TV Review: Star is a middling second act for Lee Daniels

There was a lot riding on Empire when it premiered in 2015. Not only was Lee Daniels’ first foray into musical drama an aspirant to the primetime soap throne, but it featured a predominantly black cast, which is still an exception in the TV landscape. Even though the series stars two Oscar nominees—Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson—no one could have guessed what a roaring success it would become upon arrival. (Given how much it touted Empire, Fox must have had some idea, though.) There’s been a noticeable decline in quality since, but the premiere (and a dozen episodes here and there) remains a shining example of not just black-centric stories, but small-screen introductions in general.

Unfortunately, Daniels hasn’t parlayed the success and lessons of Empire into another standout show about the inner workings of music industry. His new series Star is a second-rate second act …

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