After a crazy season 3 premiere, ‘Empire’ upped the stakes even more in the Sept. 27 episode. Andre was attacked in the show’s final moments, a new character set his sights on Cookie, and Lucious refused to let Cookie go.
Lucious isn’t going to give up on Cookie without a fight. When he wants something, he’s not going to stop. He has a slew of gifts delivered to Cookie’s apartment, including a gold gun and a lion statue. Porsha is all about keeping these amazing presents, while Cookie says she’s “done with his ass.” You tell him, Cookie!
Jamal has a radio interview alongside a councilman named Angelo, played by Taye Diggs. They get into an argument, but Angelo convinces Angelo to get involved with his anti-violence summit. Angelo is dapper in his suit and polite as hell, but a jaded Cookie refuses to trust him. Can you really blame her?
Later, Jamal brings the urban kids from Angelo’s group to Empire headquarters, and one even raps for Lucious. After seeing the opportunity in front of him, Lucious offers to be involved in the anti-violence summit. He wants to stream it on Empire X Stream. Lucious may be a bad guy, but he’s a good businessman.
After her surprise performance when Jamal freaked out at the last minute, Lucious is now all about Nessa. Hakeem wants to do something with her, but Lucious puts the kabosh on that quickly. But Hakeem doesn’t listen. Hakeem and Nessa hit up the studio together. She gives him the spark he needs to create some pretty epic music. They really play off each other well. They collaborate on a song, and I need it on my playlist ASAP.
Seeing Through The Bad
Cookie returns all the gifts, except the gun, from Lucious and begs him to keep his distance from her. Lucious even plays the song that was playing when they first met for Cookie, saying it’s a song for Jamal. As much as she hates to admit it, Lucious is starting to wear her down.
After putting on a special performance at her apartment, Lucious has a heart-to-heart with Cookie. He confesses that he saw her way before she saw him. When he first spotted Cookie, he said to his pal, “I’m going to make her mine.”
“You saw me in those streets, and you knew that wasn’t my destiny,” Lucious says to Cookie. Cookie saw through it all and knew he was meant to make music. Regardless of all the things Lucious has done, Cookie can see beyond it because she knows the man he can be.
Andre is still struggling with Rhonda’s death. He’s all alone in his house, which isn’t the best idea. He calls out to her over and over again, and Jamal witnesses it. Andre doesn’t know how to cope. Rhonda did everything for him. Jamal agrees to help Andre get his life back together, even with something as simple as counting meds.
Later, Andre asks Cookie how she kept on fighting when she lost everything. He doesn’t think he’s strong enough to deal with Rhonda’s death. But Cookie assures him that he is. She praises him for fighting his way out of the hood when she went to jail. Andre is stronger than anyone gives him credit for.
Bye, Bye, Teddy Bear
At the anti-violence summit, Angelo makes an incredible speech about the importance of empowering and educating black youth. When Jamal gets up to sing, he can’t. He has another panic attack. Poor Jamal!
After the event, Angelo and Cookie strike up a conversation. She’s officially charmed by him. Lucious sees it all happening in front of him, and he HATES it. Jealousy is an understatement. I’m a hardcore Cookie/Lucious fan, but I love Taye Diggs.
Tariq is still watching Lucious through his teddy bear camera in Bella’s room, but his plan goes horribly wrong. As Anika puts Bella to bed, the monitor picks up the camera signal. Lucious realizes what’s happening, and you can see the fury in his eyes. Watch out, Tariq.
The three Lyon brothers unite to talk about their next steps. They vow to defeat the obstacles in front of them and stand together. Andre finally realizes it’s time to move on and accept Rhonda’s death.
As Andre is getting the rest of his stuff out of his and Rhonda’s old place, two cops show up. They question him about recent break-ins in the neighborhood, asking him if he had anything to do with them. Andre says no, and the police go after him. They attack Andre and slam him on the ground. The policemen take things way too far and put a gun to his head while he’s handcuffed. It’s a poignant and eerily relevant scene, considering the unjust deaths of Keith Lamont Scott and Terence Crutcher in the past week. Empire has handled the tumultuous state of America in a very honest way.
Other Notes From The Episode
*When a guy eyes Nessa in the studio, Shyne punches the daylights out of him. There’s definitely a connection between Nessa and Hakeem, but I have a feeling Shyne is NOT going to be a fan of this blossoming relationship.
*Mo McRae, currently starring on FOX’s Pitch, returned this week as Becky’s boy. He urges Becky to quit her job at Empire before Lucious brings her down with him. Will Becky leave the place that’s been her home for so long?!
HollywoodLifers, what did you think of tonight’s episode? Let us know!