'Scandal' Stars Warn Fans To Brace Themselves

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One week from tonight, Scandal returns with Seven Fifty-Two, the first of four fresh episodes leading up to the May 16 finale. To find out what ABC's Gladiators can expect from Pope and Associates' last stand this season, I caught up with Bellamy Young, Jeff Perry and Dan Bucatinsky at Logo's New Now Next Awards!

Malevolent Mellie

Fans were thrown into a Fitz of hysterics when a promo for next week's episode featured The First Lady telling someone, "Life as you know it is over." And with rumors swirling that Mellie finally kicks her husband to the curb (metaphorically speaking), I asked Bellamy what she could say about her character's choices in Seven Fifty-Two.

"It's go time," Bellamy says, very matter-of-factly. "Mellie is prepared to go nuclear -- and she does. She is not backing down from fights any longer. She will call your bluff and start climbing up to the next level."

According to Jeff Perry, Mellie's mission comes as no surprise to Cyrus. "Shonda Rhimes gave me this gorgeous little speech one time where I said, 'Mellie, you are a terrifying political animal who would chew off her own foot if it meant you could get ahead.' And Cyrus respects the hell out of Mellie. Actually, in some bizarre way, he loves her -- but in a more understandable way, he could throttle her. But he fears her because they're basically one another's match."

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Unmasking The Mole

All three stars confirmed that the mole's identity remains a secret until the finale (or perhaps past it, when I spoke with them on April 13, no one had read the finale script yet), which surrounds the last stretch of episodes in a tense cloud of suspicion.

"It was a stroke of genius," Dan says. "On a show like this, where there's a cast of characters as big as an Agatha Christie mystery, the actors are often at the table reads passing notes to each other with arrows pointing to people that say, "Mole?" It's kept us guessing and excited and on edge because anyone can be the mole, which is the terrifying and exhilarating thing."

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Buckle Up

While Scandal spoilers are as rare as a red wine stain on Olivia Pope's pants, each of the actors jumped at the chance to praise their co-stars' work in the last batch of episodes. "I'm so excited for next week's episode (Seven Fifty-Two)," Bellamy said. "Something happens that allows everyone to have these beautiful monologues. I'm a fan of great acting, and I really love these cogent, long-form speeches that every character gets."

Perry concurred, adding, "We learn some things about Huck in that episode that even I didn't see coming. I didn't see Guillermo [Diaz] film them, but from just having read the script and knowing what he's capable of, I can not wait. Huck is endlessly mysterious and endlessly compelling and we find out a lot more. A lot!"

Dan takes it one step further and says that every single character will surprise the viewer by the time their finale fades to black. "I'm very excited for people to see all the characters behaving in ways they will never expect. It's a really exciting bunch of episodes."

airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. on ABC.