Tori Brazier reviews the sixteenth episode of Lucifer season three…
This episode of Lucifer sees us getting back to the meat of the season: attempting to remove the curse on the long-suffering Cain. Lucifer (Tom Ellis) and Pierce/Cain (Tom Welling) have teamed up to break his curse because Pierce is fed up of the torture of being an immortal mortal on earth and Lucifer… well, he just likes any excuse to provoke/possibly beat his Father. Lucifer’s brainwave at the end of last episode about “rewriting” history turns out to be plucking Abel’s soul out of Hell and putting it in the nearest, recently-vacated body – because apparently he can do that. And apparently Abel is the mainstay of Hell because, as Pierce indignantly points out, he was always “the asshat”. Maze (Lesley-Ann Brandt) even had fun practising all of her torture techniques on him as her first victim – most of which revolved around the appearance of his brother. If Abel is on earth, Lucifer reasons, then Cain will no longer be a murderer and thus should become unmarked.
With the scene set, a call comes through to the LAPD about an explosion at a production office and a potential witness being delivered to the ICU – the perfect opportunity for Pierce and Lucifer to team up and go and find a fresh ‘vessel’ for Abel, much to the chagrin of an abandoned and in-the-dark Chloe (Lauren German). When, after an unfortunate mix-up, young production assistant Bree’s (Lauren Lapkus) body ends up hosting Abel’s spirit – rather than the 97-year-old man Lucifer and Cain had picked out, in order to minimise the brothers’ potential time together on earth – this episode’s case and the season’s narrative arc dovetail together quite nicely. It’s also a fun extra twist, having the production assistant as a young female, who begins swaggering around town and hitting on the ‘laydeez’ (a “pussy hound”, or indeed “like Lucifer”, as Maze so charmingly describes Abel’s character). His full-on biblical chat-up lines include the of the size of his flock and, err, asking women to allow him to “bless you with my seed”. Actress Lauren Lapkus really makes the most of her opportunity to play the unlikely host of what appears to be the ‘first lad’ (if Cain has to be the ‘first murderer’), with legs akimbo, confidence unshakeable and a permanent half smirk at her lips – which *is* rather similar to Lucifer… As Lucifer and Pierce realise that Abel might, understandably, wish to get his ‘eye for an eye’ from Pierce and kill him, they set off in pursuit to apprehend Bree/Abel first.
Meanwhile, Charlotte (Tricia Helfer) and Linda (Rachael Harris) begin their therapy sessions together and the former’s high-powered, controlling tendencies and competitiveness immediately come to the fore; as Linda points out, she can’t simply ‘win’ at therapy. This initial franticness gives way to a strong, more grounded than usual scene for Tricia Helfer later, as Charlotte starts talking about her family (often left awkwardly on the sidelines by the writers) and the PTSD-like symptoms she is experiencing following her body being invaded by Lucifer’s naughty mother last season – not that she knows that’s what it was yet.
As Charlotte and Linda are talking it out in therapy, Maze and Amenadiel (D.B. Woodside) are slugging it out in anger and retaliation. Having attempted to find assistant Bree in order to return Abel to hell like the good little archangel he is, Amemadiel is ambushed by Maze and they have their hotly-anticipated showdown/meltdown. It’s safe to say that if feelings aren’t exactly resolved, they are at least aired.
The case is neatly solved by the episode’s end, as always, with the revelation that assistant Bree had been working against her crooked producer boss, who was involved with a Bolivian cartel, and who essentially tried to murder her for disapproving of the partnership and trying to divert their funds. Lucifer reluctantly dissolves his partnership with Pierce – thereby having to break his unbroken word – as he sees what danger his helping Pierce outsmart God put Chloe in (all those bombs about the place). The pair are also still frustrated by the permanence of Cain’s mark, which should have theoretically disappeared the moment Abel breathed as Bree. Just as Pierce vows to continue on his own, because there’s hope as long as his brother is on earth, Abel gets rather emphatically run over by a car. Possibly not the most delicate of endings, but it certainly made the point that Cain’s struggle is still far from over. Indeed, it’s back to square one.