Hakeem is Still Missing
The World Series delayed our Empire time, but we didn’t forget that Hakeem got snatched up last episode. As a reminder, we see Hakeem’s kidnappers dragging him to some unknown destination.
Meanwhile at Lyon Dynasty…Cookie is frantically calling Hakeem, wondering why he has been MIA. Eventually she gets a video call and it’s a sweaty Hakeem with tape over his mouth. Cookie hangs up because she thinks it’s a prank from Lucious, but even Lucious isn’t that sick.
She confronts Lucious at Jamal’s studio session, who tells her he’s not about that life, but he knows what’s going on, and they storm out to get their son back.
Hakeem is Found
Hakeem’s kidnappers want $40,000. Lucious says it’s because they’re trying to flex on Cookie for being the new kid on the block, so they pulled a “snatch and grab,” which is dumb, but this is Empire. Anyway, the drop up car pulls up empty. Come to find out, Hakeem asked to be let out and it was that easy.
Cut to Hakeem stumbling around with a swollen bloody eye. The first place he decides to go after being kidnapped is to Anika’s house for some loving. Mmmkay.
Later on we find him back with his family refusing medical attention, claiming he’s okay, and being a total jerk. In this case we can forgive his behavior because he’s obviously dealing with PTSD and also needs a CAT scan. Lucious forces him to physical exam from their private doctor, and it turns out that he needed was stitches on his eye. However, this doctor’s license is questionable because he didn’t suggest a CAT scan considering that Hakeem took a few blows to the head.
Hakeem’s theme or the rest of the episode is PTSD and seeing things in psychedelic blurred vision. He continues refusing help and spazzing out on any and everything (RIP to the glass he broke). Cookie tries to figure out a solution with her sexy head of security. He suggests that Cookie puts the dudes who snatched Hakeem on payroll. This is some backward street ish, and she declines. Eventually, the only productive thing that comes out of their conversation is a kiss it had long been obvious that he was going to be Cookie’s new love interest, but there’s always a catch.
Cookie thinks things over and decides to set up a meeting with the kidnappers to discuss them being on payroll, and she brings Hakeem with her. She tells Hakeem to be cool, as if that ever really works, and as soon as they step inside Hakeem pulls out a piece on them. Cookie tries to talk him out of pulling the trigger and then gets a hold of the gun herself. She g’s up and holds the gun to the lead dude’s head as a way to welcome him to her team. W. T. F.
Dre Tries To boss up
Dre has an artist showcase with the sole purpose of trying to figure out who is getting dropped from Empire Records. J Poppa, Becky’s boo, performs and reveals some of his new Christian verses that who Dre convinced him to add. Lucious isn’t feeling it, and wants the thugged out J Poppa back. Frida Gatz performs, but gets cut short when some random man heckles her. In true Freda Gatz fashion, she attacks the man, and then dips out. Dre tells Lucious they should drop her because she’s too much of a liability, but Lucious ain’t with it, and reminds Dre who really runs things.
Lucious’ Attempted Olive Branch
Lucious tries to make peace with Hakeem by offering him a hot track with “no strings.” Hakeem, hip to his dad’s BS declines the offer. The two of them get into a heated discussion that spills into Lyon Dynasty right before a showcase. Hakeem’s brothers tell Lucious and Cookie to let them handle their brother alone. Hakeem reveals that he feels small because he didn’t fight back when the goons were beating to smithereens, so he’s overcompensating with all this fake hard behavior. They gave him a pep talk about how being Cookie and Lucious’ kids is the ultimate survival, and that he’s a winner, and they got his back. It seems to work, but um like, the kid still needs therapy for his PTSD. One doesn’t just get over being snatched while jogging. However, Hakeem, still disturbed, does at least manage to perform his verses with the girl group he put together, and they kill it.
Lucious scoops up Freda Gatz to tell her that he’s not dropping her from Empire, and that he identifies more with her as his child than his three sons. He plays her the beat he tried to give Hakeem. She likes it and spits hot fire off the dome. It looks like Lucious got his next hit.
Cookie stops by the head of security’s apartment and cuts to the chase. She wants to get busy and she hopes that he can make her forget about everything that happened during her crazy week. He gives her the lovin’ she’s been missing, but the only thing is…he has a bull tattoo on his back, the same tat that we saw on the backs of the men who kidnapped Hakeem. And the plot thickens!