Uh oh, there is trouble in Washington, and for once, I don't mean the capital. Despite the #KerryWashington-led political powerhouse being renewed for another season, it looks like even Olivia Pope can't fix this one and #Scandal is coming to an end. No, for once the results aren't rigged, but the popular #ShondaRhimes show is set to end after Season 7 next year.
Scandal, How To Get Away With Murder, and Grey's Anatomy make up ABC's Thank God It's Thursday line-up, so it was no surprise that all got early renewals back in February. However, with Scandal recently celebrating its 100th episode, it has been announced that Rhimes will be winding down after Season 6.
A Scandalous Way To Go
So there we have it, ABC has officially announced the endgame, and although the final episode count is yet to be confirmed, Scandal will wrap in 2018. Speaking about the decision, ABC chief Channing Dungey broke the news on how she and Rhimes came to the decision:
“We sat and we talked and she said, ‘Look, I really feel like season 7 is where I want to wrap up this story because I always prefer to end a show where you’re feeling on top as opposed to letting things fizzle out.’ I do think that audiences, especially fans and Gladiators, who are as loyal to Scandal as they’ve been, are going to want the story to end in the way that Shonda intended to. That was a decision she felt really good about and we support wholeheartedly.”
With Scandal ending after seven seasons, Rhimes has always maintained the foresight to know how she wants the show to bow out. However, it appears that recent events may even have changed that. Speaking about the centennial episode, Rhimes had already divulged Scandal's uncertain future:
"I used to know how it ended, and then Donald Trump was elected. We had a destination, and I don't know if that's our destination anymore."
Sources close to the show told the Hollywood Reporter that Rhimes had always seen Scandal as a seven-season show and was ready to close the book on the lives of Pope and her gladiators in suits. It shouldn't really come as that much of a shock, especially considering that as far back as Season 4, Rhimes told us that Scandal wasn't a "10-season or eight-season show" and only had a limited shelf-life:
"I've already decided when 'Scandal' is ending. I think there's only so much Scandal you can tell satisfactorily. The Fitz-Liv thing can only be told so long and in such a way. … I've already decided how long that is and what that's going to be."
Sure to go out with a bang rather than a whimper — like too many shows do nowadays — an ongoing Scandal would've likely charted Fitz's time away from being POTUS and Pope taking full-time office at the White House. There are only so many times one woman can fix the problems of the cabinet and it is already been getting increasingly hard to keep the formula fresh.
The Scandal Is Real
Based off the life of political fixer Judy Smith (who also serves as a co-executive producer), Scandal was originally meant to star Nashville and American Horror Story's Connie Britton. Rhimes makes no bones about the fact that Washington wasn't the first choice for the part of Pope, however there is no denying that she has made the role her own.
Season 6 of the government gripper has still remained popular, but lags behind Grey's and Murder; it was also mired in controversy this season when it had to scrap plans for a storyline about electoral hacking from the Russians, fearing it was a little too close to home.
While we know roughly when the show will end, it is still unknown if Scandal will again be held for a midseason return for the final season. Worryingly, there are also rumors that Season 7 could be a shortened one, similar to the premiere season. Rhimes has said that she wanted another abbreviated season, which looks like it could be now or never.
The show's creator was moved by the decision, but promises that the show will go out with its usual stars and stripes mentality:
“Deciding how to end a show is easy. Deciding when to finish is quite simple when the end date is years away. But actually going through with it? Actually standing up to say: ‘This is it?’ Not so much. So, next year we are going all out. Leaving nothing on the table. Creating this world in celebration. We are going to handle the end the way we like to handle the important things in our Scandal family: all together, white hats on, gladiators running full speed over a cliff.”
Now that we know that 2018 is the swansong for Scandal and Washington's time as the superglue of soapland, let's sit back and enjoy the ride!
Check out the spoilerific scene from Episode 100 beneath, and don't forget our poll below.