“Empire” Recap: “Sin That Amends”
On Wednesday’s “Empire,” Jamal dealt with his PTSD while Lucious tried to win back Cookie. Here are the most important things to know about “Sin That Amends,” the second episode of season 3.
The show began with Cookie receiving gift after gift, including a gold-plated gun and a lion statue, from Lucious. She gave him all the items back, and told him to “respect my boundaries.” He, however, thought she’d “come around,” and later used “Just A Friend” to bond with her. A flashback showed their first meeting, with the two singing the track together, but she insisted all she learned in that moment is that she’s meant to do music.
The next day, Lucious surprised Cookie with at-home performance from Biz Markie rapping the song. After, he confessed to crushing on her before their first meeting and said he purposefully ran into her that fateful day. “My destiny was you,” he told her.
Meanwhile, Lucious flipped out on Anika for wanting to hire a nanny because he didn’t want a stranger in his home. Instead, he told her to do the “damn job” herself. Lucious moved to sign Nessa, but didn’t want her working with Hakeem. They went into the studio together anyway, and creative sparks flew. Hakeem also took advice from Shyne, but was clearly frightened when Shyne punched out a guy just for looking at Nessa.
Jamal got off on the wrong foot with a councilman named Angelo (Taye Diggs) during a radio interview about gun violence. Angelo, who suspected Jamal was suffering from PTSD, invited him to partner with his youth organization “Woke,” and participate in an anti-gun violence summit. When Jamal later brought the kids to tour Empire, Lucious offered to host the summit at Leviticus. His only motivation, though, was to stream it all for Empire.
Cookie accused Angelo of exploiting Jamal, and seemed to be in denial about her son’s PTSD struggles. Lucious, however, seemed to understand that Jamal was having difficulty performing in the wake of the shooting. At the event, Angelo credited Cookie for changing his perspective on some issues. But when Lucious put Jamal on the spot to perform, he had another panic attack and walked out. It led Jamal to admit that he has a “problem,” and “can’t get on the stage” anymore.
When Cookie asked Lucious how “we” will fix the situation, he was just happy she said “we.” Angelo added to the awkwardness when he praised them for getting along and promoting “black love.” In response, though, Cookie said they weren’t a couple, and started flirting with him.
Amid all this, Andre seemed to be suffering a full-on breakdown as he continued to hallucinate Rhonda. Jamal offered to help him keep track of his meds, and Cookie tried to boost his confidence and urged him to return to church. “I got you no matter what,” she assured him as they both cried. Later, Andre and Jamal bonded over their respective issues and offered each other support. Andre also encouraged Hakeem to “step up” as a father, and said he’d be going to the home he shared with Rhonda to get the last of his belongings.
In addition, Becky’s rapper boyfriend J Poppa said he wasn’t renewing his Empire contact because he got another offer, and negotiated for her to come with as an A&R rep. Concerned about the feds coming after Empire, he said Becky shouldn’t be there when it all crumbles. Towards the end of the episode, a flashback showed Tariq’s mom pulling him away from a teen Lucious, and telling him to stay away from their craziness and not tell anyone they’re half-brothers.
In the final minutes, Anika discovered the camera hidden in the stuffed animal as Tariq was watching live, and Lucious ripped it out. The show ended with Andre getting stopped by two white police officers as he left his old townhouse, with the cops questioning him about break-ins in the area and not believing he had a right to be there. Though he was cooperating, Andre was violently thrown to ground with one of the officers pointing a gun in his face.
The promo for next week’s episode showed Andre being charged with assault on a police officer, and questioning if Tariq was behind it all. The show will also feature Angelo hitting on Cookie, as well as Mariah Carey’s highly-anticipated cameo.