Lucifer: 1.04 Manly Whatnots
Four episodes in and Lucifer is continuing to find the right balance between having fun with its own twist in a procedural drama without the supernatural elements making it wholly unbelievable. And I don't mean the fact that the Devil has taken a vacation in LA and is helping out the local police department, but the fact that his partner Detective Chloe Decker hasn't clocked on to the fact that he is in fact the Prince of Hell.
And she is a detective so failing to notice his use of supernatural powers would quickly become tiresome and make her look altogether terrible at her job. It's a trap superhero TV shows - even great ones like The Flash - have fallen foul of. So I was pleased that after noticing his ability to control the will of others last week she stepped up her investigation and came increasingly close to believing by the episode's end. The fact that Lucifer always speaks the truth and is quite open about who he is certainly adds an element of credibility to her concerns and discovering the scars where his angel wings were brought her even closer.
But then came the twist, whether it is through the actions of the wrathful Amenadiel or just his developing humanity, that allowed him to feel pain. Yes, Lucifer convinced Chloe to shoot him in the leg to prove he was the Devil and then he actually started to bleed. I am intrigued where this is going, particularly with Amenadiel started to convince Lucifer's ally Mazikeen that his holiday had gone on long enough. Was the bad timing of his ability to feel pain just as she was about to realise the truth a bit of a cop out? Maybe a little, but I like the pace of the show so far so there is still room to do this right moving forward.
I commented in my previous reviews that the cases work best where Lucifer has a personal motivation to exact justice and I think that is true. This one was a slight twist on the whole affair though with Chloe being forced to use Lucifer and his connections to find a missing girl by attending a 'players' seminar to which the rich and powerful - Lucifer included - were invited. Carver Cruz was a particular sleazy and pathetic creature as the man claiming to have all the steps to bed any woman they wanted and I couldn't help but laugh as Lucifer continued to interrupt his presentation, dismissing every other man in the woman as inferior (Cruz included).
Tom Ellis continues to deliver a fun, engaging performance that while utterly despicable makes him instantly likeable too. This episode he twists the words of his therapist Linda (another great role in the show) to humanise Chloe who has seemingly put on a pedestal. Lucifer's solution is to have sex with her, much to her disgust and I enjoyed his continued frustration at her continued ability to shoot him down. In any other show a man that turns up in her apartment and then invites her to his club where he greets her stark naked would make him a creep. But by making him the Devil he instantly becomes great to watch. It's a fish out of water story in a very twisted way.
Oh and the few scenes he has with Chloe's daughter Trixie continue to be one of my personal highlights - his look of disgust and throwing her a piece of bacon to keep her sated were hilarious. (I should probably mention Chloe's ex and fellow detective Dan. Kevin Alejandro places a perfectly serviceable role in the show but is immediately outdone by every other character. I'm interested to see what the show does with his character, if anything).
The final showdown and the twist that it was the brother and sister blackmailing Cruz I kind of saw coming - and the twist that Lucifer could be hurt was far more interesting - but it wasn't so dumb that it distracted from the episode. If I can find one main fault in Lucifer so far it is that cases aren't something we haven't seen countless times before but the magic of this show is in how Lucifer deals with them.
Manly whatnots was another solid and very fun episode; there is still great scope to really embrace the darker, emotional supernatural elements of the show. The show came closer to revealing the truth of who Chloe's partner was and I hope that it doesn't take too long for that revelation to finally happen.