Katie Lowes Spills On The State Of Scandal & Whether She Ships Quinn & Charlie

Photo: Eric McCandless/ABC
Today's world is looking more and more like an episode of Scandal. In fact, some fans believe that the ABC drama predicted Donald Trump's presidency long before it occurred. While Shonda Rhimes might not have any powers of political prediction, she has created a series capable of both escapism and smart commentary on the world around us. It's the reason that Katie Lowes, who portrays Quinn on the series, comes to work — there's always something new to explore in Shondaland.

For Quinn, one of those "new things" is an engagement. Will the Gladiator go out and "get some normal" along with her wedding dress? Don't hold your breath, says Lowes. The actress — who also currently stars in IAMA Theatre Company's workshop production of The House That Jake Built — spoke to Refinery29 about the current state of Scandal, how she really feels about Quinn and Charlie, and what she was most excited about this season.
Were you excited about Quinn's engagement, or do you hold a torch for Huck and Quinn?

"I was very excited for Quinn's engagement. I think that Charlie has stuck by her for a long time, and I think in her heart of hearts, Quinn used to be a pretty traditional girl. She was planning on getting engaged to her boyfriend Jesse Tyler when she had her other identity Lindsay Dwyer, and so I think that Charlie is a really good life partner for her. He gets her, he loves her... but I do think there's always that guy who got away, where it didn't work out. I don't think Quinn will ever not love Huck. They have such a complicated relationship."

People were shocked by how closely Scandal seemed to reflect American politics last season. What are your thoughts on that?

"It's completely just wild and coincidental and crazy. We shot the first episode [of season 6] in July, so there's just no way anyone could have really understood and known... The show is a wild, crazy ride, and at times we do pull from headlines and are inspired, and I think Shonda [Rhimes] definitely is, but in the case of our current political climate, there's just no way... it was shot too far in advance."

What can you tease about Quinn's arc this season?

"What I can say is... We just had a table read two days ago, for an episode that will be coming out in two months from now, and it's one of my favorite episodes that we've ever read, and the fact that I can say that after being on a show for six seasons is such a testament to how unbelievably genius Shonda Rhimes is, and her ability to have this engine keep going as crazy and fun and fast as it is...

"I get to do stuff that I've never done before, and I'm very excited for Quinn's personal journey. I think that over the past couple of seasons we've seen how stellar she is as a Gladiator and how good she is at her job, and how loyal and hardworking she is for Olivia, but I've actually shot a lot of personal scenes between Quinn and Charlie... I think with the engagement there's going to be a lot of fun, personal things going on in Quinn's life that are so much fun for me to play. "

Can anyone at Olivia Popes & Associates really have a normal life or marriage?

"No! I don't know yet, because I don't know what's coming down the line, I don't know if Quinn's going to give it a real try, you know? Because there's this saying in the office 'Go get some normal...' I think for a lot of the misfits who work at Olivia Pope & Associates, we really do just want our hearts to be full with some normalcy and love and traditional things, but I'm not sure if [it's possible]. They can keep trying! I don't think it's a goal that's achievable."

Will there be any real-life moments that make its way to
Scandal this season?

"I think things have changed a lot, is what I'm hearing from a lot of the writers. Where things are at right now, in our political landscape... the show, was going down a certain path, because we had shot a bunch of episodes before we started airing. The writers and Shonda had a very specific track in mind to where the show was going, and going down some pretty dark journies, and I think what I'm hearing is that because of everything that is going on now, they're changing their tune... I'm not really sure what audiences want right now, do they want to go dark, do they want an escape... What hero do they want. I think the needs of what people tune into has shifted as of recently... I think the country has changed a lot."

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