So, I discovered this show a while back via a trailer on the internet, which I then showed to my friend because she has a love for this sort of thing. Eventually, she started watching the show and was sucked into it, and later I caved and started watching it as well. I binge watched it in a matter of three days so I could watch the season finale on TV. I binged it again with said friend in another three days to write this review. That alone should tell you what I think about the show, but this wouldn’t be a proper review if I left it off at that.
So I’ll start this review off with a little bit of clickbait: Lucifer, a show about the devil living in LA and being a total playboy, is the best “Christian” show I have ever seen.
Yeah, you read that right. I said it’s a great “Christian” show (using quotations because it’s technically a secular show, but stay with me, I’m making a point). Yes, this show is, in fact, about the devil, and he is, in fact, the protagonist, a “good guy” as it were. Sort of. I mean, if you must conform to western forms of storytelling where there is black and white sides and morality. Which this really doesn’t do, but I digress.
Now, the first thing you’re probably going to say (or hear OTHER people say) is that the idea of the devil being the protagonist – the “good guy” – is unthinkable. After all, he’s the devil, he can’t be good, he’s pure evil! If he’s good, this is just a deceitful trick and it’s bad and blah blah blah guess what this is fiction. You know what that means? It’s not real, it is not meant to be taken as real, if you are taking it as real that’s your problem and not mine or anyone else’s. But if you really have a problem with it, just think of it as a metaphor and maybe that will make you feel better. If it doesn’t, too bad, get over it. If you don’t get over it, you will miss some of the best themes I’ve ever seen.
Now, this show starts off with quite a bit of “content”. Lucifer owns a club, he drinks, he smokes, he has sex, and boy oh boy are there a lot of innuendos. Pilot episodes almost always have extra gruesome amounts of “content” though because they want to show the full range of what the show might have. None of the other episodes of this show are as bad as the first. The first few after it still have a lot of innuendos, but later they sizzle down and die almost completely. And there is a very good story reason for that.
But first let me go over the basic premise of this show: Lucifer took a vacation from hell and opened up a club in LA called Lux. He brought his favorite demon with him as his bodyguard; her name is Mazikeen, or Maze. One day Lucifer is witness to a murder (and by witness I mean he was shot up along with the person who got killed, but being an immortal it didn’t do much to him). When the police get involved, he meets Detective Chloe Decker, whose reputation is not in good standing with the department for some reason we don’t quite know yet. Lucifer takes an interest in her, mostly because his charm doesn’t seem to work on her and that has literally never happened before, plus he wants to help solve the murder. Basically the entire show is him wanting to solve crime with Chloe because he is bored.
Oh, but there’s more going on than meets the eye. An angel named Amenadiel shows up and tells him to go back to hell, warning him that there will be consequences for his absence, essentially setting himself up to look like the villain here. But, is he? The truth is, both Lucifer and Amenadiel are unreliable narrators in this story. We don’t know that we can trust what either one of them are saying. Because of this, things get more interesting.
What I initially loved about this show was its writing. First off, it was brutally hilarious with so many puns (and innuendos but I covered that already), but later I realized there is also great use of subtlety all throughout the show. They state things in such a way that you don’t really catch them because you think it might be for a joke or a throwaway line, but it’s actually something bigger for the story itself. When I mentioned earlier that you should take his being the devil as a metaphor, I mean it: the show itself asks you to do the same, and then later it asks you to stop thinking of it as a metaphor, for a very specific reason at that.
Look, if we stripped this show of its supernatural element, it would still be good, but it would lose something intrinsic to it: its commentary on human nature, sin, and God. You may not think they would have anything good to say on such matters since it’s about the devil, but the reason I think this is the best “Christian” show ever is because of its take on these things. We are shown time and again that Lucifer is angry at his dad (God), and he keeps saying that he was awful, that Lucifer was being treated unfairly. But he keeps being proven wrong. And honestly, I don’t think you could convey such a message quite as well without the supernatural elements presented here. Could you have done it without making him THE devil? Probably, but I think it’s honestly more impacting this way.
There are strong themes in this show about justice vs punishment, about second chances and redemption, about love and selflessness and sacrifice. It brings up important issues like consent. Despite him appearing to be a womanizer, he really isn’t and is actually somewhat of a feminist. He doesn’t actually ever creep on or harass women, nor does he objectify them (nor does the show ever; even the more “scantily clad” people are not really sexualized).
This show is masterfully written, masterfully acted, just masterfully pulled off altogether. If you can’t take my word for it on the good messages, the least you can do is acknowledge it for quality craftsmanship. But. Its themes and messages are what really make it so compelling. Every time I watch it, I keep finding something new, and I am deeply analyzing the whole thing, to the point where I will actually be doing analyzation posts on it in the future.
This post was definitely more rambly than I meant it to be, because there’s just so much I could say about this show and I was having a hard time figuring out what to say and what to leave out. I will most certainly be writing more on this show, you can count on that. The main thing I want you to take away from it is this: It’s wonderful, it’s hilarious, it’s brilliant, it’s dramatic, it’s heart breaking. It made me cry a couple of times. This is legitimately my new favorite TV show, and I’m not sure I’ll ever get tired of watching it.
If you want a slightly more comprehensive explanation about this show and why it’s so great (especially if you’re a Christian), go read my friend’s post on 5 Reasons Why You, A Christian, Should Watch Lucifer