NOTE: Full spoilers for this episode of, “Lucifer” are present in this review

 

 

Lucifer managed to deliver a fairly good season finale this week, though it was predictably evident that the episode ended up being held back in a few respects, due to FOX shortening Season Two’s planned episode order back in March. “The Good, The Bad, and The Crispy” nonetheless managed to wrap up the major story conflict of the season, namely what to do about an increasingly dangerous Mama Morningstar and the Flaming Sword, even if this once again ended up eating into the procedural element of the season finale, particularly when it comes to the hasty, head-scratching conclusion.

In terms of the concept for this season finale’s case-of-the-week, there was a lot to like. The LAPD and Chloe inevitably end up on the trail of Mama Morningstar, after she accidentally kills the bone-headed murderer from last week with her leaking holy light, and this has Mama Morningstar trying to evade the police. All the while, the show kicked the time limit with Mama Morningstar into high gear, as she becomes dangerously unstable, not just physically, but also emotionally and mentally, even going as far as to hurt people to get what she wants!

The tragic consequences of Lucifer’s and Amenadiel’s indecision were particularly felt with Linda this week, who suffered her greatest consequences yet for knowing Lucifer’s secret. It seems like the show is either forgetting about Linda’s suspension, or conveniently sweeping it under the rug, since she’s suddenly hanging out in her office a lot again, likely because her professional conflict was meant to span the four episodes that were trimmed out of the season. Still, Linda almost losing her life to Mama Morningstar’s insanity, after she tortures Linda for the true nature of Lucifer’s plan to strand her in Heaven, was a pretty good way to add urgency to a climax that otherwise strangely didn’t have much of it.

Fortunately, this episode definitely delivered when it comes to this show’s sharp sense of humour, even amidst the drama and danger of Mama Morningstar being on the verge of coming apart. Lucifer trying to slow down both Chloe and Ella, and only pushing them further along the investigation with every attempt, was quite funny. Likewise, Amenadiel attending improv classes with Dan, and being way too intense, made for probably the most hilarious moment in the episode! I hope that Amenadiel and Dan doing improv sticks around in Season Three, since this is a surprisingly inspired way to give Amenadiel a more heartfelt connection to Earth, especially with his angelic powers apparently being diminished.

I say, “Apparently”, because Amenadiel’s power loss also ends up being swept under the rug in the end, when he manages to summon a prolonged slowing of time that seemingly spans everywhere, not just the vicinity, allowing Maze to save the gravely wounded Linda’s life by getting her to the hospital, while Lucifer is able to confront his mother before the rogue sibling of the murderer that Mama Morningstar accidentally killed ends up shooting her at the crowded Los Angeles pier, which would kill thousands of people. There’s a subplot in this episode’s case where this man kills one of the cleaners that Mama Morningstar hires to deal with the body of the original victim, but it’s very hastily tossed in, especially when the guy sloppily kills one cleaner, yet not the other, despite them being twin sisters that run a body cleaning business together. How does he make a mistake like that? This just felt like a clumsy red herring, especially the bullshit blowtorch explanation that’s quickly tossed in to explain the dead cleaner’s charred head, which this guy, frankly, shouldn’t even know about. The show clearly didn’t care about the procedural element this week, on account of the pressing need to wrap up the season’s main supernatural plot.

Fortunately, Amenadiel conveniently getting his powers back out of nowhere means that Lucifer can separate Mama Morningstar from the humans, then use the completed Flaming Sword to cut a tear in reality, which can give Mama Morningstar the chance to enter a void and begin her own world, separate from God, her children, and the universe as we know it. This was a quick and clean way to get rid of Mama Morningstar without consequences or casualties, even if it means that she seemingly can never see her children, including Lucifer and Amenadiel, ever again. Lucifer even tosses the Flaming Sword into the void for good measure, conveniently tying up that story arc too. Hell, Charlotte even improbably survives the separation, somehow being returned to life from Mama Morningstar’s possession of her body. She doesn’t remember Dan, or anything that happened since she was ‘killed’ though, with Chloe and Dan seemingly believing that she fell off the pier, hit her head, and got amnesia. I guess it’s as good an excuse as any to avoid lasting consequences for Mama Morningstar parading around in Charlotte’s body for most of the season.

It’s the end of the episode that most highlights the forcibly truncated Season Two of Lucifer though, as Lucifer resolves to tell Chloe about his true nature, only to be suddenly knocked out by an unseen assailant, then dumped in a seemingly endless desert, complete with his angel wings back. Wait, huh? I get having a cliffhanger to muse over until Season Three begins this Fall, but this feels like it was meant to build off of story arcs that had to be cut out of the season. Why does Lucifer suddenly have his wings again? How was someone even able to knock him out in the first place? Was it even a human person at all? There’s a lot of questions, but some of them feel very sudden, as if FOX felt the need to just put in a cliffhanger for its own sake, even if it’s abrupt and barely explained.

Still, considering the fact that four episodes were forcibly removed from the season before its back half started, Lucifer nonetheless managed to cap off Season Two on a solid note. The supernatural storyline ultimately had to be rushed through, despite a fairly clever chase between Chloe and Mama Morningstar, though the proper procedural element of the show felt even more like it was practically intruding on everything else that was going on. There’s still some promising groundwork laid for where the show may go in Season Three though, namely Lucifer finally finding a reason to confess his secret to Chloe, and Amenadiel finding a potential new safe space at improv with Dan. What’s really curious though is how Lucifer managed to both get his wings back, and end up knocked out and somehow placed in a desert. It will be very interesting to see exactly how Season Three explains this later this Fall!

Lucifer 2.18: "The Good, The Bad, and The Crispy" Review
Lucifer's season finale suffered from the forcible shortening of Season Two this week, but still managed to tie up Mama Morningstar and the Flaming Sword on a solid note.
THE GOOD STUFF
  • Chloe ending up an obstacle to Lucifer protecting people
  • Amenadiel taking his first steps at improv
  • Mama Morningstar and the Flaming Sword are tied up pretty well at the end
THE NOT-SO-GOOD STUFF
  • Several hasty, rushed-through story elements, especially with the case-of-the-week
  • Confusing cliffhanger ending that feels compromised
84%Overall Score
Reader Rating: (0 Votes)
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About The Author

Senior Editor

Brent Botsford has reviewed video games, movies and television for over a decade. He is also a Twitch Affiliate at twitch.tv/venuszen , presenting new, retro and independent games as the, "Sixth-Handsomest Gamer on the Internet', VenusZen.

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2 Responses

  1. Ruchi

    Another very good review. As I had feared, the episode felt rushed but I am more forgiving of what happened. A few comments, some of which address your concerns:
    –Chet’s brother (Hector?) probably knew of the charred head from Chloe. She told him that the victim’s fingerprints were identified as his brother’s. He probably didn’t care which cleaner he killed, as long as it pointed to Charlotte. Chet might have told him he was going to kill Charlotte. When Chet ended up dead instead, he connected the dots. It was somewhat sloppily written in that it is unclear how he knew about the cleaners, unless they are the go-to gals for such messes.
    –We don’t know how far Amenadiel’s time-slowing power extends. It is probable that it extends across all earth time. If it didn’t stop for everything, there would be severe boundary condition mismatches for all the non-celestial beings, when time resumed. In this episode, he certainly tried to extend it across a large area over an extended period, to give Maze time to get Linda to the hospital. Maybe deus ex machina, but I am OK with it also affecting Lucifer and Mum.
    –Mum escaping into the Void, outside the boundaries of Creation, was a good way to resolve something that had no other clean resolution. And it seems inspired by the ending to the Mike Carey Lucifer comics series.
    –It doesn’t really make sense that Charlotte was revived after Mum left, but hopefully there is real story behind it, not just an excuse to keep Tricia Helfer on the show, which is almost a sufficient reason.
    –Lastly, cliffhangers are popular in current TV, but this was not particularly cruel (like those in Walking Dead or Game of Thrones). It certainly hints at an interesting S3, unless it is just a dream sequence, which would be a cheap/lame twist from the writers. Fans have been dying for Lucifer to get his wings back, so there would have to ve some fantastical circumstance for that to happen. The ending scene would have seemed haphazard and random, except that it really felt inspired by the Clint Easrwood desert scene from The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. I have to assume it was a celestial being that did this to him, so this probably introduces the antagonist of S3, like the S1 ending did with S2.

    Overall, I think this would have been better stretched out over a few episodes but it was still a satisfying finale.

    Reply
    • Brent Botsford

      I do have to concede that there have certainly been more cruel cliffhangers on television. I still get annoyed thinking about the Walking Dead one from a couple of seasons ago. I just wish that there was a little more buildup to Lucifer getting his wings back, since it feels like that was among the story elements that were cut out in the season’s shortening, a la Linda’s suspension. Still, I am interested to see where this goes!

      I guess you’re also right about Amenadiel and Chet. I was probably over-thinking Amenadiel’s abilities, since they’ve only ever been displayed right in front of Lucifer as far as I can recall. I really wish that there was a better explanation for Chet suddenly turning angry and violent over an estranged family linked to a criminal business that he seemingly wanted nothing to do with though. Seemed like a forced device for the climax.

      Ah well, I suppose it’s time to settle into this show’s Summer break. I will miss it in the meantime!

      Reply

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