At the beginning of the episode, Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) meets with Lucious (Terrence Howard). The pair join everyone else for dinner. Lucious announces his engagement to Anika. Everyone is thrilled with the ideal, except for Cookie, who shows off her revealing clothing, before rushing out. Afterwards, Jamal and Cookie finalize his song, which she ensures will climb the music charts. Outside, Michael Sanchez (Rafael de la Fuente) receives advice from Cookie about coping with Jamal’s (Jussie Smollett) busy schedule.
Lucious watches Hakeem’s music videos, before his ALS kicks him and makes him nearly faint. His television screen changes to CCTV footage, which shows Detective Calvin Walker (Damon Gupton) going through his trash. Afterwards, he meets with Vernon (Malik Yoba), who flat out asks him, if he killed Bunkie. Lucious admits to the murder, but blames it on Bunkie attempting to shake him down for 3 million dollars. Afterwards, Vernon confronts Andre (Trai Byers) about the false alibi he provided for Lucious. Andre admits to it and confirms he gives his father an alibi regardless of reason.
Rhonda (Kaitlin Doubleday) gets a call from Andre, who confirms he was right about Bunkie. Jamal tells Michael that Cookie was wrong, before the pair agree to go on a week long vacation. Vernon confides in an old comrade, who suggests it is time to move on. The board members at Empire Records listen to Jamal’s songs. Although everyone enjoyed it, Anika still manages to insult it. Afterwards, Cookie shares a drink with Lucious, who refuses to hide his contempt for Jamal, but gives Cookie management of Elle Dallas (Courtney Love). When made aware of the change, Elle doesn’t like the ideal. She rushes off angrily.
Vernon meets with Lamont Harris (Jim Saltouros) and offers him a job. Cookie tracks down Elle at a rundown motel and suggests she needs to get clean. She explains Elle’s music helped her get through her time in prison, before flushing the drug. Hakeem checks out websites saying he has been double-crossed, before refusing a call from Tiana. Instead, he attempts to get in contact with Camilla. At the club, Jamal confronts Cookie and tells her to stay out of his personal life, but she responds, by insulting Michael’s professional interests. After Jamal’s song is played, she convinces Vince Boyd (Jamar McNeil) to tweet about it to his massive follower database.
Meanwhile, Lucious interviews a security expert, who agrees to beef up the mansions security. Hakeem (Bryshere Y. Gray) enters in a depressed and drunken state and congratulates Jamal. Hakeem asks for Jamal’s help, but is refused. Vernon and Lamont attempt to convince another man to take the fall for Lucious’s crime. Meanwhile, Michael learns Jamal has blown off their getaway for a satellite interview. At the same time, Hakeem is having his own troubles, until he is given a little motivation by Lucious.
Cookie listens to Elle’s new work, which is horrendous. It is suggested splicing together Elle’s recordings to make it work. Porsha is confronted by Anika, who attempts to turn her against Cookie. Next, Lucious meets with another doctor, Lester Mason (John Hoogenakker). The doctor discusses Russian drugs, since they’re unregulated and insists they’ve been fairly effective.
Cookie attempts to convince Elle to go back to her roots, by getting rid of her expensive fur jacket and jewelry. With the changes, Cookie is thoroughly impressed. Next, Jamal performs, before being interviewed by Sway. When questioned about his love life, Jamal refuses to come out. Lucious heads to the jail and thanks Commissioner Marshall for making an arrest. Afterwards, Lucious and Anika discuss the experimental drug, before Cookie runs into the new head of security, Malcolm (Derek Luke).
Andre and Vernon get back on good terms. Everyone listens to Hakeem’s new song, which Lucious plans to rush to release. Next, Olivia arrives and seems to startle everyone. She introduces her daughter and suggests she wanted to meet her daddy, before the show ends.
Overall, Empire has been fresh, compelling and fun. Each episode seemed captivating. While this one was definitely good, it seemed a little disjointed and a bit all over the place. There was a little too much going on at once and the events compounded until the very end. For starters, the whole Courtney Love cameo felt forced and worthless, in terms of value to the plot. I hope the new security guy, Malcolm, will lead to something. If it does not, his addition to the episode was pointless. The episode had some solid moments, but Vernon’s successful play to get Lucious out of murder was weak and uncreative. The episode deserves a 6.5 out of 10.