The WORST Episodes of Empire

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Sep 16, 2021

Network: FOX

Lucious Lyon is the king of hip-hop. An immensely talented artist, the CEO of Empire Entertainment and a former street thug, his reign has been unchallenged for years. But all that changes, when he learns he has a disease that is going to render him crippled and incapacitated in a matter of three years. The clock is ticking, and he must groom one of his three sons to take over his crowning achievement, without destroying his already fractured family.

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Home is on the Way

#1 - Home is on the Way

Season 6 - Episode 18 - Aired Apr 21, 2020

In the midst of the Bossyfest launch and the fight to regain control of Empire, Cookie reflects on her life and the woman she has become. Lucious finds it impossible to deny his feelings for Cookie, while continuing to support Yana and her rise to stardom. When the Lyons face their biggest threat yet, Lucious prepares for the battle of his life and realizes that in the end, family is what matters the most.

star 7.43
143 votes
We Got Us

#2 - We Got Us

Season 6 - Episode 16 - Aired Apr 7, 2020

After witnessing Andre's breakdown, Cookie and Lucious have him committed to the same treatment facility as Leah and the guilt Cookie feels from Andre's situation causes her to wonder how different life would be if she had not gone to prison. Meanwhile, Becky struggles with balancing her personal and professional relationships and Hakeem and Maya find themselves in a less-than-ideal situation after a drunken night in Vegas.

star 7.46
140 votes
I Am Who I Am

#3 - I Am Who I Am

Season 6 - Episode 14 - Aired Mar 24, 2020

While on a road trip, Cookie, Candace and Carol take a painful trip down memory lane, shedding light on their childhood and exposing heartbreaking secrets from the past. Lucious uses something special from the past to help give Yana her big break. Meanwhile, Maya hatches a scheme to generate more buzz for the "Birth of an Empire" movie and Teri becomes increasingly more fearful of Andre.

star 7.48
139 votes
Over Everything

#4 - Over Everything

Season 6 - Episode 17 - Aired Apr 14, 2020

Lucious continues to run Empire and discovers some of Andre's business missteps by way of Kelly Patel (guest star Pej Vahdat). Meanwhile, Cookie tries to relaunch BossyFest but is met with major obstacles from the ASAs. Also, Hakeem and Maya's unlikely partnership proves to be beneficial and Becky celebrates her birthday.

star 7.53
139 votes
You Broke Love

#5 - You Broke Love

Season 6 - Episode 3 - Aired Oct 8, 2019

While Lucious' plan to escape from the Feds finally comes to a head, Cookie finds herself in a dangerous situation with Damon. Andre is haunted by a ghost from his past that he can't seem to shake and Tiana receives backlash from fans over a social media post. Meanwhile, Becky tries her new artist on track and is surprised by an unexpected visit from family.

star 7.56
243 votes
Directors: Howard Deutch
Writers: Marcus J. Guillory, Yolonda Lawrence
Heart of Stone

#6 - Heart of Stone

Season 6 - Episode 6 - Aired Nov 12, 2019

Candace and Carol take Cookie on a girls' trip to Miami to have some fun and take her mind off Lucious. After an unsettling visit with Leah, Lucious is left to deal with some inward self-reflection. Meanwhile, Andre makes a bold decision regarding Treasure's upcoming album and Giselle goes behind Becky's back to find Tiana a new audience.

star 7.57
180 votes
Directors: Sanaa Hamri
Writers: Stacy A. Littlejohn, Thomas Westfall
Strange Bedfellows

#7 - Strange Bedfellows

Season 3 - Episode 12 - Aired Apr 5, 2017

Angelo makes an unsettling discovery and is concerned that Cookie’s past isn’t in the past and will hurt his chances of becoming the Mayor. Anika is faced with a life-changing decision after Tariq reveals what he is really after. Meanwhile, Hakeem’s 21st birthday party takes an unexpected turn.

star 7.58
1,623 votes
Directors: Bille Woodruff
Writers: Attica Locke, Matt Pyken
Do You Remember Me

#8 - Do You Remember Me

Season 6 - Episode 8 - Aired Nov 26, 2019

Upon taking her first steps back into music, Cookie discovers an artist with raw talent when Lucious dismissed years ago. Meanwhile, Lucious spends a day in the city with Yana and is surprised to discover they have much more in common than he thought. Also, Andre pulls out all the stops in order to convince a reluctant artist to sign with Empire, Tracy finds evidence that incriminates Lucious and Giselle runs into an old friend who could help Bossy Media with its financial trouble.

star 7.64
170 votes
Directors: Ruben Garcia
Writers: Carlito Rodriguez, Leah Benavides Rodriguez
What Is Love

#9 - What Is Love

Season 6 - Episode 1 - Aired Sep 24, 2019

Lucious, who is now a wanted fugitive, is on the run from the Feds. Cookie keeps busy by focusing on her brand outside of Empire, which now includes a daytime talk show and a community center. Andre, currently sitting on the Empire throne, is confronted by several people who now want to get in on the company and Hakeem sets his sights on the lead role in the first EMPIRE movie. Meanwhile, Becky and Giselle search for their first Bossy Media artist.

star 7.64
275 votes
Directors: Sanaa Hamri
Writers: Brett Mahoney, Dianne Houston
Be True

#10 - Be True

Season 2 - Episode 5 - Aired Oct 21, 2015

Over at Lyon Dynasty, Cookie and Anika work together with Laz to throw “Cookie Lyon’s Block Party,” a big event to launch their company, showcase their artists and premiere a signature Dynasty anthem written by Hakeem. Meanwhile, Jamal gets busy working on his music with Ne-Yo. Also, Hakeem begins a tender romance with the lead singer of his girl group, and Andre takes steps to rid his soul of past sins.

star 7.64
1,080 votes
Directors: Kevin Bray
Writers: Janeika James, Jasheika James, Wendy Calhoun
Full Circle

#11 - Full Circle

Season 4 - Episode 2 - Aired Oct 4, 2017

With Leah still insisting that he is a monster, Lucious sneaks away in hopes of finding out what type of person he was before the explosion. Cookie panics that Lucious has gone missing on Claudia’s watch, until she realizes he found his way to Uncle Eddie, a music icon who has since become family to the Lyons. Meanwhile, with Anika still behind bars, Hakeem and Tiana grow more comfortable as a family, and Becky makes a rash decision regarding Jamal’s new song.

star 7.64
1,029 votes
Directors: Craig Brewer
Writers: Craig Brewer, Eric Haywood
Stronger Than My Rival

#12 - Stronger Than My Rival

Season 6 - Episode 5 - Aired Nov 5, 2019

Lucious, still obsessed with his past, tries to make amends for his wrongdoings with an old friend. Cookie vies to take control of the house, putting the whole family in the middle. Andre and Lucious go head-to-head in a competition to figure out the direction Empire should be heading in. Meanwhile, Becky and Giselle are at odds over the future of Bossy music.

star 7.67
212 votes
Directors: Dawn Wilkinson
Writers: Janeika James, Jasheika James
Tell the Truth

#13 - Tell the Truth

Season 6 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 15, 2019

A happy family occasion brings the Lyon family back together, but it becomes apparent that no one seems to see eye-to-eye. Lucious, unhappy with how Empire and the Empire movie are progressing, springs into action and comes face-to-face with demons from his past. Meanwhile, Cookie reaches her breaking point and considers seeking help and Andre encourages Tiana to smooth over the controversy she created for the company.

star 7.67
225 votes
Directors: Bille Woodruff
Writers: Jamie Rosengard, Michael Martin
Evil Manners

#14 - Evil Manners

Season 4 - Episode 3 - Aired Oct 11, 2017

When Cookie is denied a line of credit, she flashes back to her years in prison and compares her past struggles to her life now. Lucious continues to struggle with demons of his own and begs his family to tell him about the ways he’s wronged them, but they are reluctant to tell him the truth. Meanwhile, the NYPD is still on Andre’s case about the events that transpired in Vegas and one officer in particular catches his eye.

star 7.67
962 votes
Directors: Bille Woodruff
Writers: Carlito Rodriguez, Matt Pyken
In Loving Virtue

#15 - In Loving Virtue

Season 5 - Episode 11 - Aired Mar 20, 2019

With the reputation of the family business on the line, the Lyons strategize on how to clean up Kingsley’s mess and introduce a new and improved Empire. As Lucious and Cookie hire an old acquaintance to help track down the money Eddie stole, Andre tries to convince Devon’s record label to let him record with Empire. Meanwhile, Treasure and Tiana fight for the female vocalist track on Jamal’s new song.

star 7.67
291 votes
Directors: Clement Virgo
Writers: Felicia D. Henderson
Bleeding War

#16 - Bleeding War

Season 4 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 18, 2017

The race is on when Cookie announces that the number one album for Empire’s 20-For-20 will be a competition between all of the label’s top artists, giving Jamal a bold idea for his newest song. On the heels of Bella’s first birthday, the family plans a special “Prince and Princesses”-themed birthday party, including a special Prince tribute, but the special day brings back haunting memories for one of the Lyons. Meanwhile, Lucious is at a crossroads, as he tries to put to rest the anger from his past life.

star 7.67
905 votes
Directors: Sanaa Hamri
Writers: Diane Ademu-John, Jamie Rosengard
Come Undone

#17 - Come Undone

Season 6 - Episode 13 - Aired Mar 17, 2020

Cookie continues to keep her secret from her sisters, but Lucious feels she needs to come clean in order to move forward. When Treasure is unable to perform at the upcoming showcase, Becky suggests that Yana take the spot, but Lucious feels she's not ready. Meanwhile, Giselle struggles with keeping her family secret from Julian, Maya sets her sights on her own recording deal and Andre's actions put Quincy in a very bad situation.

star 7.68
146 votes
Without All Remedy

#18 - Without All Remedy

Season 5 - Episode 14 - Aired Apr 10, 2019

After receiving news about Andre’s health, the Lyon family does everything in its power to support him, while continuing the tour. As Cookie and Lucious hash out their wrongdoings, Kai comforts Jamal through this process. Meanwhile, Maya comes to terms with where she stands with Blake and the others, and the rest of Empire must make sure the tour stays afloat.

star 7.68
273 votes
Directors: Craig Brewer
Writers: Jamie Rosengard
Shift and Save Yourself

#19 - Shift and Save Yourself

Season 5 - Episode 12 - Aired Mar 27, 2019

Cookie is offered a career game-changer that would put her future in the family business in jeopardy. Jamal works diligently to try to make Tiana and Treasure’s track a success, as Lucious, Cookie and Giselle deliberate future plans for Hakeem and the rest of the artists at Empire. Meanwhile, the feds pressure Thirsty, due to his affiliation with Lucious and Damon Cross, and Andre receives startling news.

star 7.68
295 votes
Directors: Dianne Houston
Writers: Matt Pyken, Thomas Westfall
One Before Another

#20 - One Before Another

Season 3 - Episode 5 - Aired Nov 9, 2016

Lucious and Andre are on high alert as they wait for Shine to retaliate after their latest business encounter went south. Jamal, who has yet to perform in front of his fans, teams up with Hakeem for a performance that he thinks could help him face his fears. Meanwhile, Cookie is caught off-guard during a routine meeting with her probation officer.

star 7.70
1,638 votes
Writers: Carlito Rodriguez, Joshua Allen
Noble Memory

#21 - Noble Memory

Season 4 - Episode 1 - Aired Sep 27, 2017

On the brink of Empire Entertainment’s 20th anniversary, Lucious is making his first public appearance after the explosion in Las Vegas, while all members of the Lyon family, as well as Lucious’ nurse, Claudia, have their own interests in Lucious regaining his physical and mental faculties. Crossover episode with Star Season 2, Episode 1.

star 7.70
1,121 votes
Directors: Sanaa Hamri
Writers: Brett Mahoney
Talk Less

#22 - Talk Less

Season 6 - Episode 12 - Aired Mar 10, 2020

Lucious hunts for a record deal for Yana, but is met with surprising feedback from the label execs. Meanwhile, Cookie struggles with her inability to shake memories of the secret she's kept for so many years. Also, Lala, feeling neglected by her team at Bossy Media, pulls a dangerous stunt to take promotion into her own hands, and Andre suffers from brownouts and lapses of judgement as Kingsley pushes for more control.

star 7.71
145 votes
Remember the Music

#23 - Remember the Music

Season 6 - Episode 9 - Aired Dec 3, 2019

Hakeem raises concerns over Lucious' changes to the Empire movie script, causing Lucious and Cookie to come together to recount the events that lead to the evolution of Empire. Andre turns to Kelly Patel to help him gain controlling interest in the company, as Teri grows increasingly suspicious of Andre's role in signing Prophet the Poet. Meanwhile, Bossy Media considers taking on a silent partner to help with their financial issues and Philly Street confronts Lucious about the info he received from White Tracy.

star 7.71
177 votes
Directors: Geary McLeod
Writers: Indira Gibson Wilson, Matt Pyken
A Wise Father That Knows His Own Child

#24 - A Wise Father That Knows His Own Child

Season 5 - Episode 15 - Aired Apr 17, 2019

As the Feds close in on Empire, Jeff Kingsley seeks the truth about what really happened between Lucious and Tracy Kingsley. Meanwhile, Teri and the Lyons pray for Andre’s health, and Cookie faces the truth about her relationship with Damon Cross. Jamal and Kai reach an understanding, while Hakeem attempts to figure out where he stands among his relationships.

star 7.72
262 votes
Directors: Dawn Wilkinson
Writers: Carlito Rodriguez, Yolonda Lawrence
Birds in the Cage

#25 - Birds in the Cage

Season 4 - Episode 10 - Aired Mar 28, 2018

Nurse Claudia takes her job to a new level, when she kidnaps Lucious. To find him, Cookie must race against time and use the skills she learned in prison to rescue him. Meanwhile, Andre, Jamal and Hakeem pick up the pieces from their battle with the Dubois family.

star 7.73
576 votes
Directors: Craig Brewer
Writers: Craig Brewer