“Empire” Recap: “A High Hope For A Low Heaven”
On Wednesday’s “Empire,” Cookie and Lucious had to put aside their issues when they found out Hakeem was kidnapped. Here are the most important things to know about “A High Hope For A Low Heaven,” the sixth episode of season 2.
Cookie couldn’t reach Hakeem and thought he was “ducking” her. She was stunned to receive a video of him with duct tape over his mouth, but thought it was a prank from Lucious. At the same time, in the wake of Michael’s cheating, Jamal emotionally recorded a breakup song with his father. They were interrupted by Cookie, and they quickly realized Hakeem really was “snatched.” They took off, refusing to let Jamal go with them, fearing he’d be taken, too.
Cookie was panicked, but Lucious thought it was a simple “hustle,” and vowed to get their “boy back,” unaware that Hakeem was being beaten. At a drop-off point, they were furious when a van showed up without Hakeem, who apparently escaped. Still bloodied, he went to see Anika, and they promptly got it on. Hakeem eventually returned to the Lyon mansion, insisting he was fine, but he angrily blamed his parents for what happened to him.
Lucious and Cookie clashed over how best to protect him, and he said Hakeem should come back to Empire in order to keep him safe. At a rehearsal for his girl group, Hakeem was very clearly not okay as he clutched his head and snapped at Laura. He later had a meltdown, filled with flashbacks. Cookie met with Laz, who suggested she actually hire the kidnappers to keep them happy.
He also vowed to “slay” for her, and they shared a kiss, though Cookie seemed uncomfortable. She brought Hakeem to a meeting with the captors, which immediately went wrong when he pulled a gun. Cookie tearfully talked him down, and snatched the gun, warning the guys not to go after her family again. “Welcome to my streets, bitch,” she exclaimed.
Jamal was pissed off when the Staples Center wouldn’t book him, saying he wouldn’t be pigeon-holed as a “gay artist.” Lucious then became pissed off himself when Jamal sought help from a man named Jameson, who clashed with Lucious years ago over his homosexuality. Meanwhile, Andre held a meeting about rebranding Empire’s sub-label Gutter Life, and wanted to cut some artists. He interviewed each of the hardcore rappers, including J-Poppa, Becky’s boyfriend. He and Andre surprisingly bonded over their faith, and Lucious and Becky were angered when J-Poppa spit Bible lines during a performance. Freda took the stage next, and was taunted by a sexist dude, leading her to kick him in the face. That led father and son to argue over whether should stay on the label.
The next day, Hakeem was to perform with the girls at the Big Apple Jam. Before he took the stage, Lucious gave him a new song, saying it came without strings. Hakeem wasn’t buying it, however, leading to a screaming match about “manning up.” After kicking their parents out, Andre and Jamal offered their little brother support, saying he didn’t even have to get on stage if he didn’t want to.
Despite their words of encouragement, he blanked when he hit the stage, leading Laura to take the lead and sing directly to him to get his focus back. The move worked, making everyone proud but Lucious, of course. At an after-party, Laura was clearly jealous when Anika showed up, but Hakeem brushed her off.
Lucious later met up with Freda, offering the same song he tried to give to Hakeem. At the same time, Cookie went to Laz’s place, asking him to make her “forget everything that happened this week. The episode ended with them sexing it up. But as the camera pulled back, it was revealed Laz had he same scar tattoo as Hakeem’s kidnappers.
The promo for next week showed Cookie mending ties with Jamal, as Hakeem questions whether Laz is loyal. TELL US: What do you think of tonight’s “Empire”?