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Lucifer - Vegas With Some Radish - Review: “Emotions (Not) In The Past”

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This episode was perhaps the best one of the season by far. It just marginally beat out the exceptional Maze episode. What made this particular one so special was that it was everything that made the end of last season so spectacular. It mixed up the typical dynamics and was a genuinely hilariously funny hour with a ton of heart. It sadly says something about this season when the standalones left over from last year are the ones stealing the show. That fact is a bit ironic since it’s likely the need to air these standalones that have caused this season to feel stuck and bogged down unable to get a firm story flow going. With that said it would have been a travesty to not air these brilliant phenomenal episodes. It’s just a darn shame that the writers couldn’t find some way to make the Season Three storyline flow through them a bit better. Still, not even that fact can take away from the complete and utter brilliance of this near-perfect hour of the show.

Where to start when it was all so brilliant? Perhaps the best place to start is discussing the Las Vegas adventure that Ella and Lucifer went on because we all know the best way to close out this review will be talking about that final scene. So, onto Las Vegas! It was nice to finally see the series of events that led Lucifer and Candy (Lindsey Gort) to end up married last season. This whole adventure also showed off how much Lucifer really does care about the humans in his life. He didn’t have to run off to try and help Candy, but he felt like he didn’t do right by her and went to make that right. What Lucifer failed to realize himself is that the real reason behind his impromptu trip was the fact that he did genuinely care for Candy as a friend. The one thing bad guys don’t want to do is mess with Lucifer’s friends because it will never end well.

Also, a huge major thumbs up for the whole Vegas storyline was the fact that Lucifer got to sing, which means Tom Ellis got to show off his brilliant singing voice. The show doesn’t let him sing nearly enough, but when they do it is a bright spot in an episode. The entire song and dance number was hilarious with Candy and Ella spotting the audience. The case of the week was actually very well done and the killer was a surprise right up to nearly the reveal. The moment the bartender appeared in the background of the cabaret performance it was pretty obvious he was the murderer who wanted the bar. It was actually quite poignant when he was losing his cool when Candy and Lucifer were screwing with him. It was so poignant because of the performance Gort was giving.

When Candy was first introduced last season she seemed like a real stereotypical ditzy pretty girl character. But Gort bluffed the audience because by the end of that episode it was revealed just how much depth there is to Candy. Sure, she’s a master at the art of the con, but she also cares a lot. When Candy was confronting the murderous bartender there was a genuine hurt in her eyes and her voice that someone that was like family to her had tried to kill her. This was only Gort’s second venture into this character yet she has her mastered so well. She knows how to perfectly transition the character between serious real mode and con mode. It’s her portrayal of Candy that makes her a fun character that is a joy to watch. She has a pretty powerful friendship with Lucifer, so hopefully, this won’t be the last we’ve seen of Candy or her brilliant portrayer, Lindsey Gort. It would have been much better to bring Candy in as a new regular part of the show then Pierce if they wanted to mess with the bond between Lucifer and Chloe. There is terrific chemistry between Ellis and Gort while the same sort of spark has yet to ignite between Lauren German and Tom Welling. Not to say it won’t happen, but it’s going to be hard to beat what Tom Ellis and Lindsey Gort have developed between their characters. Thankfully they've established Candy and Lucifer as just kindred spirits who now call one another friends.

Even though the stuff between Lucifer and Candy was brilliant to watch perhaps the most eye-opening bit of this part of the story was Ella. Finally, after well over a year we have a tangible albeit still semi-cryptic reveal about what makes her such an enigmatic character. Up until now we knew Ella had a bit of a bad girl past that involved car theft and she’s shown more than once she has some solid lock picking skills, but how did that person become the happy-go-lucky woman we know? This episode didn’t really give us an answer to that, but it did reveal that she also was a bit of a card shark and appears to have been a heavy gambler in her past. Though, the biggest revelation was when she inadvertently revealed that she used card counting to “quite the voices”. It was a very perplexing choice of words, but very intriguing. What voices is she trying to quiet? In any other show she might be considered to have some sort of psychiatric disorder, but on this show, the possibilities are far vaster. It seems highly unlikely that her religious devotion was mentioned in the same episode as this reveal without somehow being connected. Could she somehow be special like Chloe and have some sort of tie to the celestial world? Are the voices she hears angelic or demonic? Again, this is just presuming "voices" was noted in a literal sense. If the writers choose to run with this aspect of the character it'll be very interesting to see if they go with a real psychiatric issue or more of a tie-in to the celestial portion of the show. There is a lot of great character potential with either route.

Ella has shown to have some very keen instincts regarding the celestial beings around her. She doesn’t know their true origins yet she somehow always seems to get a solid read on who they are at their core. She also seems very drawn to them much in the same way that Trixie is. That is important because Trixie, as Chloe’s daughter, is just as special as her mom because without Amenadiel’s involvement on behalf of his father neither of them would exist. We know that Chloe is one of a kind in that regard, so that isn’t Ella’s story, but it’s starting to become clear that this enigmatic character has a lot more going on under the surface than meets the eye. The writers have seemed to struggle with Ella, but the struggle might be because there is a big reveal that they are holding onto. The writers seem to be holding onto multiple big jaw-dropping character changing show evolving moments and until they are ready to shake up the whole world of the show they have to slowly draw out the story for each of these characters. Right now these big reveals that need to happen, but haven't, are easily the most frustrating part of the show. It's so frustrating as a fan to see the potential in certain characters and to see the writers hinting at going certain routes with characters, but not giving any payoff to these setups. There is a strong reason to believe that once the big reveals occur all of this frustration will end up being worth it, but for now it's annoying. Let’s just hope the writers hurry the Hell up and get to some big reveals because the actual Season Three storyline needs a serious jolt of new energy that a big reveal could bring.

A moment needs to be taken to commend Aimee Garcia for her performance in this episode. She is a brilliant actress and has done an exceptional job bringing the complicated and confusing Ella to life. The character is almost always bubbly and overly excited about everything, but it’s in the quieter stiller moments for the character that so much is revealed through Garcia’s calculated delivery. When Ella made the voices reveal there was this moment of quiet contemplation before bubbly Ella returned and threw Lucifer off topic to protect her own secret. Make no mistake, it is now clearer than ever that Ella is hiding something about herself and valiantly protecting it. In that quiet moment it was also made obvious how burdened Ella is by the secret. For the briefest of moments it almost seemed like she wanted to open up to Lucifer, but just couldn’t do it. This was an important episode for Ella and hopefully just the beginning of big things to come for the character. In Aimee Garcia’s hands whatever the writers have in store for Ella will be brought to life in magnificent ways.

While the whole Vegas storyline was complete and utter brilliance the secondary storyline was equally as perfect. The only thing missing was Maze, but it was still faultless. Letting Lauren German and Rachael Harris loose with a drunken storyline in Lucifer’s penthouse was inspired writing. They both have spot-on comedic timing and they absolutely nailed Chloe’s drunken impromptu birthday celebration. Dr. Linda hasn’t been in this season nearly enough so far, but this episode more than made up for it. Linda really needs to offer Chloe a friend discount and get her into her office for some much-needed therapy sessions. That couch of hers is magical and God knows (literally) that she needs someone to talk to that understands. That will likely be especially needed when Chloe does finally accept the truth about Lucifer, whenever that wonderful moment may finally come. Linda could really use a human friend that she can talk to about the weirdness of the celestial world.

Until such time as the two women can commiserate regarding the real Lucifer, this is a very fun substitute. Bravo to Linda for suggesting they take advantage of Lucifer’s temporarily unoccupied penthouse to have the most epic birthday celebration including Hamlet and a fun Risky Business sequence. It was a party fit for Lucifer, but it was a darn shame he missed the festivities. As much as it would have been great to see him there partying with the ladies it was good that he wasn’t because it gave Linda an opportunity to get Chloe to open up about her feelings for him. Chloe says that they are just friends and she’s over her feelings for him, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. She can try to deny what she feels for him, but she’s doing nothing more than lying to herself. The tears that sprung to her eyes when she was talking to Linda about Lucifer leaving on her birthday was very revealing of what she truly feels. She truly cares about him in such a deep way that it terrifies her because the last time she let herself feel that much for him he shut down and ran off on her leaving her with lasting emotional injury.

By the time Lucifer got back the party was over and his place was trashed. At least his safe was intact despite Dan’s best efforts. The entire episode was perfection, but this final scene was exactly what fans have been so desperate for this season which was a moment of genuine real sincerity from Lucifer to Chloe. Granted he thought she was passed out at the time, but he was still honest with her. Thankfully Chloe heard his honest heartfelt confession and with any luck, it’ll play a part to start leading them closer together again to the point where Lucifer will find some way to get her to accept the truth of who he is. For now, all the audience and the characters have to hang onto is the inspired gift that Lucifer gave Chloe. What a terrific idea by the writers to have him give her the bullet that she shot him with, the very thing that stopped her from believing in the first place. The very object that has led Chloe to be unable to accept that Lucifer is, in fact, the Devil is now around her neck. One can only hope this is a promise from the writers of what is to come. Perhaps a reveal happening this season isn't all that unrealistic. Lucifer couldn’t have given her a better gift and for the first time this season the fans got the beautiful interaction between these two that has been painfully absent.

These sorts of episodes are what make Lucifer such a special show. Even during this rough patch for the narrative of the show, these gems make it all worth it. There was not a single part of this episode that wasn’t spectacularly done. It was a very big character episode and those are the best kind. This show is at its best when cases aren’t the forefront of the hour. The cases drive the underlying part of the show, but should never overpower the importance of character interaction and character development. This episode delivered a lot of heart with brilliant character interactions and some very well done character development. The warm fuzzy feelings generated from the hug that ended the hour was exactly the way to end this brilliant episode. This is one episode that won’t be forgotten anytime soon.

Don’t miss the next episode when it airs on Monday, November 13th at 8/7c on FOX.

Hit the comments with your thoughts on this episode. Did you enjoy the unusual pairings? Was it fun seeing Chloe and Linda get drunk and trash Lucifer’s place? What do you think is going on with Ella? Did you like the way the episode ended?

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