Lucifer: 3.07 Off The Record
The third of the episodes to be lifted from season two, Off The Record is an odd one. It starts with a character we have never seen before waking up in a hospital bed before, travelling to fix things with his estranged wife, who, as it turns out, is having an affair with Lucifer. The episode then goes on to show us that this man is named Reese, he is an investigative journalist and his estranged wife is none other than Linda.
The first major sticking point I had for this episode was from the first conversation between Lucifer and Reese. Reese has gone to Lux to try to work out who the man sleeping with his wife really is. Lucifer notices his staring and come over the sit with him, thinking that Reese wants to sleep with him. As he rejects Reese he say its not because he is a man, but because Lucifer isn't attracted to him.
This is yet another 'blink and you'll miss it' admittance of Lucifer's sexuality. But, yet again it is only verbalised. At every point in the episode where Lucifer is 'entertaining' people, they are women. This theme, present since season one, is something I have written about before, but it is now really starting to get to me. I love Lucifer; it is a fun, ridiculous show that makes me laugh but I'm not sure how much longer I will continue watching if this sort of queer baiting continues. Because that's what it is, queer baiting, letting the audience know the Lucifer isn't straight but never letting that fact breath. Never letting Lucifer be seen with another man in any sort of romantic or sexual situation, its more than a little tedious.
Meanwhile Reese's investigation into revenge on Lucifer escalates as he begins to ride along with Lucifer and Chloe. In this process it begins to become apparent to Reese that Lucifer isn't as awful as he had previously thought. Then he sees Lucifer's devil face, which, unexpectedly, changes everything.
Reese spirals into a feverish hunt for the truth, and before we know it a year has passed and the story has skipped from early in season one canon to late season two. This is when Reese realises that he can prove to Linda the Lucifer is really the devil by shooting him, because he won't die. This back fires because Linda already knows and doesn't care.
Everything comes to a head when Reese enlists a serial killer to kill Lucifer, but instead a young patron of Lux gets killed. This leads the killer to turn in Reese and poison him. In his last moments Reese sees the killer getting caught by Chloe and tells Lucifer he hopes Linda will forgive him.
Reese's want for redemption is one of the most interesting aspects of this episode. It represents an exaggerated version of something that is present in all the male characters in the show; a lack of understanding in their own and other's emotions. It isn't until very late in the episode that Reese realises that he have never been honest about why his marriage to Linda failed. The reason this caught my attention was because it is a representation of not only toxic masculinity but also just how ridiculous the, often tv perpetuated, traditional idea of seduction is. It does this by having all of Reese's attempts at reconciliation fail, even when he swallows his pride and is honest with Linda. Because, even after all of that, some relationships are just done and there is no saving them.
After being poisoned, Reese wakes up where the episode started, and the camera begins to zoom out. Out of the hospital room and into a darkened corridor. It is at this point that it becomes obvious that Reese, and all of the events that have been seen in this episode are in Hell.
This adds another layer to the story as it proves something that Lucifer has said multiple times in the series. That it is humanity that send themselves to Hell, and they can leave anytime they want, but they don't because they feel guilty. This is especially poignant because of Reese thinking that he is forgiven when the killer is caught, but obviously he hasn't forgiven himself.
The fact that the entire episode is set in Hell also means that it doesn't feel as out of place as the other episodes lifted out of season two. Because of the repetitive nature of Hell, this story could be happening at literally any time.
Overall, Off The Record is a nice insight into Linda's past, as well as revealing a little more about the lore of the Lucifer. However, I am looking forward to getting back to an actual season three episode next week.