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Lucifer: Pilot

Lucifer is (very) roughly based on a comic book in which the Devil leaves Hell to open a nightclub. In the comic, there's a lot of deep, existential questions about the nature of humanity. Somehow, FOX decided that that meant that Lucifer should be a cop procedural.

But if you can get past that, Lucifer is a very good, character-driven show. Tom Ellis is an extremely charming, likable lead. He's honestly the reason why the pilot works so well. Lucifer a genuinely funny guy/Devil. And there's some real heart and tenderness to Lucifer as well. One of the first scenes we have with him is him using the favor owed to him to make sure that Delilah cleaned herself up. And he's shown to be rather upset at her murder. By the end of the episode, he's shown to care enough about Chloe that he immediately rushes to her side once she is shot. This isn't necessarily an evil Devil. Would I have preferred him to be? Yes, I think so. As charming and lovely as Lucifer is, he is the Devil. Stereotype or not, you expect him to be a little more evil. I would have liked him to be a bit more evil, at least in the beginning of the show.

Chloe Decker is the police half of the police procedural. She's also the straight man, which means that she, to put it bluntly, is less fun than Lucifer is. This episode, we learn that she's something of a pariah due to the Palmetto case, that she wants to help people and to be a cop like her dad, and that she was in a teen movie that had a nude scene. And that Lucifer loves that movie. Oh! And she's the one person that's immune to Lucifer's superpower.

This might be the most interesting aspect to Chloe. It's necessary from a story perspective; it makes Lucifer interested in her, and it puts them on a more even partnership. But it also gives us a mystery to solve. Now, as I write this review, I already know why she's immune. So, I won't necessarily speculate on why she is immune. Feel free to do that on your own, however!

Rounding out our main pairing, we have Chloe's family. Her daughter, Trixie, is adorable. I'm wary of child actors and characters, as they can get really annoying very quickly, but Trixie's interactions with Lucifer were short and sweet. It was a little endearing how he hates children. We also have Chloe's ex-husband, Dan. He isn't necessarily given a lot to do this episode besides warn Chloe to finish up the case quickly. They don't have the best relationship, but it seems like they're still trying to raise Trixie together. So that elevates both Chloe and Dan in my eyes.

We also have Dr. Linda, who becomes Lucifer's therapist. Her initial scene is... a little rough. She had a startling insight into Lucifer, which felt a little off and unearned. I realized that she's a therapist, but would she really just spout off a random observation to someone who isn't her patient? They also need to turn down her Lucifer-induced antics. I found them to be more uncomfortable than funny.

The highlight of this show, for me, is the interaction between Chloe and Lucifer. They have very good chemistry together, and Tom Ellis and Lauren German play off of each other very well. Yes, Lucifer is fun anytime he's on screen, but the scenes that they share together shine in particular.

Random Thoughts

The music in this show is absolutely phenomenal. I adore it.

They actually recast the actor who plays Dan after the pilot. There's a version with Nicholas Gonzalez, and there's a version with Kevin Alejandro, who plays Dan for the rest of the series. Both do a decent enough job, but Alejandro's Dan is a bit more sympathetic.

We also have Maze and Amenadiel. Although on opposite sides of the divine spectrum, they both want Lucifer to go back to Hell. And neither of them were really given much to do this episode.

Although, Amenadiel did bring up an interesting point: what's going on in Hell right now? Has an ambitious demon stepped up and taken charge? Is his name Crowley?

Tom Ellis is really the one who sells this whole, ridiculous show. It's one of the better pilots I've seen.

8.8 out of 10

~An Honest Fangirl
---
Originally posted at Reviews From An Honest Fangirl.

15 comments:

Billie Doux said...

Programming note: Fangirl will be posting reviews of the first two seasons this summer, and will be covering season three as it airs.

Billie Doux said...

... and I must agree that Tom Ellis is a huge reason to watch. I think he's marvelous. And, no spoilers for later episodes, he gets better and better as the series progresses.

An Honest Fangirl said...

Oh, without a doubt. In fact, I'm pretty sure that everyone improves. One of my favorite characters ended up being someone that I really didn't like in the first episode.

Billie Doux said...

Oh, now I have to ask who that is. Dan? Mazikeen? Dr. Linda?

An Honest Fangirl said...

I actually liked Dan right off the bat, if only because he's trying to keep Trixie's life relatively stable through her parents' separation. But no, Dr. Linda ended up being one of my favorites, which I totally didn't see coming because this first outing is... bad.

The 42nd Vizsla said...

I am also on team Doctor Linda! Love her. I also think she's a super important character on the TV landscape right now, but that's discussion for much later in the shows run

Welcome HG!

-Mikey

The 42nd Vizsla said...

And by HG I of course mean HF. Stupid typo :)

Camille B said...

Well I have read somewhere on your blog that you do like comments, even late, even about shows or episodes already old, so, for Lucifer, here I am!
What could I say? Honestly, if the actual Devil is anything like the one on this show, I want, nay, I demand to go to hell when I die!
At first I was reluctant to watch this show, fearing a sick morbid horror-show with an immoral cruel anti-hero, WOW!, what a delightful surprise it's been! This show is pure fun and its hero is simply the most lovely and endearing I met for a while.
Lucifer the character is brilliantly written: the Devil being NOT evil, since his role is precisely to punish evil! It's so clever that I wonder how nobody could have thought of it earlier!
And Tom Ellis is so damn charming and talented that we 100% but it!
Not to mention the insane chemistry with Lauren German.
Not perfect, sure, but this pilot manages to make us like the show's main protagonist and want to discover what happens next, so, mission accomplished.

Billie Doux said...

Camille B, we do indeed love comments and they're always welcome. And I most certainly adore Tom Ellis as Lucifer, too. Enjoy!

Camille B said...

I meant "100% buy it", of course...
Olé, 1st comment, 1st horrible typo!

sunbunny said...

Rewatching Lucifer with my mom! I'm not up to date (I think I'm mid season 4) so I was like meh let's just watch the whole thing again. It's weird to see where the relationships start knowing how they change and how deep and meaningful they become. I feel like the show busted music budget on the pilot WOW what a soundtrack.

Tom Ellis is 10000% what makes this show work. He's sexy and flirty and charismatic and amoral but in a fun way and not really evil at all. He also has a very strong sense of justice. People should be punished for the bad things they do. I agree that it's really important that the first deal we see Lucifer make is in aid of Delilah getting herself together. He doesn't want to seduce her or manipulate her, he genuinely cares about her. It's not your Sunday School devil that's for sure. Maze, Linda, and Amenediel (I'm not looking up the spelling...pretend that's right) barely figure in to the episode. I guess we do need to establish our leads first but it's just funny considering how important they become that they're not more of a presence from the get go.

Tbh, the shop gets off to a rocky start. Like it's enjoyable but it took some time to find its rhythm. Which is fine, Angel took its sweet time too.

An Honest Fangirl said...

Sunbunny, Amenadiel. So close! haha Linda is so different from the character that she later becomes. It's kind of unreal to see her character development.

I always have a rule that I give a new show roughly 6 episodes to convince me to keep watching, just because so many great shows do take awhile to find their feet. If I remember, Lucifer finds its footing relatively quickly. Enjoy your rewatch with your Mom! :)

Josie Kafka said...

I finally gave this a real chance, after bouncing hard off of it twice before. And it's fun! (I'm also desperate for something interesting but not too grimdark.)

The therapist scenes were uncomfortable for me, too. I kept thinking about how the show was really dodging around the question of consent.

Sunbunny, I like what you said here: "[Lucifer] also has a very strong sense of justice. People should be punished for the bad things they do." I think that's very true in this show, and a rather interesting perspective on his rebellion against God, too.

ChrisB said...

My niece and I have very similar taste in television shows. I told her to try Supernatural. She spent the summer marathoning through the whole thing and texting me all the time about it. She told me to try this one.

I liked the pilot. Tom Ellis is brilliant casting and the story left me wanting the next chapter. My niece is very happy with me! :-)

An Honest Fangirl said...

Yay! I'm so happy more people have been trying this out lately! haha