“Empire” Recap-ish: Can We Get Rid Of Lucious, Please?

Don’t look too closely at any episode of Empire. Under all of the histrionics, the glitz and the glamour, you’ll see. The bottom won’t hold. There’s a few screws loose. The stitches are unravelling. Watching the show is like agreeing to get into that boxcar the neighbor kid made, and letting him push you down a hill — you might crash into Mr. Anderson’s parked Volvo, but it’ll be one hell of a ride.

To maximize your enjoyment of the show, consider it for what it actually is — a ludicrous joyride through great rolling fields of camp, high drama and a story so outlandish that it could almost be real. So, a bunch of stuff went down last night, but it was mostly the Cookie and Lucious show, a battle for the ages.

Here’s the rundown: Cookie and Lucious continued to fight this war and will do so to the bitter end. Hakeem signed Becky G and mushed her into a 3LW/Cheetah Girls hybrid called — are you ready? please be ready, this is so bad — Mirage a Trois. Jamal is evil still, Andre is sad and less evil, that prosecutor with the boobs from the beginning of this season said that Vernon is ready to testify, but literally no one except for Rhonda and Andre know that he’s dead, it seems. Oh, and Empire apparently exists in an alternate universe where there are no other rappers or artists aside from the hilarious bootleg versions that they’ve created. Whatever, who cares, it’s awesome! Here are some loose ends.

The Audacity Of Thirsty

I greatly admire the scrappy, squirrelly vibe Andre Royo is giving me as Thirsty Rawlings. I appreciate the audacity it takes to name a character — a lawyer! — Thirsty. For this, and Thirsty’s ability to always be in the right place at the right time, thank you, Lee Daniels, from the bottom of my heart.


Hey, These Songs Are … Fine/Not Fine

Exhibit A.

Exhibit B.

Cookie’s Lewks, Described

Cookie isn't sorry that she turned against Lucious while he was in jail.

This is what you wear when you’re invited to dinner at your estranged husband’s house. This is the look you give right before you grab that tacky gold runner with both hands and pull it slowly off the table. This is how you feel when your estranged husband is actually the worst person in the entire world.

Cookie crashes Lucious' party.

This is what you wear when you show up at the party your estranged husband THREW FOR HIMSELF after being released from jail, even though he definitely still deserves to be there, and then let your youngest son upstage your middle son, who was just trying to sing a nice song with Pitbull.

Lingering Queries

  • Who told Hakeem that Mirage a Trois was a good name for a girl group?
  • Where did Cookie learn how to choreograph?
  • When will they figure out that Vernon isn’t anywhere except dead as a doornail?
  • Was that a Sandra Bland reference in the preview for next week?
  • Has anyone ever seen Sway without his hat?