10 Things to Know Before 'Empire' Returns

Empire returns to FOX with its mid-season premiere on March 30, and it's been a while since the Lyons were last seen on screen. If you are in need of a refresher, look no further. Here are 10 big moments from the first half of season 2 that you need to know before you start watching again. It's time to relive those SHOCKING moments! 

*This does contain spoilers. If you are planning to watch the first 10 episodes of season 2, stop reading! 

01
of 10

Cookie starts Lyon Dynasty.

FOX's Empire--Cookie Lyon
Photo credit: FOX

At the beginning of season 2, Lucious is in jail, and Cookie takes advantage of it. Cookie tries to get investor Mimi Whiteman to make a deal with her that would remove Lucious as CEO; however, he swings a deal with Mimi from behind bars, removing Cookie. As a result, she starts her own record label, Lyon Dynasty. Hakeem, season one's Tiana, and a new Destiny's Child-like group join the label. 

02
of 10

Hakeem gets kidnapped.

Hakeem on 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

Hakeem is mysteriously kidnapped in the middle of the day by a gang identified by the bull tattoos on their backs. They decide to release him, and they end up striking a dramatic deal with Cookie. It isn't until later that Cookie realizes her new security guy and love interest Laz is part of the gang. 

03
of 10

Anika is pregnant.

Anika of 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

 After Hakeem is kidnapped, he is distraught and bumps into Anika. They immediately start kissing, and it escalates quickly. As a result, Anika winds up pregnant with Hakeem's baby. After she hears how well Lucious has been treating Rhonda (Andre Lyon's wife) during her pregnancy, she becomes obsessed with having an heir to the Empire throne. She tries to tell Hakeem, but he professes his love for someone else to her, prompting her to keep it a secret. 

04
of 10

Jamal becomes the new face of Pepsi.

Jamal on Fox's 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

Jamal's career really takes off in the second season after Lucious is released from prison and he's relieved of his business duties. Jamal finds out that he is being considered as the new face of Pepsi, but the catch is that he has to write a new song. He recruits both Cookie and Lucious to help him and creates an incredible song that lands him the title. This causes A LOT of drama in the Lyon clan, but Jamal holds his ground and decides to have his next album produced by both of them, 50/50. 

05
of 10

Hakeem drops the Lyon name.

Hakeem's Rap Battle on 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

After Hakeem has recovered from his kidnapping experience, he challenges Empire's artist Freda Gatz, who is beloved by Lucious, to a rap battle. He wins, but he also announces that he will no longer be referred to as Hakeem Lyon, just Hakeem. Times are confusing for Hakeem, and from his perspective, it seems like none of his family members are really on his side. 

06
of 10

Jamal and Sky Summers kiss.

Alicia Keys as Sky in 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

In one of the most confusing scenes of the second season so far, the openly gay superstar kisses pop diva Sky Summers (Alicia Keys). Jamal and Sky kiss after they finish working on their amazing duet PowerfulLucious sees that something has gone on between them, and he thinks that Jamal is "fixed." 

07
of 10

Mimi is married to Camilla.

Fox's Empire--Camilla and Mimi
Photo credit: Fox

In perhaps the season's most shocking twist so far, viewers find out that Mimi is actually married to Camilla, Hakeem's older ex-girlfriend who was paid to leave him alone in the first season. It turns out Camilla never went away, and she won't be going anywhere anytime soon. 

08
of 10

Lucious is removed from Empire's board.

'Empire,' Lucious Lyon
Photo credit: FOX

Lucious thought that getting billionaire Mimi Whiteman involved in his company would only help him gain more success. Little did he know that she has been plotting all along to overthrow him. Lucious pulls Mimi up on stage with him for the announcement of the Empire-Swiftstream merger, and Mimi proposes a vote to remove Lucious. Although Andre attempts to bribe board members to keep him on, even Hakeem votes him off the board. What's in store for Lucious now? 

09
of 10

Rhonda might lose her baby.

Rhonda on 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

 At the close of the mid-season finale, a very pregnant Rhonda is pushed down the stairs by an intruder in the luxurious new mansion that Lucious bought for her and Andre. Viewers are left with a disturbing, bloody Rhonda and no answers. Who could the intruder be? Anika? Will she lose the baby?

10
of 10

The Lyons are nominated for American Sound Awards.

Lucious and Jamal on 'Empire'
Photo credit: FOX

Empire introduces an award show to the series, much like the Grammys, that recognizes Jamal in multiple categories. Hakeem is expecting to be nominated for Rapper of the Year, but Freda takes his spot. The finale reveals that both Jamal and Lucious are nominated for Song of the Year, which will likely put a strain on their fragile relationship.