This episode starts with Hakeem (Bryshere Y. Grey), who is in the studio and has been there for over 24 hours. His father, Lucious, is looking on. Hakeem is writing rhymes and spitting fire - getting all his anger at Blake supposedly "stealing" his lyrics out of his system. Lucious (Terrence Howard) approves even though Cookie thinks Hakeem needs a break and a shower.
Later in the episode, Andre (Trai Byers) comes in to look after Hakeem, who once again goes on an immature tirade about how he is the only one suffering in the family and he never grew up with his mother (who was in jail at the time,) so whoa unto him. Andre acknowledges that pain but also asks Hakeem to consider that Andre too has lost a child who would've been five at this point. And, he will spend the rest of his life making up to Hakeem for the mistakes that he has made. Meanwhile he really, really wants Hakeem to see a therapist.
And, of course, Hakeem makes a joke about Andre being the crazy one and reiterates that being in the studio is his therapy. That partly explains why he released the diss track about Blake that is circulating the airwaves as they speak. His therapy at this point is to passive aggressively pick a fight with a man to whom he openly gave song lyrics.
Jussie Smollett and guest star Toby Onwumere.Chuck Hodes/FOX
The second scene of the episode shows Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) at the kitchen bar, researching living with HIV on her laptop. She reads from a website about how, given medical advance, people with diabetes are more likely to die earlier than people with HIV. Lucious (Terrence Howard) suggests that Cookie give the research a break. But Cookie persists, saying she needs to understand what Kai (Toby Onwumere) is going through so she can be a better mother-in-law to be.
Meanwhile she is asking Lucious why he hasn't signed anyone new yet. Sure Devon (Mario) is with Def Jam, but they need money fast. Lucious says he has a plan to get a rapper named Carlito and he plans to do it by snagging Carlito from his manager, who is reportedly in over his head at an underground, millionaire's poker game.
Cookie decides to launch a social media-activated campaign "Five Boroughs in Five Days" to find the next star out there in the streets of New York City. She starts walking to parks and broadcasting live on her cell phone to encourage people to come out so she can find the next big star. The messaging is making Cookie a social media star according to Porche (Ta'Rhonda Jones.)
Cookie gives a rousing speech to the online masses: "You don't need everybody to believe in you. All you need is one somebody and she standing right here in front of you. So bring it."
Cookie is pleasantly surprised when Porche performs an intro for her cousin. Porche can rap! She then listens to several other people perform but a white woman butts in line. Cookie asks her if she is in the right place and she most definitely is. Help, says the woman, I'm Elizabeth Landry, Maya's mother, and I need your help. (Maya is Poundcake's daughter, that Cookie knew from the lockup. It seems that Maya is losing control since finding out she is the product of a prison rape and according to Maya's adopted mother, she has gone off the rails.)
Three Black Divas Is Back (aka Hey, Tisha Campbell!)
Cut to Empire Records, where three women are in the studio singing a bop. Becky (Gabby Sidibe) and Giselle (Nicole Ari Parker) are bopping their heads too. Jeff Kingsley walks in and shuts down all the good vibes. He's just not feeling the song - not matter how head-boppy it is. The data proves, he says, that Three Black Divas - led by Tisha Campbell - won't sell records. Becky immediately refutes Giselle and Giselle immediately tries to talk over Becky. Becky recovers though and says she meant exactly what she said in expressing her disapproval of Kingsley's methods. And Giselle once again sees that the super bossy boss doesn't really respect her opinion or her vision.
"The three bland decrepits are a thing of the past," says Kingsley. "Please stop chasing yesterday.... I'm dropping them."
Becky's Best Friend Date
Cut to Becky and Jamal (Jussie Smollett) having friend time at Jamal's condo. Jamal asks Kai to leave so that he and Becky have time alone. Kai is a little jealous and tries to get the date down to just one hour. Jamal pushes back and it's clear this couple is still in a honeymoon phase and not yet in another phase where it's ok to have friends outside of the relationship. Jamal also slips off his wedding ring and puts it in the drawer. Hmm. Why is he trying to hide the engagement ring from Becky?
Meanwhile, she asks Jamal to put on his onesie so they can watch Insecure together. Becky is dressed in a pink furry Onesie herself. This apparently is what the two friends do together to pass the time. It's cute.
Long story short, Jamal comes across some gummies in Becky's bag and he starts to eat them, unaware they are edibles. Becky figures out why Jamal is giggling and tells him he is eating marijuana. He gets quite angry, because he is not supposed to be partaking in drugs and this could be a gateway to reenter drugs for him, he thinks. He also tells Becky she needs to leave because Kai is coming back. That all backfires and Kai walks in to the two of them sitting by the couch wearing their onesie animal hoods, giggling and eating edibles.
After a poorly-played game of truth or dare, Becky eventually finds out that they are engaged and she is hurt that Jamal never told her. They are drifting apart and she doesn't like it. Becky then tells Kai that she initially wasn't that sad about him going missing while on a work assignment but as of right now, she actually would cry for him if he died. It's a jarring conversation that's kinda funny and kinda not. Did this best friend cross the line in terms of being supportive? And will Becky's weed-addled statements about Jamal being a whore who had a lot of boyfriends come back to haunt the couple if (gasp) Jamal turns up HIV positive later in the season or next?
Lucious Plots At Poker
Terrence Howard in the "What is Done" episode of EMPIRE.Chuck Hodes/FOX
This scene starts with a DJ Mustard beat and ends with Lucious and Thirsty figuring out how they are going to get into a millionaires poker game and game a new artist out of a losing millionaire. Thirsty sets everything up and Lucious has to buy in with a million to start. He doesn't have that cash on hand but sets up a sale of a Derek Lamb painting that was gifted to Cookie for their wedding. Lucious gets a cool million and enters the game hoping and praying.
The players are all rich and mostly white - except for the manager of Carlito, who apparently has a gambling problem. But one other of the rich players doesn't show up and in his place is the second exciting appearance of the night in Damon Cross (Wood Harris.) Lucious asks Damon what he does for a living, and Damon says "The people who need my services know I'm the best at what I do."
The game comes down to a wire and all that's left to bet is another million and the rights to control and manage the artist Carlito. Just as Lucious wins the hand and stands to collect a ton of money and Carlito, a bunch of masked gunmen enter the room and demand all the cash. As they run in, Lucious and Damon run out a side door and out a fire escape. Lucious turns to Damon and says I never enter a place without knowing a way to get out.
Cookie and Maya
Cookie goes to visit Maya to try to get her on the straight and narrow. It doesn't quite work. Maya is living in a nice apartment with a white boy from New York University who also claims to be a trust fund baby. Cookie immediately dislikes him and her eyes narrow while looking at him. Another long story short, Maya tells Cookie she knows what she's doing. But then a day or so later, Maya is calling Cookie collect from a New York jail. She needs to be bailed out for being caught acting as a drug mule. White boyfriend Evan is nowhere to be seen and turns out that Evan is the one who sent Maya out with drugs and instructed her to give them to a particular person. Once she did that? The person turned out to be an undercover cop and she was arrested.
Maya asked for help getting out and Cookie agreed. But when Cookie returns later to get her, Maya changed her mind and decided to stay with Evan. He, of course, had given her a reason as to why he - a wealthy trust fund kid - couldn't afford to bail her out. And she, of course, believed him.
Cookie gives the best speech of the evening here. But Maya turns around and tells Cookie that she doesn't know everything and had she ever considered that she ruined Maya's life by telling her she was the rape progeny of an inmate?
Harsh words. Cookie takes them to hard and admits she doesn't have all the answers on her live stream. But she also says she knows how to make stars, so bring it.
Three Black Divas Get Cut
Giselle tries to talk sense and her own data research into Kingsley. Go ahead and keep the TBD! They sell out their tours! But Kingsley isn't having it. Giselle tells him that he is so obsessed with overturning the Lyons legacy that he can't see the forest through the trees. When Giselle leaves his office, he opens a box and looks at a picture of a girl. Then he looks at the Lyons throne encased in museum-quality showcase glass and then he grips a six-point star weapon in his hand so sharp that blood runs to the floor. Either Kingsley is legit crazy or he is doing all this rap-king stuff in order to impress a dead girl or a girl he can't have.
Later, Giselle is meeting with TBD and tells them they were cut and that Kingsley is a SOB who won't take anyone's advice and is too mired in data to recognize real talent when he sees it. The lead singer of the group, portrayed by Martin, says this is why they appreciated the Lyons. And then Giselle has an idea.
Lucious and Thirsty are talking about the foiled poker game.
"Our plan was perfect," he says. "Automatic weapons, masks. We got four million dollars and we got Carlito."
Thirsty interrupts the celebration with a quiet note: He was unable to get the Derek Adams painting back. The holder had sold it. Lucious tells Thirsty that the painting is coming back, hook or crook - as long as it's back before Cookie notices it's gone.
The next scene shows last minute poker game add-on Damon Cross sitting under a painting in his home. That painting is the Derek Adams piece.
Giselle For Breakfast
Guess who shows up at Cookie's house for breakfast? Giselle and TBD. They are there to talk business. Giselle asks Lucious if he wants to make some money and Lucious lets Giselle in.
FBI And A Funeral
Remember that funeral that was happening in the season five premiere? Well, cut to the funeral parlor and the FBI are trying to get Lucious to view some pictures. Thirsty says to leave his client alone because he is in mourning. But Lucious says he will view the images. And what does he see? Damon Cross and Cookie, looking a little close.
What on earth is happening? Did Cookie and Lucious set Damon up to get that painting back and someone else got killed in the crossfire? Did Andre snap and do something that got himself murdered? Did Hakeem's bravado kick start a fight with Blake and someone else brought a gun to the fight? Did Kai die from some sort of illness, or some sort of undiagnosed heart condition caused by intense stress after being kidnapped while on assignment?
I guess we will find out at the season finale in a few weeks.
Until then, catch up on the earlier episodes of Empire
Season 5, Episode 5: Life And Death In' The Depth Of Grief'
Season 5, Episode 4: Love All, Trust A Few
Season 5, Episode 3 The Lyons Master The Fall
Season 5, Episode 2: Pay For Their Presumptions
Season 5, Episode 1: Steal From The Thief (Season 5 Premiere)
Source : https://www.forbes.com/sites/adriennegibbs/2018/11/07/empire-recap-season-5-ep-6-lucious-creates-a-crime-in-what-is-done/
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\'Empire\' Recap Season 5, Ep. 6: Lucious Creates A Crime \'In What Is Done\'