⭐⭐⭐⭐ based on 6 reviews.

tl;dr: Devilishly good fun with a great lead, some surprisingly deep analysis of the Biblical character of Satan, great characters, and a format that triumphs despite its absurdity. Well worth a watch.

Season One

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

Lucifer isn't going to be winning any awards (or likely even nominations) for its initial season, but I'd definitely recommend it. I have never read the source material – either the directly influential Lucifer graphic novel series or the more broadly involved Sandman series – but there is a hint of Neil Gaiman remaining in the TV show from time to time that reveals its roots. The premise is a distinctly unusual one, what with Satan himself being the protagonist rather than antagonist, but this worked better than I had hoped. I really didn't feel the need for another supernatural detective thriller; indeed, when I saw the first trailer I openly laughed and wrote off the entire plot as ridiculous.

Luckily, a couple of friends recommended it to me and Amazon Prime secured the UK rights, which meant no/little delay in release dates, so I decided to give it a shot. I found the whole cop-show element lacklustre but surprisingly warranted. Lucifer takes no risks in the murder homicide, LA cop side of its plot, which is just another by-the-numbers police show that pales in comparison to certain other series (*cough*Mentalist*cough*), but this seems to work in the show's favour. The whole heaven/hell dichotomy, analysis of the cultural and Biblical renditions of the devil and the general supernatural subplots are actually very entertaining, well scripted and genuinely interesting, with the "cop show" effectively becoming a plot device to advance the more interesting events transpiring around it. Tom Ellis's portrayal of the Prince of Hell is fantastic throughout, with a duel personality combining total irreverence for everyone around him, which feels distinctly satanic, yet with a clear moral code and resultant superiority complex. The end result is a character that feels incredibly nuanced and intriguing and helps tie most of the less than perfect elements of the show back together.

The writers are also not interested in taking it slow or teasing out reveals. I had assumed that the first half (or possibly the whole) of this season would be a "is he, isn't he?" scenario where the audience is forced to question whether Lucifer is the genuine artefact or just delusional. I feel that this would have gotten old, fast and luckily the showrunners must have agreed as by about episode 3 we had received definitive evidence that Lucifer was immortal, routinely interacted with angels and could scare the (very literal) crap out of people with the flick of an eyebrow. With the show then firmly set on expanding the pseudo-Christian mythology and digging into the deeper philosophical questions a "risen" devil would logically run into, Lucifer actually had a surprisingly complex and layered variety of subplots, all of which were neatly and clearly tied up by the finale. Quite where this leaves us for a second season isn't exactly clear, with the final big reveal leaving me a little cold. Don't get me wrong, I'm definitely returning for more, but "Mum" is going to have to be handled extremely well for the show not to feel like its teetering towards either becoming another Grimm (all the factions! all the backstabs! all the deus ex machinima!*) or just deeply sexist. Only time will tell which transpires.

* in this case, in a very literal sense.

Season Two

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

Lucifer continues to evolve into an extremely fun and surprisingly intelligent TV show. Despite the much-lauded source material, I never really thought that a series about the Devil helping to solve crimes would actually work. Luckily, the crime-solving elements continue to be used more as counterpoints to a much broader, celestial plotline, which works well. Chloe and the police force serve as a grounding and humanising factor in a show that is far more Supernatural then it is CSI, allowing the scriptwriters a lot more leeway when it comes to the angelic characters.

The various twists are largely pulled off well and it feels like the production team have a goal in sight when it comes to the whole War of Heaven that is brewing. Certainly, mixing Chloe up directly into the heavenly machinations could have felt like a cop-out (hehe) but somehow seems to work. It validates both the first season's larger plotline and Lucifer's involvement in her life by presenting a plausible (within the greater context of the show) solution to her powers of will. It also leaves us with almost as many unanswered questions as season one, which feels surprisingly nice.

A show with this much kept under wraps can have the tendency to become a little Lost (hoho), but so far Lucifer has rewarded viewers by never leaving threads dangling too long. The big reveal over "Mom", her (known) plans and Amenadiel's fall, which were the main open questions at the end of season one, were all dealt with so swiftly that I actually forgot they weren't a part of that first season! I genuinely don't think Lucifer would work without this fast-paced narrative, so hopefully they keep it up.

Otherwise, very little has changed since season one. The actors and subplots are all still solid, Lucifer himself remains an absolute delight to watch and the script retains that fine balance of humour and drama which ties everything together. A solid continuation from the first series, still oozing as much charm and charisma as ever. Overall, I would still thoroughly recommend Lucifer and am definitely looking forward to season three!

Season Three

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

Season three certainly kicked off with a bang. I thoroughly enjoyed the whole "Lucifer gets wings, loses face" arc and the way it forces his character to really dissect what he wants, what that means now, and where he fits into the wider theological construct. If Lucifer has always been a fun meta-analysis of the concept of the Christian devil, season three is where they double-down on that and flesh out the implications of a fallen angel and angelic rebellion in a universe where they lacked free will.

As for the Sinnerman, boy that was a fun plotline. I was worried that having gone from Devil -> Goddess in the previous seasons we were going to keep upping the ante, so having Cain pop up instead was a much more interesting direction. Making him a detective and a morally grey character was a good decision. The whole "immortal curse" element was great, too, though I enjoyed the Chloe love triangle and sudden reversion of his desire to die a little infuriating. The bonding between Amenadiel and Dan was also fun, and I really liked that they brought back Charlotte now that she's no longer inhabited by the Goddess of Creation.

Overall, the season is a little too heavy on the inter-character romances, but for the most part these end up enjoyable. Maze feels a little at a loose end and there are two bizarre episodes near the end that felt like they had found out the show was being cancelled and just wanted to run with a couple of ideas. In particular, the whole Rae-Rae angel guardian with Ella was bizarre and definitely felt like a longer plotline that would have been in season four*. That said, the ending is great. Charlotte's death, Amenadiel's wings letting her take her to heaven, Pierce's revelations, and Lucifer's rage – plus the fact that Chloe actually sees his face – are all some big swings to take and the show lands each one. I think it may be the best finale to date.

Continues the winning formula, develops the characters meaningfully, and is generally an extremely fun watch.

* It turns out that this episode and the "alt-history" one (also really weird, but fun in a quirky way) were intended for season four and had been filmed before the show was cancelled. In the US they were actually never part of season three, instead aired months later as a "special feature". I guess Prime just arbitrarily chose a point in the plot to drop them in and left it at that. Does explain why they have zero repercussions and Ella's idea to move is never mentioned again.

Season Four

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

Well, the show may have jumped ship to Netflix, but thankfully it hasn't jumped the shark. Season four is a solid return to the elements that make Lucifer work best. I was a little unsure about the introduction of the priest (and Chloe working with him) but he ended up being a solid and interesting character that added to the overall season arc well. I also thought they dealt with the whole "Chloe seeing his face" thing well. She's understandably freaked out by it, but ultimately it turns into a solid growth arc for both of them. Plus it gives us a fun ride with Eve, who is a great character and another fun pick to keep the whole "theological exploration" angle going.

I also found Linda's pregnancy and Amenadiels respective freakout very funny and charming. Linda has become one of my favourites on the show and I love seeing where they take her to each season, and I'm glad her and Maze are back to being friends.

And then there's the episode where Amenadiel tries to help a young black man. It's one of the show's best to date and treats a tricky subject – police brutality and societal racism – head-on in a positive way. That it ends in the young man's death was a powerful move and, in my opinion, the right one for the show to make. I'm less sure about the result that Amenadiel almost kidnaps his son though.

As for Lucifer's own descent into devilry, it was great. I really liked how they used it to bring him and Chloe back together, tie up the prophecy, and help explain his whole wings, no-wings, face, no-face thing from the previous season. The final pivot, with Lucifer back in Hell, was a bold decision though. I like where it left Eve and Chloe, plus the whole demon-invasion angle was a lot of fun (and a great fight sequence), but I don't quite know where the show goes from here. Season five, I guess, will answer that.

Season Five

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

Whilst I prefer mid-season breaks to weekly episodes, I'm still annoyed that classically "binge-focused" services like Netflix have started utilising them. As a result, we're only halfway through season five, but without any further episodes in the immediate future I may as well write down some thoughts whilst I can still remember them. At the close of the previous season, I was a little unsure how the cliffhanger was going to work; well, the answer was to basically just ignore it. Almost. Like, 80% ignored.

Yes, the first episode sees Lucifer firmly back in Hell, ruling his kingdom as God intended, whilst Chloe deals with the fact that a month ago the person she has recently realised that she loves has left for an indeterminate amount of time. We also (re)learn that time in Hell is out of sync with reality, so Lucifer has actually been away for thousands of years. On the one hand, that could be a neat trick to allow him to come and go with relative frequency, preventing demon uprisings by just popping back for a day our time, a few millennia his. Of course, if a day is several thousand years in Hell, that's still plenty of time for the demons to get miffed and start plotting again, so I guess that plot point wouldn't really have stood up to scrutiny.

Instead, we see Lucifer choosing his duty over his love for Chloe. It's a fun first episode with some poignant moments (and a surprisingly great single-shot character in the murdered person that Lucifer is tormenting/rediscovering his feelings for the surface world alongside) and sets up a very confusing plot thread, as we see someone who looks exactly like Lucifer step into his shoes and taking on his life. That gives the real Lucifer plenty of reasons to need to go back up top. That said, the show rapidly answers all of its own questions and slightly ruins the suspense in doing so: Chloe works it out (yay), then everyone else does, in doing so giving us the backstory to Lucifer's (never previously mentioned) twin brother, who happens to currently also be the most highly ranked angel in Heaven, hence why he can seemingly just play havoc on Earth without oversight from the rest of the heavenly host. It's a bit irritatingly neat, but I will say it gives Tom Ellis a fantastic opportunity to really flex his acting muscles and as the season progressed I warmed to the meddling increasingly, particularly when Michael tricks Dan into (finally) finding out the truth about Lucifer. I think that only leaves Trixie as a "main" character (though her role appears to be increasingly downsized) that isn't actually aware that their friend is the literal devil, which is fun.

In fact, season five seems hell-bent (heh) on wrapping up loose threads. Michael's skills in manipulation are a clever device to unearth so many secrets so rapidly, but it does move a little too fast at times. Still, it's refreshing for a show to burn through so many potential snags and I'm glad they've done so whilst allowing Chloe and Lucifer to continue growing together (even with quite a lot of interim drama). She knows about her divine intervention, Maze finally learns about her mother, even the reality of baby Charlie's divinity (or lack thereof) comes out. That it all leads to a big reveal of, well, actually God this time around is pretty huge, but also feels like they may be wrapping the story up.

I mean, on the one hand, Michael feels like he's a character set up to fail and take over Hell, giving Lucifer the final moment in his aeons-long redemption arc. It's even possible that the opening gambit – that Hell is really Lucifer's torture, nothing else – could be true, and as he finally comes to realise that he (and all the demons, lost souls etc.) can find peace. After all, they're going hard on the whole "angels self-actualise their fate" thing this season. But I hope they don't. For one thing, whilst this feels like a weaker season than we've had for a while, it's also still a really fun show and one where each of the characters keep going from strength-to-strength. I've already mentioned how much fun Ellis remains, but all of the core cast seem to have stepped up their game this season and it's been a lot of fun to watch. Plus, the black and white episode to learn of Lillith's story was some great world-building and I feel like there's a lot more potential there. But more importantly, the core element of Lucifer that I've always enjoyed is the way it pokes holes in Christian theology. Giving it all a neat little bow at the end just feels like a disservice to that theme. I guess we'll find out in part two of season five, whenever that happens.

And we're back! I think I'll just leave this as a review with a break in the middle, but it's interesting to see which clues I picked up on in the first half – and what I no longer agree with (I also originally rated the season at a 3/5, which I definitely no longer agree with). For starters, the second half of the season was considerably stronger, bringing the season overall back to the quality I've come to expect for the show. They dealt with the introduction of God particularly well, and the whole "God forgets his powers; wait, actually, it's Michael manipulating things again" plot was really quite fun. That it also gave them an excuse for a musical episode (oh, just God warping reality for his own amusement) was a neat trick.

I liked Lucifer's descent into "I'm not worthy" a little less, feeling like it was just a lazy way to put a wedge between Chloe and himself yet again. Ditto the whole "what happens to Hell, oh God has just 'dealt with it'" single sentence reveal that makes some of the last season and first half of this season a little moot.

All of this, though, was neatly balanced in the final few episodes, which ended the season with more than a little bang. It's now incredibly clear (and has been confirmed by Netflix) that season six will be the final one, and I think that's okay. I'd definitely like to see more of the show, but I'd rather it goes out on a high, and it's certainly set up to do so. Everything from God retiring, to Dan's death (😲), to the political race between Michael and Lucifer, to the ultimate showdown (of ultimate destiny) – I thought it was all really interesting, well-written stuff. It kept the audience on their toes, it continued to drive home key plot points, and it managed to tie things together really well whilst delivering some excellent one-off moments.

Bringing back Eve was a nice touch, as was getting to see the Goddess once again, and God messing with Dan was just a huge amount of fun. I also really appreciated the way they brought back the Goddess of Death. But above all, the evolution of Lucifer and Hell itself had some really interesting implications that I'm excited to explore. I think it's clear that they're moving towards a Good Place style finale where angels can help lost souls reach heaven over time (the throwback to the character from the first episode was a nice touch), but quite what that looks like for the angels themselves is unclear. I slightly hope Chloe doesn't actually quit her day job to become a House Goddess, but if they do it well then fair enough. I'm also intrigued as to what they have in store for Ella; she definitely feels like she's being set up for greater things.

Overall, it was just a thoroughly enjoyable ending to the season and leaves the show in a whole new place. Lucifer is God – what on heaven and earth (and hell) is going to happen next?

Season Six

Spoilers Ahead: My reviews are not spoiler-free. You have been warned.

And so the final chapter of Lucifer is done... unless he pops back up in the Arrowverse again, or some other Neil Gaiman spin-off franchise (🤞). At the very least, the creative team behind the show, and Tom Ellis in particular, should feel immensely proud of how perfectly they encapsulated this character and quirky premise. The cop-show bits never really got beyond late-stage Castle in terms of depth or rationale, and I still think that Chloe's character felt a little half-baked at times, but you can't fault the fun the show had with the whole "celestial's on Earth" angle, nor the utter charm and personality that Ellis imbued the titular devil with 👏

As for how they tied together all the various story arcs, I thought they did it pretty well. I enjoyed the introduction of Chloe and Lucifer's angelic child and felt like they used their own lore well to create a plausible reason for her time travel (an aside: I really like the whole "self-actualisation" angle they went with, it's a really interesting narrative device with some fascinating implications), whilst also setting up a threat that felt very personal and more than a little mysterious. Plus, they dealt with the whole time travel paradox pretty well and made Chloe and Lucifer's sacrifice feel both earned and consistent.

Dan's ghost arc was a lot of fun and provided a good counterpoint to Lucifer's own journey towards self-improvement and overcoming guilt, even if the ending to that thread was unnecessarily anxiety-inducing for what it could have meant for Trixie (which I'm glad they chose to ignore). I'm a fan of how they tied off the whole Eve/Maze relationship, and again the final scenes with Maze and Lucifer were just a really lovely tribute to their evolving relationship. On top of which, using the wedding as the backdrop for Ella's discovery of who her friends actually are (finally!) was a lot of fun. Even Amenadiel has a meaningful arc that made his decisions seem natural and coherent, whilst allowing the show to explore some pretty poignant messages around being Black in the US (and many other countries), policing, and systemic racism. Plus, the little reveal about his kid (and Linda's reaction) was played perfectly 😂

The result is a very fitting (if occasionally a little too overly loved up) ending to the story. Not a single character feels hard done by... Except for maybe Trixie. I just wish she'd appeared at the end with her mum and made some joke about her half-sister's celestial roots; it seems somehow not okay that she is the one character who doesn't ever find out, nor does it seem right that she's absent from her mum's deathbed at the end. Speaking of her mum, Chloe's role throughout the season does feel a little sidelined to being "just the romantic interest". I'm still not sure how I feel about her giving up her career to be God's assistant and was glad to see them revert that by the end.

I'm also not sure they quite pulled off the Daredevil one-shot showdown either, but the fight scene had some very nice moments! And the whole "Devil becomes a therapist" was a nice touch, but it doesn't quite live up to the philosophical undertones of The Good Place, even if it (predictably) fell in the same wheelhouse. But then, this is a show about the Devil being a playboy in LA who helps a detective solve murders... it never really needed that depth. The fact that it managed half the depth it did is slightly incredible, and I'm glad to see it go out on such a clearly defined high.

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