Friday, June 5, 2015

Power Of The Empire

Fangirl Friday : Fox's Empire

I can't believe I even have to say this, but EVERYONE, and I mean everyone, should be watching Empire


Click through to see why you should be keeping up with the Lyons! Screw all those other television families! 



Official trailer :



Firstly, Taraji P.Henson as Cookie Lyon! 


Guys, who hasn't loved Taraji since Hustle & Flow? Or pretty much anything. 



She IS the show for me. With the most compelling story line, the BEST lines, and a wardrobe that makes you go "DAMN!" pretty much every episode. 



She doesn't take shit from ANYBODY! (Not even her very manipulative ex husband.)


Cookie SLAYS! She's out of prison after 17 years, and wants what's hers! (AKA an empire based on HER drug money.)



#TeamCookie all the way! She has to deal with her ex, whom she's still kinda in love with, her sons, her ex's new girlfriend, and a whole lot of other things happening around her. 


But don't you worry. She handles it ALL with her own unique style! This could have just been a Taraji-as-Cookie fangirl post, but I just really want everyone to watch the show. 

Cookie has her priorities straight!
The most heartwarming, and my favorite, relationship on the show, is that between Cookie and her son Jamal, played by the BRILLIANT Jussie Smollett. 


Every scene these two share is magic. 


Jamal happens to be gay. And Empire does not shy away from how hard it is to be a gay black man. Flashbacks from the past, Lucious's current behavior, it all breaks my/your heart for Jamal, but Cookie has ALWAYS had his back.


She loves him, supports him, encourages him, and more than anything, is proud of him, something his father just does not understand. 


Trust me, you'll love watching these two on screen together.


Her relationships with her other two sons are a bit more complicated, but the progression of the story is a great one. Bryshere "Yazz" Gray is extremely likable as Hakeem, and he plays the baby brother to perfection.


Trai Byers as the eldest son: the very gorgeous Andre is amazing. His journey throughout the season is perhaps the most difficult to watch at times. Bravo, Empire! Tackling mental health issues is always a big deal, and they do it brilliantly, but more so, I've seen so many posts on Tumblr and Twitter about how monumental it is to tackle these subjects within the black community. 



They don't gloss over his issues. They don't over-dramatize them. His story is painfully real. 



His dynamics with the other Lyons, and his wife, Rhonda, are things that contribute to his state of mind. And it's sometimes tough to watch him spiral out of control. 


Despite alllll the issues, and allll the drama. There is real love between these brothers. And I keep wishing things would stop coming between. And they'd just quit with all the manipulation and competition.



Was I the only one that kept saying, from day one "please don't let anything come between Jamal and Hakeem!"

But then, of course, there's Lucious. The head of this particular pride.



Terrence Howard as Lucious Lyon is... perfect. As in, that is one hell of a performance. He is vile! Manipulative. Selfish. Despicable!



Not to mention completely in love with himself! 


He constantly puts others in the line of fire, so to speak, to get ahead. Because, you know "it's not personal, it's business." 


He consistently fucks with his sons. Under-appreciates Andre, treats Jamal deplorably, and controls Hakeem.

And he loves every second of it. 


Jussie Smollett as Jamal is my second favorite thing about Empire. He is irresistible. If he doesn't have you completely in his corner by the end of the first episode, you don't have a heart! And if you aren't constantly worried about this beautiful creature I don't know what show you're watching.


His character arc was probably the most interesting one. From staying in the closet because of his father's insistence, to so much more. 



Watching him stand up to his tyrranical, bigoted father is magical. No matter how many times you see it. Even if a part of him still yearns for daddy's approval. 


At the end of the day, you just want to see Jamal happy. With a man who appreciates him. Maybe a pretty Aussie filmmaker? 


The Music :

Most importantly, the soundtrack. I knew the music would be amazing from the opening scene. Veronika Bozeman's voice gave me CHILLS. 




The music MAKES Empire what it is. And epic story of a music empire run by a dysfunctional but VERY talented family, and all the murder and mayhem that goes with it. Trust me, you'll be running to buy the original soundtrack the second you're done with the show. I know I did. Love EVERYTHING! Jussie Smollett, and him and Yazz are.. wow. Magic together!

This is just the tip of the iceberg, music-wise. You NEED to watch the series and hear the amazing performances. Not to mention the amazing cameos! Snoop Dogg, Estelle, Rita Ora, Courtney Love, and SO many more! 

What are you waiting for?!? Go get caught up! 








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