Lucious has 99 problems and his family is all of them.
He’s scheduled Hakeem, his golden boy, to perform at the opening of his new club, Leviticus. Cookie wants Jamal on that stage too, but Lucious definitely doesn’t.
Lucious’ assistant, Becky, finds out that he has ALS, making her suddenly understand why he’s been making such big decisions about Empire. He doesn’t want her telling anyone.
The media is harassing Empire after two people were shot at a local mall, with the perpetrators citing one of Lucious’ artists, Kid Fo Fo, as their “inspiration.” Fool Fool is flattered, claiming he’s an inspiration just like Gandhi. Good Lord.
Surprise, surprise, big brother Andre has a skeleton in his closet: he’s bipolar. Rhonda wants him to go to the doctor to recalibrate his medication because he’s starting to show symptoms, but he’s so busy manipulating Cookie into undermining Hakeem that he’s been cancelling appointments.
Bunky’s body is found in the river, and Lucious’ “surprise” on the phone about his death is definitely not winning any Oscar nominations any time soon. He does manage to fake some tears in front of his family later, though. And it’s revealed that Bunky was Cookie’s cousin.
Rhonda connects Cookie to a publicist to arrange Jamal’s coming out–which just screams “bad idea.”
This idiot Hakeem has his friend record him peeing on the floor of some expensive restaurant. Of course, the cops are called and the video ends up viral, much to Andre and Rhonda’s joy. Lucious has to appease President Obama on the phone because Hakeem made some pretty rude comments about him in the video.
Controversy sells, of course, so tickets for Leviticus quadruple because everyone wants to see the “bad boy” perform.
Lucious threatens Jamal–if he comes out to the world, Daddy isn’t paying for his lifestyle anymore. So Jamal doesn’t show up for his press conference.
Cookie has to be stopped from attacking Annika after she laughs when Fool Fool disses Cookie, after which she tearfully asks Lucious why he’s treating her the way he is. Lucious doesn’t make any verbal attempts to defend her but, shockingly, he drops Fool Fool from the label.
Andre is going off the deep end (the idiot), and Rhonda isn’t happy. It’s clear who runs the show in this marriage.
When Jamal goes backstage at Leviticus to talk to Hakeem, his little brother suggests that they perform together (YAS!). Hakeem is an arrogant little brat, but I love that he cares about his brother.
Lucious is taken by surprise when the duo start shutting the club down with their performance. However, he grudgingly gives props to Cookie for Jamal’s performance AND apologizes for letting Fool Fool insult her–not sure what’s sincere from him anymore; sometimes he acts like a good guy and sometimes he’s the devil. Cookie makes it clear that Lucious isn’t raising Hakeem correctly–he’s “ungrateful and entitled” (damn right), and she blames him for it.
Ready for this curveball? As Cookie leaves Leviticus, she’s sidelined by a Federal agent waiting outside for her in a car. Their conversation is short, but apparently Cookie made a deal with the Feds (presumably, that’s why she got out of jail early), and now they’ve come calling. She needs to testify in front of a grand jury, a move that may ultimately get her killed.
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