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Scandal returns Thursday, Sept. 24 at 9/8c on ABC, and show creator Shonda Rhimes tells TVLine that Season 5 will see Olivia and her remaining Gladiators reunite and do what they do best:Gladiate.

Rhimes admits that the show’s central theme was sidelined in Season 4 because “we were busy healing” Olivia, but she says Season 5 will feature “the reconstitution” of Olivia Pope and Associates.

“The Gladiators did gladiate,” Rhimes adds of Season 4. “But they gladiated on a different scale and a different level. And the Gladiators scattered.”

Indeed, with Harrison dead and Abby working at the White House, Rhimes said “a lot of times it was just Huck and Quinn gladiating by themselves. And that wasn’t the same dynamic.”

Will new addition Cornelius Smith Jr. (who was promoted to series regular for next season) fill a vacancy on Team OPA? “I honestly don’t know,” Rhimes says.

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ENTERTAINMENT: ‘Scandal’ Season 5 Preview: Gladiators Gon’ Gladiate  was originally published on