The Dec. 14 winter finale of ‘Empire’ was full of twists and turns. Cookie realizes just how bad Jamal’s drug addiction is, Lucious tries to ruin Cookie’s relationship (again), and Andre decides to take control of his life.
Jamal is prepping to hit the stage at the People’s Ball. He seems to have it completely together. He can’t afford to blow this performance. Lucious arrives at Jamal’s rehearsal and warns his son that he better not tell any bad tales about the family in his songs. If he does, he might as well dig his own grave.
Lucious stops by Cookie’s place to talk. He says he hopes the People’s Ball is a success. When Cookie brings up Jamal’s performance, that’s when Lucious chimes in. He’s worried she’s going to put Angelo’s needs above Jamal’s needs.
Freda’s rap at Stone’s anniversary party has Tarik on a roll. He puts the pieces of the puzzle together. The two guys Freda mentioned in her rap — MM and Bam Bam — are guys who worked for Lucious and helped killed Frank Gathers. Tarik is able to get a judge to sign a court order to freeze Empire’s assets for 30 days.
Making A Deal With The Devil
Lucious meets with Diana at the People’s Ball carnival. She’s looking to make a deal. She wants him to kill a story that’s supposed to drop the night before the election, one that could ruin Angelo’s chances of winning the mayoral race. In exchange, she’ll end Angelo and Cookie’s romance. Lucious fulfills his side of the bargain, but Diana realizes Cookie is a positive effect on Angelo’s campaign. She wants Angelo to win more than anything. Needless to say, Lucious is not happy about this development.
Lucious and Anika are still going hot and heavy, but his mom is really killing their vibe. Anika has officially had enough of Lucious’ mom. She threatens to leave with Bella if he doesn’t get rid of his mom in that house.
Cookie confronts Jamal and demands he hand over all the drugs in his house. She makes him watch as she pours the pills down the drain. She’s shaken by the amount of drugs Jamal has and disappointed that she didn’t realize he was going down this dark path.
Andre finally tells Nessa about his bi-polar disorder. He talks about how Rhonda always took care of him during his low periods, and Nessa shocks him by saying she won’t be following in Rhonda’s footsteps. She thinks he should learn to take care of himself. She’s kind of right…
Wanting A Seat At The Table
Cookie and Lucious talk about the latest drama at Empire now that their accounts have been frozen. Lucious makes one last plea to get Cookie to watch out for Angelo, but she doesn’t listen. Lucious is on fire and not holding back. He heads straight to Tarik’s FBI office and holds out his hands. “You want me?” he says. “Here I am.” He makes a big scene and makes sure everyone know that they’re brothers.
When Cookie arrives to the People’s Ball, there’s no sign of Jamal. She runs to Jamal’s place and he’s throwing up. He manages to convince her to give him pills that she has to get out of the drain. Gross. Meanwhile, Tiana and Hakeem’s performance are heating up the People’s Ball. At the end of their performance, Takeem shares a STEAMY KISS! I am so here for it.
Just when Lucious thinks he’s going to have to revert to some less than moral methods to get Empire out of this bind with the feds, Shine says he’s got $50 million lying around. He’s willing to hand it over to Lucious if he gets a stake in Empire. And, yes, Shine is still working with Tarik. Even though he may not be following exactly what Tarik wants him to do, a possible seat on Empire’s Iron Throne is too tempting not to taste.
Watch Yourself, Andre
In the midst of all this chaos, Andre is in the middle of his own crisis. He’s on the beach hallucinating Rhonda. “I need you to let me go, Rhonda,” he cries. She tells him what he needs to hear in the moment. God, I miss Rhonda. Before her spirit leaves for good, she tells him: “Promise me you’ll destroy that b*tch who murdered me and killed our baby.” Watch out, Anika! Before he walks away, Andre takes off his wedding ring and throws it in the ocean.
After taking drugs again, Jamal is able to perform. He absolutely kills it. He thinks everything is all fine and dandy as he walks off stage. Jamal’s family confronts him right then and there. Cookie tells him that he’s going to rehab. He needs to get help before it’s too late. Jamal goes willingly.
The night is still young for Lucious. He just can’t let Diana get away with not upholding her end of the deal. As Angelo and Cookie are about to walk away happy, a reporter walks up and starts asking questions. Apparently, Angelo got a DUI when he was 17. He ran his car into a river and left an innocent girl to drown!
Lucious looks at Cookie and says, “I warned you.” Yes, even Angelo has skeletons in his closet. At least Cookie knows about all of Lucious’ past misdeeds.
Andre shows up to Leviticus looking for Shine. He knows that Shine knew about the asset freeze before it happened. Tarik tipped Shine off so Shine could get all his ducks in a row. Andre has Shine. He knows Shine is working with Tarik, but he doesn’t want to rat him out to Lucious. If Shine agrees to let Andre pull the strings from now on, Andre won’t let Lucious know that Shine is a snitch. Shine has to silently be on Andre’s team until Andre says the time is right to KILL LUCIOUS! Yes, really!
HollywoodLifers, what did you think of the winter finale of Empire? Let us know!