9/26/2016 by Michaela Shelton

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There are a lot of things going on in the world today… but not as much as we saw on the season 3 premiere of Empire, which aired on FOX earlier this week. With the cliff hanger at the end of season 2, fans highly anticipated the shows return.  The episode began with the revealing of who fell of the balcony at the end of season 2, when Anika and Rhonda were fighting. Ironically, Rhonda, who almost died last season because of Anika, is the one who fell to her death. This season her luck has run out and of course for dramatic effect, Rhonda landed on a car directly in front of Lucious. What a “coincidence.”

Following Rhonda’s death, Andre chokes out Anika, who subsequently goes into labor, having her baby 6 weeks early. All of this happens within the first 5 minutes of the show! Already too much going on here.

Overall, there are a lot of story arcs to follow. Let’s start with the three Lyon’s brothers and their current situations. In this season premiere, we see Hakeem coping with being left at the altar. Hakeem shows up to his ex Tiana’s house taking his pants off and confessing his love.  He then passes out on her couch, as Jamal is calling him to share the news of Rhonda’s death. This scene was good, because it illustrates Hakeem’s priorities and inability to be alone.

Next we have Andre who is going crazy over the death of his wife. He is shown crying and hallucinating in Jamal’s home where he is currently staying. I feel bad for Andre. First his unborn baby and now his wife died… this man can’t catch a break.

Last but not least, there is Jamal, the most reasonable person in the entire family. However, he has a breakdown during a performance, when he suffers from PTSD from the night he was shot. This proves that even people who are seemingly the most together can only take so much. This breakdown caught me completely off guard to be honest. Okay producers, I see you being creative! Kudos.

Meanwhile, we get used to seeing a lot more of Shyne, the thug who crashed Hakeem’s wedding and is now ordering Lucious to follow orders, so he won’t testify to the feds. This character is hardcore and unpredictable! Definitely excited to see how his storyline plays out, following his tantrum in the studio.

Also, Tariq (who we found out last season is Lucious’ half brother), is hard at work trying to make sure Lucious goes to jail. Unbeknownst to everyone, he is able to hide a surveillance camera in a teddy bear in order to watch what goes on in the Lyons house. Smart move Tariq, smart move. He is faithfully stalking the house, so I am sure he will send Lucious to jail in no time.

The climax of the episode is when Tariq comes over for dinner at Lucious’ house. In some weird form of reverse psychology, Lucious invites Tariq over for dinner and tells him he doesn’t need a warrant to come into the house because he is “family.” Then Tariq goes on a rant and basically comes for everyone at the dinner table. He goes from each person individually and calls them out about their lives and the reigns Luscious has on them. Finally he comes for Cookie and she shuts him down completely. Even though Cookie is upset and heartbroken about Lucious’ decision to marry Anika to invoke spousal privilege so she can avoid talking to the feds, she still stands by him and her family.

Overall, I don’t know what to expect this season. It seems as if the writers of Empire are trying too hard. The drama is so all over the place that it is a little hard to follow. Also, it’s interesting to note that ratings have drastically dropped as far as the shows season premiere. Maybe people are sick of this show, and not here for it anymore. However, I will continue to watch, because I have been watching since day one. We shall see what unfolds this season!


Read more stories by Michaela Shelton at her blog www.darealmichaela1.com

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