Lucifer What Would Lucifer Do

 “I know what you’re doing. And you can kill the messenger if you must…but just know that I am here for you.”

It’s a rare thing for my opinion of an episode—one that, despite a decent nugget or two, for 57 minutes was little more than a forgettable romp into the world of Lucifer—to change so drastically on the strength of the final three minutes.

Lucifer in one of his sillier moments on the evening.

One scene that encompassed every moment we’ve shared with the titular anti-hero. Moments that I have, on more than one review occasion, pointed out as eye-rolling, over the top, or just plain reaching. At times, it seemed as if this season was hovering dangerously close to the bad taste left by the final four that capped off season two. Sure there have been some wicked cool moments—Maze, I’m looking at you—but something wasn’t quite right. And as I viewed “What Would Lucifer Do?” I realized that I was tired of the writers continually hitting us with the superficial as it pertained to Lucifer Morningstar. Sure, there were hints something below the surface, something I wanted to see expressed by words and action, not just my own conclusions.

Alas, “What Would Lucifer Do?” gave that to me in spades.

But let’s rewind a bit, start at the beginning before getting to that magnificent ending.

As Lucifer said earlier in the year, it’s time for him to get back to doing what he does better than anyone else: performing favors. Shagging a judge’s yoga instructor wife was a good start. Crazy enough, Lucifer turns things around in a way where said judge is thanking our anti-hero and owing him a favor—one that will, of course, pay dividends during the procedural aspects of the show.

Dan’s casual words help Amenadiel understand that sometimes the action to take is just to be there for someone.

A major theme in “WWLD?” is Lucifer reminding those around him that people don’t change. “Once a bad guy, always a bad guy”. So it stands to reason that the murder case involves the Firehawk Ranch, a reform shelter for juveniles who have seen their fair share of trouble with the law. Run by a former criminal and addict, Jerry Blackcrow, the shelter immediately draws Lucifer’s scorn. This plays out in him (for the second consecutive week) narrowing his sights on the first suspect they come across with any semblance of a motive for the killing. It’s been a disappointing few procedurals as Lucifer, a man who can draw forth anyone’s desires, one who accepts himself as “a punisher” is not able to readily see beyond an initial preconceived notion on someone’s guilt. Speaking of guilt, wow, does it pay dividends later on. Before we get to that though, let’s bring Chloe Decker in on things.

One of my biggest Chloe issues is just how out of sorts and timid she’s been in front of her new LT, Marcus Pierce.  It was very satisfying to see her finally stand up to the dismissive nature of Pierce’s interactions with her, though the distraction while they’re on the case nearly gets her killed. As mentioned, Lucifer thinks they have the right guy in Tyson Chase but Chloe’s not convinced. Even after the murder weapon, one that belonged to Tyson is discovered, Chloe allows her intuition to lead her back to the ranch with Pierce in tow.  When she confronts him on his behavior, Pierce admits his admiration for her skills as a detective. Enter a shotgun totting Blackcrow who does his best to turn Chloe into a clay pigeon. Instead, Pierce takes the hit, pushing Chloe out of the way. This scene is the catalyst for not only Chloe seeing her LT in a new light but also throws Lucifer out of whack.

Throughout the episode, Lucifer shouts out to anyone who will listen that he hasn’t changed. But that sentiment is flipped around on him when Amenadiel—who himself has finally figured out his own purpose—lays bare why Lucifer nearly killed the fleeing Jerry Blackcrow.

Lucifer knows how to cut with his words…but he also seems to be the loneliest person on the show.

“I don’t think it was the human you were trying to punish today,” Amenadiel says. Instead, Lucifer deigned to punish himself “for not being there for Chloe when she was in danger because you care about her deeply”. Amenadiel’s revelation, one that emphasizes Lucifer’s change, frames all the former Lord of Hell’s actions of this season in a new light. But we know that Lucifer will not go quietly towards the light, tearing into his brother like only he knows how. He turns a sobering and sad story of a tortured soul in hell into a weapon to cut Amenadiel down…but though his words cut deeply, his brother offers an understanding nod, promising to be there for Lucifer…

And this is a Lucifer needing an unwavering sentinel at his back more than even I realized. Our final shot is Lucifer Morningstar, staring into a broken mirror, disgusted with the person looking back at him. 

Post Script

  • What an ending! I must have watched it 3 or 4 times, to just enjoy the power behind the writers’ words and, most importantly, the delivery by both Tom Ellis and D.B. Woodside was incredible. I watch a lot of shows and, to date, it’s my favorite scene of the fall TV season (just beating out Jensen Ackles prayer to God in Supernatural). Add in the background song with the lyrics “keep it spiraling” repeating, ending with “I tried with open eyes but I could not see” as Lucifer stares into the broken mirror…you can’t get more poetic than that. Additionally, I think this scene is a reminder (at least me) that, despite some of the silliness and apparent step back of Lucifer’s development, there has always been a method to the writers’ madness. I cannot wait to see what the next few weeks have in store for us.
  • So there may be something there between Chloe and Pierce. We definitely saw the LT soften up a bit and, though he’s hiding something tragic about his past (probably to do with the Sinnerman) her words on how short life is and “to just live it while you can” is something we all can take to heart. With that said, they can’t mean to ‘ship Chloe and the LT, can they? Not only would it be an improper relationship considering their positions but it could really hamper the Lucifer/Chloe train…yeah, that means they’ll probably do it.
  • Despite taking a major punch to the gut by his brother, it was good to see Amenadiel come to realize his purpose. I know he believes that God has sent him on this path but I have a feeling it’s a bit more indirect than that. I see Amenadiel’s trial as discovering his true self and acting accordingly. It’s not quite the same as God wanting him to be there for Lucifer but both put him on the path of redemption.