionable* pasts, I think we can safely say Quinn falls right in-line with the others. So what you've got here is a kind of rag-tag team of smart people with problems, and Olivia is like their mother, which you could say makes sense, given her own shady past - having an affair with the Prez. One big happy family :)

Also noteworthy was the First Lady finally showing us who she really is. But I think we all (certainly I) suspected she had an agenda all her own early on. Specifically, in a previous talkback session, I said that their marriage is reminiscent of what people said about Bill and Hillary Clinton's marriage - that it's essentially like a business partnership. Both have/had their political ambitions, and are/were simply working together like business partners to see those objectives through - even in light of Bill's 3 or 4 affairs, including the Monica Lewinsky scandal, which likely inspired the Amanda Tanner fiasco in Scandal.

Olivia's reaction when the First Lady *revealed* herself to her was hilarious; you could see the look of absolute surprise on her face, kind of like, "I don't know who this woman is."

But it's really no surprise that the First Lady is just as sheisty as several of the other characters on the show. It's a dog eat dog world out there; every man for himself. A sad commentary on the state of things (and not just within the political realm) we could say.

And now that we know Cyrus is the mastermind behind Amanda Tanner's death, looking ahead to next season, will others eventually learn the truth, and will whomever does, play a significant role in season 2?

Talking to TV Guide again, Rhimes had this to say in response:

The answer to both of those questions is yes. There's a level of power that Cyrus is playing with at this moment that allows him to distance himself from the actual acts of doing certain things, and possibly gives him a little bit of leeway in his mind. He really does think that he is doing what's best for the country. I absolutely believe Cyrus has a line that he won't cross. Cyrus is a patriot who really loves his country and really believes in the presidency. In a weird way, that's his flaw. His patriotism has taken him to some dark places.

Well, yeah. Like murder.

And what about Billy Chambers? Given what we saw towards the end of the episode, as he got on the elevator with Charlie, and later we see Charlie at Cyrus' house asking for the rest of his payment for taking out Amanda Tanner, because he needed to leave town ASAP, are we to assume that Charlie finished the job Huck assigned to him - to kill Billy Chambers?

Rhimes wouldn't answer that obviously.

And with Olivia handing in her White House badge/pass as she walked out of the compounds, does that imply she's done with that specific circle of people, and that entire narrative thread won't be continued next season?

Rhimes' reply: 

We'll see. I think it's important to keep her within that world in some capacity, but she burned a very important bridge. More than just walking away from him, she forced him to do something that he wasn't willing to do. He actually got the courage to walk away from his life, and she threw him back in. While she may be willing to come back in, he may not be willing to let her in.

And so does this open the door for a new romance for Olivia?

Rhimes's response: 

There is [the possibility of a new romance]. I was just talking about that today. There's a prospect of one. I don't know that we're going to get to it early in the second season, but there's definitely a prospect of one. I think that we call her a political nun and she has no personal life and we all know why she has no personal life. But I think that she reached a crossroads at the end of the finale. She handed in her White House badge. She was walking away. I think we might come upon her trying to get her own little bit of normal at this moment.

And might this new prospect be a black man?

Rhimes' reply:

[...]

Just kidding; that question wasn't asked; but I know a lot of you were thinking it. If I ever get an opportunity to interview Rhimes about the show between now and next season, I'll be sure to ask her that question for you all :)

But I won't be surprised if Rhimes hooks her up with the copper, David. They *dance* well together I think, and it won't be shocking to learn that they had a little something going on at one point, back in the day.

The TV Guide interview is quite thorough, so if you'd like your season 2 expectations potentially spoiled, I'd suggest you read it; if not, stay away. Not that Rhimes gives much away, but I think she hints at enough, and does answer a few of the questions head-on.

She talks about whether we can expect a major through-line next season as we had with the Amanda Tanner thread this season, and also the potential real-life scandals she might be considering as fodder for next season's episodes.

And by the way, this should make you fans of the show happy - she reveals that ABC ordered 13 episodes for season 2. So expect double the fun.

See ya next season!

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141 Comments

  • TT | May 24, 2012 5:39 PMReply

    I am a fan of this show! I felt slighted that this was the end of this season!! I've been looking all over on HULU, ABC, etc. for the next episode.. oh well! Can't wait until next season. I loved the diversity of each character, and seeing how they worked as a team. I think this last scandal with Quinn really was a test of the team's loyalty. But they all went in with blind trust. Which will be fun to see play out. When Olivia left the White House and handed in her badge it was indicative of the end of her sexual relationship with the President. She hadn't fully made that decision until the guy engaged confessed of his infidelity even though he felt she was the one. He said he tried to remain faithful- but he just couldn't even in the best of circumstances. Which was parallel to her relationship w/the President. Oh well, but it was fun. I've watched each episode at least 3 times each. Excellent writing, excellent characters, great acting...what more can you ask for- oh a leading lady that happens to be black ;o) love it!

  • Akimbo | May 22, 2012 3:33 PMReply

    Well, now that we're done justifying questioning the blackness of a character who fails to behave in an overtly stereotypical manner (when we're really just kinda salty that a black chick is messing with a white dude)...cookout anyone? Who's making the potato salad?

  • Muse | May 22, 2012 10:51 PM

    .....And scene.

  • Nadine | May 22, 2012 3:24 PMReply

    Again, CAREY, my reply to your last inflammatory comment (based in the BIZARRO world) is below. I see terms like "self-hatred" and I laugh... not because they are not real or even applicable in certain, sometimes most, instances, but because statements such as those are just soooo "the opposite" of who I am (which anyone who has been on these boards would know...) that it is clear that the one assailing , well... me, with such comments is simply clueless. The problem is not mine... it's theirs. You scoff at my usage of "African Principles", yet in the same breath accuse me of "white-washing". So sad. BTW - I'll end just as I started... using terms like "white girl" or "white boy" is a waste of our resources and spirit. There are bigger, very real issues to battle when it comes to "race" in America, including social constructions and media representation/abuses. Denying "the struggles and hardships of the Black American's experience"... Lawd have mercy... again, my response to that tripe is below.

  • i thought you were done | May 23, 2012 3:26 PM

    you broke your word. how could you?

  • CareyCarey | May 23, 2012 12:13 PM

    Please Lauren Bacall (below) , enough of the white girl cry (drama queen). Who said your mouth was a prayer book anyway? But that's ok, even if you won't kiss me in the morning, I'll still love ya :-). Btw, can't we all just get along? If not, if this is another love TKO... shoo, fly, don't bother me.

  • lauren | May 23, 2012 8:24 AM

    @Nadine-you can't reason with Carey's pretzel logic; the neurotransmitters in his old brain have calcified. I'm electing to ignore his meandering monologs from now on.

  • CareyCarey | May 22, 2012 10:24 AMReply

    @ Nadine, I've purposely submitted this -- my last comment on this subject -- at the top of this tread for several reasons. The first being, I will no longer assist you in your blasphemous attempted to deny the struggles and hardships of the black american's experince. I will no longer be a vehicle for your platform of self-hatred and the "white-washing" of our past. I've come to this point -- our fork in the road -- because it has become glarringly obvious that you do not desire to engraciate yourself with the ideology that shared experiences/roots/struggles/pain/oppressions, etc, springs forth shared "reactions". Now, I know I do not have to explain to you the full scope of "reactions"and how "it/they" can manifest in various forms, so I'll continue. As I was saying, I will no longer help you, assist you, nor engage you in a conversation that's hell bent on moving the agenda/message that there's no discernable differences between black americans and white americans. Listen, I've come to believe your platform is reminiscent of gays and lesbians whose major strategy is to focused on painting themselves as "just like me or you" with no discernable differences. To a large degree, that mindset comforts their soul and reinforces/affirms their belief that their way of life is fine and dandy. And if they can sell that "thought", that concept, they've created an army of messengers to carry the message that we are all the same. More importantly, anyone who apposes their view/concept, now becomes the dreaded enemy. So I am simply wondering why a person would push the issue -- TRUMPET THE MESSAGE -- that whites and black folks in American are one big happy family with only one discernable difference, their skin color? Are those who push that message trying to validate their life of total surrender -- assimilation? BE JUST LIKE THEE... the white man and his culture. I know society has painted the color "black" as a negative symbol of "bad" and "white" as purity, so I wonder if that's the core reason behind some black folk's desire to distance themselves away from anything associated with "being black"? Anyway, we're back where we started... S&A scandalous "Scandal" Talk-Back- Session: 130 comments later. Soooo, answers to your questions. 1) Black Traits? Ans: Silly question. If I have to list them, you're obviously fooling yourself, and thus, you do not want to know. I listed 15 black women who exhibited several black traits but you focused on something (I don't remember) negative in several of them, while turning a blind eye on their finer qualities and unique-ness 2) White traits? Ans: See answer to question "1". Add A) why is there the term vally girls? B) They way the majority of white folks react around a room full of black people. C) lets add something as simple as how they(white chicks) swing their hair away from their face. D) How a large majority of whites preceive amercican history, slavery, etc. Final: I don't care what Shonda does with the character 3) African Principles? 4) Question: Do black women from different parts of the United States exhibit similar traits? Ans: Silly question to the 10th degree. The only way black women across the United States would NOT exhibit similar qualities would be if they changed their skin color, never read a book or watch tv, never traveled outside their cave, out of their homes, off their block or off their remote island in the middle of the red sea. And never look out their windows nor associate with other black women who may originate from different places of birth. Silly silly question! We are influenced by a plethora of stimuli -- PERIOD. 5) Question: Perceptions of black youths. Ans: For the umpteenth time!! -- however and whenever someone arrives at a conclusion regarding something or someone -- (at a specific period/moment in time) -- and then acts on that perception/conclusion, the end results of their decision DOES NOT in any way alter their original thoughts. The deed is done. Right or wrong, afterthoughts or whatever... The horse pulls the cart! 6-7-8-9 questions = Redundancy. So Nadine, in short, if you wish to deny your blackness and whitewash our history and raise the flag of complete assimilation, you go right ahead, but I am not holding your hand anymore. If being just like white chick soothe your soul, that's fine b/c I understand where you're coming from. But let me remind you that shared experiences develope shared reactions and if you refuse to accept that, I cannot pursuade you to change. Serioulsy, since the first black person stepped on this continent, they all shared common experiences. And it goes without question that we -- as black folks -- are still experiencing some of those earlier "problems" and joys and triumphs, and consequently, unless one is fooling themselves, we will continue to share similar reactions. WE ARE UNIQUE! Please accept it.

  • Nadine | May 22, 2012 2:28 PM

    @CAREYCAREY ..umm, yeah. You lose. ;) Lies never win. Oh, and where I've NEVER, EVER believed (or even suggested) that Blacks and Whites in America were anywhere NEAR the same, sans their color, (quite the opposite as I clearly mentioned below and implored you to address regarding Black and White female leadership styles) I must say, you are exhibiting a trait that I would have listed under "White traits"... you are rewriting history, my dear, in an attempt to come off as a victim, "white boy" *giggle*.

  • Kid chaos | May 21, 2012 8:52 PMReply

    Kerry washington is going to be raped by some white dudes in her new movie i bet she has no problem with letting that be seen on film.(great day for black women.. you go girl)

  • statum106 | May 21, 2012 7:59 PMReply

    I'm interested in finding out who Quinn Perkins is because she's obviously so over her head (unless you are a paramedic or doctor, you don't pull out an object that's embedded in someone's neck.

    As for Cyrus, did he orchestrate Amanda's abduction and murder to protect the president or does he have another agenda?

    Those are the questions I have coming into season 4. As for Olivia, she's just as broken as the people who work for her but has a drive, focus and conscience that inspires loyalty and gets results. I'm interested to see if there's another side to this group- a side that's capable of creating a crisis as opposed to solving one. Hopefully we'll see that next season.

  • Plez | May 21, 2012 10:37 AMReply

    Good grief!!! This Country is so warped...Damned if you do, damned if you don't. Shonda thanks for a writing a show that empowers women to choose their own destination in life and not worry if a man will be there to hold her hand. If you continue to let past history override your life, you will never be happy. 400 years ago our ancesters were slaves, in today's society we are allowing it to happen again. Stop being ridiculous and criticizing black women for being light skin, dark skin, mixed, fat, loud, strongly opinionated and taking roles that allow them to become more relevant in this racists society. The more we disrepect each other on these social network sites the further apart and divided we become. Aren't your tired of being the only race that promotes black on black hate?

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 12:29 AMReply

    @ Akimbo, in reference to your comment --> "Seems like the men here are the ones with the real issues"... this comment section of S&A is dominated by females. So I understand how you would come to that conclusion. @ Nadine, I have a suggestion. Since we might agree that our written words to not do justice to all are concerns and/or opinions, and S&A no longer has a podcast, I believe there's room for one S&A's opinionated big talkers. I can invision one with the likes of you, jug, Akimbo, bondgirl, AV, Misha, maybe Darkan, Tamara, Melissa, BLUTOPAZ, Sergio, Cherish and a host of others who let it fly. It's certainly would be absent of one-sided opinions and it WOULD be filled with much controversy. Yep, an open forum of mixed black folks from diverse backgrounds, yet shared interests. Think about it -- a person could get their roll out without the constaints of a confusing comment format and delayed responses. And, I believe it would be filled with a host of entertainment value!

  • Nadine | May 21, 2012 9:04 PM

    My post below is for CAREYCAREY.

  • Nadine | May 21, 2012 9:02 PM

    1) What are Black Traits a) Please provide as many examples of these traits as you can; b) Please give us 5 examples of traits you DO NOT see in the character of Olivia Pope and/or Kerry Washington that you would like Shonda Rhimes to include next season in order to change your "perception" regarding Pope and Washington's "white girl-ness"; 2) What are White Traits a) Please provide as many examples of these traits as you can; b) Please give us 5 examples of traits you DO see in the character of Olivia Pope and/or Kerry Washington that you would have to see Shonda Rhimes NOT include next season in order for you to possibly alter or even question your "perception" regarding Pope and Washington's "white girl-ness"; 3) What are African Principles?, a) If you agree African Principles do exist, how do we see those principles manifested in societies outside of the United States amongst the global Black presence, b) How are they manifested here in the States; 4) If you have a Black woman from San Diego, a Black woman Chicago, a Black woman from Texas, a Black woman from Miami, a Black woman from Georgia, a Black woman from D.C., a Black woman from New York and a Black woman from New Hampshire, would you expect them all to exhibit similar traits that you listed in your answer for #1a.; 5) If someone PERCEIVES a Black teen as being a drug addict or one MORE LIKELY to be engaged in drug activity simply because they are Black, does that make their perception valid, true or worthy simply because that is what they think (their perception) given that Black teens are the second least likely group, in the U.S., to engage in drug activity (see http://www.dukehealth.org/health_library/news/white-and-hispanic-teens-more-likely-to-abuse-drugs-than-african-americans)? - Perceptions can and have been changed throughout the centuries which is why I found your point re: perception invalid. Also, simply because you are not conscious of your concerns regarding Blackness and Pope and how your dialogue comes off as highly gendered does not mean that it is not subconsciously gendered therefore something to not be ignored by your detractors. 6) I also asked you to specifically address my comments on leadership styles and Black women (which directly correlates to Olivia Pope given that she is the boss)... you ignored. Please briefly respond to the statement which illustrated to me the major fault in your premise; 7) I asked you earlier of your thoughts on two specific Black actors, then I decided to not continue... you then quoted my questions (which is not answering them) and followed them up with "WTH???" (which was not answering them) ... So again, "Please tell me... is LaMorne Morris Black on the show NEW GIRL, because, he kind of never acknowledges it... what about Damon Wayans Jr. on Happy Endings"... finally, "Now come on Nadine, play fair. You say I am entrenched in my opinion and thus have a wall up and are NOT TRYING to understand your statements. That's simply NOT TRUE. I repeatedly answered your concern. Albeit not directly (in some cases) nevertheless,"...CAREY. Simply because you state that you have answered my questions, does not make it so. So no, CAREY, I am not looking for a 10 page response. I would simply like you to either sh!t or get off the pot. You have my questions... I ask that you simply answer them "straight, no-chaser"... If you elect not to (which is fine), I ask that you refrain from inserting me into your dialogues with other people regarding this issue and not address me again on this issue with anything but the answers to my questions.

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 6:54 PM

    Now come on Nadine, play fair. You say I am entrenched in my opinion and thus have a wall up and are NOT TRYING to understand your statements. That's simply NOT TRUE. I repeatedly answered your concern. Albeit not directly (in some cases) nevertheless, throughout my many posts, I believe I've address your central points. But if not, or if you missed them --> "When I or ANYONE utters the phrase "she acts like a white girl" -- there's not a damn thing anyone can say to change that person's perception. Justifying a person's behavior/actions does NOT invalitate the perceptions of the "accuser". There's arguably a thousand indicators/reasons, and a combination of such, which could inspire one to come to their conclusion. We can't take that from them -- THEY OWN THAT! You -- nor I -- can change what makes one person laugh, nor what makes them frown. Nor can we make them see people and the world around them, THROUGH OUR EYES. I am suggesting those who are spending an inordinate amount of time explaining Ms. Pope's "lifestyle" in an effort to change the view/perceptions of others, are on a fool's errand. It cannot happen. The effort is as fruitless and pointless as one trying to "teach" a blind man about the colors of the rainbow. And then complain if he or she doesn't see it your way. [I'm bringing it home now] If I used the term "they act like a white person" I know what it means "TO ME" and that's all I, or ANYONE, should care about. And, they should get all hell bent out of shape because -- truthfully -- they don't know why I came to that conclusion. I believe the problem lies within. The accused (for lack of a better word) may take those words as a negative connatation, but that would be on them, not me. Hell, as I said in another comment, I don't care where each of the principle characters/usual suspects are located, raised, [REGIONALITY] etc, -- on the surface, acting like a white person and/or talking like a white person, should not be perceived as a good thing or a bad thang (there's plenty of room for discussion). The vision will forever rest at the feet of the one making the statement. Last, as long as each of us has our own free mind, the phrase "he or she acts like a white person"holds merit. One might not agree, but it IS A VALID STATEMENT. Granted, a person or persons can bitch and moan, and explain in the most intricate details, why a person "acts" a certain way, but that IS NOT going to change the perceptions/viewpoint of the one making the comment, b/c again, who knew exactly what qualities/characteristic/actions/nuances, etc, the accuser used to draw their conclusion? In short Nadine, you cannot "talk" a person out of their vision. They own that! Good or bad, right or wrong, they've build their images over numerous years, and it's work for them, and you can't change it.

  • Lauren | May 21, 2012 6:08 PM

    @Nadine-Notice how men started this noise soon after female comments about how hot Olivia and Ftiz's chemistry was... yeah and Carey's great at deflecting pointed remarks or regurgitating them to suit his point of view.

  • Nadine | May 21, 2012 5:29 PM

    ... I don't understand. "I was wondering why Nadine insisted on pointing out the differences of black women in Washington D.C., on the east coast and other regions of the United States. Damn, I couldn't understand why she wouldn't stop explaining the dynamics of her life and that of Olivia Popes."... my name continues to pop up. Did we not have an agreement? Also, you were able to summarize my points just fine here which you claimed was a near impossible task in not so many words given my inarticulate ramblings. Not only that, but you continue to do exactly what I asked you not to by glossing over the the content, paraphrasing, etc... regarding my points/questions posed directly to you, but instead you choose to do so with someone who was not a party to the conversation. I'm not going to explain REGIONALITY to you and why the characteristics you don't see in Pope and Kerry Washington that make you question Pope are the same characteristics you would not see in me thereby rendering my "Blackness" also up for interpretation by you as well. I now think that you have a wall up and are NOT TRYING to understand my statements, because you can clearly paraphrase them, but seemingly pretend to not see the connections.

  • Rane | May 21, 2012 12:42 AM

    In my opinion, time would be better spent towards making a good movie rather than talking in circles.

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 12:42 AM

    Damn... "constraints" not constaints. and, "do not do justice", not "to" ... and, "I believe there's room for one titled "S&A's Opinionated Big Talkers". Yep, as usual, I botched the sh*t out of that comment :-). Please forgive this old goat of a black man from Iowa.

  • rane | May 21, 2012 12:20 AMReply

    Thankfully Ms Rimes doesn't need to pay attention to the antiquated, sexist, racist, trifling, jealous, narrow minded, myopic bullshit that exists here and neither should any other filmmaker. Catering to the permutating precepts of what is black enough, will only serve to keep you stuck on act one/scene one/page one forever.

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 9:43 AM

    @ RANE, it was merely a coincidence that I used females to express my opinion. It was not a conscious effort on my part to excluded male actors. The gist of the arguments revolved about female actor, so I just followed the flow. And again, female commenters are the overwelming majority of those who visit this site, so I understand how you and others would "unfairly" focus on that small point. But Rane, you're working me this morning... so get back to work :-). Don't even think about coming back with your semantics "slide rule".

  • rane | May 21, 2012 9:07 AM

    @carey-"nor was this a male or female issue in my mind" Your vitriol (in caps) aimed at Ms Washington, Seldana and Berry? Anyway... I'm editing.

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 8:21 AM

    Ms. Rane, you seem to be missing my point as well. You would not be pissing me off if you made a movie about a monkey making love with a goat and they had gay half black children who talked like white girls. I mean... "disappoint MY racial behavior standard"???!!! Damn, I could have had a V8. So that's where the confusion lies? I was wondering why Nadine insisted on pointing out the differences of black women in Washington D.C., on the east coast and other regions of the United States. Damn, I couldn't understand why she wouldn't stop explaining the dynamics of her life and that of Olivia Popes. But wait, Ms Rane I am sorry -- b/c you are correct about this-->"when white misconceptions of us as a monolithic group stirs our indignation...One can't have it both ways". HELLO.... I AM WITH YOU! What whites do or say has NEVER stirred my interest. I've repeatedly asked, why white folks seem to be the focus of many of our discussions. I've even been called a "white guy" b/c I refused to join in the poor-poor us and "kill whitty" routine. That's a completely different camp than I'm in. But now I understand where you're coming from, so I hope you hear me out. Let me draw a parallel between this ongoing discussion and one involving Tyler Perry. Okay, some people simply flat out disapprove of everything Tyler Perry. There's nothing inherently wrong with that. The problem exists when some people (female or male) insists on catagorizing those who enjoy Tyler Perry's products and/or praise his efforts. As with this debate/discussion, one grossly errs when they try to pigeonhole a man or a woman into a position/class/group/location/sub-group/financial status/education level, etc, simply because of what makes THEM laugh while others frown, or how they view those around them. To that point, when I or ANYONE utters the phrase "she acts like a white girl" -- there's not a damn thing anyone can say to change that person's perception. There's arguably a thousand indicators/reasons why one would come to that conclusion. We can't take that from them -- they own that. So I've never understood why some folks get bent all out of shape when they hear those words? You, nor I, can change what makes one person laugh, nor what makes a person frown. Nor can we make them see people and the world around them, through our eyes. I am suggesting those who are spending an inordinate amount of time explaining Ms. Pope's "lifestyle" in an effort to change the view/perceptions of others, are on a fool's errand. Also, I could care less if a black man or a black women "acts" like a white person (whatever that means to whomever uses those words). . If I used the term I know what they mean "TO ME" and that's all I, or ANYONE, should care about. Hell, as I said in another comment, I don't care where each of the principle characters/usual suspects are located, raised, etc, -- acting like a white person and talking like a white person, should not be perceived as a good thing (there's plenty of room for discussion). Btw, I was never "disappointed" nor was this a male or female issue in my mind. Maybe it seemed that way b/c Ms. Rimes & Ms. Pope was the center of discussion. Last, as long as each of us has our own free mind, the phrase "he or she acts like a white person" holds merit. Granted, a person or persons can bitch and moan, and explain in the most intricate details, why a person "acts" a certain way, but that IS NOT going to change the perceptions/viewpoint of the one who made the comment.

  • Rane | May 21, 2012 2:03 AM

    @carey-I stated in "my opinion" sir; that I'd rather "make a good movie" which is MY choice for ME! Get it? I'm not telling anyone else what to do with their time...than pontificate ad nauseam about what is "black" when white misconceptions of us as a monolithic group stirs our indignation. One can't have it both ways; you can't protest being stereotyped one minute and accuse someone of acting white the next. This is the age old double fuck that we as a people never seem to tire of. In your comments below, all of your ire is pointed at black actresses. Aren't there any black actors who disappoint your racial behavior standards? If so, their omission speaks volumes...just my opinion. Again, to state the obvious, anything anyone offers here is opinion... and in my opinion, Ms. Rimes seems to be doing well for herself as well as the actors she employs in roles heretofore elusive to actors of color. 1. I am not a man and 2. I'm sure my film will piss you off which makes me smile... a lot:)

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 12:59 AM

    Sooooo, in essence, your last 2 comments are suggesting there should never be conversations centered around "race". Django -- OFF THE FREAKIN TABLE! "Girls".... OFF THE FUKIN' TABLE! Halle Berry -- OFF THE GODDAMN TABLE! Zoe Saldana -- OFF THE MOTHAFUKIN TABLE! GO MAKE A GOOD MOVIE AND KEEP YOUR BLACK TRAPS SHUT! Right? **eyebrow raised** How in the hell do you know what Ms. Rimes doesn't need to do and who she listens to? Rane my man, bring back your good-ass film or blow it out...

  • Neziah | May 20, 2012 10:17 PMReply

    It was a pretty good season to kick the show off with, but I wasn't overwhelmingly impressed by it, and the season finale was anti-climatic in a negative way. I personally think Taraji had the better show this season with "Person of Interest", which has one of the best season finales to a TV series in years. I do look forward to seeing what direction Rhimes takes Scandal in next season though.

  • Kid chaos | May 20, 2012 6:44 PMReply

    Orville you are on point.If black women knew there history sleeping with a white man would not be cool.

  • HUH | May 20, 2012 8:47 PM

    This article is racist in my opinion. Black woman know their history, but the men they encounter today are not slave owners. God created everyone equal! I think the show is amazing!

  • Orville | May 20, 2012 4:44 PMReply

    Also, another point I am pleased Kerry Washington finally got her Hollywood breakthrough but at what cost? So a young black woman has to be an older white man's concubine? Whenever President Grant calls Olivia she drops her panties?
    Why does a young black actress have to be a mistress to an older white man?
    Why is the president white anyway? Right now we have a black president in the White House. Why couldn't Olivia have a black man as a love interest? I am sure Shonda can find SOMEBODY to be Olivia's love interest who is black. Why couldn't Olivia have a boyfriend of her own? Why is Olivia written to be so vulnerable and weak? It seems strange to me. Olivia is supposed to be this strong black woman yet she can't resist a fifty something white guy? I guess in Shonda Rhimes post racial world this is somehow progress but it is not.

  • statum106 | May 21, 2012 8:27 PM

    @CareyCarey, a few episodes ago, Fitz was having problems sleeping. Mellie effectively admitted knowing about his affair with Olivia by stating he should be able to sleep better now. She knew and she understood the value of Olivia as part of "the team" and expressed her anger at her leaving to going into business for herself.

    This doesn't mean that she was truly "cool" with it but she understood what Fitz needed and what it meant for his presidency. I'm curious to see if Mellie had any affairs of her own during up to this point and I originally felt that she was the one who leaked that audiotape of Olivia and Fitz.

    @ Orville, Olivia's vulnerability is what makes her interesting. Here she is, speechifying (standard for Rimes' shows) to a South American dictator about what she'll do to him if he doesn't let his wife and kids remain in the US and yet she's totally thrown for a loop when she's escorted out of the White House after the administration declares "war" on her. What I'm saying is, her professional life is where her strength is. Once it got cloudy (romantic) with Fitz, that control and swagger disappears with the quickness.

    As for falling for the "older white man" thing, it's the allure of VISIBLE power and charisma. You saw it with Lewinsky and Clinton, you see it now with women both young and old with Obama. Hell, we saw it back in the day with Biggie and we see it now with Lil' Wayne. It ain't a stretch to see Olivia fall for Fitz, especially since she helped put him in office. Now, brothers are different. We won't try to bed Hillary Clinton or Nancy Pelosi because of their status but would try to step to Valerie Jarrett or Desiree Rogers because we think they're attractive.

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 11:16 AM

    @ Bondgirl, I loved your "sister wife" reference. I haven't heard that in some time. But tell me, I've always thought every party involved in the "relationship" had to be on the same page in order for those words to be applicable? Are you saying both Fitz & Mellie confided in each other about Olivia involvement? Or are you saying Fitz was creepin' with Olivia but Mellie was aware of it and was cool with it, yet kept it under her hat? I guess I am asking (b/c I didn't catch it) how did you come to your conclusion that this was a sister wife scenario? Anyway, if what you say is true, Shonda gots some real drama going on :-)

  • bondgirl | May 21, 2012 10:42 AM

    Orville, I respect your opinion but it's more complex than Olivia being the white man's concubine. Actually, by Episode 6 I realized the threesome is more of a polygamous marriage, except the only 2 who were aware from jump were Fitz & Mellie...Olivia's the naive one who thought she was being a sneak, which to her credit is why she ended it. I don't know if you've watched the full season, but everything about Mellie's behavior towards Olivia screamed sister wife. When Mellie invited her to the WH bc Fitz couldn't sleep through the night; making sure they danced together by grabbing Billy; even when she left to campaign in another state was all so that Fitz & Olivia could be alone intimately and allow him to focus on being the POTUS. Wives don't do that with concubines, mistresses or hookers..they do that with the second wife. Shonda had to set it up this way bc none of us would accept their love w/o some kind concession, and in this case it's the wife's permission that allows it to be okay (somewhat).

  • Cherish | May 20, 2012 7:07 PM

    I do agree with making Olivia making vulnerable and weak so early. I didn't like the whole Mellie's speech to Olivia about expecting her be his mistress. Not because Mellie said it - we saw the kind of woman she is - but that Olivia took it, didn't respond, no follow up on her feelings on this. Olivia is this bad-ass woman, but she's being cut down, put in her place. Its also the writing, all these intense monologues, mostly for shock value. But dialogues, which I think was needed in that scene, left a hole and felt one-sided. But calling Olivia a concubine, come on. Why can't she be a flawed individual, who is smart, but made a mistake? It didn't even seem like they had an affair, just that one night. And making the President black would have been a distraction. All the previous presidents have been White, and she probably didn't want people to make any associations with Obama.

  • Nadine | May 20, 2012 6:45 PM

    @ORVILLE... See now... WHY didn't you start out with this comment instead of dropping the "whore" word? I think you would have gotten a better dialogue. I don't have time, but while watching I couldn't understand if the FLOTUS' lies were supposed to successfully make the audience "understand" the affair, I wasn't buying it, but I saw that as a flaw not in Shonda's character of Olivia Pope, but in the internal workings of the character Olivia Pope. A part of the driving storyline. A weakness that had to be played upon only after having established Olivia's strengths earlier in the season. I suspect Olivia will have a new love interest next season, but with the short 7 episodes, I believe Shonda had to create and have the audience experience a dramatic backdrop to Olivia's life which would make future storylines much more layered and interesting. I think the short season answers most o your questions... as for the Black president... interesting... would you have cast a bi-racial Black man in the role or a Black man... just curious...

  • Orville | May 20, 2012 4:41 PMReply

    One of the points that some people are trying to articulate is Shonda Rhimes seems to have a propensity to PLACATE for white people. In Shonda's post racial universe, black people must some how ignore our blackness in order to be acceptable to whites. Black people can't have black friends or black lovers. Black people can't talk about anything relating to our race because Shonda is concerned about not upsetting white audiences.

    Olivia Pope is a black woman in theory but Shonda Rhimes seems determined to DOWNPLAY Olivia's blackness. All we see is Olivia Pope at work we never see Olivia in her private life. Does Olivia have any friends? Does Olivia have a black family? What does Olivia do in her private life?

  • Nadine | May 22, 2012 2:33 PM

    Sorry I didn't see your comment down here... please no problem! That scene got at my goat as well. I think she will have a Black love interest... I can feel it in my bones...

  • Orville | May 20, 2012 8:08 PM

    Nadine I was wrong to call Kerry's character a whore and I apologize. However, the Mellie scene where she admonishes Olivia she treated her like a prostitute. Mellie was basically saying it was okay for Olivia to sleep with her husband. I felt disgusted with that scene and I felt uncomfortable. I felt the scene played into negative stereotypes about black women sexuality.
    I am not sure ABC is as enthusiastic as some people think the network is. After all, ABC only ordered 13 episodes for the second season? Why not a full order of 22 episodes?
    Well I would like Olivia to date a man of colour but yes I would prefer Olivia to have a black male love interest. I don't see why not. I think someone like Henry Simmons or Michael Ealy would be perfect for Kerry's character.

  • Cherish | May 20, 2012 6:50 PM

    You asking about Olivia's backstory, friends, family? Dude, they squeezed like 2 seasons of storytelling into 6 episodes, this show didn't give anything or anyone a chance to breathe. It was so focused on the "scandal," not much else was told. In Grey's Anatomy Shonda told Bailey's personal life, didn't she have the baby in the first season?

  • Ali | May 20, 2012 5:10 PM

    You act like you know what Shonda Rhimes is thinking.

  • Alex | May 20, 2012 4:39 PMReply

    "And might this new prospect be a black man?"


    ...yep, there it is - there you go erasing everything you just commended Rhimes for doing. Joke or not, it's irrelevant. I hope it's the Police dude, but I enjoy their jibes/banter too much; also lord knows that Stephen (Finch) is a little interested...

  • Kid chaos | May 20, 2012 4:13 PMReply

    Many black women defending a woman who sleeps with a married man.

  • Jug | May 20, 2012 7:39 PM

    Straight Troll to be ignored.

  • Jug | May 20, 2012 7:38 PM

    Nadine, wasted breath. Chaos is one of the dumbest commentors to hit S&A in a loong time.

  • Nadine | May 20, 2012 4:56 PM

    @CHAOS... your child-like need for attention has always been sad to watch. In the couple of weeks I've even noticed your posts, not one of them has been thoughtful. This post here is probably your most thoughtful post and even then, it is weak... weak from every angle... weak in its premise... weak in its clear and deliberate attempt to MISframe the comments on this board in order to shame... laughable... as I said before... "grown folks" and you think I'm kidding about looking into improving your future as well as your present. A person exhibiting your characteristics is clearly unhappy in their own lives. You have a personal story that needs overcoming...

  • Cherish | May 20, 2012 11:57 AMReply

    Well, Nadine and BondGirl basically broke it down, but I can only add my voice as one of shocked and saddened to hear some people consider Olivia Pope as a sista who acts White or not in tune with her Blackness. I do have issues with writing and storytelling of this show (I don't care who Quinn Perkins is as I don't know her character well enough to care, and wtf w Mellie's convo w/Olivia) but Olivia acts White???!! Wow. I think this this is partly a regional thing. As I'm New Yorker (Brooklyn baby lol) as others pointed out, Kerry Washington and her character represent me and my friends - children of immigrants, good colleges - bougie, sure, but still firmly rooted in our Caribbean and African American roots and culture. Maybe this explains my disgust with Tyler Perry's Madea, but after spending time in Georgia for my job, I can see this "version" of blackness reflects the people out there. But, along with regional differences, I think that the Black community and culture have also narrowed the definition of Blackness. In this world Whitley Gilbert from A Different World would be called "white acting" today. Its as if we no longer have room for Bougie (for lack of better world) or upper class African American culture and just call these folks "trying to be white." Its really having a detrimental effect on our children.

  • CareyCarey | May 21, 2012 8:45 AM

    "Of course, the evidence is anecdotal, but the average black woman doesn't seem to have a problem with Olivia's blackness" @ Akimbo, you're right and we shall see. We'll see if black woman support Scandal next season ( without considerable disapproval if major changes don't occur) and if white folks stick around. You may be right, but if I had to bet it... I believe the newness has worn off. The honeymoon is over.

  • Akimbo | May 21, 2012 1:06 AM

    Whether you feel the women of this board are representative of all black women is a whole other conversation and since I didn't label myself in any way, I can't be a "self-proclaimed elitist." The fact remains that, when Scandal is on, twitter and Facebook are buzzing and it's not just the "film snobs." Of course, the evidence is anecdotal, but the average black woman doesn't seem to have a problem with Olivia's blackness; the male, as you might call them, "self-proclaimed elitists" of this board do. So you'll need another excuse. Also, thus far and outside of romantic partners & colleagues, no one on this show has family or friends except the clients of the week, so that's less an Olivia problem and more a show problem.

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 11:20 PM

    Nadine, we must have been writing at the same time. So look, I am going to blame our "issues" on the game. I mean, there's something about this form of communication that's obvioulsy impeding our understanding of each other. Listen, you said: "You actually did exactly what I asked you not to do, which was gloss over the the content, paraphrase and not address the real issues". NO NO NO! I tried to express that what you considered as "the real issue" where totally different than my concerns. In essence, they were not MY real issues. So I basically chose the path of least resistance. Yet, on the other hand you said --> "Your "perception" argument was blanket and not substantive...that's why I didn't address it". Is-that-right? All of your concerns are what... and mine are what?? Well, is seems we are agreeing that we both are talking but nobody is listening. Oh Btw, I am going to reserve my judgement on your last sentence --> "Oh and BTW - no one will ever "step" to me and question my "Blackness", they would literally have to be from Mars or be idiots and I don't usually surround myself with idiots. So yeah... you're the first to even come close". Huuuuum? **eyebrow raised**

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 10:54 PM

    @ Nadine (I'll get back to you Akimbo, in another post). Nadine, please excuse the tone of my last comment, but the central point of my concerns with you and your comment revolves around something my father told me. He said "son, never play another mans game". To that point Nadine, it goes without question that my writing skills are no match for yours. Consequently -- as I said in my last comment -- rather than write 10 pages to refute your allegations, [may times] I've chosen to pass. I did not believe my written word would do justice to all my concerns. And look, Akimbo dropped by and did exactly what I accused you of doing. she focused on this --> "seems like you guys would prefer a stereotype to a unique character. Lucky for you, that finger-popping, neck-waving sista is just a few channel clicks away". And please Akimbo, who's framing this issue/argument around "the women on this board" and who they relate to?! Hell, in the first place, most of the women who comment on this board, are in no way a reflection of the average black women in this world. This blog does NOT represent the likes and dislike of the average film/tv/movie viewer. Forget about it. This board is more a reflection of movie and film critics, writers and those in the movie industry, not to mention those who deplore Tyler Perry type movies. So please, move away from your self proclaimed elitist status. Now -- if I am not misstaken -- I believe my concerns, Orville's concerns and Misha's dislikes of the series, is rooted in the lack of a backstory that would give any indication that Olivia Pope is anything other than a black skinned alien, who was dropped on this planet, without family, friends or anything that would give a semblance that she is connected to ANY culture. And btw, Misha is not a man.

  • Nadine | May 20, 2012 10:44 PM

    @CAREYCAREY ... so... I wrote this thing.. this response to your inflammatory statement below. My response wasn't pretty, but it also wasn't something I felt comfortable writing to (and about) you (although your usage of the word "facetious" is killing me...). You actually did exactly what I asked you not to do, which was gloss over the the content, paraphrase and not address the real issues. So what can I do with that? I will take your indignities, I guess because I am stupid, maybe (or could it be that pesky African principle of "communalism")? I guess you would like me to accept that my arguments are TYPICALLY untrue (because you say so) and scattered (even though I clearly prefaced my last comment with "THIS IS A RANT" which you neglected to mention). Your "perception" argument was blanket and not substantive...that's why I didn't address it. Also to accuse me of intentionally misleading people? I mean, CAREY... after all this time if you really believe that, then we really don't need to be addressing each other. Llet's agree to navigate these boards in silence. Oh and BTW - no one will ever "step" to me and question my "Blackness", they would literally have to be from Mars or be idiots and I don't usually surround myself with idiots. So yeah... you're the first to even come close.

  • Akimbo | May 20, 2012 9:58 PM

    "Now Nadine, you have to know that many of your comments are rather difficult to respond to. At times they're filled with 10 different points /views/statements, many of which are totally untrue. And some of which are (imo) totally off topic. Consequently, rather than write 10 pages to refute your allegations, I've chosen to pass."
    WHOA, pot meet kettle. And you didn't even do what you promised. Why try to pawn off your judgement of Kerry's blackness on "black women who may not be able to relate," when the black women on this board seem to be just fine with the character and Washington's portrayal? Seems like the men here are the ones with the real issues, which is too bad; seems like you guys would prefer a stereotype to a unique character. Lucky for you, that finger-popping, neck-waving sista is just a few channel clicks away.

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 9:44 PM

    @ Cherish... "Carey, I do understand what you're saying re black folks trying to distance themselves from "Blackness". Thanks for acknowledging my concerns. "Now negative low class behaviors seem so intricately tied to Black culture" EXACTLY! Oh thank you lord. That's the crux of my concerns with many of the comments. Basically, my point is, Olivia Pope can rap her arms around her "blackness" WITHOUT acting a damn fool or playing James Brown, and talking like geechie mom. "Scandal" has not even winked at her culture. Read ORVILLE's comments. Again, Ms Pope may be every black woman, but as a viewer, I don't feel that at the present time. And that may be the producer's goal.

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 9:25 PM

    Now Nadine, you have to know that many of your comments are rather difficult to respond to. At times they're filled with 10 different points /views/statements, many of which are totally untrue. And some of which are (imo) totally off topic. Consequently, rather than write 10 pages to refute your allegations, I've chosen to pass. For instance, in my opinion, most of your last comment (May 20, 2012 6:29 PM) just didn't reasonate with me. African principles (traits that can be found in Black people/societies anywhere on the globe)??? "If you simply continue to categorize BLACK as being this one thing" ???!!! "if the show SCANDAL, Kerry Washington and the character of OLIVIA POPE all had experiences born out of locales where you are basing your experiences. The thing is this show is not set i the South, the Midwest, or even the West coast"??? "from what I've seen, Kerry's character isn't given any "black interactions/experiences" (i.e, listen to black music, black saying's, black girl friends, a black creep-creep-creepin' man [HIGHLY INSULTING, what are we 19 years old? Immature behavior for a 35 year old woman (KW) at best...], some kind of storyline that shows she's part of a black culture)"....??? Highly INSULTING??? Now come on Nadine, the comment was tongue & cheek, but you went on a rant about what kind of music you like??? And Listen, I particularly like MIsha's comments b/c she understands the issues (or my concern) but you seem to be completely missing my point, or purposely clouding the issue. Cherish also goes straight to the point, but I don't understand were you're coming from. Hell, Orville has hit the nail on the head but you? "I do not have to pretend to be something I'm not to let people know that I'm Black"??? And? And again, that's not my issue and I am happy for you. "You have placed the expectations of the Black Southern/Mid-western style of speaking and behaviors on the backs of ALL Blacks (no matter their background, class or location)"??? WTH? "is LaMorne Morris Black on the show NEW GIRL, because, he kind of never acknowledges it... what about Damon Wayans Jr. on Happy Endings" WTH??? "I do NOT do or say any of the things you require in a Black woman's expression of BLACKNESS (see your quote on your Olivia Black expectations) GOOD GOLLY MISS MOLLY! Now we're getting somewhere! You've clapped down like a pit bull on the leg of a burglar -- refusing to let go. That's right, you've refused to acknowledge my point about "perceptions" and you failed to understand, purposely dismissed or failed acknowledge my point of listing all the wonderful, diverse, beautiful and professional black women. Yet, you come at me with my facetious -- tongue & cheek -- comment.... TO PROVE YOUR POINT??? Please, lets not talk about insulting me or my intelligence. Nadine please stop. Yes NADINE, you may be able to paint a picture of a woman who looks just like YOU, lives in your building, has all the same friends, acts just like YOU and listens to the same music THAT YOU DO, and baby, you know I love you too, but in the end, some black women would not be able to relate to you and THEY MIGHT SAY THAT YOU ACT AND TALK LIKE A WHITE GIRL or not *shrug* . Now, if that insults you -- ??? WOW -->"you will get STUCK spending too much time on the inconsequential which will only kill the fruit" TELL ME ABOUT IT!

  • Cherish | May 20, 2012 6:42 PM

    Carey, I do understand what you're saying re black folks trying to distance themselves from "Blackness", from the hair issues (which I have brought up before though some still don't think it should be discussed) to marrying light. It's a concern and should be addressed. What's happening to me is that there is a more of an association of negativity with black culture, like all that stuff you mentioned that goes in poor white folks. Its mostly class issues as well. Black people seem to be at weird point in this country, started when hip hop became the center and defined black culture and now accelerated due to the recession and the destruction of the middle class. Now megative low class behaviors seem so intricately tied to Black culture. Saying "I'm black and I'm proud" will sound false to alot of young people today, you would be surprised that to some of them they don't see positivity in Blackness anymore. Will write lata and go into it.

  • Nadine | May 20, 2012 6:29 PM

    THIS IS A RANT: @CAREYCAREY - I am so disappointed in your response to @CHERISH and I feel that maybe your points would resonate more to the rest of us, or those in disagreement, if the show SCANDAL, Kerry Washington and the character of OLIVIA POPE all had experiences born out of locales where you are basing your experiences. The thing is this show is not set i the South, the Midwest, or even the West coast, it is set in the heart of Washington D.C. politics which will attract, from all over the country, some of the most resourceful minds trumping even the academia in that D.C. insiders (not the figure-heads) have to not only be book smart, but be street smart as well. Anyway, I used up my time on KC up there mid drive-by. I will have to come back at a later time, but a couple of points, 1) VERY IMPORTANT: You stated that you said SOMETHING to me "10 hours" ago in one of your comments, but you never addressed my comments where I asked you to address African principles (traits that can be found in Black people/societies anywhere on the globe) and leadership styles as expressions of BLACKNESS as I believe those issues to be central to the character of Olivia Pope and the writing of Shonda Rhimes., 2) You are not acknowledging my points on REGIONALITY and CLASS (which is more complex than the six strata) and exactly what that means. You have placed the expectations of the Black Southern/Mid-western style of speaking and behaviors on the backs of ALL Blacks (no matter their background, class or location) in this country who DO NOT ALL HAVE THAT EXPERIENCE. It is becoming insulting CAREY, and you know I love you so this is really disappointing to me. I do NOT do or say any of the things you require in a Black woman's expression of BLACKNESS (see your quote on your Olivia Black expectations: "from what I've seen, Kerry's character isn't given any "black interactions/experiences" (i.e, listen to black music, black saying's, black girl friends, a black creep-creep-creepin' man [HIGHLY INSULTING, what are we 19 years old? Immature behavior for a 35 year old woman (KW) at best...], some kind of storyline that shows she's part of a black culture)".... Carey... for once, the actress is actually RECOGNIZABLY BLACK. I do not have to pretend to be something I'm not to let people know that I'm Black... because my azz is Black, Please tell me... is LaMorne Morris Black on the show NEW GIRL, because, he kind of never acknowledges it... what about Damon Wayans Jr. on Happy Endings... actually I'm not going to come back to address this last statement. You understand where I stand. It's getting insulting CAREY and I wish that you didn't have so little faith in Blackness and its different permutations, because the version you feel is required of, I guess only Black women (IMPORTANT: please cite the Black men you have this issue with as well if you disagree with my statement and not just summarize and gloss over), is nothing like any of the Black women I have grown up around and have modeled myself after... CAREY. Do you doubt that I am Black? Kerry is more like my girlfriends than an Angela basset would be, does that not make me Black? Do you doubt that I am a Black woman because, I HATE BB KING's music (love King) and the BLUES (hate it!), there isn't one rapper I like, (may they all burn in hell), I had my first taste of macaroni and cheese when I was like 23? If you simply continue to categorize BLACK as being this one thing, this one thing that my parents and grandparents never were... my mother never was... whose home, that she took about 10 years to renovate, is the original slave quarters where her ancestors lived and she grew up feet away from the sugar cane plantation its inhabitants used to service and my father apparently never was who lived in the mountains by the sea and rode horses and raised livestock, you will get STUCK spending too much time on the inconsequential which will only kill the fruit. I hope this all stops because it is sooo bad...

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 1:13 PM

    "I think that the Black community and culture have also narrowed the definition of Blackness" ~ Cherish | May 20, 2012 11:57 . Well Cherish, that's one way to look at it. But I believe the problem should be defined as some black folks who narrow their own world of "blackness" by running from anything that would give the appearance of them "acting black" or even the dreaded "being black". In essence, they're embracing everything that's considered white, in an attempt to white-wash, dilute and change their culture. Come on now, surely you know what I'm talking about. They change their hair to look like that of white folks. They marry white folks to produce light skinned babies. Some change the way they talk -- albeit maybe unconciously -- but while doing so, they berate other black folks for using what's considered an ebonic language. Yep, the Whitney Gilberts of the world wouldn't stand out if everybody talked like her -- right? And please, do you see the problem with associating acting white with "upper class African American culture" ??!! Well... if not... that's the biggest problem I am having with this entire discussion. I mean, is being "black" or "acting like a black person" a bad thang? OF COURSE NOT. But don't tell some black folkks that. They will run from you like you're the quintessential mad dog angry black man, who they wouldn't be caught dead talking to. You know, the old guilt by association thing. And on the flip side, I worked for a Gas & Electric Utility C0. I was what is known as an electrical linemen. That's right, I worked on power lines. Some were high voltage line (up to 160,000 volts) and some were the lines that went in homes. Well, I worked in a lot of all white towns and I went in a lotta white folks homes. Let me tell you, acting white is not a good thang, and I am here to tell you that it has nothing to do with bougie nor positive. Acting like white folks could mean, filty, nasty, po, overweight, dumb, welfare babies runnung around, dog shit in yo house, alcohol & drug abuse mammy, ignorance, racist, 3 families living in one 700sq ft home, smelly, funky putrid mess... with old raggedy cars cluttering your back yard, which by the way, might included 4 hound dogs, 20 rabbits, 3 coons and 1 rooster, all chained to a pole, or in cages. So run from the ambiguous phrase "acting white and talking like white folks". Get it straight, it's really nothing to be proud of. But you're right Cherish, if things do not change "Its really having a detrimental effect on our children". Now say it loud "I AM BLACK AND I'M PROUD!

  • rissa | May 19, 2012 11:32 PMReply

    I love this show! Characters are complex and interesting. Cannot wait to find out Quinn' s past!!

  • Tom | May 19, 2012 10:53 PMReply

    Awesome show! I love that President Grant is a moderate Republican. I can't wait til next season to find out whoQuinn is!

  • CareyCarey | May 19, 2012 10:03 PMReply

    Oh Lawd... why does it feel like the herd mentality is raining down on my head? I mean, Blaqbird showed up to drop her words of "wisdom" (I have a few words for her). Stacie came back and dropped a story of her sister who once lived in Iowa (I'll get back to that). Lauren drove back by and said, carey - Funny you live in Iowa... that state isn't black enough either... WHOA!... what's really going on? I know what it is, but that's another discussion for another day. So lets see if I can shine a little light on this "less than" perplexing issue. Blaqbird said she used the words "y'all" and "thangs" to make a point. Okay, what was the point? Is she unconciously making the point that to embrace one's blackness means a person has to butcher the English language? Yeah, think about that. Lauren implied the state of Iowa is not noted for having a large black population. Huuuum, what was she trying to say? Well, I don't know if she knows it, but she was actually supporting my position. But the most defining comment came from Stacie. Yep, Stacie -- unknowingly -- could have been my spokesperson. She said her sister, who was living in Iowa, constantly heard the words "you talk like a white girl". Oh LORD, if I had a dollar for every time I heard those words spoken to me -- I'd be a rich mofo. Listen, I was raised in Iowa and I lived in the projects. Having said that, I took on triats of all my surroundings (i.e., school, sports, neighborhood, church and classmates, etc,). Consequently, all those dynamics shaped the man I am today -- the good, the bad and the ever changing. And check this, even when I entered the military I was hit with the "you act like, or you talk like ______(fill in the blank). It wasn't always "you talk like a white guy". OH NO! Check this -- Although I got hit with that on several occasions, one of my drill sergeants said, "Hey Carey, get over here. I see we're going to have a problem b/c I see you're from Illinios (that's were I was living at the time) so you're obviously one of those smart-ass n**gas from the supburbs of Chicago!". I looked at that fool and although I wanted to say "No you dumb-ass mfker, I was born and raised in the projects of Iowa" but I held my tongue. Now, there's a few moral teachings or practical lesson contained in my tale of woe. 1) First impressions are lasting impression. How one arrives at those impressions is completely depended on his or hers past references. 2) My skin said I was black, but something within my walk, talk, head turn, mannerisms, persona, behavior, reactions, attitude or a combination of such, propelled some individuals to draw a conclusion on who they thought I was. I can deny them that freedom and they may have seen something that I was not aware of -- who knows. That's right, just like Stacie's sister and Kerry Washington, people are going to come to conclusion based solely from what they first see, and hear. Is some of it justified? Well, from their perspective, it absolutely is. Are their assumption facts and true? Nope. Did I, or have I, Stacie's sister, Kerry Washington or her character on Scandal, ever exhibit behaviors, mannerism and/or attitudes that are seen in a large group of white people? That's highly possible. Does a large population of black Americans exhibit traits, mannerisms and attitudes that would not fall under the negative catagory? ABSOLUTELY YES! Therefore, I am suggesting something I told nadine 10 hours ago. We're talking perceptions! Good or bad, right or wrong, people come to conclusions based on a variety factors. Again, we're talking about the act or faculty of apprehending by means of the senses or of the mind. That's right, an immediate or intuitive recognition/memory, that allows us the freedom to draw a conclusion. Listen folks, whatever Kerry or Olivia did or said, to make some come to the conclusion that "she's acting white" their opinion should not be relegated to some "ignant negrodome" simply because you or I believe or can prove she's blacker than the blackest black woman. Geez, saying or knowing that black women act a certain way in Washington D.C, or on the moon, is muddling the issue.

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 1:26 PM

    Come on Blaqbird, you gotsta know I knew what you were saying. I just had to make your comment fit my little story. You know, I took a little artistic liberty, don't shoot me. So stop it, you know I admire your thinking process. Hell, I even -- a few months age -- posted a youtube clip especially for you -- remember that? So hey, this ain't another love TKO... unless of course... ol'CareyCarey done got on your one last nerve :-O

  • blaqbird | May 20, 2012 11:42 AM

    My comment below was definitely "tongue-in-cheek" and I'm sorry you couldn't receive it in the manner in which it was given. I feel no need to go into some long diatribe about perception/indicators/whatever. I stand by what I said in my earlier comment, and I appreciate you, CareyCarey, for seeing my comment as the wisdom that it is.... :-)

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 11:17 AM

    @ Whatever, Hypocrite (below), I am going to assume that you used that moniker to imply that I was a hypocrite? Okay, back-atcha... Whatever Dork. I mean, what did you read? I simply said people draw conclusions about others based on a plethora of factors. And since we're all products of our "environments", those environments are multilayered. Consequently, it's a fact that anyone of us -- white, black or dookie brown -- could exhibit traits/mannerisms/speech patterens/slang/word usage/characters, etc, that are seen in a large percentage of people outside one's own race. And listen, the above "actions" do not have to appear on a regular basis. And hell, who knows.... a black woman might not be conscience of the fact that she's swinging her new found -- new bought -- hair like a white girl swings her goldilocks. And hell, why is there even the term "Vally Girls". Get it? So yeah, I said what I said about Kerry Washington, so how -- exactly -- does that make me a "hypocrite".

  • Whatever, Hypocrite | May 20, 2012 12:51 AM

    You said Kerry wasn't black enough for you and have said so on many occasions. Your mic is off.

  • blaqbird | May 19, 2012 5:11 PMReply

    Oh Lawd... I swear there were only 10 comments on this post yesterday. I come back and sh*t done hit the fan lol.

    I won't even get into this whole "black indicators" thing because like so many people said, it's ridiculous. I just need some of y'all to go put Toure's "Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness?" and Baratunde Thurston's "How to be Black" on the summer reading list. Also include "Why Are the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?" please. Hopefully after reading this you all will get a revelation about some thangs before the second season of Scandal begins....

    *Couldn't you tell I'm black? I used "y'all" AND "thangs". Isn't that how it works CareyCarey??? ;-) By the way, I'm from Nebraska and Lord knows I'm happy that I got out the first chance I got!

  • Paula | May 19, 2012 4:00 PMReply

    I love the show! I am dying to know who Quinn is. My guess is that she used to be in the cult in Georgia that they were talking about and she killed someone and is now in the witness protection program. Who do you guys think Quinn is?

  • BluTopaz | May 19, 2012 12:44 PMReply

    I should add, these are probably the same people who make it their business to demand that brownskinned Black women stop complaining whenever the issue of light skin preference in the media comes up. These geniuses are the true gatekeepers as to what Black womanhood really is, literally and figuratively/sarcasm.

  • CareyCarey | May 19, 2012 12:18 PMReply

    Damn, who said anything about Kerry's diction being the main focus of concern?! DONE DONE DONE -- this party is over.

  • BluTopaz | May 19, 2012 11:44 AMReply

    So basically there are negroes in this thread questioning Kerry's authenticity (whatever that means) because she speaks proper diction. Why do so many Black people love to kvetch about the dumbest shit? Are you that wounded?

  • HUH | May 20, 2012 8:57 PM

    Cowards hide behind online comments. It's no surprise that you found this racist article. Glad you found an outlet to reveal your ignorance and lack of education. continue to search for blogs and comment. Hide behind your keyboard!

  • MichelleToo | May 19, 2012 11:23 AMReply

    So, as an actress, my mother gave me a piece of advice...never criticize another actress. Since I believe in karma and this particular piece of advice I will chime in and say that this is some of the best acting that Kerry Washington has done in her career. I haven't watched every episode. Maybe like, 60%, but I really believe that she has grown into this character and this character has grown into her, so to speak.

    A lot of actors are so good at TV because the writers begin to write for you, and a beautiful thing happens when the actors and writers (directors too, but with TV they change from episode to episode) really begin to fall in love with and truly know the characters. So the result is that the actors really get to shine. In fact, when I look back over Kerry's career, she hasn't really gotten to do a lot in her movies. In Lakeview Terrace, the character, in my opinion wasn't well written. And she didn't get to do anything. The roles that really put Kerry on the map in her early career, were characters that had a great deal of agency and something to do and were well written. For instance, Save The Last Dance. She was really good. That character was very prominently featured, had something at stake, was well written, was a part of the movie....an integral part of the movie. Compared to Ray where the character was just sort of blah. And yes, no small actors, blah, blah, but I think I am noticing a trend with her characters. Some of the roles she has had to do have just been negligible or sparsely and poorly written.

    And LORD IN HEAVEN knows that I have no interest in defending Kerry Washington, nor does she need me too. But I think what I am trying to say is that Kerry is bringing a great deal of herself to this role. And really, how is Olivia Pope any different from First Lady Michelle Obama? Mrs. Obama doesn't roll her eyes, suck her teeth, say "Girl", put her hands on her hips or anything else. So why is Kerry getting such a backlash? Is it because we like Michelle Obama better than kerry Washington?

    You know, Kerry doesn't have to ever suck a tooth or role an eyeball. Kerry is Black. For real. No questions. Her skin color, for me, does all the talking. She isn't Rashida Jones, Maya Rudolph, Paula Patton, the girl from Glee who plays Santana, or any other "Black" actress out there. In her own skin, to me, Kerry Washington is the most defiant and political character on TV. And not to bash women who are fair, but really, with Kerry Washington, she looks Black, period. She doesn't need to do anything else in my opinion.

    One of the quibbles I do have with the show is Columbus Short. Does anyone know why he is on this show? He is like a big name, right? Done a bunch of movies, right? So why is he on TV in a really, really small part? I'm really confused!

  • Moionfire | May 23, 2012 6:58 AM

    Good post. It seems like black actresses can't win. They get critisized for being sassy and "ghetto"-- but then are called "acting" white when they don't.

  • CareyCarey | May 20, 2012 3:52 PM

    MichelleToo??? Huuuum, I wonder if you're the MichelleToo from the old S&A site?

  • misha | May 19, 2012 11:16 AMReply

    "I was simply trying to make a point that whether or not some people want to embrace the notion that black woman do have distinctly difference traits than white women, we all know it's true. Well, maybe I should say those of us that are not ashamed of being associated with and/or connected to "being Black", will admit there's a difference. Listen, I don't care what anyone says, when a person enters a room, the first thing we identify is the color of their skin - period!" >>>> Oh, lordy! You are making all kinds of sense this morning, old rambling one! LOL

  • CareyCarey | May 19, 2012 12:12 PM

    *LOL* That's right Misha, if loving you is wrong, I don't wanna be right -- this moanin'. Yes yes yes, the old rambling one is kicking up a little dust this morning -- with your help, of course :-). So look Misha, the big hitters are out in full force today, so watch my back. I know they'll be nice b/c a couple are my closest friends on this board, but you know black woman, some of them will hit a midget with a brick. But seriously, I don't know why only you see, or care to admit, the real issues in this debate? I wish they would move away from the "sucking teeth and wagging finger" reference. BTW, I have to admit that you ain't doing too bad yourself. well, actually, you've been killing it --> "some of these black women in leadership positions were first "chicks from the block." They grew up in the hood but manage to go on and do great things despite the odds. Perhaps Olivia is one of these women? And if she is, maybe Shonda can explore that? Now that doesn't mean Olivia has to go all "girl" when she's in business mode. But what about in more RELAXED moments, when she LETS HER HAIR DOWN. Oh, that's right...Olivia rarely had such moments in the first season and that's partly why I found it diffcult to relate/sympathize with her much, and I'm speaking just as a woman, not black woman ~ Miss Misha. Stop it Misha, you're making too much sense. Yep, we are agreeing today (Damn, the Devil must be beating his wife -- or something like that :-) . Your comments are reminisent of what I've been saying from the jump --> I'm suggesting that Kerry and Shonda are giving the appearance of playing the Three Card Monte. Y'allll know the game -- the black queen starts in the middle (Olivia) -- then the cards are flipped and flopped and **POOF**... she's gone -- only a shadow of a black woman (her skin color) remains.

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