Lucifer S03E08 – Chloe Does Lucifer
Are you a top hat or a shoe? This was one of the questions asked by this week’s Lucifer. In a way that only a show like Lucifer can, it tackled the matter of who we are and who we think we should be, by using Monopoly metaphors. After a few adventures in Vegas and in reporting, we go back to Lucifer in the forefront, still reeling with his identity. Chloe gets to pretend to be Lucifer for a day while Ella tries to no avail to avoid Charlotte. And we get the aftermath of last week’s episode as Linda deals with her ex-husband’s death and what it means regarding her own brush with death. This brilliant episode, “Chloe Does Lucifer” was written by Julia Fontana and directed by Louis Milito.
The Darkness in You
Lucifer as a show is great when it focuses on its characters’ struggles, and the writers are truly incredible as they manage to do that while still adding a bit of comedy to the situation. That is basically Ella and Charlotte’s subplot in a nutshell. First of all, let me give props to Aimee Garcia and Tricia Helfer because both of them were truly excellent in this episode. As we learned back in “Welcome Back Charlotte Richards”, Charlotte is struggling to find out who she is now in her post-Mom state. She doesn’t want to go back to Hell but after a long time of not being a great person, being good doesn’t come as easy as she thinks it should. Which is where our beloved Ella comes in. If there’s a character that we know is truly good, it’s Ella Lopez.
Charlotte wants to be better and thinks that Ella can help her do it; the problem is that Ella is slightly terrified of her. It makes for a lot of hilarious moments, like Ella trying to get into the elevator and hiding behind a counter, but deep down there is a very interesting take. Charlotte as a character is still a mystery to us. While she might look like Mom and sometimes have a few of her mannerisms, it’s clear she’s not Mom. But the characters who knew Mom don’t know that.
In Ella’s eyes, this woman has helped murderers escape justice, played with Dan’s emotions and has a slightly weird relationship with Lucifer, so those points are definitely not in Charlotte’s favor. But it’s interesting to see them interacting and Charlotte making strides to be better, like helping out with the case. She is a bit like Mom in the “fish out of water” but the difference is that she apparently does seem to care and want to be better.
On the other side of the darkness coin, we have our beloved Doctor Linda Martin. Linda has gone through hell, metaphorically speaking of course. First, she found out that her patient is the actual Devil and that Heaven and Hell actually exist, then when she gets over that she gets pulled into the celestial family drama, which ends with her being flambéed by the Goddess of Creation and almost dying. Then her ex comes back into her life and tries to shoot her friend and scare her before getting killed via poison.
So it’s safe to say she hasn’t had the easiest past couple of months, and this episode deals with her emotions regarding all of it. Rachael Harris kicks it out of the park as usual and this episode allows for D.B. Woodside’s Amenadiel to come back into the forefront. Their scenes together are pure magic and you see how much they shine when they are in a scene together.
Linda is trying to plan this huge funeral for Reese with everything being perfect, and then we realize she’s overcompensating. She doesn’t feel bad about Reese dying, and she feels bad that she doesn’t feel bad about it. All it has done is make her think of her own mortality, which as she states, was easier when she didn’t know about the Divine. We get some incredible performances by Harris as she laments the fact that the mystery of the universe is gone and she knows where she is headed when all this is over.
This isn’t the first instance of Linda thinking she’ll go to Hell; we got that back in “A Good Day to Die” when someone needed to rescue Lucifer from Hell. As we know from Lucifer’s own words, hell is very much driven by guilt, so what has Linda done that has caused her that much guilt that she thinks she’s definitely going down under (and I don’t mean Australia)? Just like Charlotte, Linda is fighting back the darkness, but unlike with Charlotte, Linda has help.
Linda helped Amenadiel earlier in the season and now it’s his turn to return the favor. Amenadiel should definitely get a prize as one of the characters that has come a long way (the other is Dan, whom we’ll get to later). Amenadiel might not completely understand what Linda is going through, but he is still able to help her in his own way.
He started as an angel who didn’t care who got hurt and looked down on the world; then he fell and had to learn who he was. As he pointed out to Linda, yes, she does know more about the world now, but that doesn’t mean she has any fewer questions. In fac0,t she has more now, so she’s just as clueless as she was before the reveal, and this change in perspective helps Linda look at things in a new way.
Top Hat or Shoe
Lucifer has come a long way since the pilot episode, that much is clear, but with every step forward there also seems to be a step back. The episode starts with one of the most adorable scenes in the series so far: Chloe and Lucifer playing Monopoly with Trixie by the fire. It’s very telling that Lucifer does seem to be very happy and relaxed when he’s with the Decker women, to the point of allowing Trixie to paint on his face. It was a very domestic scene and one I hope we get more of because their scenes bring joy to my heart.
This is, of course, a segue to Lucifer’s crisis during this episode. He gets home from playing Monopoly to find Amenadiel waiting for him. Lucifer had been pretending there was a party at his place with loud music and lights when he was really paying Monopoly with the Decker women. Amenadiel tells his brother there is nothing wrong with wanting a quiet night in, and that boring suits him, which, of course, offends Lucifer. Lucifer is all about his persona, especially after the wings debacle and losing his face. He’s lost, and the only thing he knows is the devil persona, the manwhore who can party like no one else. Except that’s not him anymore, not really, but we know how badly he deals with change.
I won’t lie, it is jarring to see Lucifer fall back into old patterns, pretending all he cares about is partying and being a “top hat” when he’s come this far. But as much as fans want him to embrace who he is now, the truth of the matter is that going back to old patterns and trying to reject change is actually one of the most human things he has done. Most humans don’t always react well to change; take it from someone who got voted “Most Changed in 4 Years” and spent two days trying to figure out what had actually changed.
Change is hard and most of the time, we don’t even realize we have changed until someone points it out to us. If it was hard for me to embrace change after four years, imagine how hard it must be for Lucifer after a millennium of being the same. So his actions are definitely understandable, but that doesn’t make them any less frustrating.
This episode gives Lauren German a chance to shine once again. Due to the nature of the case, someone has to go undercover and despite what Lucifer claims, it can really only be Chloe to do it. Chloe has to go full-Lucifer. What follows is a series of hilarious scenes of Lucifer trying to teach Chloe how to be more like him. There are dolls involved, roleplay and some hilarious acting from both Lauren German and Tom Ellis. Lucifer tries to coach Chloe through an earpiece but she kind of fails miserably at it until she decides to ditch the bug in her prosecco and go it alone. It’s nice to see them on opposite sides of the scene for once, as this time it’s Lucifer complaining about Chloe ditching protocol while Dan is just along for the ride.
As always, Ellis and German do a great job of reacting to what the other is doing. We see her joy at seeing Lucifer tricked by Trixie, which German plays beautifully. There’s also a very small moment where, before the sting, Chloe takes off the necklace Lucifer got her, and you see his face fall like he doesn’t understand why she’s taking it off. Then she takes his pocket square and the smile is back on. Lucifer is reminded throughout the episode that he doesn’t need to be on all the time. Benji liked Kim more than Esther because she was more real and they could spend quiet time together. Then Esther and Mack turned out to be fakes who just pretended to be someone they weren’t.
Just like last week with Linda saying Lucifer is her friend, this week Chloe mentions there’s nothing wrong with people being loved for who they truly are. And here’s hoping that something sticks to Lucifer and he realizes that he doesn’t need the adoration and respect of random people when he’s already loved and accepted for who he is by the people in his life that actually matter. Our favorite devil might be in need of a wake-up call and I feel like it’s coming.
Trixie Espinoza: Oh I’m not talking fake money.
Chloe Decker: She slammed you!
Amenadiel: Boring suits you, brother!
Dan Espinoza: He’s a dude, and he’s straight.
Lucifer Morningstar: That’s never stopped me before Daniel, I’m so good at flipping men they call me “the Skillet”.
Ella Lopez: Chloe does Lucifer.
Chloe Decker: I wouldn’t put it that way.
Lucifer Morningstar: Get ready to go full me, detective.
Linda Martin: I used to walk around thinking maybe reincarnation was real. Sure it sounded bonkers, but I could still wonder, still hope. What if I came back as a chameleon or something? Chameleons are cool.
Charlotte Richards: I can’t count the times I allegedly helped a client unmake that mistake…
Chloe Decker: Really?
Charlotte Richards: What? I said allegedly.
Lucifer Morningstar: Well he was straight when I first met him.
*I find it very telling that they were playing Monopoly because, as everyone knows. you don’t play Monopoly unless you’re playing with someone who has seen all sides of you, because it can get ugly.
*I truly love the scene at the end, between Chloe and Trixie. Scenes between Lauren German and Scarlett Estevez are always a joy. I love the message of being true to who you are instead of who you think people want you to be.
*I mentioned earlier than I think Dan is one of the characters that has come the furthest since the pilot. Not only is he at the point where he just laughs at Chloe and Lucifer’s antics, but he’s also all right with Lucifer spending time with Trixie. The Dan of season 1 would have probably freaked at the idea of Lucifer playing Monopoly with Chloe and Trixie, but Dan has grown a lot since then. Major props to Kevin Alejandro and the Lucifer writers for not going the usual route and writing Dan as the jealous ex, and showing that, yes, it is possible for exes to have a healthy platonic relationship and work together.
*My Deckerstar heart loves the fact that Chloe is wearing the necklace that Lucifer gave her; I do hope we get a bit more of a step forward from them soon.
*Love the fact that Ella accidentally convinced Charlotte to take the DA’s job; at least that solves the problem of how to keep Charlotte around.
*Loved the convo at the end between Lucifer and Linda, speaking about Oscar Wilde.