Empire Power Rankings: 'More Than Kin'

Shakespeare's back on the damn list for the episode title alone

Previously on Empire: Anika got pregnant, became an Uber driver, and shoved Rhonda down the stairs because she's the queen of multitasking. Andre found out he had a family history of bipolar disorder, which a doctor couldn't tell him, I guess. Here's this week's power rankings.

1. LUCIOUS LYON (last week: 1)

Lucious is still on top, but possibly not for long. When he's not making all his sons loathe him, he's finding time to have some aggressive foreplay with the reporter we all knew would want to sleep with him, because that's all female reporters do in TV and movies. But back to Lucious, who keeps having all the shitty things he did in the past tumble into the present. Everyone finds out about the fact that he blackmailed Anika's father into committing fraud, but the response is largely muted. Whenever someone finds out Lucious did something evil, they just sort of shrug and move on. It's not really boiling over to the point where we're going to end the season with a "Who Shot Lucious?" moment, but knowing this show, it will probably still happen.

2. COOKIE LYON (last week: 4)

Cookie rises a couple notches this week, thanks to snatching up a co-CEO position. That's the only reason she's not lower, because chasing around the reporter trying to sleep with your ex-husband is hardly a power move. Have some self-respect, Cookie.

3. ANIKA CALHOUN (last week: 2)

As long as she's pregnant, Anika gets to stay at the top of the list. She also levied her control over Hakeem by mentioning to him that Lucious threatened to kill her, so she's already back to her manipulative ways. She's also taken to the hospital for some pretty convenient complications and even gets Cookie on her side. Anika is finally sitting pretty in the Lyon family, so of course her descent has to come soon.

4. HAKEEM LYON (last week: 8)

Hakeem is back to being Hakeem, which is to say, drunk and stupid. But a brotherly-love session and mending fences with Laura and Anika put him back on track — or however on track Hakeem can ever get.

5. HARPER SCOTT (last week: not ranked)

I AM SO GLAD THIS FEMALE JOURNALIST TRIED TO FUCK THE MAN SHE'S INTERVIEWING. THAT'S SO FRESH AND INVENTIVE, EMPIRE. The only reason she's this high up is because she figured out that Lucious's mother didn't actually kill herself but is being hidden away in a retirement home.

6. ANDRE LYON (last week: 6)

Andre's decision to go public with his bipolar disorder was a brave move. He's actually been handling his adversity better than anyone else in his family now that he's back on his medication. However, now that he knows his grandmother is still alive, there's the question of whether this will cause him to spiral again.

8. JAMAL LYON (last week: 7)

Jamal gets docked for turning back into the coffee-house Jamal nobody has time for. Not to mention even bothering to talk to his flop ex-boyfriend Michael, with whom he's already broken up twice. There's something to be said about mining pain for your work, but I need Jamal's album to come out so he can move on from singing the same tired songs about his dad and running into the same relationship with a useless character.

9. SHUT UP, DORA (last week: not ranked)

Michael, why are you here? Go away.

10. RHONDA LYON (last week: 5)

Rhonda is back to her role as the doting wife, which is all well and good, but when is she gonna find out that Anika shoved her down a flight of stairs?

11. SHAKESPEARE (last week: same)

"A little more than kin, and less than kind," is how Hamlet described his relationship with the new King of Denmark. I suppose this refers to Anika, but it's hard to know when the show doesn't hit me over the head with its Shakespearean analogies like it normally does.

12. THE MUSIC (last week: same)

This Hakeem song, "Got That Work," was actually pretty decent for a Hakeem song. It's not as good as "All Nite," but given the rest of the music offerings this week, it's a godsend. No one needs to see Jamal in his feelings in a coffee shop anymore. I go back and forth between hating and loving Jamal's songs. I need more stuff like his songs with Freida Gatz, and not … acoustic rehashes of songs we've heard before.

13. LAURA CALLEROS (last week: 14)

I think she forgave Hakeem after finding out he got Anika pregnant, but honestly, Laura has become about as interesting to watch as wallpaper. Is she supposed to be Hakeem's "salvation" or something? I'm over her. Where's Tiana at? And the damn backup singers in her supposed girl group?

14. THIRSTY RAWLINGS (last week: 10)

LOL, Thirsty, you had one job to do! Keep Lucious's mother hidden away. He might end up killing you next week, but at least your tacky suit will be perfect for an open casket.

14. ANIKA'S MOMMA (last week: not ranked)

You'd think there would be a bigger blow-up from Anika's mom.

15. BECKY (last week: not ranked)

Becky is actually pro-Jamal and Michael getting back together. Fuck you, Becky.

Movie & TV Awards 2018