Jussie Smollett Pleads With Fans To Stick With 'Empire'

Entertainment | 12/02/2015 | 11:45 AM EST

'It's worth the ride. It will pay off. Don't stop watching.'

It's no secret that Fox's "Empire" is falling.

The show that was once a television phenomenon has seen a major dip in ratings this season, despite over-the-top storylines and a laundry list of celebrity guests. While the musical drama saw an increase in viewership every week during the first season, the second season has steadily lost fans week over week.

It's an issue show star Jussie Smollett is well aware of, yet he's still encouraging fans to stick with the show through its ups and downs.

"I understand the backlash. They have something to compare it to now. But this isn't a show about happy endings," the actor told ESSENCE. "It's messy and wild and emotional and complicated and f-cked up but it's worth the ride. It will pay off. Don't stop watching."

The season two premiere brought in more than 16 million viewers, but last week's episode only attracted 9 million viewers. Those are still impressive numbers, but a far cry from what used to be.

Still, Smollett sees the value in "Empire" and how it caters to a diverse audience.

"Everyone, no matter their age, race or sexual orientation can relate to the underdog," he added. "Everyone has felt misunderstood and counted out – some of us more than others – but we all know that feeling and that's what Jamal represents."

The winter finale of "Empire" airs Wednesday (Dec. 2).

Ladies, what are your thoughts on the show? Have you lost interest? Sound off!


(Photo: Michael Lavine/FOX)

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