From 2012 to 2018, the world watched the political thriller TV series “Scandal,” which aired on the ABC network every Thursday night. Created by Shonda Rhimes, this show took place in Washington, D.C. and followed the character Olivia Pope, played by Kerry Washington, and her crisis management firm Olivia Pope & Associates. Viewers witnessed the drama and secrets that happened behind the scenes in politics while watching Olivia battle her own struggles, including those of her family.

One character who was arguably a fan favorite was the character of Elijah “Eli” Pope, also known as “Papa Pope.” Played by actor Joe Morton, he was Olivia’s father and the “Command” of the spy agency B613. The two had a very complicated relationship, and fans of the series stayed tuned for the father-daughter challenges that kept coming their way. Part of the thrill of getting to know Papa Pope was that he was unpredictable, in a position of power, and always had a good monologue under his belt to remind everyone around him who was in charge, including Olivia.

Out of the seven seasons of the TV series, there are countless monologues characters spoke that fans still remember to this day. REVOLT captured 10 of Papa Pope’s best ones. Check them out below.

1. Do you have to be so mediocre?

In this scene, Olivia was on her way to a private jet when Papa Pope pulled up in a car. He got out of the car to talk about her affair with Fitz. At this moment, the affair was out in the world and was circulating through the media.

Olivia believed she would be protected by her firm and allies as the scandalous news continued to spread, but her father expressed his disappointment with his daughter and reminded her that he taught her to do better. He mentions a saying that he has always told Olivia since she was a little girl and how she should always follow it, even in adulthood.

“Did I not raise you for better? How many times have I told you, you have to be what? You have to be what? Twice as good as them to get half of what they have. Sleeping with that… for God’s sake! You know to aim higher. At the very least, you could have aim for chief of staff, secretary of state — first lady!? Do you have to be so mediocre?”

2. You… are… a… boy!

In this scene, President Fitzgerald “Fitz” Grant has Papa Pope held hostage in a room to gain some information. In an attempt to him break down, Fitz tries to use his relationship with Olivia as a power play. The president thought talking about his affair with Olivia would make Papa Pope feel uncomfortable, but he did not take the bait. The father responded with a message to Fitz that he will never be a man in his eyes.

“You’re a boy! You’ve been coddled and cared for, pampered and hugged. For you, it’s always summertime and the living is easy. Daddy’s rich, your mama’s good-looking, you’re a Grant. You got money in your blood. You… are… a… boy! I’m a man. I have worked for every single thing I have ever received. I have fought and scraped and bled for every inch of ground I walk on. I was the first in my family to go to college. My daughter went to boarding school with the children of kings! I made that happen. You cried yourself to sleep because daddy hurt your feelings. Because papa banged his secretary. Because it hurt to have so much money.”

He continued, “You spoiled, entitled, ungrateful little brat! You have everything handed to you on a silver platter, and you squander it. You’re given the world, and you can’t appreciate it because you haven’t had to work for anything! So, now you decided that the one thing you want is my daughter. My child. Mine. What I made. What I created. You can talk about what a great lay she is to try to get a response from me all you want. But guess what? I am actually, quite literally, above your pay grade. Which means that I know that you believe that you are in love with her… You love that she is a door marked ‘Exit’!”

3. If you didn’t kill the poor bastards, somebody else would...

Olivia asked her father to meet her because she needed comfort, and felt lost about the purpose of her job and what she was fighting for. She talked to him about learning that people she knows have killed before. She was in shock at the realization of murder and started looking at the world differently.

The amount of evil she has witnessed in politics makes her feel that fighting for the goodness of people is a losing battle. She pleaded with Papa Pope to be a dad at this moment and asked for his perspective on how to deal with it all. He vulnerably admits his truth and what being in power has caused him to do.

“183 — That’s the number of people I’m responsible for killing, not the number I’ve killed but the number I’m responsible for. There’s a difference. You get an order to kill someone, well maybe you pull the trigger, but it’s not on you. They ordered it. If you didn’t kill the poor bastards, somebody else would, but when you become Command, you are the one giving the orders. You are the one making the decisions. You have to choose who lives, who dies. You are responsible. So you become the hand of God. 183. I know all of the names, how old they were, if they had children, if they would be missed — 183. I never made a decision lightly. I always suffered a bit with each one. The responsibility of that, the gravity of that, the weight of it, it mocks me, it stains me, it never leaves me… So, whatever you think of Jake, however you want to punish him, being the hand of God is already the worst punishment in the world.”

4. Am I finished being dad now? Are we done?

This monologue came after Papa Pope revealed that he was responsible for many deaths. He emphasized to Olivia that even if things look bad, the point of it all was trying to do the right thing to save people — even the ones some say are not worth it. In his own way, Papa Pope encouraged Olivia to keep going because her purpose was to be better than the “monsters” and to help the bad people see a brighter future ahead in the name of justice.

“Everyone is worth saving. Even the monsters, even the demons. Everyone is worth saving in the face of darkness; you drag everyone into the light. That is the point, at least I’d like to think that is the point of you… Am I finished being dad now? Are we done?”

5. Run, Olivia, run. Because mark my words, Fitzgerald Grant is not going to make it to the end of his term

During this episode, Fitz orders Jake, another member of the agency B613, to overthrow Papa Pope’s position as Command. The scene starts off with Papa Pope and Olivia sitting on a park bench. Olivia thinks she knows what has happened with her dad and comes to him apologetically. But since this happened after being held hostage by Fitz, Papa Pope is officially at war with him. He advises his daughter to get as far away as possible from what is about to happen. This monologue was a wake-up call for Olivia.

“No, you have no idea what happened. You have no idea what is currently happening. You’re skipping around in a field of bombs and mistaking them as daisies. This dear, sweet child is what happened. The married man you can’t seem to stay away from had me abducted and locked me up in chains and spoke to me about the way you taste, while he allowed the terrorist who snaked her way into my marriage bed to clear you as air space. What happened was, the man you screwed betrayed me by freeing the woman who gave birth to you as a bargaining chip. What happened was the man who defiled you also defiled an organization that I gave my soul to build. That is what happened.”

He went on, “What is currently happening is that President Fitzgerald Thomas Grant III has made an enemy, the worst kind of enemy because I know all his secrets. I know where every body is buried, and the greatest weapon I can use against him calls me ‘dad’… Everyone should be afraid. The president should be very afraid, and if I were you, Olivia, I would be terrified. I would pick up whatever chips you have left and run as far away as possible from that burning building known as the White House. Run, Olivia, run. Because mark my words, Fitzgerald Grant is not going to make it to the end of his term.”

6. Olivia, against me you will lose

In this scene, Olivia walked into her apartment and found her dad sitting in the living room waiting for her. She had been working on digging up information about him to try to understand his motives. Papa Pope challenges her suspicions, and questions her actions and whereabouts. She points out that her dad has been keeping tabs on her, and to avoid talking about what she has been up to, she tells him to go home. As Olivia walks away, Papa Pope reminds her who she is talking to.

“You do NOT disrespect me. Ever. You understand? Can I make that any clearer? I’m the one that protects the republic. I’m the one that protects you. Everything I do serves that purpose. I have spent a lifetime keeping you safe from harm, a lifetime worrying about your feet, a lifetime making sure that the path in front of you was clear of debris. A lifetime shining their shoes so that you might always see your reflection at every turn. You do not see this. You do not believe this. You think I’m some relic, some misguided vicious dinosaur from my museum who attacks without thinking. Let me assure you I am not. When I strike it is precise and it is for a reason. You do not interfere. You do not get in the way. You NEVER EVER choose one of them over me again. I won't have it… Olivia, against me you will lose.”

7. You want to be a boss? Is that it? Speak with some spirit!

During this episode, the stakes in the presidential race were getting high. News was leaked that Senator Edison Davis was addicted to painkillers and suffered from depression. The rumors were reported on television where Papa Pope, Edison and Jake watched another presidential candidate, Governor Frank Vargas, respond to the allegations. Because Papa Pope runs the presidential campaign for Edison, Edison got upset about the news and blamed Olivia for his secret being publicized. Papa Pope did not like to hear Edison talk badly about his daughter. So, he tells Edison who the real person in charge is and what will happen next.

“I can’t quite decide which part of your indecorous behavior troubles me more. The decision to interrupt me while I was speaking, the distasteful reference to my daughter requiring reigns or this foolish belief that I would ever take orders from you. You want to be a boss? Is that it? Speak with some spirit! Do you want to be a boss?... Should you ever be so unwise as to forget who the real boss, the only boss, is around here again, Meridian Terrace? That will be the last of your worries. I can guarantee that. I’ll handle this my way. Until then, I suggest that you keep out of my sight and keep my daughter’s name out of your mouth.”

8. You are faster, stronger and smarter than him. How could you be so weak?

During the presidential race, things got a little more chaotic. With recent news about presidential candidate Frank Vargas being shot, Olivia, knowing about her father’s capabilities, confronted Papa Pope to see if he was responsible. The scene was set up to where Olivia walked into her dad’s office and asked him directly about the shooting.

Papa Pope denies it, but she does not believe him. To try to make the situation seem like a good thing for Olivia, he convinces her that because of Vargas’s death, she can still represent Mellie as the future president and has a second chance in making it to the oval office. Olivia stresses that she does not want her father’s help, even though he reveals who really shot Frank Vargas.

“You know better. You are better. You are faster, stronger and smarter than him. How could you be so weak? How could you let that man outplay you? That’s what happened, Olivia. He outplayed you in the generals, and he outplayed you tonight when he paid an assassin to shoot Frankie Vargas… That’s why you lost. Because you think I am a predator. I am your father. I am not a predator, I cannot be a predator, not in this world. I am very smart prey trying to help my species survive. Think. Think like them… Cyrus Beene loves Cyrus Beene. He has always been the most dangerous predator.”

9. You privileged little inkwell prep school IV league doctor’s son. You ain’t no Jesse Jackson...

Papa Pope taught Senator Edison Davis a lesson about how to carry himself in the presidential election. Edison shared his plan with him about his upcoming speech. But, the Commander warned Edison that what he said could make or break his success in the race. Edison was hoping to take the route of highlighting important Black historical figures to prove his stance as a potential leader of the country, but Papa Pope disagreed with this approach and told him how he should really act during the race. This persuaded him to do everything that Papa Pope said in order to win the political seat.

“This is America. You have another crop of supporters. A larger crop. Those supporters, they are okay, pleased in fact, at the idea of a Black president. As long as he’s not too Black -- as long as he understands his place -- as long as they can be sure that he’s not gonna run North of the Mason Dixon at the first sign of daylight. See, that is what they’ll think if you stand on a podium talking about Hollis Doyle and quoting Rosa Parks and Huey Newton.”

His advice continued, “You need to cease talking. Race is a social construct. You’re speaking to a man from the ghetto. You have no idea what you’re talking about. You privileged little inkwell prep school IV league doctor’s son. You ain’t no Jesse Jackson. You ain’t got nothing to preach. You ain’t got nothing to say. You don’t have a dream, and you haven’t been to the mountain top. That is why I chose you. The first Black president. You are gonna get there by making everyone forget that you are Black. When you are in the oval office, you can say whatever you want. Until then, stand still and hope nobody notices that this ain’t no tan.”

10. In the end, they don’t care what happens to us...

In the final season of the series, Papa Pope met with Olivia on a park bench, once more. There, she confessed that a federal investigation into what has been happening behind the scenes with the political parties was underway. People had been wondering who slipped confidential information to outside sources. Olivia told her father that she was the one who exposed B613 and wanted her father to join her in testifying.

He responded by handing her an envelope with her inheritance and told Olivia he wanted no part in the matter. He continued to tell Olivia that giving up to a country that does not see her as valuable is not going to fix a system that was created against Black people for centuries.

“The person I raised doesn’t hold out her hands and smile while she is being shackled. That is what my slave does. Watching my child enslave herself in order to fix ‘massa’s’ problem? This unyielding desire of hers to fix everybody else’s problem? What did I do wrong?... In the end, they don’t care what happens to us. They pet you on the head and tell you you’re smart, pretty and you matter to them. You are in the light, so they can stay in the dark.”