Those treacherous, seductive Lyons are back tonight on Fox's monster hit Empire and we can't wait to hear them roar! When we last saw Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) and Co. they were reeling from Lucious (Terrence Howard) naming gay son Jamal (Jussie Smollett) his heir apparent before being arrested for Cousin Bunkie's (Antoine McKay) murder.
Proving no distant relative or family friend is safe around a Lyon, Lucious's former right hand man, Vernon (Malik Yoba), met a fate similar to Bunkie's in the Season 1 finale. Will bipolar eldest Lyon offspring Andre (Trai Byers) and his Lady Macbeth-esque wife Rhonda (Kaitlin Doubleday) get away with murder?
What about youngest son Hakeem (Bryshere Gray)? The up-and-coming rapper teamed with Andre, Cookie and Anika (Grace Gealey) to stage a hostile takeover of Empire Entertainment in the season finale. Will the hothead Lyon cub actually prove a worthy rival for Jamal this season? Below are five storylines we can't wait to watch play out this season on Empire!
1.) Lucious Lyon Presents: Jailhouse Rock
From O.J. Simpson to Martha Stewart, tales of mega celebrities going to prison have always been popular fodder for the tabloids. Will hip-hop god Lucious Lyon finally earn some of his wife's street cred by doing time?
Famed comedian Chris Rock guest stars this season as part of Lucious's prison arc. He plays a drug lord the hustler-turned-mogul squares off with while in lockup. Don't drop the soap, Lucious. We know how you feel about homosexuals!
2.) Team Cookie and Anika?
The enemy of my enemy is my Boo Boo Kitty. Following the best TV catfight since the Dynasty reunion back in 1991, Cookie Lyon and Anika "Boo Boo Kitty" Calhoun reluctantly agreed to work together to seize Empire from Lucious and Jamal. If you believe these two bitter, couture-clad rivals are going to stay on the same side as the season progresses, I have a dope mixtape with wicked sick rhymes from Bristol Palin and Ann Coulter I want you to listen to!
In the Season 1 finale, Anika set up a meeting with a Southern fried corporate raider intent on getting him to finance their takeover bid. This season, Oscar winner Marisa Tomei joins the cast as Mimi Whiteman, a lesbian venture capitalist who just might play an integral role in Cookie finally ascending to her rightful throne as Empress of the Empire. I wonder if she'll eat the cookies?
3.) The Rise of Jamal
A wise man once said absolute power corrupts absolutely. Now that Jamal has won the throne, just how far will he go to keep it?
We know this much, Jamal is still on the outs with Cookie. I'll miss their tender mother/son bond but I know the juicy drama resulting from their Shakespearean rift will be worth it!
As Jamal struggles to be both an artist and acting CEO of Empire in Season 2, his love life will be equally complicated. Watch for the return of aspiring chef Michael Sanchez (Rafael de La Fuente). Can Jamal's old flame keep him from losing his soul to Lucious and the Empire?
4.) Camilla's Revenge
God didn't need help making man in his own image and Lucious Lyon didn't appreciate British fashion designer Camilla Marks (Naomi Campbell) helping to mold Hakeem! As gross as I found certain aspects of Camilla and Hakeem's May/December romance (He called her Mama!), it was really effed up the way Lucious banished Jamal's old lady back to England. I can't wait for Camilla to get back on this side of the pond to exact some sweet, sweet revenge.
5.) How To Get Away With Uncle Vernon's Murder
Andre and Rhonda Lyon were one of the last TV season's most twisted couples long before they had actual blood on their hands. He routinely pimped his wife out to secure business deals. Proving what's good for the gander is perfectly permissible for the bipolar goose, Dre had no problems bending a bureaucrat over a desk to help the family business. Talk about a modern marriage!
Rhonda's hold on Andre weakened as Season 1 neared completion. He found Jesus and Jennifer Hudson at an in-house treatment facility for his mental illness. She did manage to redeem herself when she bludgeoned Vernon (Malik Yoba) to death for fighting with her hubby. Before Andre could call the cops, Rhonda blurted out she was pregnant. I wonder what will be harder to hide, a baby bump or a dead body?
Season 2 of Empire premieres tonight at 9/8C on Fox.
Photo credit: Fox