Villain Protagonist: In all honesty, Olivia is actually this. She is the protagonist and she did agree to have the election rigged so that Fitz would win and become President of the United States. By the end of season 2, it will all come back to haunt her.
Woobie: Season 3 seems to just be an experiment in how far she can be pushed before she breaks. Losing Jake, twice, finding out both her father and her mother are BigBads, and the increasing awareness she and Fitz will never be together are causing her to become a walking shell.
Quinn Perkins (Katie Lowes)
The newest addition to Olivia's team (and the one through whose eyes the series is introduced). Has a mysterious past which is gradually revealed throughout seasons one and two.
Hidden Depths: Her real name isn't Quinn, and she didn't exist in that identity until two years ago. Not only is her name falsified, but it's stated that agents from all corners of the US government have warrants for her real identity. As season two reveals: her real name is Lindsay Dwyer, she was framed for a bombing that killed seven people, and the conspiracy surrounding why stretches to not only Olivia, but the Supreme Court, the First Lady, the president's most trusted adviser, and the national security of the United States.
Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Uses it in the Season Two finale when Huck freezes up. This may be one of the things that triggers Olivia to focus more on her employees, although it's not clear if she knows about it.
The Mole: Briefly becomes this for B613 after a complicated series of events leads to her unknowingly murdering a watchman on video camera. However, Huck quickly finds her out. He apparently tortures her, but a series of flashbacks at the end of "YOLO" reveals that it's more complicated than that. It's not yet clear how this is going to play out.
Dating Catwoman: In season two, she sleeps with David Rosen mainly to distract him from his investigation into Pope and Associates. Then she starts falling for him - before Harrison fakes her into believing David is an abuser, triggering her into leaving him.
Domestic Abuse: The victim thereof, and what brings her to Olivia's attention (and eventually team).
The Resenter: "Seven Fifty-Two" reveals Abby is starting to resent Olivia for the debt she owes her, regarding her divorce from Charles. Abby wonders if that debt cost her a chance to be genuinely happy with David.
A former marine and CIA official who now works as the technical support in Olivia's firm. He is extremely loyal to Olivia and, while his CIA training led him to enjoy hurting people (and made him very good at it), he tries to avoid doing so, and attends AA meetings to try to cope with this.
Cold-Blooded Torture: Just one of the many skills "the Agency" (presumably the CIA) taught him. The Agency also taught him to enjoy it, a fact which horrifies him.
Is the victim of it when he is thought to be the shooter that tried to kill the president. And we learn that he was kept in a dark hole for two months in order to make him forget about his wife and baby.
Hidden Depths: Huck's dossier is apparently thicker than most spy novels, most of it is redacted, but he has CIA/espionage/military training as an assassin and Olivia trusts him to break a dictator's wife and children out of the embassy with only five minutes' leeway. He's also spent time homeless and suffering from PTSD, begging on the DC subway, which is when Olivia found him. He also falls for a woman he thinks is a fellow addict, but she turns out to be a spy and assassin like him.
Madness Mantra : "Seven fifty two". The hour at which he met his son again, while he was homeless in the metro.
Mellie: Every married couple alive pretends. They pretend they don't hate their in-laws or their husband's stupid jokes or their wife's laugh or that they don't actually love one of their children more than the others. Marriage is, well, it's almost all pretend. For everyone. That's the reality. That's what's real. Buying into the delusion that there's any other way to live together, to get through an entire life together, that's, well that's the fantasy. That's pretending.
Fitz: Did I do this to you? Or have you always been like this? Because if it was me, I'm sorry. I'm sorry.
Woobie: By YOLO and A Door Marked Exit, it's clear the show is trying to break him as much as it's trying to break Olivia. He now seems to believe he is literally the devil. having his husband cheat on him, then realizing he was indirectly responsible for murder can do that to a man.
David Rosen (Joshua Malina)
Assistant U.S. attorney who has a friendly rivalry with Olivia.
The Bus Came Back: After roughly a season of not being seen, is revealed towards the end of season two to have been "Albatross", a mole that has been causing the Grant administration problems for most of the season.
Amanda Tanner (Liza Weil)
A former White House intern who had an affair with President Grant at the urging of Billy Chambers, whom she was dating and who hoped to use the resulting scandal to bring down the White House.
Politically Incorrect Villain: He repeatedly refers to both Cyrus and his husband, James Novak, as each being the other's "wife". Cyrus is not amused.
James Novak (Dan Bucatinsky)
Cyrus Beene's journalist husband.
Camp Gay: While an exceptional journalist, James is also quite fixated on the idea of having a "fat, smushy baby" and, in a flashback to the early days after Fitz's election, excuses himself to make wedding plans after he and Cyrus are newly engaged.
Dating Catwoman: What counts more as a journalist's enemy than a politician behind a massive conspiracy and cover-up? Especially when he contemplates putting a hit out on you.
House Husband: James quit his job some time before the series began because his husband promised him a baby. Unfortunately for Cyrus, he didn't deliver, which led to James returning to his work.
Really Gets Around: Before he dated his husband, James was (to quote his husband) "a bit of a slut". Which Cyrus found quite appealing.
Vice President Sally Langston (Kate Burton)
The Vice President of the United States, a religious conservative. She and President Grant have a tenuous relationship, since he mostly offered her the VP spot to appeal to the religious right while she mostly accepted for the sake of his endorsements in future endeavours. Cyrus and Olivia both dislike her. After Grant's attempted assassination, she attempts to wrest control of the president's office, but after Grant returns she returns to the VP spot.
Well, technically she already knew he was gay. It was the cheating on her part - and the fact that it was with the husband of her main rival at the White House, no less, who's a reporter and could bring it up in an article if he chose - that really upset her. That and the fact that he implied in their final argument that she never would have gotten anywhere in her political career without him.
Jake Ballard (Scott Foley)
A naval officer who seems to be particularly close to the President, he is also introduced as a romantic interest of Olivia's in the latter half of the second season. Grant assigns him to spy on and protect Olivia from various threats.
Breakout Character: On June 14, 2013, it was officially announced Scott Foley will join the main case of Scandal.
Hidden Depths: He was involved in something called "Operation Remington" with Fitz Grant during the first Gulf War. At the start of the third season, Cyrus had to get his security clearance raised to read about it. It horrified him.
Jake Ballard's current and Huck's former boss, he is also implied to be the head of the CIA's classified B613 program. His actual name was not given for much of the series. However, the season two finale has Cyrus refer to him as "Roland" and reveals that he is Olivia Pope's father. Season Three gives him the nickname "Eli" and the complete name of "Rowan Pope". Not that this is a surprise, given B613 members tend to use assumed names.
Good All Along: Or at least not completely evil. It turns out at the end of "YOLO" that the case against Olivia's mother was not fabricated.