Empire, Television

Empire- “A High Hope for a Low Heaven”


I’m gonna be honest and say that I was only half watching this week’s episode because it seemed like they were lacking in tasty drama and snappy comebacks in favor of a lot of warped looks at Hakeem’s sweaty face…but the last few minutes actually had me saying OH SHITTT and that was worth waiting for.

Even though we had a week in between for the World Series to forget, we’re quickly reminded that Hakeem and his six pack were kidnapped by the neighborhood razor gang and also fun fact that seemed REAL out of place is the nice ab transition we got to Becky’s place where she’s apparently banging one of the rappers at Empire. I care about this .3% so that’s how much time we’re going to spend on it. I actually had to ask my sister what Becky’s name was to type that sentence.

Anyway, Jamal is in the studio crooning soulful musings while Lucious accompanies the piano without a pair of snazzy shades. It was jarring. Who is this mellow, piano-playing Lucious? Jamal stops short because he can’t get Michael with “his thing out” on his balcony off his mind. Lucious quickly swings back to normal and is like please don’t share any deets with me, thank you, just channel your heartbreak into the song. Only the song is interrupted again by Cookie barging in to accuse Lucious of having their son kidnapped. What a picture perfect family.

While Lucious is telling Cookie that this time he wasn’t involved in the illegal activity, Jamal sees the gang all has matching longhorns tattoos and instead of locking that away for a nice mental clue, he immediately shouts, “What ya’ll a bunch of punk-ass cowboys?!” and is popped unconscious. But here’s where things don’t add up. His parents band together to search for him but Hakeem is already wandering the streets with an eyeball that’s seen better days and making out with Anika—who was just crying to her mom about how her life sucks, lolz. Hey Anika, sexing a teenager isn’t going to help matters. To be clear, Anika was his first stop, and then he went home and let everyone know he was okay. Makes sense. He then spends the majority of the episode sweating buckets and having a case of tunnel vision, so you could say he’s doing really well after the ‘nappin.

Cookie meets with Laz; our spicy new security/promoter/it doesn’t matter because he’s here to boink Cookie. They smooch while having a meeting about strategizing with the thugs who are going to keep bullying Lyon Dynasty until they pay up. Except the kiss is lame and Cookie doesn’t really seem convinced on this one.

After a convo that I didn’t really listen to because I was waiting for them to get together intimately, I guess it’s agreed upon that Cookie pay off the gang. She rolls up with her sweatiest child who suddenly pulls a glock on the group unplanned and Cookie has to talk him down to hand over the weapon, so that SHE can point the gun at thug #1 and tell him in her best street Cookie voice that if any of them come near her family again they “won’t even hear the knock at the door.” YEAH THAT’S RIGHT. COOKIE GON DROP YOU. KNOCK, KNOCK…Who’s there?…BULLETS. Sorry, you know how gangster Cookie gets me going.


While we’re on the topic of gun violence, the rapper I despise the most on this show, Freda, gets onstage and starts spitting about cocking guns and shooting bitches in the neck, you know low-key stuff. Someone from the crowd heckles her and instead of continuing on about how she’ll kill anyone who doesn’t know her name she drop kicks him and makes herself a straight up liability for Empire.

What’s an even bigger liability for Empire are Hakeem & the 3 Latinas. Their real name is stupid and I refuse to address it. They’re about to debut a fire flames song and they absolutely can’t mess it up, which Lucious knows so he tries to get in Hakeem’s head before the performance. He stops by with a new track for Hakeem, no strings attached. The best part about this is Lucious introduces the song like it’ll blow our ears off and then it consists of the words “bang, bang” and “boom, boom.” EARTH-SHATTERING beat. Hakeem says nah, there’s a Lyon family fight backstage where Lucious utters his infamous MAN UP and SACK UP a bunch. Apparently Hakeem isn’t a man until he does some time for shooting up a joint. Sounds about right for Lucious logic. His brothers try to comfort him before he hits the stage but it doesn’t stop him from freezing when he sees Lucious’ smug look in the audience. New boo to the rescue though, Laura serenades him about trigger fingers (lotta gun talk this epi…let’s chill on that next time around) and Hakeem suddenly finds his swagger again. The girl group burns the house down and I obviously will be downloading their lady jam.

As they all celebrate at the after party and you can tell Laura has changed her mind about being Hakeem’s bae, Anika shows up only to be rejected again. When will she learn with this family? Hakeem’s like I’m all good now thanks and pushes her out the door. Lucious plays boom boom for Freda and she gives him the reaction he was looking for with Hakeem, free styling over the beat and making me hate her more now that she expressed love for this stupid song.

And for our grand finale…Cookie shows up at Laz’s house and wants him to lay it on her until she forgets about her shitty week. But what’s that? OH SHIT. His shirt comes off and he too has a longhorns tat to match the gangsters. HE JUST GOT THE KEYS TO THE LYON DYNASTY VIA COOKIE’S VAGINA…and there’s no telling what’s going to happen next.


– Andre convincing Becky’s man friend rapper to work some scripture into his rhymes was top-notch stuff. We’ve got Freda going bang bang and Poppa reciting psalms. Who said Empire had no diversity?

-Jamal is sad about Staples Center passing on him because he’s being marketed as gay. He’d like to keep that on the DL now apparently, and brings in a gay guy named Jameson to help with his image…except Jameson and Lucious hate each other’s guts. This seemed irrelevant in this episode but might come into play more later, so it’s worth mentioning.

-Porsha looking like a unicorn in this scene with her pastel hair popping out like a horn. Don’t eva change, Porsha.


-“Bitch I said are we clear? Welcome to my streets, bitch.”-Cookie


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