The “Empire” mid-season finale employs yet another bisexual twist

Camilla stops by to visit Hakeem, who notices her wedding ring almost right away. “It’s not what it looks like,” she says, confirming that her marriage to Mimi has been motivated by something other than love. MARRIAGE EQUALITY. LOVE WINS!

imback“I’m here, I’m queer, but not really.”

“Everything I did, I did for you; for us. You have to trust and believe me,” Camilla says. Yet another woman on this show who will use bisexuality to get ahead. (Speaking of Boo Boo Kitty, she’s just gone off the deep end and probably killed Rhonda.)

Hakeem eventually finds out that Camilla is married to Mimi, but it doesn’t seem to phase him. PHEW! It’s only MIMI! Not, like, a dude or anything. So when Mimi calls for the board to meet and plays the recording she made on her pen, the members ready for a vote to oust Lucious. When they reconvene, Hakeem fills in as Cookie’s proxy and the final AYE or NAY is up to him. He sees Camilla through the window.

ate-it“I did it all for you. I married a rich lesbian billionaire with a terrible sense of fashion just to invest in your father’s company and take it down from the inside so that you and I could be together. You’re worth it!”

Blinded by love and lust, Hakeem votes his father out and Mimi, the new head of Empire, immediately names her wife the new boss. In the hall, Cookie takes one look at Mimi and spits in her face.

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There are so many questions unanswered about Camilla and Mimi’s relationship, like if they’d planned this all along; were they ever really in love, or at least, is Mimi truly in love with Camilla? Because if not, the sad truth is that the writers on Empire only allow women to explore a lesbian and bisexual identity if it exudes some kind of shock value. Jamal’s relationship with Michael was treated with respect, even with their trust issues and ultimate demise, but Tiana, Mimi, Camilla, Anika—their sexuality is used in a different way and taken much less seriously. For Jamal, bisexuality cannot exist—the show hammers in that he is a gay man, regardless of what happened with Skye. But the women are all fluid—so fluid that they will have a serious girlfriend but date Hakeem on the side, or marry a woman so that they can be with Hakeem, or have sex with Lucious because they think the same girl is sexy (ultimately in a ploy, we can see now, to become closer to him and his position of power), or sleep with Mimi to secure a business deal. 

Empire is, unquestionably, a soap with hyper-dramatic elements and larger amounts of queer themes and characters than ever before seen on network television, to be sure. But its lack of esteem for most of its women characters and their sexual identities as opposed to their male counterparts is frustrating and offensive. Even though Lucious is (arguably) the worst human on the show, we’re expected to root for him over Mimi and Camilla, the ruthless couple who will do just about anything to get what they want. I would take way less issue with that being a storyline should the show have any kind of Jamal-esque lesbian or bisexual female character to level it out. Because right now, it is severely unbalanced and the take away from the show is never trust a woman—she’s probably evil and a promiscuous bisexual, to boot.