• Network: ABC
  • Series Premiere Date: Apr 5, 2012
  • Season #: 1 , 2 , 3
User Score
6.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 118 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 85 out of 118
  2. Negative: 25 out of 118

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  1. Apr 6, 2012
    2
    This show had a lot of promise and decent production values but the writing and acting are simply horrible, on the caliber of high school. The characters are unimaginative stereotypes which allows you to know what's going to happen in every scene without any effort. After slogging through this premiere ep I couldn't delete it fast enough and to unschedule all future recordings of it - this show needs to be cancelled asap. Expand
  2. Dec 28, 2012
    10
    I discovered Scandal really late. I am not a fan of Private Practice or Greys so I avoided this show but I am now hooked,. Scandal is smart, fast and sexy. Its like a romance ,mystery , crime novel wrapped up in a nice package . I love it
  3. Apr 7, 2012
    4
    I lasted 15 minutes! Shonda you're a classmate but I can't stand your material. You present people as adolescent chatter boxes who glibly represent some shallow world I've never experienced nor want to. Souffles of faux angst and hollow people.
  4. Apr 5, 2012
    0
    Wow, this show is painful to watch. If you like **** manipulative lawyers, being as awful as possible, then go ahead and watch it. Grey's Anatomy but they specialize in being terrible human beings.
  5. Apr 8, 2012
    1
    Very disappointing. Unbelievable storyline, no depth to the acting. I lasted 20 minutes and could not continue. I particularly didn't like the lead character who so seemed somewhat vacuous.
  6. Apr 8, 2012
    3
    Based only in the pilot, this show was a bad mix of unbelievable characters, bad dialogs and cliché stories. We have a great and powerful lobbyist and a group of lawyers that could do anything for their clients, because they solve crisis, so they don't have to play by the rules.
    It sounded decent in paper, but there is no good reason to watch the show unless they add some
    depth to the characters, make them believable and improve the stories a lot. I really hope S.R. can improve, being a fan of some of her other shows. Expand
  7. Apr 2, 2012
    10
    I just watched the pilot episode and I'm really looking forward to this series. This is a political/legal drama, featuring a crisis management firm led by a former White House correspondent. While it's too early to predict whether the writers will be able to come up with enough interesting plots for every episode, the characters have such great chemistry, that viewers will be drawn in. I really loved the casting and was particularly impressed by the female lead (played by Washington). who really shines. Expand
  8. vhw
    Apr 7, 2012
    10
    The show was much better than I was anticipating it to be. Great performance by KW. The writing can be improved, and based on S.R's previous work, I'm hoping it will.
  9. Apr 6, 2012
    6
    The pilot for me was a mix of good and bad. The good was there were some bright patches of snappy dialogue and interesting little character traits, such as the lead being someone who likes to fix things, including her co-workers. As for the bad, for starters, none of the characters really appealed to me in the pilot. I'd even say I actively disliked a few of them, including the lead, and not in a good way like Alex from the Grey's Anatomy pilot or House. I remember how much I loved the pilot for Grey's Anatomy, in no small part because I liked every character, even the ones who were dicks. But here, whether it's the writing or the casting (probably both), I found myself turned off. Also, the pilot fell back on the very well-worn cliche of having their big, unsolvable problem solved by one of the characters realizing there was a street security camera that may have filmed what they needed. In the last several years, how many procedurals have fallen back on the security camera solving the case solution? A lot. When they can't even muster up an original solution in the pilot, it doesn't fill me with great confidence for the series moving forward.

    The structure was a touch off too. It starts off with a new employee being hired, insecure and uncertain of herself. The large opening focus on her makes you think the show will be told largely through her perspective. But then she's pretty much ignored for the rest of the show, a passive bystander, and it all becomes about the lead character who runs the company and gets things done. I get why the new character was introduced, to allow us to see the main character through the eyes of a newbie, someone who isn't part of the culture yet and would question the lead character's motives and practices. But the fact that they opened with the newbie so prominently made the rest of the episode feel a bit fractured.

    Ultimately, I was really hoping for something of the quality of Grey's Anatomy, but this isn't it. Not for me, anyway. Maybe I'll watch another episode in a few weeks just see if it's gotten any better.
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  10. Oct 26, 2012
    4
    The show started out with promise, but it has been reduced to a show where everyone shouts condescending speeches at each other. There are a few just whiny and awful characters that need to go. The main characters are good if they could have better writing. I hope the show gets back to a more realistic dialogue.
  11. Apr 12, 2012
    1
    Watched for about eight minutes. Not exactly sure why stuff like this gets made, it is like watching a mashup of the worst parts of ten different shows. Very poor.
  12. Apr 9, 2012
    10
    Fantastic television. Fun, sexy, and smart. Reminds of how Grey's Anatomy was in the beginning. Can't wait to see more. I have seen the first two episodes already and just keeps getting better. The cast is fantastic especially Jeff Perry, who plays Cyrus. Keep watching, I promise you won't be able to stop.
  13. Apr 29, 2012
    10
    This show is very refreshing when I think about the summer reruns and these crazy reality show .Think god there is some good writers still out there. Love this writers let your pen keep going don't let negative out weigh the positive. Can't wait to see more of you and you actor (Washington) she is is very refreshing.
  14. May 13, 2012
    9
    Great show! I don't know what some people are watching to give it a 5.6?? Absurd. Excellent drama and writing. Some of the characters are underdeveloped, but it was just enough to want to know more!! My only criticism is the guy who plays Huck... I believe his character is supposed to be kind of "off." But his acting still isn't good to me. But pleeeeease give me more!! I haven't been this excited to watch TV since 24 was on. Expand
  15. May 17, 2012
    10
    I love the show, it's better than those so called reality shows full of dramas that we could do without. A lot of people on here are saying the hate the show, but then probably watch the bachelor or bachelorette which shows a man or woman kissing 15 women or men before he or she can makeup his or her mind. This a really good show!
  16. Jun 3, 2012
    10
    I don't get the negative reviews I'm seeing. This show is a great addition to Rhimes' portfolio of Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice. My entire circle of friends (ages 25-40) are addicted to this show. My only complaint being that the first season was too short. Revenge couldn't hold my attention, but Scandal sure does!
  17. Nov 12, 2012
    9
    I am a big fan of this show Kerry Washington nails her performance she is magnificent. I have no problem with the plot. I think the way it was set up adds interest to the show.
  18. Jun 19, 2013
    8
    This show is the best of it's genre of the moment. Scandal is intriguing, the love between Olivia (Kerry W.) and Fitz (Tony G.) is intense and you just get them and want to see them again and again. Frankly this show is a great show that you should definitely check out and I can assure you, you will get hook to it and will start dreaming about it. I didn't give it a 10 because I think Shonda Rhimes can still take the show to a all new level. Expand
  19. Apr 12, 2012
    5
    I'll say one thing for Shonda Rhimes, her style is immediately recognizable. Unfortunately lines comparing surgeons to gods (Grey's Anatomy) create an immediate animosity towards the characters she tries so hard to elevate.
  20. Apr 24, 2012
    10
    Characters and plot leave a lot to be desired but I find the show strangely satisfying. suspend belief for an hour and you get a fast paced show with some interesting plots. though those plots do have holes.
  21. Nov 30, 2013
    3
    Scandal would be more appropriately titled "The Adventures of Mary Sue." Olivia Pope is the worst Mary Sue character since Wesley Crusher. But in this show, it's worse, because she's not some minor character--she's in the starring role. Pope is so brilliant that she's semi-psychic and can immediately deduce whether someone is telling the truth. She's so beautiful and charming that the President of the United States falls in love with her literally within five minutes of meeting her. People threaten to quit their jobs if she's mistreated. She can bully the U.S. Attorney General around and he'll still call her his friend at the end of the day.

    It's not in the show, but I'm pretty sure she also has nine Olympic gold medals and once saved some orphans by knocking out a grizzly bear with an uppercut to its testicles.

    The Mary Sue problem destroys the show. It makes it borderline unwatchable. There can be no genuine conflict in a show centered around the idea of "Look how AMAZING this woman is!! No, seriously, keep watching, we're going to keep telling you she's BRILLIANT AND SEXY AND PERFECT."
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  22. Jun 12, 2012
    7
    This show started with a group of highly unlikely characters, believing unlikely things uttering an unlikely dialogue. Initially we got only glimpses of characters. As the show has moved on, we start to get to know the characters much better, they have better dialogue and their actions make more sense. My primary objection initially was that the main character is described by her colleagues with awe yet she never inspires awe. She is still not an awesomely inspiring person but she does come across as highly competent at what she does. The show has improved significantly after its pilot. So I watched it some more and it has started to grow on me. Expand
  23. Dec 11, 2012
    5
    Full disclosure: I watched two episodes. This promises to be a lousy show. This is for people who didn't watch "Lie to Me" and many other 6/10 and 7/10 shows that this one apes badly. I'm certain that Darby Stanchfield (Abby) can make more than two facial expressions, so I think she should have been asked to make them on this show. There's plenty of acting talent on the screen. This show doesn't give them the characters, lines, and direction they need to make it work. Expand
  24. Apr 7, 2014
    8
    Season 1 is relatively short but the acting and dialogue make this show worth watching. Kerry Washington is gold and the rest of the cast delivers as well.
  25. May 8, 2012
    10
    Love this show. It is smart and has potential. Characters are interesting and somehow entertaining. However, Kery Washington could do better (too many unnecessary funny faces). It's also good to see Guillermo Diaz and Henry Ian Cusick in other interesting roles !
  26. Nov 21, 2012
    7
    An entertaining minefield of political mishaps and steamy campaigns
  27. Apr 1, 2014
    0
    So I've only watched the first episode of the first season, and I am really disappointed. It's a miracle it even has a score higher than 6/10. It just throws a whole bunch of stuff in your face and expects you to sit back and enjoy it. I don't get it. It's an irritating show, with irritating characters, and a ridiculous over-the-top plot that somehow manages to be boring. I'm going to watch the second episode, and if I don't like that either, I'm done with this show. Expand
  28. Feb 17, 2013
    9
    I hated "Grey's Anatomy". I didn't care for "Scandal" when the first season started. The dialogues were (are?) quite heavy-handed and written. But I stuck with it b/c of the fascinating milieu. Now the show is a must for me every week. It gets more and more intense. Aside from being topical and political, it's also quite psychological and scandalously delicious!
  29. Feb 2, 2013
    10
    I love the show, the plot, and the dialogue. The characters are somewhat relatable-not in the professional aspect but in the basic things we crave: loyalty, love, and respect. The acting is fantastic and the show makes me question how things really happen in the White House. I look forward to the show each week and my newsfeed on Facebook every Thursday is filled with other excited Scandal fans.
  30. Feb 8, 2013
    9
    When I first got into Scandal during it's first season I found myself liking my first political drama. While I know some view the show as ridiculous,; for the first time in a long time I can't wait to see what happens next. While it takes most network shows a while to have a big reveal it takes this show only a matter of a couple episodes to do so. I like that. I'm never bored with this show. As for the cast, it's a wonderful ensemble. Kerry Washington is such a powerhouse; and I can't remember the last time I loved a TV couple as much as I love Fitz and Olivia. Expand
  31. Jun 29, 2013
    7
    Scandal is a political drama that has Olivia Pope as the protagonist. She is literally superwoman, which wins a viewer almost immediately because she isn't just a damsel, or a confused girl, or a trusty sidekick. She is the fixer. Kerry Washington plays the part so well and viewers become entangled in the web of political secrets and conspiracy. There is a love story in the background but that gets old really quickly, and unfortunately it is a major part of the plot lines. Otherwise, its a great show with extremely memorable characters. Expand
  32. Jul 12, 2013
    10
    This is the best show on television right now and I have watched a lot of shows recently. Kerry Washington does a really good job of taking the seriousness of this show and mixing it with pleasure. The acting and writing for this show is extraordinary. It is a show that you have got to keep up with because it is a fast-paced show dealing with the white house and other things around that. I hope this show stays on for many more seasons to come. Expand
  33. Nov 12, 2013
    8
    Decent show. Olivia's dad intriguing, cy is fun. smart writing. interesting enough to continue forward, prefer back to back episodes to get deeper. the photo click scene changes get annoying! love the assassin. decent tv
  34. Oct 19, 2013
    10
    I don't know why people keep on comparing this with Grey's anatomy. I don't know other people's standards but watching the first season, this is one hell lot of a TV show! Good casting, incredible acting, US-TV show standard twists and entertainingly addictive. This is even better than Suits!
  35. Oct 27, 2013
    10
    Amazing. Since the beginning of the show in the trailer. Shonda Rhimes carry us to DC. Shonda Rhimes give us material every week in order to put us addictively fans of the show. Kerry Washington makes a perfect work in the pilot. And Bellamy Young, Jeff Perry and Guillermo Diaz make notable works. It's so twisty, and well written show. 10 of 10. Excellent. The new hit.
  36. Nov 17, 2013
    7
    The first season is a little bit shaky. Understandable, since the plot is quite complicated. The show's got potential, big ones, and Shonda Rhimes is usually the person to trust when it comes to good drama. Apparently, she's not only good at medical shows, but also political ones.
  37. Mar 23, 2014
    0
    Kerry Washington totally ruins this otherwise pretty good series. I don't think I ever saw such poor acting anywhere else. Every single scene she plays is overacted and fake.
  38. Mar 29, 2014
    1
    The acting by the major characters is absolutely terrible, the worst culprit being the lead character, "Olivia Pope," who seems to think acrobatic facial twitches while yelling at people is acting. The main characters are unlikable. The President is a putz and the aforementioned lead character is a moron. The supporting characters are great, but they have too much idiocy to overcome. I powered through 6 shows because this was recommended to me and I thought there must be more to it. I can pretty safely say I tried. Don't waste precious hours of your life on this. Expand
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 29
  2. Negative: 1 out of 29
  1. 60
    It's the new Revenge, but so much goofier and more shameless that it makes Revenge look comparatively measured.
  2. Reviewed by: Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Apr 6, 2012
    70
    It's still a fun, fast ride, with lots of twists and turns, murder and menace, and after only a few episodes we know enough back story about most of the main characters to care what happens to them.
  3. Reviewed by: Troy Patterson
    Apr 5, 2012
    70
    Rhimes hustles the audience into episodes in the middle of things. Pope and her colleagues speak at a clip suggesting years of study at the West Wing School of Elocution and Composition. In the rush, I scarcely had time to scoff at the over-the-top content of the pilot.