‘Empire’ Season 2, Episode 9 Recap: Jamal Kisses Skye, Anika Goes Crazy & Lucious Kills Laz
Empire's second season may not be a complete replication of the first, but that doesn't mean the show, or its brand, isn't officially fire! Anthony Anderson and Tracee Ellis Ross used their Wednesday-night sitcom, Black-ish, to explore what life would look like on a Christmas card if they were the Lyon family. Let's face it, Daniels and Strong, you've made it! And their hard work paid off in Wednesday night's episode (Nov. 25).
Fans continue to wonder if the Fox hit will live up to its season one reputation, but it looks like Cookie and her cast are out to show everyone what their made of. Things started off with Cookie and her old sister Candace, played by Vivica A. Fox, are still looking for lost little sister, Carol. But that storyline didn't measure up to what the writers have in store for Anika, who is officially crazy if you haven't been keeping up. She's convinced herself that she's in love with Hakeem, and that he's in love with her back, but that's only because she recently found out she's having his baby.
Now, instead of being a grown woman with boss moves like she has in the past, Anika has transformed into a modern embodiment of Jennifer Jason Leigh in Single White Female. Last week, Anika "kidnapped" Hakeem's girlfriend, Laura, posing as her driver, as a means of doing research on her competition. From that point forward, Boo Boo Kitty goes into stalker mode: clipping out all press pictures and stories and Laura and Hakeem; watching their live media appearances; and writing the word "lies" all over Laura's photos.
As a means of finding a way back into the Family and its fortune, Anika goes to Rhonda for help. Unfortunately, she still can't seem to get the words out to let anyone know she's pregnant. Instead, Anika tells Rhonda she's just truly in love with someone. Rhonda offers advice in the best way she knows how based on the information she's been given. "If you find somebody that's worth fighting for, then that's what you have do to...and take down anyone that gets in your way," Rhonda tells her. Too bad she has know idea what Anika's planning.
To move things along, Anika shows up at Hakeem's house unannounced as usual and pounces on Laura. She speaks down to her then knocks her background. Before the show is over, Anika shows up at Hakeem's place once again — this time, invited. She tells him that he's in love with her, and demands he stop fighting it. No matter how many times he tells her to get it "through her head" that it will never happen, Anika isn't hearing anything Keem is saying.
While Anika is busy losing her mind, Jamal (Jussie Smollett) teams up with Skye Summers, who's played by Alicia Keys. She's a stay-in-your-lane pop star who wants to team up with Lucious to break the mold and produce something with some edge. Lucious doesn't seem the talent for expansion, but Jamal does. He works with Skye to create Empire's latest single, "Powerful." And if you missed the episode, here's a spoiler alert: Jamal kisses Skye!
Finally, Lucious pays Cookie at visit at her office and runs into her man, Laz, for the first time. Being the overprotective and territorial man he is, Lucious runs his own background check on his ex-wife's Latin lover. Of course he finds out that he's part of the gang that kidnapped Hakeem, better known as the 125th St Bulls. Cookie spazes, takes Laz's gun, tosses it to her former business partner and gives him the "ok" to handle him. It's safe to say Laz won't see another episode. Here's where Daniels should have cued "Bang Bang Bang."
Rosie O'Donnell guest stars as Pepper, Cookie's former cell mate who helps her track down Carol. Lucious buys Andre and Rhonda a mansion, and tells Dre he's done "testing him." And Lee Daniels finally guest stars on his own show as a director for Pepsi working with Jamal.
Get ready for the fall finale next week!