kerry washington (essence cover)*Emmy-nominated and newly married, “Scandal’s” Kerry Washington is having the kind of year even Olivia Pope might envy!

In Washington Confidential, ESSENCE writer Denene Millner caught up with Gladiator queen Washington to get her take on the small-screen powerhouse—aka Scandal—that changed the network game.

The runaway hit ABC drama, which features the Hollywood beauty as the cunning yet complicated D.C. “fixer,” has a fervent fan base of 8.5 million self-professed Gladiators watching each week—all ready and waiting to untangle the latest web of lies, danger and deceit.

Also in Olivia vs. Kerry, ESSENCE explores the differences between Washington and the character she breathes life into each week. ESSENCE’s November issue hits newsstands on October 10th. Thanks!

In the cover story, here’s what Kerry said about the acceptance of her character Olivia Pope (and herself as a black actress):

“They are allowing an educated, intelligent, powerful, complicated, human, flawed, multidimensional black woman into their homes. They’re not walking past her on the street, they’re not trying to avoid engaging her, they’re not ignoring her and pretending she’s somebody else’s family and somebody else’s problem…”