Empire Burning Questions: EP Talks Snitches, Catfights and 'Dwight Walker' — and What They Mean for Season 2

Empire‘s Season 1 finale was like a laptop with frozen “Shift” and “1” keys — which is to say it made viewers go “!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Still, when the action-packed two hour telecast was over — read our recap here, if you need a reminder — there were tons of question marks left floating, too.

We got Empire showrunner Ilene Chaiken on the phone to grill her about 10 story arcs that were left in limbo — or which left us saying some combo of “Whoa!” “Whaa?” and “Wait just a minute!” — and how they might play out when the show returns for Season 2.

Click through the gallery below for intel on Jamal’s rise to the top of the Empire Entertainment food chain, the skinny on Cookie’s claim on the family mansion and some delicious behind-the-scenes dirt on the Boo-Boo Kitty beatdown.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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14 Comments
  1. karenb says:

    Such a great show. The acting is excellent. Love the storylines. Good questions, Slezak.

  2. BTM says:

    Jamal is the equivalent of Michael Corleone??? No! Bad! Stop it! Michael turns out worse than his father.

    I do *NOT* want to watch this turn into Jamal’s version of Breaking Bad. I do *NOT* want a show about a sweet young man losing his soul! NO!

    • Annie says:

      I agree. The writers need to tread lightly on this. They need to notice how removing Daniel’s conscience on Revenge pretty much ruined that show. Jamal is a fan favorite, and while he doesn’t need to be a saint, they don’t need to turn him into someone who doesn’t care about anyone, and who is willing to kill people to get what he wants. Being ruthless and being a murder are two different things.

      Besides, Jamal looks weaker now than he did during earlier episodes.

  3. ChicagoDan says:

    It was a bit of a 180 that Cookie was willing backstab Jamal for the sake of getting Empire back. And notice Cookie kept the info she learned that Camilla didn’t take the money from Hakeem. Hmmm, seems like we’re maybe seeing the real Cookie and all that motherly love was just an act

    • CK says:

      Cookie has always been a bit torn. She loves her sons, but she also wants what is hers. Jamal stood there and did not act as Luscious shut her out. Even when she revealed that Luscious had murdered Bunkie. Even when Luscious took shares from her sons to give to her, Cookie quelled her outrage upon learning that.

  4. Annie says:

    Great questions Michael, but it breaks my heart to think that the writers didn’t think that they needed to follow up on the storyline about Cookie ordering the hit. That was a major plot point. I hope that they also realize that Andre and Rhonda need to face some repercussions in regards to Vernon’s death.

  5. Jules says:

    I’m thinking Jamal might have had something to do with his Dad’s arrest. Maybe he got a taste of power & now that his Dad’s not dying, he wanted to make sure it’s not taken away. I get that this show is soapy and over the top, but I’m really surprised they had Lucious reveal he didn’t have ALS so soon. His power with his kids was in having something that they all wanted, even though he was doing horrible things to them, he got away with it because they wanted the “empire”. It also made it even more weird that he would STILL hand over power even though he’s not dying. What was the point of that?? Maybe we’ll find out later but as much as I love the show, I was left confused by some of the choices made.

  6. Leia says:

    Strikes me that they will make all these people so morally repugnant in the end, that we;ll simply watch to see their down fall. Not Good. There has to be someone who is worth saving, in the mix, or is this just about “see the rich people fall down”and stab each other in the back to get ahead.

  7. i think it was hakeem an andre who got their dad locked up. they were going against him in the end. im hoping when empire comes back on lucious getd out of jail like cookie did an they get back together. they are such a good couple. i hate it that lucious went to jail he was trying to be a better person. the show would suck without him

  8. Sim Simas says:

    The show continued to sky rocket with each episode. It was inevitable for Empire to reign over every chart in existence, with a talented and strong cast, powerful and provocative script, and escalating situations that reached beyond the boundaries of “rules of engagement” . These characters have personal goals and motives, but Cookie wants all to end well. The Lyon was caged in his den. What’s next for this hit TV show? Hopefully, I can become a cast member and be a part of this epic music evolution called “Empire”.

  9. that is my. Favorite show i love yall sng i would love to be on that show to be honest And yea hakeem u knkw the scoo

  10. THE MAIN POINT IS THAT EMPRIEIS LIKE A REAL SHOW LIKE COME ON NOW THAT A GOOD SHOW FOR PEOPLE IF I BE ON THERE I WOULD CUT UP BUT YEA I LIKE HAKEEM I KNOW EVERYTHING ABOUT HIM AND THE HOLD EMPRIE CAST SO COME ON NOW I JUST NEED TO BE PUT ON THOS SHOW FOR EVERYBODY CAN SEE WHOIM REALLY IS SO HAKEEM WASSUP AND HEY COOKIE AND JAMAL AND ANDRE AND EVERYBODY. ELSE BUT YEA I KNOW I SNAPPED BUT YEA I JUST KEPT IT 100 SIMPLE SO YEA I GO DOW. ONE SWING OFF HAKEEM WE ALL SWING THAT GOES FOR MY MOM COOKIE AND BRORHER JAMAL SO YEA I SHOULD BE ON EMPIRE JUST. SNAPPED BUT YEA HAKEEM WASSUP

  11. ninamags says:

    I think they need to tone down all the guest appearances. They’ve made the family compelling enough on their own without having to resort to stunt casting since they don’t really add to the overall story.

  12. Meg123 says:

    I was honestly shocked how terrible the last 4 episodes had been. I don’t think i will continue to watch it. Cookie was fun in the beginning, but i don’t know somehow i WANT JOSS CARTER back. She was Taraji’s best role so far. She even made little phone calls epic.