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Lucifer - They’re Back Again, Aren’t They & The One With The Baby Carrot - Double Review: “HIS Plan”

Lucifer hit the ground running as the season launched right back into the action without missing a beat. This season is a bit different than prior seasons, and not just because of the new character of Marcus Pierce (Tom Welling), but because no one knows much about the new big bad. In the first season there were clear foes and last season it was obvious that Mom was up to no good, but who is Sinner Man? This season neither the characters nor the audience have any idea who the big bad is and that kind of makes things more interesting. This seems like it could be a season of transformation and evolution as all the characters were presented with situations that will certainly challenge them throughout the year.

The first big change right out of the gate was the introduction of Marcus Pierce. He is obviously meant to be a romantic rival for Lucifer as both set their sights on Chloe, but it also appears that he and Lucifer will be working together a bit albeit very reluctantly. Now, here is a curious thing to consider, the mysterious Sinner Man appears in Los Angeles at the exact same time that Marcus appeared. Also, quite coincidental, is the fact that he is intimately familiar with who the Sinner Man is. More than that, he also has taken a considerable interest in Lucifer who is, arguably, the original creator of all that the Sinner Man is doing. It's a very big coincidence that some big mysterious being who Marcus encountered in Chicago shows up at the exact same time as him in Los Angeles and both find themselves directly connected to Lucifer. Could Marcus be the Sinner Man? Or is the Sinner Man following him for some reason? With this show either is a possibility, but Marcus was extremely quick to point out the sins of his new team of officers. Dan, in particular, took a beating from him in these first episodes. It’ll be interesting to see how they develop him. Will he be a trusted member of the team that Lucifer and gang can count on or is he there to take them down from the inside? It is this mysterious approach that the writers and Welling are delivering that makes this character very intriguing. Welling is a perfect fit for this group of performers and he’s a welcomed addition to the cast. It is great to see him back in a series regular role after taking an acting hiatus to work behind the camera. This definitely feels like the right part for him.

While the show will certainly spend time building up Pierce’s past and his backstory, it seems like Sinner Man is going to be a mystery for quite some time and he’s likely to keep causing problems. The big question is whether this being is human or celestial. And, in addition to that question, does this being know who Lucifer really is? It would seem highly likely given the fact that of all the people he could have targeted he chose the Devil himself. So, did God give his son back his wings to help protect him from the Sinner Man or was the Sinner Man sent by God to teach Lucifer a lesson? Or, if Sinner Man is a celestial being, is he gunning for Lucifer’s position in an attempt to launch an attack on Heaven? There is also the fact, that while Amenadiel pretended to not know who Sinner Man was, there did seem to be a small tinge of possible recognition of the name when Lucifer brought it up to him. This is Lucifer at its very best with mysteries without obvious answers.

One very unfortunate thing about this whole storyline is the fact that Lucifer lost his Devil face just as he was about to show his true self to Chloe. This season is crucial in that the show has reached a point where they can’t keep going on with Chloe in the dark. That aspect of the story walked a very fine line of believability last season and the writers simply can’t keep dragging it on forever. The reveal needs to happen by mid-season at the latest to allow the writers some time to show a part of Chloe’s journey through finding out and accepting the truth. Chloe is smart and observant and continually throwing things into the story simply to keep Chloe in the dark has started to border on the ridiculous. It would be nice to see Lucifer and Chloe get a chance at a romantic relationship, but that is way less important than Chloe finally being let in on the big secret. Chloe finding out opens up a huge array of potential storylines for the show that could launch it to the next level allowing it to dive more deeply into its celestial roots. Here’s to hoping the writers understand all this and Chloe’s finding out is already in the works.

Honestly, it’s becoming necessary for this to happen for Chloe, at least in these first episodes, the writers didn’t seem to have anything fresh for Chloe besides a possible new love interest in Marcus. Every single other character that appeared had some clearly defined thing to drive their storylines for the season. Amenadiel is dealing with what it means to know he is the favorite son yet to be denied the things he most desires like his wings and powers. Dr. Linda is dealing with the fallout from her vicious attack which has clearly left her still in pain that she is desperately trying to hide. Dan is forced to deal with his past issues from the first season in addition to what he wants in his life. Ella was her usual happy self, but there was a religious storyline set into place along with once again showing that under the innocent exterior there seems to be something dark or traumatic. Even Lucifer is dealing with new issues such as his “whack-a-mole” wings that refuse to stay away no matter how many times he cuts them off. Even Maze, who didn’t appear because of Lesley-Ann Brandt’s maternity leave, has been set up with her own individual storyline by growing her bounty hunting business. And when she returns she’s likely to be haunted by what happened to Dr. Linda last season as well. Chloe, on the other hand, seemed like business as usual. She wasn’t really given anything new to work with. However, this might not be an oversight by the writers, but exactly what they were intending. If the audience can see Chloe in a funk while everyone else is moving forward then surely the character herself will notice it and in time that will become part of her storyline this season. Finding out the truth about Lucifer and her own celestial origins could launch some really fun identity issues for Chloe. Lauren German is a powerhouse actress, so to not use her to her full potential would be a darn shame and since the writers seem to know what they have in her there has got to be so much more to Chloe’s story that we just don’t yet know.

There were a lot of terrific things from these episodes like the involvement of both Dr. Linda and Ella in more of the story. In the first season, Dr. Linda was basically just there to be Lucifer’s therapist with the very rare story participation outside of that. Then last season she started to get integrated into the bigger group especially after Lucifer revealed the truth to her. This season she’s left to deal with the lingering physical and emotional ramifications of being brutally attacked by Mom. She’s only alive because of Amenadiel and Maze who valiantly fought to save her. Even though she appears to be healing there is still a lot of healing that needs to occur that isn’t necessarily physical. That’s an interesting position for the doctor of the group to be in. Everyone comes to her for advice, but who can she go to? It’ll be interesting to see how long she’ll suffer in silence before seeking help or help being forced on her by her friends. Maze, who doesn’t do well with deep emotional feelings, took off to avoid having to confront what happened with Linda. Amenadiel, at least inquired how she was going but was so caught up in his own emotional turmoil that he missed some obvious clues that she wasn’t as good as she claimed. And Lucifer, who ironically seemed to be the only one to really notice Linda was still in pain, was his usual self and got sidetracked by his own needs. Though, the fact he even noticed she was hurting was a huge step for him and a sign that he is evolving and changing in positive ways. Chloe is perhaps the best listener of Linda’s remaining friends, but given that Chloe doesn’t know everything that severely limits what Linda can tell her. For now, Linda will probably be able to keep suffering in silence and hiding her pain from the others, but it’s very likely that Charlotte’s return in a few weeks will trigger some painful memories for Linda. She’s finally getting a storyline that is more about her than Lucifer and that’s a terrific thing because it’ll give the writers a lot of room to write amazing things for the incredibly talented Rachael Harris. In her very capable hands, it should be a very funny, heartfelt, heartbreaking, and healing season for Linda.

The other character finally getting into the thick of things is Ella. She was criminally underused last season, but they seem to have some big plans for her this year. Already she was heavily used in both of these first two episodes with her getting a surprising amount of time in the second episode. She’s still her big-hearted bubbly self, but last season made it clear there are a lot of dark days in her past. The Ella we know seems like a creation of her own to portray who she wishes she was versus who she actually is. She’s a very smart woman who knows her stuff but also has an almost childlike personality at times that seems like a desperate attempt to hide some currently unknown trauma. Ella is a woman with a past and on this show that means that the audience will spend the rest of the season(s) watching the layers slowly be pulled back on her while we all sit back anxiously waiting to see what the bigger picture is once all the pieces are revealed. Aimee Garcia does a phenomenal job showing off Ella’s bubbly personality while also showing off a deeper side to the character that is hiding just under the surface. It’s that hidden part of the character that is most intriguing.

These episodes also dove into the other relationships within the show. They showed off the friendship between Linda and Amenadiel and it’s still just as entertaining as ever. D.B. Woodside and Rachael Harris are a fun duo who has made the friendship between their characters a joy to watch. They also dove more into the brotherly relationship between Amenadiel and Lucifer. That particular relationship could really test both of them this season. They both have things the other wants, even if they won’t admit to it. Amenadiel wants his wings and powers back while Lucifer wants his wings gone for good. Lucifer, while he will never admit it, seems perplexed at the fact that Amenadiel is the perceived favorite son and may perhaps like to have that title back. These brothers need each other, but jealousy is something they’ve both always suffered from, so it’ll be interesting to see how they continue to navigate these issues. Will they be divided as they were in the first season or will they come together stronger than ever? Only time will answer that question, but hopefully, they’ll find a way to remain united because in so many ways they need each other even if they annoy the literal Hell out of one another.

While all the characters got fun things to do there were, however, three missing faces in Maze, Trixie, and Charlotte. The first one will be back in the next episode since it’s a carryover from last season then there may still be a hiatus where Maze is off doing her bounty hunting thing since her portrayer spent the first few episodes this season nurturing her newborn son. By the way, congratulations to Lesley-Ann Brandt and her husband for their bundle of joy. Trixie should be making her return soon and it’ll be interesting to see if they give her any character specific storyline this season. With each season Scarlett Estevez gets older and with age comes more that the writers can do with her character. Hopefully, this season will throw amazing things the way of this extremely talented young actress. And last, but certainly not least, is Charlotte. She’s set to return in the fifth episode of the season and it will be very interesting to see how Tricia Helfer handles this version of her character and what the writers have in store for her.

The case of the week in the season premiere was very intriguing because it wasn’t at all predictable. In fact, the case wasn’t really solved and threw the door open to the Sinner Man mystery. It was one of the best season premieres the show has done yet in terms of the case. The second episode had a very predictable case of the week as the moment the lead-in comic appeared it was pretty much a guarantee that she was going to be the bad guy. Still, that case gets a few redeeming points because it brought Ella more deeply into the story and sent her out into the field with Lucifer and Chloe. It might have been predictable, but at least it was fun to watch the team work together.

This season is off to an awesome start and this new Sinner Man mystery has a lot of promise. The episodes weren't perfect, but they were as entertaining and engaging as ever. The show needs to address Chloe learning the truth and the sooner the better. This seems as though it is set as a transformative season, so that could lead to some very fun and dramatic moments as the characters endure whatever is thrown their way. With a new character and a new mysterious big bad, there is a level of uncertainty in this season that hasn’t existed previously. That element of mystery will only aid in making this season even more engaging. The writers and Father clearly have a plan and all the rest of us can do is go along for the ride and enjoy where it takes us. Hang on, because things are just ramping up on what promises to be an epic season.

Don’t miss the next episode when it airs on Monday, October 16th at 8/7c on FOX.

Hit the comments with your thoughts about these episodes. What do you think about Sinner Man? Could he be Marcus Pierce? Will Lucifer and Marcus become friends despite the set-up for them to be rivals love interests for Chloe? Where will Dan fit into that whole equation? How long will Linda be able to hide her pain from everyone? Do you think Chloe will/should finally actually learn the truth this season?

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