Okay guys, I must admit Empire hasn’t been what it used to be and this week we saw less of what the show gave us in the fierce first season as Cookie took matters into her own hands when the Lyons suspected the Dubois family was to blame for their latest family crisis, Andre lashed out on everybody while Cookie set her eyes on a new plan for Empire in Vegas.
The episode began with the Lyons out for blood and at war against the DuBois as they met with their lawyers after a classic group walking scene. Cookie was physically held back to avoid climbing across the table to scratch Mrs. DuBois’ eyes out. Angelo’s cousins and the Lyon boys (excluding Hakeem who was too sad about his baby taken to make it) traded insults and Jamal reminded Angelo that they took $5 million of Lyon money, while Anika just pleaded to have her baby Bella back which of course, the DuBois deny knowing anything about the baby being taken. The meeting ended in a deadlock as Cookie shoved her chair over and the Lyons stormed out.
Anika and Hakeem were told at the Child Protection Service office that due to some paperwork issues, they had lost Bella. This surely can’t happen in real life, right? Well, the family gathered and Cookie reminded them that they were all a mess when they’re not on the same page, just like this meeting with the DuBois showed so they all agreed to be stronger together. Thirsty said it didn’t make any sense the baby could disappear (I know right!) so the DuBois had to be involved somehow but they still could not confirm it.
Lucious did not like the concept for his show and asked for something better while Jamal walked in. They couldn’t totally agree on the song they started last episode as Jamal wanted to do a mix of it himself but Lucious had a plan to bring a young MC (played by Fetty Wap) to represent him on the track. They went into the studio where the MC stumbled in with his entourage unstable from pain meds after being “allegedly” shot 4 times the day before. He started bleeding while he recorded and Lucious said it showed that he was literally putting his blood and heart on the track but for Jamal, it was a reminder that while he too has taken a bullet, Lucious hadn’t. He played his version of the song and even the producer in the studio said he killed it but Lucious did not seem so convinced. Later on, Leah gave Lucious a box of photos of his father; Joe Walker, which he decided to make into a bunch of cardboard cut-outs to inspire himself and Jamal in the studio. Lucious told Jamal he would do the song his way as he was sick of fighting and Jamal‘s music would be Empire’s legacy someday.
Cookie and Andre met with the Vegas man and tried to use Inferno‘s lack of concept to their advantage and push When Cookie Met Lucious instead. The man agreed as long as Lucious also agreed but Andre insisted he was not going to work with his father who he called a liar. Later on, Andre remembered that Anika killed Rhonda and their unborn baby so he went to see her and started choking her but to his surprise, Anika pleaded with him to do it because she deserved to suffer after selling her soul just to be a Lyon. Andre left her to continue suffering.
Another Lyon suffering was Hakeem as his daughter got kidnapped right when he was ready to step up and be a good father. He sent all his partying friends out of his apartment to do yet another live monologue on Empire Xstream to tell all his fans about Bella and the DuBois while the fans’ messages showed in in realtime. #FreeBella. An army of Hakeem‘s fans assembled with Free Bella signs and met up with Angelo and his mum as they exited a building where Mrs. DuBois swore to him that she had nothing to do with Bella being taken.
Cookie went to meet Andre and yelled at him for freaking out during the meeting with the Vegas man (I think he has a name though) but he told her again he wouldn’t work with Lucious. Cookie said they needed him as his name was on the title of Jamal’s album. Nessa, who was in the room, complained that the new show had nothing for her and also tried to stand up for Andre but Cookie slapped her across the face for coming between her and her son. Andre took Hakeem to Shine’s laundromat where Cookie was about to do some business. She screamed at him for bringing Hakeem there and made him wait in the car while she went to handle her business. Shine’s guys were beating Angelo up to get answers out of him. He thought Cookie would save him when she walked in but soon realized she was in charge of the act so he pleaded with her. She told him he needed to talk to his mama because she knew where her grandbaby was, instead, Angelo screamed that she was not going to get away with having him beat up.
Nessa was furious with Andre so she went to see him to ask what his plan was and also about her Vegas deal as she felt he did not expect her to sit and watch from the audience but he told her she could do whatever she wanted as it was between him and his family. I’m so sure Shine is not going to be happy with this new development and wonder what their revenge on Andre would be.
Cookie went back to Lucious to tell him she was sure Angelo had nothing to do with Bella’s disappearance. She also told him that When Cookie Met Lucious was going to be on stage in Vegas as it was a win-win for the family but Giuliana walked and said Marcone (finally, i remembered Vegas man‘s name) called her to tell her about his conversation with Cookie so she flew back in to make sure she and Lucious were still on the same page. Lucious told Cookie Inferno was the Vegas deal so she asked if he was saying no to something that could bring the family together. Lucious just continued to stroke Giuliana‘s leg so Cookie got up to leave and reminded him she did 17 years for him but Giuliana replied saying, “Thank you for that. But I’ll take it from here.” Ouch! I really can’t wait to see how Cookie attacks or deals with her!
In the final scene, Mrs DuBois stitched up Angelo’s face after Cookie had Shine‘s guys deal with him so he told her they had to go to the police chief because he wanted to see all the Lyons in jail. She told him extraordinary times called for extraordinary measures and rang a bell which prompted a maid to come in with baby Bella. She told Angelo to meet the newest member of the DuBois family and went on to say, “they ruined one of mine, so I took one of theirs”.
When she swore to Angelo earlier on in the episode that she had nothing to do with the baby’s disappearance, I really thought my other theory about Tariq and Anika planning something shady was right but it turns out Mrs DuBois is just as mean as Cookie. With only 2 episodes left this season, here’s the trailer for the next episode; Toll & Trouble, Part 1…