A priest walks into a bar…
But, before we get to the obvious joke, after turning down a chance at some routine debauchery, Lucifer has some couch time (of the professional variety) with Dr. Linda. She points out that he may be lonely, a prospect Luc scoffs at. “Being alone,” she says, “and being lonely are two entirely different things.” She asks about any friends he may have and after admitting that he and Maze are on the outs, Lucifer also wonders the exact nature of his current ‘ship with Chloe.
Now, let’s get back to that priest/bar thing. In this case, it’s Father Frank coming to Lucifer for a bit of a favor. He wants the Morningstar to speak to Lenny Arrietta, director of a neighborhood youth center who just so happens to be using said center as a front for his drug operation. The Father is especially concerned with Connor, a teen who’s been in the system after losing both his parents years ago. Luc’s disdain for the Father’s position—as a servant of God—shows through and he denies Father Frank’s call for aid. Still, he taps Chloe to investigate the Father and the two head to the youth center to speak with Arrietta but they arrive a bit too late: Lenny Arrietta is already dead.
The pair question several people at the center, including Eric Doyle, head counselor as well as Connor. Both confirm the animosity between Arrietta and the Father and when they visit Frank at church he admits to confronting Arrietta earlier that morning but has an alibi for the murder. Chloe asks the Father to come to the station to make a statement but when they exit the church, the trio is narrowly missed by a hail of bullets from an SUV. Father Frank comes clean about the threat to his life and the existence of the Spider; another dealer trying to take over Arrietta’s turf. He also admits that Conner’s already dealing for Arrietta. With the Father’s life in danger, Chloe and Lucifer know they need to keep Father Frank safe and come up with the unlikeliest of sanctuaries…
Of course, Lucifer begins by doing his best to tempt the Father with women and drink. But in Lucifer’s attempts to shine a light on the Father’s hypocrisy, they discover some interesting facts about his pre-priest life. It turns out the Father was a pretty good pianist, opening for the likes of the Stones and David Bowie, among others. But it’s his story of the accident that puts things into perspective. That night, more than a decade ago, is when Connor lost his parents and Frank his daughter. In this tragedy, Frank discovered his faith. “The church gave me purpose,” he says and his connection to Connor makes even more sense now. If that wasn’t enough though, how about Lucifer and Father Frank bonding over some ivory key pounding? Chloe catches the pair bonding and tells Luc that there’s nothing wrong with him taking a liking to the Father. But duty calls and they visit a skate park where they catch a glimpse of Connor dealing. He gets away but it doesn’t look good for him after Chloe gets a positive ID on Connor as the SUV driver in the church drive-by. Frank doesn’t take the news too well and Lucifer uses this to further drive his points on God’s “game” home. But Frank isn’t shaken. When he asks why Frank continues to believe in Connor, the priest answers “God has faith in him—in all of us—even in our darkest moments.” Frank turns it back on Lucifer and the fallen angel replies “because he didn’t have faith in me.”
The poignant conversation is interrupted when the Father gets a call. By the time Luc and Chloe realize he’s gone, he’s already meeting Connor at the church. When the pair arrives they find Connor holding a gun on Father Frank with Eric Doyle, aka the Spider, cajoling the boy to kill the priest. Connor overcomes his doubts and drops the gun. Doyle ends up shooting Father Frank before Chloe wounds him. Lucifer is powerless as he holds the dying Father in his arms but before he dies, Frank tells Lucifer to “Remember, your Father has a plan for you.” The death and revelation strikes something in Lucifer and he nearly kills the injured Doyle. Chloe’s able to reach Lucifer just in time but the night’s events have wounded Lucifer. He returns to the balcony to lay bare his pain to God. “What does it take to please You?” he demands. “Break Your rules and you fall, follow them and you still lose! Doesn’t matter whether you’re a sinner. Doesn’t matter whether you’re a saint. Nobody can win, so what’s the point? What’s the bloody point?”
Back at the house, Chloe and Dan’s talk is interrupted as the former admits that her mind is elsewhere. It becomes clear where after she shows up to Lux, the friend Lucifer needs at the moment. The two spend time on the piano and, though it’s not nearly as entertaining as the ivory key-time Luc and Father Frank had, it’s just as bonding. Maybe even more so.
And then there’s the subplot. Though Malcolm is blackmailing Dan to get him something from Evidence, we find out that the once-dead cop is taking orders from a higher power. Amenadiel. And what does the angel want Malcolm to do? Simple, really.
Kill Lucifer Morningstar.
Heart of a Devil
- As Lucifer continues through the season, we find more and more cracks in our titular character’s shell as life amongst humans slowly erodes away his armor of indifference. Though somewhat overly dramatic, ‘A Priest Walks into a Bar’ revealed a bigger hole in Lucifer’s heart, one we have caught glimpses of but never one Lucifer would admit. Simply put, he believes God has given up on him. Father Frank, even in knowing Lucifer’s true identity, still showed compassion trying to reach the Lightbringer. How much will Lucifer’s relationship with Father Frank change him going forward remains to be seen, as is the shoulder Chloe offers at the end of the day.
- It should come as no surprise but Amenadiel is pulling out all the stops to get his brother back to Hell. Using Malcolm as his assassin is conniving and a reminder that there is nothing soft and cherub-y about an angel. With that said, it seems as if Amenadiel would go beyond pitting one lowly detective against Lucifer and instead he’d be better served hiring an army (so to speak) to ensure the job gets done.