4 Reasons “Empire” and “The Sopranos” are the Same Show – Wait…What?!

Photo Source: prphotos.com

Photo Source: prphotos.com

Lyon meets Soprano! Yep, that’s one of my TV fantasies in a make-believe world where Frank Underwood chooses Olivia Pope as his VP running mate and Dr. House pops in unannounced to school the folks on Grey’s Anatomy. What about watching Cookie Lyon and Carmela Soprano chitchat over lunch and a bottle of vodka? I’m a pop culture addict which means I love thinking about random ish like this – don’t judge me (wink). So anyway, this got me contemplating all the uncanny similarities between Empire and The Sopranos! Here goes:

  • Family = Money, Power, Respect: Both groundbreaking TV series feature a powerful family struggling to hold it together. One is a New Jersey mafia crime family and the other is a musical dynasty founded with drug money. They both fight to keep family secrets under lock and key while balancing the challenges of life at the top – all by any means necessary! Oh, and run-ins with the feds are just a regular part of life.
  • Brothers From Another Mother: Tony Soprano and Lucious Lyon – classic sociopaths! These two kings of the jungle are cut from the same cloth. They both slay their way to the top of the food chain (with no remorse) leaving a trail of blood on their hands, while struggling to keep friends loyal and their families intact. Both Tony and Lucious fight inner demons, yet periodically display glimpses of their own humanity. They’re “slightly” devoted fathers (depending on the mood) and serial womanizers.
  • The Wife of a Hustler is a Gangster Wife: Cookie serves 17 years in prison for selling drugs and loses her husband and kids in the process. She’s a force to be reckoned with and has one-liners that’ll keep you hitting rewind on your DVR. One of my favorite Cookie-isms is “The streets ain’t made for everybody — that’s why they made sidewalks.” Ha! Just like Cookie, Carmela is no shrinking violet and will do anything for her kids. Although she doesn’t have a criminal past, Carmela is definitely complicit in her husband’s crimes by turning a blind eye or taking advantage of her position. Anybody remember when Carmela uses her gangster wife charm to bully a member of the Georgetown alumni association into writing a college letter of recommendation for her daughter? Yikes!

Do you see similarities between Empire and The Sopranos?