"Guess Who's Coming to Dinner"
~ Flashback Episode ~
3x02 - Olivia Pope
Season Three
Season 03, Episode 02
Episode Information
Air Date: October 10, 2013
Viewers: 9.01 million
Written by: Heather Mitchell
Directed by: Allison Liddi-Brown
Character Information
(present day)
Character Backstories:
Episode Chronology
Previous Episode: "It's Handled"
Next Episode: "Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington"

Sunday, my house, 7:00. I'll choose the wine.

Eli Pope to Olivia Pope

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner is the second episode of the third season of Scandal, and is the thirty-first overall.


Through flashbacks we learn more about Olivia’s estranged relationship with her father. Meanwhile, both the White House and Pope & Associates are still in the middle of cleaning up the very big and very public mess they created.


Olivia Pope & Associates:
  • Olivia and the team work to help Jeannine Locke repair her reputation
  • Olivia goes to Huck to find out some more about B613
  • Quinn digs into Olivia's past
White House:
  • Mellie & Cyrus try to push Fitz to release a statement about the Jeannine situation
  • Fitz asks Cyrus to look into whether or not Jake Ballard is still alive
  • Mellie comes up with her own idea about how to "handle" Jeannine
  • Fitz uses Tom to communicate with Olivia
Rowan & B613:
  • Rowan pushes Cyrus to "take care" of the Jeannine problem
  • Rowan puts Olivia between a rock and a hard place
  • Olivia continues to probe her father about Jake
  • Olivia meets Huck
  • Olivia cuts of Sunday dinner's with her father
  • Olivia learns the truth about her father
  • Edison Davis gets in a car accident shortly after meeting the evil Rowan
  • Olivia goes to a mutual friend – David – to get some help about the missing Huck


We jump back five years to a time when Olivia Pope had dinner with her dad every Sunday. She'd bring a then-homeless Huck a doggie bag. Every Sunday. Olivia is only at the restaurant as part of a deal she made with her father so he'll pay off her law school loans. The man we know as Rowan (aka Eli Pope) tries to apologize for his past mistakes. Olivia decides to try, too. She mentions she has a boyfriend. It's Edison. As for Rowan, he rambles about his boring work at the Smithsonian. After dinner, Olivia is attacked at the train station. A nearby Huck springs into action to save her. This was the first time Olivia would see just how lethal he could be.

In the present day, Fitz sends Tom to follow Olivia jogging where he hands her a burner phone so they can talk. He knows they can’t come clean about their relationship now. He also mentions a recent trip where he shot hoops with the Dalai Lama, who reportedly has a sweet jump shot. Fitz tells Olivia this story because, when something happens, she’s the only one he wants to share it with. He knows that Jeannine Locke is an innocent kid. He also knows that Olivia is going to attack the White House to prove this. That’s fine with him. "Bring it," Fitz says. Game on!

"Doom. Gloom. Fate of the Republic. I get it." This is how Cyrus answers a call from the ever-cheery Rowan, who wants to know why the White House hasn't made a statement about Jeannine. It may have something to do with the fact that Cy can’t find her. That’s because she's on TV next to Olivia as they give a press conference right in front of the White House. Cyrus and Mellie want Fitz to grow some "presidential-size balls" to confirm that he slept with Jeannine Locke. That's not going to happen. So Mellie has Cyrus leak a document detailing all the days she was out of town and Jeannine was hanging around the Oval Office late at night. The press connects the manufactured dots.

Four years ago, Huck told Olivia how he worked for the secret CIA offshoot B-613. It was run by a man called Command in a place code-named Wonderland. Huck was put in a hole for a very long time. He now lives at the train station where he craves a cheeseburger. Perhaps Olivia can bring him one after dinner with her dad, who introduces her to fine wine. No sign of popcorn though. Olivia mentions B-613. Daughter doesn't see dad's internal alarm go off. A short time later, Huck is MIA. He's been arrested and labeled as a schizophrenic. At least that's what Liv thinks until her first-ever meeting with David Rosen reveals that's a lie.

Olivia's fellow gladiators are surprised to meet her dad when he shows up at the office. Rowan is happy to see them all, Huck included. He lets Olivia know that he needs America to believe that it was Jeannine Locke who had an affair with the president if she ever wants to see Jake Ballard again. The two of them smile and laugh to mask the venom of their conversation from the others. Rowan, smiling ear-to-ear, suggests she have a chat with Huck if she truly wants to know what happened to Jake. The story isn’t pretty. Olivia knows Jake’s fate is looking grim. She makes a call to the one person she thinks can help: The President of the United States.

Four years ago, Olivia checked out the front that was used to cover up the work of B-613. It was the Acme Limited Paper Company located on Wonderland Avenue. Olivia knows the name. It’s on a pen her dad gave to her. She demands to know what he really does for a living. She wants to know if he works in Wonderland. Rowan explains that his daughter never wants to know him the way he truly is because that would ruin their Sunday dinners. A short time later, Olivia introduces Rowan to her fiancé, Edison. He’s a senator who will make sure spies get treated right. This is Olivia's way of telling her dad that she wants Huck back. Rowan obliges, but also infers that he was behind a car accident that injured Edison.

Using her "bitchy" charm Abby convinces Jeannine's White House pal, Ethan, to help them obtain instant messages that prove she was never alone with the president. A press conference is in the works. Jeannine breaks down as her life spins out of control. Olivia promises to get her through this. A short time later, Jeannine gets a call from an unexpected person: the First Lady. Mellie wants to talk about her future. Their chat takes place while Olivia is out at the morgue. She heads down there anytime they bring in a body that matches Jake's look and build. When the day of the press conference arrives, Olivia learns that Jeannine told her coworker to destroy the instant messages. Uh oh!

Fitz lets Cyrus know that he wants B-613 to release Jake. That's not possible. B-613 doesn’t exactly work for the president. Olivia realizes Jeannine is going to lie and say she had the affair. She wants to know who got her. She calls Fitz, who reveals that Jake is alive. Olivia screams, "You bring him back!" She knows that if she saves Jeannine then Jake dies. If she lets Jeannine burn, Jake lives. She tells , dad, Eli Pope that she'll put Sunday dinners back on the table if he saves Jake's life. Dad says he’ll take this under consideration.

Jeannine Locke was promised two million tax-free dollars to lie about the affair. She figures she may as well make a profit from all this. Olivia pleads with her to not do what she’s about to do. Her plea becomes irrelevant. Their live TV moment is preempted. Fitz is on TV making a statement. He tells the world that he had an affair with Jeannine, whose press conference is abruptly canceled. Fitz later tells Vice President Sally Langston he "had Jeannine Locke six ways to Sunday all over this White House." But Sally doesn't believe a word that is coming out of his mouth. As for Jeannine, at least she’ll be able to get a book deal out of all this.

Quinn has been hacking Olivia's email because, well, she can. She finds one that seems to talk about Huck. It was all about how he helped her that night in Union Station. Huck puts two and two together. He corners Olivia in the parking structure violently wanting to know if her father is B-613, by chocking her. He wants to know if her father is Command. The answer to both questions is yes. Huck silently walks away. Later, Olivia receives a call from Eli telling her to open her front door. She's stunned to see a beaten and bloodied Jake on the other side. As for dear old dad, he expects his daughter to be at his house for dinner Sunday night. He’ll choose the wine.

~ Recap for Guess Who's Coming to Dinner [1] provided by ~


Main Cast

Recurring Cast

Guest Cast


For a full list of cast/character credits in order as they appeared click here: Guess Who's Coming to Dinner Credits



Production Dates

  • (7/30) - Filming began at a top secret location. [2]
  • (7/31) - Kerry Washington, Columbus Short & Guillermo Díaz were on set filming scenes; setting downtown. [3]
  • (8/01) - Columbus, Katie Lowes, Darby Stanchfield & Tony Goldwyn were on set filming scenes. [4]
  • (8/01) - The OPA cast (Kerry, Columbus, Darby, Guillermo & Katie) was on set in the OPA office filming scenes. [5]
  • (8/02) - Kerry was on set for a late night of filming; it is unknown who she was filming with. [6]
  • (8/02) - Darby was on set filming. [7]
  • (8/05) - Katie & Guillermo filmed a Hucelberry Quinn scene early in the AM. [8]
  • (8/06) - Kerry & Columbus were on set for an early shot. It is unknown if the rest of the OPA cast were on-set as well. [9] [10]
  • (8/06) - Darby was on set filming some scenes. [11]
  • (8/07) - Darby & Guillermo were on set filming scenes and tweeting. [12]
  • (8/09) - Shooting began in the early evening. Known actors on set: Kerry Washington & Columbus Short. [13] Kerry was on set till 4 am. [14]
  • (8/12) - Today the cast filmed on location; location unknown. [15]
  • (8/13) - Shooting for this episode overlapped with beginning to film Mrs. Smith Goes to Washington; both episodes had scenes filmed. [16]
  • (8/26) - Shonda Rhimes worked with the editors to cut together the episode. [17]


Promotional Photos

→ See and enjoy 12 pictures from Guess Who's Coming to Dinner at Images from Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.

Behind the Scenes

These pictures are courtesy of the actors and production team's Twitter posts.


Promotional Video

Scandal 3x02 Promo "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" (HD)

Scandal 3x02 Promo "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner" (HD)