Review – Lucifer S03E16: Infernal Guinea Pig

A Case Gives Lucifer an Important Realization

In the spirit of honesty, I’ll admit when I heard the plot summary for this episode I groaned a bit. I’m not a big fan of Cain as a character, so an episode revolving around him? Not my style. But in true Lucifer fashion, the episode surprised me. I kind of really loved the episode, which is titledInfernal Guinea Pig,” and is written by Jenn Kao and Julia Fontana. It was hilarious when it needed to be and yet still hit you with the emotion when you least expected it.

Our Nightmares

Lucifer Charlotte RichardsLet’s talk about Charlotte Richards. I am probably the biggest, if not one of the biggest, Charlotte fans in the fandom. She’s one of my favorite parts of season 3, due in no small part to the enormous talent of Tricia Helfer.

This episode gave us a strong look into who Charlotte is, someone who fears losing control. Ever since we found out that Linda was going to be helping out Charlotte I was excited. It’s my personal opinion that everyone can benefit from a little bit of therapy. That doesn’t mean taking the first step is easy though. No, actually speaking about your traumas and your fears is one of the scariest feelings in the world. Which is why that first scene with Charlotte is so relatable.

Charlotte wants to use therapy as a way to access her lost memories, the months when Mom was in her body. But as Linda tells her, she can’t actually win at therapy. Helfer’s expressions change the moment Linda even alludes to her Hell loop. She understandably overreacts. It’s not until she hears Abel’s words that everything clicks and she let’s go a bit of control.

She comes back to Linda’s office and we get one of the best scenes, and performances, of the episode. Charlotte finally admits to Linda what her Hell loop was. She’s having breakfast with her family when someone comes in and shoots them. She’s unable to do anything about it because it’s someone she represented. No words I use would be able to properly describe how powerful Helfer’s performance is at this moment. In a few sentences, she transmits all the guilt, self-hatred, fear and despair Charlotte is feeling. She is trying her best and we truly hope Linda can help her through it.

He’s My Partner

Lucifer Infernal Guinea PigOne of the hilarious parts of the episode are the scenes with Chloe and Dan. Pierce takes Lucifer as his partner for the day since they are dealing with the Abel mess and, well, Chloe had a few things to say about it. For one thing, she was not happy. A lot has been said about jealous Lucifer this season but the truth is jealous Chloe is just as good. Well, it was more possessive Chloe than jealous but it still counted. Once again I marvel at how they want us to believe the triangle will be a real thing; from what we can see Lucifer and Chloe only ever worry about each other.

Chloe is left to solve the case with Dan and we get a wonderful group of scenes. The easy chemistry between Kevin Alejandro and Lauren German shines as Chloe complains about what happened. She remarks that no one wanted to work with Lucifer when he started. Now that he’s become a good partner, Pierce just takes him. She points out how Lucifer had no reaction but if she knew what we know then she’d be singing a different tune. Because we know that if given the choice Lucifer would never leave her side.

The situation has echoes of last season’s “Trip to Stabby Town” when Chloe got jealous that Lucifer was spending all his time with Ella. It also says of how far Dan and Chloe’s relationship has come that they can freely talk about things like this. After all, it wasn’t long ago they were the ones married and Lucifer was the new guy on the scene. As Dan reminds her, Lucifer is her partner and nothing is ever going to change that.

Risk Too Great

Lucifer Infernal Guinea Pig 2This episode proves to be a pivotal point in Lucifer and Cain’s relationship and in the most unexpected way. But really, it was one that we should have seen coming. Lucifer’s brilliant idea from the end of the last episode is to go back to Hell to get Abel’s soul and bring it back to break Cain’s curse. Of course this is Lucifer and nothing is ever that easy. For starters, he accidentally puts Abel in a different body, a woman’s body that is. And no matter what they try Cain’s mark still remains.

What follows is a hilarious chase as they try to find Abel before anything bad happens. Abel is portrayed by the wonderful Lauren Lapkus who makes the episode even better. In typical Lucifer fashion, their chase coincides with Chloe’s case and they have to come clean, of sorts. It ends up with Chloe endangering her life. Unlike earlier in the season, this time Lucifer is by her side and it’s the push he needed.

He’s spent so long being furious at this father for the wings, it caused him to lose sight of what was truly important. Chloe’s life and her safety are worth more to him than pissing off his father. So he breaks off the deal with Cain, since he doesn’t mind risking his life, but he will not risk Chloe’s. He’s seen that as long as he gets what he wants Cain doesn’t care who he puts in danger. Tom Ellis’ acting is masterful yet subtle as he tells Cain that this was both a difficult decision and yet the easiest he’s made.

Lucifer might have said his piece but I doubt that’s going to be the end of it. And I fear Cain is going to be using Chloe against him in the future.


Linda Martin: You do realize you can’t win at therapy

Charlotte Richards: Oh please, I can win at anything.

 Mazikeen Smith: We all learned to torture by torturing him.

Chloe Decker: You’re the Lieutenant you call the shots. But the next time you want to still my partner to tail the target in my investigation you want to clue me in first?

Bree/Abel: Oh my flock is your flock this I swear.

Lucifer Morningstar: I will not let you endanger the detective’s life in the process.

Chloe Decker: He’s not endangering my life. I am choosing to be here and if you’re not gonna help you should probably just leave.

Lucifer Morningstar: Well we both know I’m not gonna do that. I’m your partner.

Chloe Decker: I couldn’t have done it without you.

Lucifer Morningstar: I know I promised I’d help you end your curse but I’m afraid we need to dissolve our unholy alliance.

Cain: Why?

Lucifer Morningstar: The risk is too great. I mean I don’t mind putting myself in danger, but the detective? If she had died it would have been my fault.

Cain: But you’re the devil you always keep your word

Lucifer Morningstar: I do. So I hope you understand how difficult a decision this was. And yet. oddly, the easiest I’ve ever made.


*Lucifer’s stick figures were kind of completely adorable.

*We got a return of Dan the film nerd, it’s always wonderful when he makes an appearance.

*The fact that both Cain and Abel were in a sort of Hell being tortured without end is an interesting punishment. It’s very old testament if you ask me.

*Again cheers to Lauren Lapkus because she was a true joy as Bree/Abel (especially with the little dance and the interactions with Charlotte and Chloe.)

*It’s very curious that Cain feels absolutely no guilt for killing his brother. And you can see it register in Lucifer’s face. Killing your brother isn’t the sort of thing you just shake off. We know he has personal experience in the matter, as Lucifer himself couldn’t shake off killing Uriel (despite it being to protect someone else.)

*I respect Amenadiel being the only one that is sort of thinking straight in the Cain situation but that’s not the perfect way to go about it.

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About the author

Maii Trueba

Maii is a 27 year old writer, who can get emotional and protective over certain characters and their stories, also pandas. And don't get her started on A Song of Ice and Fire because you'll never hear the end of it. She graduated in film and has a certificate in Art History so the nerdiness comes out from time to time.

1 Comment

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  • This ep cleared up one thing for me. The Sinnerman lackey isn’t Abel.
    It was a bit amusing when Maze described Abel as “caveman Lucifer”

    I agree with you about Chloe and Dan. I like that even though they are exes, things aren’t awkward between them after the split. They have become good friends and still support each other.

    There’s a scene where Maze is with Cain and she’s holding hunting equipment. My mind jumps to 3×10 where we learn Cain has read Moby Dick a couple of times. Back to 3×16, it kind of looks like Maze is getting ready to harpoon a whale.

    I feel that Charlotte could benefit from being let in on a devil reveal.