Tonight’s episode of Empire starts with some good news. Cookie made Forbes’ list of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Business. Back in reality, Lucious still has amnesia and he tells Cookie and his sons to stop tip-toeing around him. He’s tired of being treated like a baby, and especially wants to know why Leah called him a monster. Cookie still keeps trying to shut this conversation down, but Hakeem takes this opportune moment to mention that Lucious punched him in the face once. Lucious asks Cookie where she went for 17 years, which just upsets her. She storms off and all throughout the episode we see her having flashbacks of when she first checked into the bing.
Later on we find Jamal and Lucious sitting at a piano discussing music theory. This sets the tone for bonding that they were never able to do before. It’s bittersweet to watch because Lucious doesn’t even seem to remember how writing and recording music works. Jamal is patient with him and even sneaks him into the studio at Empire, with Thirsty’s help.
Shyne and Cookie are still bumping heads at Empire. Cookie has him listed for one album and Shyne says that’s not enough and that he had a 10-album deal with Lucious. Cookie reminds him that sheruns the show now, but Shyne reminds her that he has stake in the company and feels that she’s being disrespectful. He demands to know what’s up with Lucious, but obviously he doesn’t really know what’s up. He thinks Lucious is just taking some generally recovery time while in his right might. Shyne and Cookie kind of compromise when they agree to give him 5 albums out of the 10.
Juliana is still missing, which is definitely a problem, especially if Thirsty can’t find her before the feds do. Speaking of the feds, there’s that cute one named Pam, that Dre met at a bar the other night (you know, the can’t get it up incident). She didn’t know who he was then, and he didn’t know she was an investigator. But now they’re in a sticky situation because she’s on the investigating team for the explosion and has been looking for Juliana too, and while she’s attracted to Dre, it’s obvious she doesn’t trust him now that she realizes he’s a Lyon. At one point she shows up to his office and starts questioning him. It gets to the point where Dre doesn’t want to speak to her again without his attorney present. But really this is a love-hate kinda thing because they end up getting it on later.
Empire needs to bring more money in, as we know. This becomes clearer when Cookie and Dre get informed that they’re being denied a line of credit. There’s definitely something fishy about this. Hold that thought.
Jamal and Lucious are still having their father and son love fest. They’re in the studio bonding, with Jamal reminding Lucious of his old life as a musician, but then Warren pops up unannounced trying to take Jamal on a date. Jamal gets shook and swiftly hurries Warren out. Lucious doesn’t remember that he’s a homophobe and that he pretty much hates Jamal, but Jamal definitely didn’t forget.
But if it’s not one thing it’s another. Once Warren is gone, Jamal and Lucious try to get back to their session, then Shyne barges in. He bogarts his way past the security guard because he hasn’t spoken to Lucious in a while and wants to take care of business without Cookie present. However, he quickly realizes that something isn’t right. Shyne plays along with Lucious’ clueless line of discussion, and even plays a song for him from back in the day. That song sends Lucious into a fit. He starts flashing back to a violent episode of his when he was living the gangsta life with Shyne and it’s too much for him to handle so he runs out. Shyne, being the hood dude that he is, asks Jamal if Lucious is slow now.
After the dust has settles, we’re back with Jamal and Lucious bonding again. Lucious mentions that he could see that “Moonshyne” was a violent man and that they have a history. He asks Jamal if he was violent too and if they’re protecting him from himself. Jamal then goes into the story about how Lucious threw him in the trash can when he was a child for wearing his mother’s shoes and accessories. Lucious is horrified that he was so intolerant and then he made hell freeze over by apologizing to Jamal.
It’s sweet and all, but hopefully Jamal doesn’t get too used to it. Who knows how Lucious will behave once he finally regains his memory.
Cookie ends up at the shoot with Forbes shoot for powerful women, and of course she runs into Diana Dubois, who is still going hard for revenge. Diana immediately starts being petty by gossiping to the other powerful women about how Empire got turned down for their loan and basically how they’re trash. Cookie overhears this and confronts Diana. Cookie is tired of the drama and wants to get past their bad blood because she already has a lot going on. She admits that she was turned down for the loan, but she says that’s not going to stop her from winning. One of the women that Diana was gossiping to reveals that something similar happened to her and she decides to give Cookie the loan. Yay girl power! During the actual shoot, Diana claims she’s impressed at how Cookie handled herself, and then takes her hand claiming they should put their hostilities behind them.
After the shoot, we see Diana get in a car with the same man who turned Empire’s bank loan down. That man is Diana’s cousin.
Of course there was something fishy about the loan denial!
You already know that Diana is pissed that her colleague offered Cookie a loan and that all claims of a truce are bs. But this revenge thing has grown trite, especially for a woman of such high societal stature.
Meanwhile, Warren confronts Jamal about why he’s being so secretive about their relationship and wants to know if he’s ashamed and doesn’t trust him. Long story short, Jamal reveals that he has a lot going on…AND THEN HE MENTIONS HIS FATHER’S AMNESIA!
This is the worst and none of the Lyons know it yet!
The episode winds down with Cookie walking in on Lucious spray painting a wall in their home. They converse for a bit and then Cookie reveals that she was gone for 17 years because she was in prison. Lucious asks if it was because of him and she’s honest about it. He then asks her to tell him about how everything happened.
Again, let us not get used to nice Lucious. We already know that it’s fleeting. But it’s cool for now.
Back at it next week.