We knew that the two-hour Empire season closer would bring even more scandal, back-stabbing, semi-public sex, and double crosses than the season’s weekly episodes, and the finale did not disappoint. With Mario Van Peebles at the helm of the first hour and Debbie Allen holding down the second, there was no shortage of gasps and faint-worthy moments. Here are the top 5 OMG moments from tonight’s season finale:
5. Lucious found out he doesn’t have ALS and can live another day to do all things devious.
After experiencing double vision while trying to play piano, one of Lucious’ nurses realized that double vision wasn’t usually a symptom of ALS. Lucious’ doctor broke the news to him that he didn’t have ALS, but rather MG (myasthenia gravis), which is serious but not fatal. With a new lease on life and an extra pep in his step, Lucious set out to make amends for being such a jerk to his sons…and to craft even more diabolical schemes because he’s just that type of guy.
4. Jamal went all Five Heartbeats on Beretti.
After Beretti served Lucious with an injunction preventing him from getting the rights to the songs they’d written together back in the day, Lucious was even more determined to appoint Jamal as head of Empire, feeling he was the only one of his sons who could possibly handle the role. After Jamal and Lucious wrote a song together in their old family home, Lucious encouraged Jamal to do whatever he needed to do to take care of business. Jamal headed to Beretti’s house, where Beretti was getting ready to sign Hakeem (who was…ahem…busy with Anika). Jamal asked Beretti to step outside with him to supposedly chat about Hakeem, then tipped Beretti over the balcony, threatening to drop him if he didn’t sign over the song rights to his father. Lucious and his goons arrived just in time to keep Jamal from literally dropping Beretti.
3. Cookie and Anika have the BEST. CAT. FIGHT. EVER.
In a scene that was clearly the heir apparent to the fabulously trashy fights made famous on Dynasty in the 1980s, Cookie snatched the living daylights out of Boo Boo Kitty when the two met up with Andre and Hakeem to plot their hostile take over of Empire. Boo Boo Kitty was no slouch, though; she landed more than a few punches on Cookie, and the two wound up damn near demolishing a very nice pool table.
2. They killed Kenny! (Well, Vernon, actually)
Poor Vernon. He could just not catch a break this entire season. From having to cover up the fact that Lucious murdered Bunky, to Lucious throwing him major shade every episode just because he woke up that morning, Vernon was the proverbial red-headed stepchild of Empire. After making it out of rehab, Vernon got right back on the job, only this time—unbeknownst to Lucious—he was working for the feds and working to help Cookie et al with the hostile take over. When Vernon went to visit Andre to bring him up to speed on the plan, Andre went slightly ape nuts and punched Vernon. A knock down, drag out fight ensued, and when Rhonda rushed in and saw Vernon beating Andre she grabbed a candle stick and whacked him on the head. Vernon went down, and that was the end.
1. The emperor got himself some new clothes: prison stripes.
After all that happened during the season finale, we finally got to the big Cookie Lyon-produced Lucious Lyon tribute concert, only to have Lucious arrested for Bunky’s murder right smack dab in the middle of a touching moment with Jamal. Naturally, Lucious blamed Cookie for his arrest, but as the feds led Lucious out of the building Officer Carter indicated that Vernon, who was mysteriously M.I.A. (aka, dead, but they didn’t know that), was their star witness. Meanwhile, Andre is mum about Vernon’s whereabouts. From behind bars, Lucious (or rather, his wicked voice over) vowed revenge. Lucious’ final words: “Game time, b*tches.”