Don't Say This To A Fan Of 'Empire's Andre

by Marenah Dobin

Empire is my new favorite show. The only bad thing about it is that the first season is already done with and it had just 12 episodes. I want more Empire and I want it now! I bop hard to all of the songs featured in each episode. I laugh at all of the great one-liners. I gasp in shock at the plot twists. And most importantly I really love all of the characters. Yes, I said all, because it really is true. I know that plenty of them can be pretty polarizing, but I honestly think they're all great, even Andre Lyon.

I feel bad that he really gets the short end of the stick, and it has to suck for him to have two brothers who on the verge of becoming musical superstars. Plus, he's bipolar so he really has a lot on his plate. I could really go on and on, but the point is that I'm sick of people hating on my boy Andre. And I know I'm not the only one. There are just so many things that Andre Lyon fans are tired of hearing, and here's six major ones.

He Has No Musical Talent

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Andre Lyon is the man who makes it all happen at the record label. He is the one who gets all of the promotional deals going and solves all of the PR problems. He has something to contribute to the record label, so it doesn't matter if he's not a singer, he's still great.

His Suicide Attempt Was The Show's Attempt To Give Him A Story Line

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A lot of attention goes to the other Lyon brothers, Hakeem and Jamal, since they are both new artists on the label, but this does not mean that they are the only ones with story lines. Andre's suicide attempt was not a ploy to give him attention or a gratuitous attempt at giving him a plot. His journey with mental illness was one of the only consistently building stories on the show — his story has just been more subtle. If you go back and watch, there have been many references to his mental state and the cracks in his attempt at exuding a perfect facade.

He Is The Show's Villain

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I'm not going to defend all of Andre's actions on the show. I don't condone his many attempts to pit Hakeem and Jamal against each other. I don't like his attempts to manipulate his own mother. I really don't support the game playing. My fandom for his character is not blind. Nevertheless, he is not a villain. I do not support a lot of his actions, but I can see his point of view and understand his motivations. He does not have malicious intent directed toward any of his family members or business associates, but just more of a drive to push his family and the record label as far as possible. Bottom line: Andre does not take the best actions, but he does not have ill intentions.

He & Rhonda Have A Bad Relationship

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Andre and his wife Rhonda do not have a conventional relationship by any means. They scheme together and openly cheat on each other (in conjunction with their scheming). They are both very Type A personalities. They're very focused on their goals and will not let anything stop them, even moral boundaries. Then there was the finale when Rhonda actually killed for her husband. They may have a really strange marriage, but their love is strong and they are very loyal... just in a very different way.

He Only Cares About Business

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Andre cares about more than just the business. He is looking for a sense of purpose, and wants to use the business as an attempt to forge a bond with his tough father. Plus, we know that Andre has bipolar disorder and routine and order are very important for him to maintain. It makes sense that he would want to immerse himself in the business to strive for some kind of consistency in his life when he is trapped in such a mix of emotions internally.

He Does Not Love His Family

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I've seen a lot of haters in my Twitter timeline going off about how Andre is the black sheep in the family and that he is only using his relatives as a pawn in his games with Rhonda. Yes, he has some manipulative tendencies, but has shown that he is actually a loyal son and brother. In a flashback scene when the cops raid the family's home, a young Andre hid his father Lucious' gun which prevented him from getting in trouble. When Lucious was questioned by police on another occasion, Andre did not hesitate to lie and say the two of them were together to give his father an alibi. He may, lie, cheat, and deceive, but he has his family's back when it comes down to it.

It looks like Empire is going to be on the air for a long time — or at least I hope so. This means that all of the characters are going to grow and change. If you're hating on Andre Lyon, just give him a chance next season. Or better yet, re-watch Season 1 with an open mind and try to see where the dude has been coming from. He's not evil, he just deals with his troubles differently than some of us would. Either way, just stop hating on the dude. Andre Lyon fans are sick and tired of hearing it.