Stars, they’re just like us — they get pregnant, and as joyous as the occasion is, it might not be at the most convenient time in their careers. Through TV history, starting with I Love Lucy in the ‘50s, shows have had to figure out how to address actresses’ real-life pregnancies on screen. Should it be written into the storyline, with the character also getting pregnant? Or if that doesn’t work, how can they hide or work around a growing belly?
Scandal had to answer this question a second time this season when star Kerry Washington announced she was expecting another child. They chose to hide her pregnancy, and delayed season 6 until January to accommodate her schedule. Through some clever and not-so-clever means, the show’s directors, costume designers, and production designers have ensured that Olivia Pope’s midsection is not quite so visible. Click through this slideshow to see all the different ways that 14 shows, including Scandal, have dealt with their stars’ real-life pregnancies, from hiding them with big purses to writing them in.
Scandal airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on ABC.