Now that we know who Olivia Pope's father is, Kerry Washington can see why her Scandal alter-ego's personal life is in such shambles.
"He's one of the most awful human beings," Washington said of her television dad (played terrifically evil by Joe Morton) at the Variety Power of Women event in Beverly Hills.
"I used to think how in the world is Olivia Pope such a successful woman, but she's such a mess," she said. "Now I think I'm surprised she's not a drug addict like strung out in a jail cell somewhere."
Asked why Olivia and the president didn't, um, go at it after they were left alone in the White House bunker during last week's season premiere, Washington explained, "They're really trying to do the right thing, those two. They're really trying to take care of the crises, respect the marriage and try to do good."
Thankfully, Washington's real family and personal life is nothing—absolutely nothing—like Olivia's.
"My mom might be one of the coolest human beings on the planet," Washington said. "She's really powerful. She's one of the smartest, most elegant women I know. I hope that one day I can be as cool as she is."
When Washington is told he'll probably make a very cool mom one day, she laughed, "The cool factor? I don't know."
Washington was honored at the Power of Women event for her work on the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities.
"The arts, I often say were like a third parent," she said when accepting her award. "Growing up as a latchkey kid in New York City, the arts were like the parent that took care of me when my parents couldn't be around. I remember walking home from school and walking to dance classes on sidewalks that were covered with syringes and crack vials and I think where would I have would up if I didn't have those dance classes and those children's theater companies."