• James

TV REVIEW: "Lucifer" S4 E2

While this isn’t my favorite of episodes, as it meanders somewhat, it does set up the rest of the season, so it’s very important in that regard. Most important, it shows how the previous season has touched all the main characters in their own way. The first episode brought the show back to life, but I think that, for true diehard fans that have watched all the seasons, this is the episode that brings out the motivations. As we know, motivations are what drive Lucifer, both as a character and a tv program.

Let’s get the police case out of the way first. As per the usual, it’s just a thinly veiled response to what the characters are feeling throughout, this time focusing on Lucifer and Chloe. Both take the opportunity during the case to act out on their impulses. Detective Decker is looking first to prove that there are people that are both guilty and irredeemable, then second, in her words, that “No one’s who they seem”, but in either instance, she’s reined in by Lucifer. If your stabilizing influence is Lucifer, you know that there’s a problem in your thought process. Lucifer, on the other hand, is concerned more with the romantic. If you remember, he and Chloe shared a kiss at the end of last season. Lucifer has not forgotten either, and it’s been at the very forefront of his mind. His impulsiveness comes from wanting to end the case, so they can have a date.

This episode is all about struggle. Chloe’s struggle is obvious, her response to learning of Lucifer's origins and what that may mean for both her and the universe as a whole. Lucifer struggles with his feelings and, while amusing to have him act like a junior high school kid with a crush, there’s also a depth. He’s desperate to be more to Decker. When she asks about if he enjoyed torturing people in Hell, Lucifer becomes very serious saying "It was a job, detective, something I was forced to do”. There is a sadness there because she still doesn’t understand who he is.

Even the side characters are fighting through some serious emotional issues. Dan’s depression over the death of Charlotte last season has taken him from a sort of goofy character to a grim one. His pain and loss are real, his blaming of Lucifer isn’t new, but the way he goes about it isn’t played for laughs. Dan is over Lucifer’s games, and it was Charlotte’s murder that pushed him past the edge. Elle is struggling with the loss of her faith, something she leaned on heavily in previous seasons. She mentions several times all the free time she now has that was once taken up by religion. Her bathtub chicken and reality TV show…problem…are just two budding signs of the internal conflict within her. Amenadiel, after recovering his wings and a means back to the Silver City, decides instead that he will remain on Earth, having found a beauty in humanity he never knew before. Still, this choice leaves him without a function, and he wants badly to find a purpose in his new life.

Perhaps the episode isn’t the strongest, but it is the most relatable in many ways. Many people struggle with the same problems as the characters, and the writing makes it come out in realistic way. Who doesn’t want to be seen as they are, or at least who they feel they are, after all? Who has never doubted their own motives? Depression, loss of faith, and a lack of purpose are all feelings that we face every day in this world. In this way, even on a show with Angels, Demons, and the literal Prince of Lies, it’s easy to identify with sometimes otherworldly characters when the writing itself grounds them in such a down to Earth way.

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