Praise Lucifer’s Dad, because what we really need to lift our spirits right now is some quality time with the dashing besuited devil and his fabulous friends. And hooray, Netflix heard our prayers, and gifted us 8 episodes of season 5 to take the edge off the “end of summer” of it all. There are some gentle spoilers below, so if you want your Lucifer binge entirely unspoiled, proceed at your own risk.
The first half of Lucifer season 5 starts two months after Lucifer went back down to Hell to keep those pesky demons in check. In LA, some things are unchanged: Chloe still rocks a mean ponytail. Maze and Linda are still fabulous. Amenadiel is still as beautiful as ever. Ella is still Queen of Hugs. But there are some big changes too: Maze is spending time working cases with Chloe; Amenadiel is running Lux; and Dan has embraced the ways of New Age self-help after the loss of Charlotte.
Down in Hell, time works differently, and it’s been thousands of years for Lucifer. When the torture time-loop of one particular soul suggests a connection to Chloe, Lucifer can’t resist a peep into the life of the woman he loves, and tries to help solve the case from the beyond. But someone else is keeping an eye on Chloe as well, and before you can say “holy evil twin”, Lucifer’s brother Michael is slipping into Lucifer’s LA life to wreak some havoc and have a little fun of his own.
The evil twin arc might suggest an eye-roll soap opera trope — what’s next, someone’s going to suddenly get amnesia? — but let’s be honest, it’s an excuse for more Tom Ellis. And that’s fine and dandy. Michael is a manipulative pain in the butt, but you know, it really is a beautiful butt. To distinguish between the two twins, Ellis uses an accent that’s probably best described as “Generican” for Michael, when Michael isn’t pretending to be Lucifer. Michael also has terrible posture, which may or may not be from the strain of trying to keep that accent going. Fortunately, a few episodes in, Michael gets a massive scar on his face which puts a slight dampener on his great schemes. For a while.
The first 8 episodes are a lot of fun, with some Big Moments we’ve all be waiting for (huzzah!) and some great meta work, particularly in the noir episode set in the 1940s, and the investigation into murders on the set of a show inspired by Lucifer’s time with the LAPD. The various tensions between characters also allow for some opportunities to mix up the normal pair work, with Lucifer and Dan putting their pudding disputes to one side and working together, Maze (briefly) trying to be more like Ella, and Chloe taking Amenadiel out on a case. There’s a hilarious moment when Amenadiel is surrounded by awestruck nuns just gazing at him, and yeah, right there with you, sisters.
Other subplots rumbling in the background before building to greater significance in the 8th episode include Linda and Amenadiel’s baby and how special he may or may not be, the latest developments in Ella’s love life, and Maze’s abandonment issues. There are some strange celestial mysteries to do with Lucifer’s mojo and his vulnerability around Chloe that I’m sure will be picked up when the season resumes. But for now, season 5 has given us the gift of two Tom Ellises, a long-awaited moment for Deckerstar fans, and possibly the best casting reveal you’ve seen in a long time. I won’t spoil it for you here, but if you watched it and thought OOOOOOOH DAAAAAMMMN, you are not alone.
It’s not clear yet when the rest of season 5 will be available, as it wasn’t quite finished before lockdown, but the scene is set for some more celestial family drama. This probably won’t involve a third Tom Ellis role (sob) but someone else is coming to spice things up, and as character choices go, it’s a doozy…
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