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Shonda Rhimes Addresses 'Harrison's' Lack Of A Central Storyline In 'Scandal'

by Tambay A. Obenson
February 8, 2013 11:38 AM
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I haven't received a press release with the numbers yet, but I'm guessing that last night's ratings for ABC's Scandal likely hit another series/season high, or somewhere around there, given the increased level of social networking activity last night - at least, I felt like my Twitter and Facebook feeds were dominated by posts about Scandal, during that 10 to 11p hour - and not only from women, by the way, although they were in the majority.

Given how last night's episode ended, and Shonda Rhime's announcement that next week's episode will jump ahead some 10 months, fans of the series have been buzzing over what that leap ahead will mean for the program's many story strands and the characters. 

Rhimes talks about what comes next in a session with The Hollywood Reporter this morning. If you don't want to know anything about the future of the show, I suggest you don't read it.

In it, they discuss what will have changed after 10 months, the introduction of a new character played by Scott Foley, how Fitz's role in Verna's death changes his moral compass, how Fitz and Mellie work together going forward, what Fitz and Olivia's relationship will be like now that he's dismissed her, potentially exploring Quinn's dark side further, and more...

But what really got my attention was her answer to the question about Harrison (played by Columbus Short, the one series regular supporting black guy) not having any kind of central storyline (while others have thus dar). THR asked Shonda what's up with that, and whether he'll have his chance to shine eventually.

Rhimes' reply:

I consider Harrison to be the gun on the wall that we haven't fired on purpose. The story of Harrison and his past -- he used to work for Adnan Salif and then he went to jail -- that thing that's going to unfold, that's a giant story that we want to unpack when it suits us most. We've been holding onto it. We will be getting glimpses and hints as to what's to come.

She doesn't say when exactly audiences can expect Harrison's story to rise to the top; just the above hints and teases. But, as she states, it's all by design, and Harrison's story is a "giant" one that will be "unpacked" when it makes sense. 

Hopefully the series isn't off the air before that time comes...

If you want to dig into all the other hints and teases Shonda drops, click HERE to read the THR piece.

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More: Television, TV News, Columbus Short

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  • Geneva Girl | February 9, 2013 1:49 PMReply

    I was wondering what his back story was in the last episode. They've flashed back to everyone else I wanted to know when it would be his turn. Rhimes hopefully won't wait too long. I guess in time for the cliff hanger.

  • AccidentalVisitor | February 8, 2013 7:17 PMReply

    Maybe it is some twisted sign of progress that in the year 2013 black producers and black showrunners are allowed to use black token characters just as their white counterparts do. :)

  • Bondgirl | February 8, 2013 10:39 PM

    Lmaooooo. The show is starring a black character, so the token whine doesn't apply here. However, Damon Wayans Jr on Happy Endings is a whole 'nother ballgame.

  • Akimbo | February 8, 2013 5:03 PMReply

    That's fine. It's not like he doesn't participate in the goings-on, we just haven't delved yet. Looking forward to long as they don't hook him up with that infernal Abby. She's the worst.

  • Akimbo | February 8, 2013 7:02 PM

    I saw that, too and it chilled me to my very core. I'd rather see Harrison with Huck, the VP, David Rose, the Presidential baby, or the reanimated corpses of any of the dead women in the show's wake than with Abby, the absolute worst character on the show.

  • Bondgirl | February 8, 2013 6:45 PM

    I saw a comment by Columbus, and he seemed to hint that Harrison/Abby would be hooking up. Hate that, as Abby annoys me too, and I'd much prefer him with Quinn if it has to be an office romance.

  • Melissaenafrique | February 8, 2013 4:52 PMReply

    I don't even watch this show but LOL. Poor him.

  • Eva | February 8, 2013 3:57 PMReply

    Ratings tied their season high. a 2.8. Still number 1 in the critical 18-49 age demo for the 10pm hour. Beat competitor Elementary in the demo by .5 and that is after Elementary had a cushy post-SB spot Sunday. They'll get renewed for S3 easily. She'll have time for Harrison then.

  • ALM | February 8, 2013 2:52 PMReply

    There is so much going on with the show, I had forgotten that Harrison is the only one who hasn't had an episode or two entirely devoted to his back story like the other main characters have. One thing we do know, the brother is smooth.

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