(The Root) — It's almost Scandal time again, and those of us who survived the withdrawal are already planning our wine-and-popcorn parties for the premiere on Oct. 3. Last season's finale left us with tons of burning questions with which we've had to suffer for months. Now, with Scandal's return a mere 10 days away, we've made a list of the most pressing things we absolutely need to know.
Joe Morton as Olivia's father (ABC Scandal)
This is definitely the first order of business. That cliffhanger was a doozy, and the viewing audience had a collective coronary once they realized they'd have to wait months to find out what the heck is going on. When the new season premieres, we deserve to be delivered straight to the juice. We've waited patiently this long; it's only fair.
Columbus Short as Harrison (ABC Scandal)
Harrison, Harrison, Harrison. Handsome, fast-talking, mysterious Harrison. Just who are you? What's your backstory? Why this iron-clad, unquestioning allegiance to Olivia, who is clearly unstable right now? We know nearly everyone else's story — we even got a peek into Huck's road to sociopathy. If show creator Shonda Rhimes is saving the craziest story for last, this one has to be incredible.
Kerry Washington as Olivia Pope (ABC Scandal)
When we last saw Olivia (before you-know-who showed up), she was insisting that she was going to move into the White House and become Fitz's first lady and that no one in the nation would see a serious problem with that. Now, Olivia has been delusional often in this series, but this last leap took the cake. We miss the old Olivia, the one that was only marginally incapable of making any good decision in her own personal life. This one seems totally inept.
Guillermo Díaz as Huck (ABC Scandal)
Now that Quinn has pretty much poised herself to take his place with her newfound bloodlust, is there a need for Huck — beyond his giving viewers someone to swoon over and dream of loving and fixing and holding through those psychotic breaks? Will Huck go off to find a new family and leave the hacking and torturing to Quinn?
Kate Burton as Sally (ABC Scandal)
No. Please, God, no.
Phylicia Rashad (Wikimedia Commons)
The revelation of Joe Morton as Olivia's father got everyone wondering who would or should play her mother. For some, the logical choice was Jasmine Guy, who expressed her interest on Twitter — it would be familiar ground for Guy and Morton, who played opposite each other as near-newlyweds on A Different World in 1992. How perfect would it be to see Whitley and Byron reunited?! But, an Essence poll shows that most viewers want to see Phylicia Rashad as the senior Ms. Pope. It's a fitting choice — both Washington and Rashad are eloquent, fast-talking, no-mess takers.
Tony Goldwyn as President Fitzgerald Grant III (ABC Scandal)
There's a group of Scandal fans who still aren't convinced that Fitz is Mellie's baby daddy. Mellie is definitely dastardly and manipulative enough to fake something like that to stay in the White House. If there is a paternity episode, let's all hope it involves a trip to the Maury show.
Joshua Malina and Darby Stanchfield as David and Abby (ABC Scandal)
Let's face it, we like the two of them together, and it'd be a shame to see the whole thing fall apart because Olivia & Company were pulling some puppet strings. The Mr. and Mrs. Smith thing is cute and all, but let's get a happily ever after out of this.
Gregg Henry as Hollis (ABC Scandal)
Or, if that's too harsh, can he retire early and go enjoy the rest of his life in some island paradise off of our television screens? That man is pure evil in a bad suit and after two seasons, it's high time he gets his due.
Marion Barry (Wikimedia Commons)
Tracy Clayton is a writer, humorist and blogger from Louisville, Ky.