The Rundown: If you were looking for more of the same bad writing, same one-dimensional acting, and a questionable grasp on theological mythology then I’m sure you’d also liked the train wreck that was season 1. G-d’s favorite son is back, and this time, his mom’s along for the ride. Watch as the Lightbringer attends therapy when he’s not out solving crimes with his adorable cop gal pal.
I really don’t understand how, in the golden age of comic book adaptation, something like Fox’s Lucifer comes into existence. While comic book adaptations to TV have not been as successful, you would at least think that Lucifer’s showrunners would have glanced at the source material. Lucifer season 2 follows the grand tradition of throwing the entirety of the source material away, except for the character names and location. Following his near-death experience last season, Lucifer is now more committed than ever to winning lady-detective Chloe Decker’s heart by using any demonic powers at his disposal to help her solve LA’s homicides. Things get thrown off by the fact that on his return from hell, Lucifer brought back an underworld hitchhiker. His mother, who had been banished there. Lucifer must track down his mother, keep LA from descending into chaos, all while never letting on to his lady love that he’s really the former lord of Hell.
Lucifer‘s lackluster second season doesn’t deviate that far from the formula of the original. It masquerades a somewhat convoluted plot about celestial beings inside the comfy, mindless shell of a police procedural. Every episode there’s a new body to check out, and some brand-new subculture or ideology to explore through the killer’s eyes. Unfortunately, the show can’t decide which it would rather be, an edgy show about the nature of religion, or a lighthearted buddy-cop show full of colorful characters. It’s this lack of defined identity that makes it fail so spectacularly on both counts. No angelic, demonic, or celestial embodiment on the show is able to really convince of its divinity, and shoehorning tired TV tropes through such characters only makes them sound bland and idiotic.
This dichotomy at the heart of Lucifer is part of what frustrates me about the show. The stakes rarely ever rise about the level of petty, interpersonal relationships between the cast. It would almost make sense if there was some supernatural threat that at least warranted such beings to be down here in the first place. Instead we get pontification about the values/vices of humanity, all while insisting on calling each other by honorifics. You can only say ‘brother’ emphatically so many times before I begin to wonder if you’ve forgotten each other’s names.
There is a lot to actively dislike about this show. Whether it reinforces negative stereotypes about men and women, misunderstands a subculture, or just the sheer amount of dick jokes they manage to insert into each episode, it always manages to infuriate me. However as easy as the show is to dislike there are also just a lot of things that are confusing. The characters seem like they operate within a pseudo-Christian, Paradise-Lost-esque mythology, but then this whole season revolves around a celestial being who copulated with G-d as his equal. Squabbles of celestial beings are reduced to no more than any squabble between a dysfunctional family. If the focus of the show was how even godly beings have parental issues, there are so many better concepts than ‘devil helps cop solve crimes in LA’. Hell, make it a family comedy if that’s where you’re going. Not this abomination of a serious crime show mixed with some celestial beings who have the biggest daddy issues of all time. For goodness sakes, it has the Devil getting squeamish about sex. They all at once treat him like he’s been wrongfully accused of making humanity evil, and at the same time seem to imply that the essence of humanity’s evil is what he is.
I could go on for pages about the lackluster strength of angels and demons, or how they took one of the strongest female warrior characters in comics and turned her into a violent puppy who just seeks the approval and attention of its master, but this show doesn’t deserve pages and pages. Avoid this show like the plague. I would say I hope it doesn’t get a third season, but I know they made one anyways. Maybe this one features Lucifer’s long-lost cousin, a unicorn from another dimension with daddy issues just like Lucifer. Ugh.
Reinventing Lucifer- In the City of Angels: A disjointed bunch of interviews with the cast and executive producers interspersed with panoramic shots of LA and clips from the show. They start talking about how LA is a crazy city for a bit, then just start talking about characters on the show, then switch back to talking about Los Angeles. Almost as painful to watch as the show itself.
Lucifer 2016 Comic-Con Panel: When the writers aren’t too busy to pat themselves on the back for creating this turd of a show, the cast is forcing smiles trying to pretend the show has any depth to it at all. They could likely only find three people whose questions didn’t start with ‘How could you…’ and so the audience questions are really short.