Empire Season 6 Episode 6 Review: Heart of Stone

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All roads lead back to Lucious, and that may prove to be too dangerous for Cookie. 

Empire Season 6 Episode 6 kicked off with Cookie telling Lucious there was no hope for them after what he did to her on Empire Season 6 Episode 5, and we slowly learned there was a method to the villain's madness. 

Every single person in his life has left Lucious or betrayed him, including his mother. He had an abusive childhood and created a persona to leave the past behind. 

Cookie is Done - Empire

Lucious still resents his mother very much, but he's haunted by the past of people either dying or leaving him behind. It also explains why he's been on the "I hate Cookie" train.

She ditched him at the airport on Empire Season 5 Episode 16, leaving him to go on the run from the feds alone. 

Three Sisters in Jail - Empire Season 6 Episode 7

Until now, the show hasn't done a very good job of illustrating why he's angry at the love of his life, but thanks to the deep dive into his thoughts on "Heart of Stone," we know what's going on behind those pretty eyes. 

It was perfectly in character of Lucious to show up at Cookie's apartment to try to get her to return. Two weeks had come and gone, and Lucious thought Cookie would be running back to him with a big fat apology. 

Cookie wanted Lucious to believe she was done with him, and if Taraji P. Henson doesn't win any awards for the freakout in her apartment, there will be a lot of unhappy fans. 

Cookie's love for Lucious spans decades. She continued to love him even though he decided against visiting her in prison and moved on without her. There's no love quite like you're first love, and Cookie is putting on a big front to make people believe she's over him. 

Something Only She Can Solve - Empire Season 6 Episode 4

However, Cookie and her sisters getting drugged revealed she was still very much in love with the father of her children. There was no doubt about it. 

That particular scene worked well, but it did feel like it was inspired by a particular scene from HBO's Euphoria, and it was difficult to not make comparisons. 

Cookie: Well, Doc, I came to tell you in person that I won't be needing anymore sessions because I left Lucious child, so I got rid of my 99 problems, so I'm good now.
Therapist: Is that what you think? Lucious is the reason you needed therapy?
Cookie: First of all, I didn't say that I needed therapy. My job did. And plus, you know how toxic and unhealthy he was. You heard my stories.
Therapist: No, what I heard you say was you left your father's house for Lucious when you were a teenager and your lives have been intertwined ever since. Those co-dependent bonds are hard to break. I spent a lot of money on that comfy couch. Would you like to sit down?
Cookie: Well, technically, it is still my hour, right?

Cookie is never going to be over Lucious and vice-versa. The sooner they patch up things, sharpen their focus, and take down the people conspiring against them, the better. 

With less than 13 installments left, we need a decent amount of time with them together to make all of it worthwhile. They hold so much hate for each other that it's becoming increasingly apparent they're using the hate because it is safer than love. 

Cookie's New Look - Empire Season 6 Episode 1

There has got to be a reason we've witnessed Cookie getting blown to smithereens inside the car. Given that Leah was back on the scene during "Heart of Stone," it's possible we got a hint that it will be she who makes Cookie crumble.

We'll use the term "kill" loosely because there's bound to be some switcheroo going on there. Leah is a formidable foe and most unpredictable. 

She could be hugging Lucious and telling him she loves him, all while stabbing a knife in his back. She's unhinged, and the family is not safe with her around. But then again, there are so many other suspects floating around that it's giving me a headache just thinking about it. 

It's plausible Lucious could really be dead. He's spent much of his time on Empire as a villain, but Cookie does not deserve the same fate. She deserves to find some semblance of happiness. 

Leah Returns - Empire Season 6 Episode 7

For so long she's been the woman behind the man, despite the sacrifices she made, and she did a great job when she was working at Empire. 

The other suspect emerging is Andre. Andre has been at the wheel of Empire for a while now, but Lucious still likes to believe he's in control of the legacy. 

There's been a rivalry between them because every time Lucious gives his son some power, he takes it back when Andre makes a move he doesn't like. 

Treasure was struggling to see the value in continuing as an Empire artist. Her creativity was getting brushed under the rug, and she was forced to morph into Tiana 2.0. That's the last thing she wanted, but Andre could tell she was not happy. 

A Happy Reunion? - Empire Season 6 Episode 7

Pushing back her album and crafting something Treasure thought was in her wheelhouse made the most sense. She's a talented young woman who didn't want to ride the coattails of another artist.

Her frown turned upside down the moment Andre dropped the news, and it was a worthwhile development. Part of the drama is waiting about to see if she sticks around long enough to become a star.

Lucious: Look, man, you said some stuff. I said some stuff. But that's what we do, and then we work it out. I mean, I'm trying to get us back on the same damn page, baby. It's been two weeks, are you coming home or not?
Cookie: Oh, coming home. Haha. You want me to come home now Lucious? After what you said about my measly $400,000? No, sir. I'm tired. I'm tired of getting crumbs and begging for what's rightfully mine. So, you win. You win, Lucious. You win, okay. Bravo. Bravo to you, Lucious because I'm tired. I'm done. I'm done talking. I'm done working. I'm done preaching, crying. My knees are tired Lucious. I'm tired. Plus, you did this all by yourself, right? You did this all by yourself. No help. My seventeen years meant nothing. You enjoy your life. Live your biggest life baby. Because that's what I'm about to do.

Tiana's comeback fell flat. The writers have done the character dirty on so many occasions that it's difficult to appreciate any of her storylines. 

She managed to shut down the women who called Bella a "bastard child," and she pressed on with her pefromance which included ridiculing the church.

Tiana Bites Back - Empire Season 6 Episode 7

Tiana expresses herself with her music, but having her lyrics and choreography changed for previously released music was a bit much. 

Becky likely had a big part in Tiana's plan, thanks to her communication with Lucious. Lucious made some great points when he trashed Becky for reaching out to him after poaching Empire's biggest artist. 

It was commendable that, even though she knew she was on the outs with her former employer, she knew to turn back to him when she really needed it. 

I finally left Lucious. That does deserve a little celebration.

Cookie

"Heart of Stone" was another decent episode of this FOX drama. It would be nice to get more Hakeem because it feels like there's a lack of Lyons on the show. 

What did you think of Leah's return? Is she the most likely perpetrator in the takedown of her family?

Hit the comments. 

Remember you can watch Empire online right here via TV Fanatic. 

Empire continues Tuesdays at 9/8c on FOX. 

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Heart of Stone Review

Editor Rating: 3.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (37 Votes)

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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