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Empire – S2E5 – Be True

Previously on Empire, ‘Poor Yorick’

All charges against Lucious have been dropped, and Vernon’s death was ruled a suicide. Thirsty has earned himself a job at Empire Records – Vernon’s old job. Andre is back at work, now acting president of Empire’s new Gutter Life label, but it might be a bit too gutter for him. Random asses and titties in the boardroom send him right to his pastor with a request to get baptized. This doesn’t go over well with Lucious.

Jamal’s relationship with Michael is pretty much done when one of them gives into Chase One’s advances. Good thing Jamal has a new tour with Ne-Yo to keep him busy.

Lyon Dynasty is targeted by masked assailants who demand money in exchange for letting Cookie’s label operate in their neighborhood, and they kidnap Hakeem when their demands aren’t met. Lucky for her, Dynasty’s new concert promoter, Mr. Delgado (Adam Rodriguez), is packing.

Images: FOX

Images: FOX

Cookie’s best line

“Oooh, mention the devil name and he will walk right in.”

Empire S2E5 - Lucious in Church

Number of times you wanted to slap Hakeem: 0

Hakeem is fast becoming one of my favorite characters. He’s still Hakeem so of course he tries to push up on Laura after signing her to lead his new girl group, but she shoots him down. Her rejection seems to have sincerely hurt him and I believed his apology and promise that he wouldn’t try it again.

When he learns that Andre set up Jamal to get mugged at Ghetto Ass Studios, he doesn’t get angry because it made Jamal accuse him, his first concern is that Jamal could have been shot that day.

Empire S2E5 - Hakeem

Most triflin’ character

Michael.  A blow job from the hairy, freaky artist? Really, Michael? It’s like that? I guess.

Runner-Up: Thirsty. Lucious asked Andre if his new lawyer/business manger is too hood for him. Hell, he may be too hood for Lucious. Sending thugs to Cookie’s for the masters is pretty low, even for Lucious.

Health check-up

Rhonda isn’t showing yet, fueling a lot of viewers’ suspicions that she’s not really pregnant. One thing’s for sure: Andre is too busy listening to the Lord and dodging Lucious’ temptations to give his wife some. Poor Rhonda.

Things Lucious Says That Doesn’t Make Any Damn Sense

“That’s that thing that pushes you up to that whole other level.”

Empire S2E5 - Lucious in Studio

Who should jump the line for relationship counseling

I know I said on last week’s podcast that I wasn’t sure why Michael and Jamal were still together. Jamal’s first love is music and Michael is painfully insecure. But I don’t think Michael accepting a blow job from the freaky artist makes any damn sense.

Best Family Moments

Andre’s confessions to his brothers reminded me why every scene with the three of them is pure gold. They feel like real brothers.

Best Cameo

I can’t name one Ne-Yo song, but his few lines in this episode have me looking forward to seeing him as The Tin Man in the upcoming live production of The Wiz. 

Empire S2E5 - Jamal and Ne-Yo

Best minor character moments

Portia offers up a Pomeranian mutt, Whoop-de-woo, as a guard dog for Cookie in the hopes of getting her job back. And guess what? It was little Whoop-de-woo who alerted Cookie that she was being robbed.


Empire S2E5 - Porsha

The BET award goes to

Why Go (feat. Bre-Z)

After a non-sensical pep talk from Lucious, she drops a hot 16. I think her daddy was smiling in hell.

Empire S2E5 - Lucious and Bre-Z

Leave your thoughts on the episode in the comments and we’ll read them on tonight’s Empire podcast!

Empire S2E5
  • 8/10
    Drama & Shade - 8/10
  • 6/10
    Music - 6/10
  • 8/10
    Entertaining - 8/10
  • 8.5/10
    Performances - 8.5/10


This was a pretty tame episode in terms of drama and manipulation. Things are in play, but with no real indications as to whose pulling the strings. Who are these masked figures trying to extort Cookie? Anika was suspiciously absent this week. Hmmm. I don’t trust Mr. Delgado at all.

Lucious’ issues with mental health and religion all seem to stem from his mother, but I’m still not feeling that any of it warrants the way he treats Andre. Jamal and Michael needed to be over, but I’m not buying the way it went down. It feels completely out of character for Michael to cheat on Jamal.


User Review
5 (1 vote)
About Nina Perez (1391 Articles)
Nina Perez is the founder of Project Fandom. She is also the author of a YA series of books, "The Twin Prophecies," and a collection of essays titled, "Blog It Out, B*tch." Her latest books, a contemporary romance 6-book series titled Sharing Space, are now available on for Kindle download. She has a degree in journalism, works in social media, lives in Portland, Oregon, and loves Idris Elba. When not watching massive amounts of British television or writing, she is sketching plans to build her very own TARDIS. She watches more television than anyone you know and she's totally fine with that.

9 Comments on Empire – S2E5 – Be True

  1. I’ve been waiting for this all day!!!


    In Baby Wipes voice *Roar*
    Baby Wipes sucks.

    1. Andre always look good in suits. That man is fly. Tiana is gorgeous. Fake Kelly Ripa need to wear a different hairstyle it’s getting played out. Also she must not be pregnant or had a miscarriage because she wanted to have sex and she made a face on that couch that spoke to me and it said SHIT. She has padding under that dress in church. I see you fake Kelly Ripa. I see you.

    2. Tiana is not about that life. I would have known immediately not to trust those girls. Being from the south side of Chicago taught my ass that. I would have been on high alert and ran my ass up the stairs. But Cookie is about that life so shit is about to go down I hope. The guy who was talking to cookie in her office, he’s fine y’all. He can get his hands dirty with me. But I guess he may be getting down with Cookie.

    3. Baby trainer need to stop kissing on Tiana on the cheek because ole chick might come after her. I see she already find Hakeem as a “potential” love interest. Baby Trainer makes me what to up chuck. “I’m feeling this music are you feeling me?” Barf. I don’t like how I see this going. She don’t have to be in a relationship with him. Don’t do it Empire. I know she walked away but let’s get real they may still do it.

    5. So this is totally not what Dre wanted at all. He wanted Empire not gutter life dirty ditch make your ass clap records. Dre should have known that Baby Wipes ain’t shit. Also I don’t know how I feel about him telling the truth when he chooses which truths to tell. He should do it a la Baby Wipes at a big dinner if anything so I can laugh. But once again he is the MVP because his acting was great.

    6. So Neyo is actually producing music for the show so its nice to see him in the show. His acting wasn’t bad. Jamal’s getting those mini Jeri curls going and they aren’t so bad. I see that Dora finally got off the couch briefly to say he is trying to explore I mean tour with Jamal but I cannot see that going well. CLOSE YOUR MOUTH DORA. GET OFF THE COUCH AND GOOGLE HETERONORMATIVITY DORA. Dora why are you so silly? Getting sucked off on the balcony when Jeri Curl lite is less than 10 feet away is stupid. Just like you. You only get off the couch to be thirsty or to fuck I see. But at least you have lines now.

  2. Whoo!!! Let’s go!


    I liked this episode. A lot happened and stories jumped around so my feedback unfortunately is the same way.

    Seeing Andre, the disciplined, buttoned up CFO, in charge of Gutter Life was so funny. Despite my liberal socialist views, I tend to be really conservative at work in thought and in action so I totally get it. His discomfort on getting lap dances and boobs shoved in his face was making me feel uncomfortable. People, this a conference room… enough with the shenanigans and someone throw up an excel schedule or a PowerPoint presentation on the wall. PLEASE!

    Yay, Portia! Did you see Portia’s bejeweled purple backpack? It was ghetto fabulousness! I missed her last episode so I’m glad she’s back. But did I miss what was up with Cookie mentioning all these phone alerts that Portia set-up? I was confused as it was mentioned twice. Not sure if I missed something as to the purpose of all that.

    Eeeeew, Michael got blown by the hairy lesbian witch killer? I was tempted to pause and take a shower because as my boo said, “even *if* I was attracted to you, which I’m NOT…” Yuk. I’m hoping that we are done with this character. Bitch, bye! Although I was fascinated by their earlier scene when they were walking through that Flash-Star-Labs-like silver, pink and while hallway.

    The three brothers. I love the way their scene was directed. The dramatic background music. The long shots. The close shots. They have a lot of chemistry together. And I can’t believe Precious slept through all that dude hotness.

    Question for the group: raise your hand if you cringed when you saw Luscious go sit on the casting couch with Chris Rock’s daughter. I started rocking back and forth and muttering “please don’t let the bone come out, please don’t let the bone come out.”

    Andre’s baptism was interesting.

    First, we see Cookie using a de-linter on his white robe. I don’t know why but that scene made me laugh it was so random.

    Second, Lucious is trifling, as proven by this exchange:
    Andre: Thanks for coming, Pop. I love you.
    Luscious: I know you do.

    He’s so nasty. But wow, that flashback with Mama Kelly Rowland was intense. I’ve said it before but these windows into these characters’ past are really effective. While I didn’t quite feel sorry for Lucious, it’s nice to gain insight into what helped make him a bastard.

    And third, Rhonda sitting all by herself, side-eyeing and shushing her in-laws was awesome.

    And holy crap! Hakeem is kidnapped. Questions for the group: who is behind this? Zoot suit? Delgado, Cookie’s new promoter? How about Anika? Has to be one of those three, right? And if it is Zoot suit, he must be doing this rogue and without Lucious’ knowledge or approval. I just doubt that it is really the local hood rats acting alone.

    I can’t wait for next week as Lucious and Cookie seem to team up to rescue Hakeem. Cookie said “trust and believe” and as I’ve been taught by the Geek In Review podcast, Women of Color episode, when a black woman says “trust and believe,” you best trust and believe that things are going down next week.

    Looking forward to the podcast and hearing your thoughts!


    Fun episode!

    Mogul count-1
    Pops count- 1 Might have missed one

    Here are some thoughts:
    The lack of security at Ghetto Ass Studios is appalling. How do moguls have an office in the hood with no security?

    Damn Doralupe’s insecurities were deep enough to let the unwashed artist get some!

    It was great to see the delicious Adam Rodríguez. He definitely wants a bite of Cookie.

    Did Rhonda call the family ‘that clan’? SHADE. Not sure Rhonda can handle the new Andre. And nope she’s not pregnant-not with that long sigh she gave after Andre expressed happiness over them having a baby soon.

    Andre was confessing it ALL! But since Lucious is God, why didn’t he just tell him that he would absolve all of his sins? Petty Lucious can curse at Vernon’s corpse but not dispose of his ashes. But his petty was on one thousand when he didn’t tell Andre he loved him back during the church scene.

    Tricky is seriously the hood’s answer to Matlock but if he’s not careful he really will be the next Vernon and get-got. Cookie won’t let him get away with his nonsense.

    I am trying to care about Freeda Gather’s but not feeling her yet.
    As for Hakeem, Lucious better step in; after all he’s the only that can harm is family not anyone else. Quick thought though-what if Delgado set this up? (I think Kate is thinking the same thing.)


    I loved all the shade and side eye given during this episode. Jamal doesn’t want to go to the baptism because of how some churches feel toward homosexuality, Lucious responds “I know you do” to somebody saying “I love you”, and Cookie don’t want nothing to do with Porsha and her Raven-Symone hair.

    I enjoyed the church scene but once again Lucious was so damn trife for getting up and walking out. Yea yea we know it had something to do with his past but he gotta stop making his sons feel bad over things that happened during his childhood. Did anybody else get a Narcos vibe as Hakeem jogged through the park? Where’s Pedro Pascal when you need him? Great episode can’t wait for the recap.

    Another enjoyable episode-my highlights
    Lucious @ church-thought he’d either get struck by lightening or his body would catch on fire 😄
    Speaking of, enjoyed the scenes of Andres baptism & Lyons bickering during the ceremony-acting up in church-where was that home training when needed?!?! 😄
    Cookies potential new man-these two played love interests in a Tyler perry film a few yrs ago
    Portia-welcome back girlfriend & whoopy whoop or whatever the dogs name is-but dog is a cutie!
    Jamal/Michael/caveman photographer-so Jamal & Michael aka Dora aka Guadalupe now over?
    baby wipes in the studio w/the young rapper-was he attempting to seduce which appears to me an underaged girl? I took notice how she moved over when he sat by her on the couch by her?!?
    Is Rhonda REALLY pregnant? Have 2 wonder w/the look on her face when Andre mentioned the pregnancy? But at church it looked like she had a slight baby bump & she was rubbing her stomach……
    Ne-yo-I was wary of the numerous upcoming celeb cameos but I liked his interaction w/Jamal & baby wipes
    Hakeem aka our little mogul is growing up-check out the suit, the way he reconciled w/new singer-
    The new Vernon whose name who slipped my mind-what is he up to & for whom does he work?
    Is he behind Hakeem’s abduction?
    Is there a new episode next week or is it pre-empted by the World Series?
    Apologies if this is 2 long-thanks for the podcast!


    Breaking news: Porsha got fired… & then re-hired!!! Luscious’ case getting dropped did not have the same effect on me. Who hasn’t used someone else name before to get out of a jam? I’m pretty sure Cookie used her sister’s name instead of her own before. I’m not a heathen so I wouldn’t know anything about that. & who throws a bachelor party @ their own work place. Tacky. & is it racist that Luscious notice the dark meat wasn’t getting it done so he called fourth the bunny? I mean Andre did have a lil smirk on his face when it started snowing. Also I’m calling it first. Something of Hakeem’s will be getting burned &/or burned down. It’s bad enough he flirts within his company but now you got two Latinas & sista eyeing you? Playing with fire. Also, did anybody else notice that Ne-Yo had a mixed pair of earrings? Richer (old South Park joke) Tiana learned the repercussions of not participating in gym class. No upper &/or lower body strength. & last Michael… You almost made on the road. Did he not learn anything from Beyoncé’s ex? See it’s the ones who act like they really despise the person when they really like them. That is all.

    The biggest tragedy of this episode is that Andre is being stingy with the D. With all the shit that Rhonda has to put up with she deserves to get a little something when she gets that feeling. This episode seemed like a filler episode. It didn’t really give me life. Thirsty wouldn’t stop talking about their nefarious deeds. Michael getting his pipe smoked on the balcony was totally out of character and unbelievable. Anika didn’t have a single scene and Tiana should have at least had some mace. No one is worried about Hakeem because this ain’t Game of Thrones. They will get him back and he won’t be missing his penis. Thanks for reading my feedback and I look forward to hearing the podcast.

  8. For the podcast
    Soon no autopsy or forensics on that body …just gonna drop the charges ?…This is more evidence that uncle Vernon is still alive . Watch he’s gonna pop up next season all fresh and brand new.

    How does this studio still not have any security .
    Tiana walked into an episode of OZ when she went down those stairs…the one time I’m in favor of profiling ..”can I get your picture alone in this stairwell with my friend with the bleeding gums?”

    Just keeping it to predictions
    Rhonda so not pregnant I think she wanted to have sex with Andre in that office in an attempt to make it true.My. prediction Lucious sleeps with Rhonda in order to get the baby she promised Andre . IM THE FATHER!!!
    Dirty Tom Green forced himself on Micheal ..we’re gonna have a flashback scene from his POV where Jamal pops in at the wrong time . He’s breaking them up so he can go in for the kill.
    Hakeem’s kidnapping is what’s gonna bring the whole family back together .. I think the dude cookie is warming up to has something to do with. it . …this show is a comedy right ?

  9. Ok, this has been driving me crazy. Why do you guys call Terrence Howard Baby Wipes?


    I really missed a bit cause I had to leave the room and got distracted by something else.

    Didn’t see Hakeem’s kidnapping coming at all. I don’t think Lucious has anything to do with that. He may treat his family like shit but he never wants them to be harmed.

    I missed Michael stepping out with nasty ass Warren. Why would any sane person allow any part of that man’s body touch any part of theirs? EWWWWWWWWWW!!! 😷😷😶😶😷😷

    I hope Adam Rodriguez isn’t behind the attacks cause I like seeing his fine ass on my TV. And I’m all for Cookie getting with him, as long as he’s not the bad guy.

    Andre gives me all the feels. I just want things to work out for him but I doubt it. Plus, ain’t no way Rhonda’s pregnant. Smh

    That’s it. Happy Porsha and her crazy self is back. Thirsty is so dirty. But fun. And I can’t wait to hear the podcast

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