It’s 12:47 pm
Watching TV these days is a real challenge,you have so many options,shows and ways to watch any number of TV shows. Gone are the days of the big networks and a few syndicated shows,now the pie is much bigger with more content.
But with more content and with the viewing audience being so very fickle,the pressure to produce a hit TV show has never been greater. Where as a few years ago,series used to grab 20-25 million a week and be considered decent,now shows that can hold 10-15 million views are seen as monster hits.
If your show ain’t grabbing good numbers,chances are you aren’t going to make it past a 13 episode run. Some networks have deep pockets (hello Disney) that carry a subpar show like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. for years hoping to develop a hit or at least hit 100 episodes which is considered enough shows to sell in said syndication.
As a rule,I never watched shows on Fox. Not because of politics but because the suits running the network historically have a quick hook,there have been shows cancelled after ONE episode!! I quit watching Fox when they cancelled a great show called “The Human Target” which actually a very early superhero show because the genre became trendy and profitable. The quick hook made me swear off Fox after that.
So you can imagine my reaction when I heard Lucifer was coming as a series to Fox. At first I thought it was a series about Rupert Murdoch but when I heard that it was based on the Neil Gaiman version that he debuted in his series “The Sandman” that was published by the DC Comics Vertigo imprint,I was both surprised and a bit leery. While comics are hot,grabbing Lucifer as a TV series seemed way risky,the character too obscure except by die hard comic fans much less the Christian watchdog groups. I thought the show would a be splashy headline for a second and then Lucifer would be gone.
But strangely enough,the American viewing public loved the show and it did well enough to get a second season……and then got renewed for a third. Gaiman is a hot property in Hollywood right now,his “American Gods” on Starz was a hit before it even aired and was renewed before the second episode came up.
Taking all these elements together,the cheetah and I decided to take a look at the first season of Warner Brothers production of “Lucifer”.
The premise is that Lucifer rebelled 3 seconds after Creation and was banished to Hell. He was supposed to rule there for eternity…..until he decided to take a vacation. To Los Angeles,the city of angels.
The series opens with Lucifer (Tom Ellis) driving to his club,Lux. He is speeding and as such is pulled over by a motorcycle cop. We learn that Lucifer has many abilities and powers,such as able to get anyone to share their darkest desires. He gets out of ticket and heads to the club we are introduced to his right hand arch-demon,Mazikeen (Lesley-Ann Brandt). We learn that Lucifer and Maze (Mazikeen’s nickname) have been on Earth for five years.
When a pop singer who Lucifer had helped is killed in his arms,he experiences a new emotion,empathy,he wants justice for the murdered girl. This brings Lucifer in contact with LAPD detective Chloe Decker (Lauren German) who is separated from her husband Dan (Kevin Alejandro). Lucifer is taken aback when his powers don’t affect Chloe in the slightest. He then insists on teaming with her to solve the crime and the punish the guilty.
They solve the case but Chloe is almost killed,Lucifer deals with the killer in a brutal fashion. He is surprised at the depth of his feelings not only for Chloe but the sudden urge to do the right thing (that develops VERY slowly).
He ends up becoming a “official police consultant” and is partnered with Chloe.
As he is wrestling with these feelings,his older brother,the angel Amenadiel (DB Woodside) shows up and we learn that Lucifer isn’t the Prince of Darkness we assume he was,he was sent to Hell as its gatekeeper and he needs to go back as things are getting a just a little iffy down there. Amenadiel is willing to force Lucifer to go back by any means possible and as the season develops,does some very human things to do just that.
Lucifer is confused by his feelings so he goes to therapist Dr. Linda Martin (Rachael Harris) where he pays for his sessions with sex. As the season develops,Martin and Lucifer become a normal patient and doctor and she is paid with money.
We found ourselves liking Lucifer,while it doesn’t seem(but yet to be determined) to be set in the DCEU directly (in the comic,Lucifer and John Constantine along other DC characters often cross paths) the reaction of the folks to “Lucifer Morningstar” is quite laid back in relation to what you would expect. No other DC characters are seen or named in Season 1 but you get the idea there are other metahumans/divinities floating around. No one is creeped out unless Lucifer shows his true face,the invokes the expected reaction.
The series hits the ground running,cramming a LOT of character development into its first season. This is both good and bad…bad in the fact that creator Tom Kapinos must have felt the pressure to deliver the goods right away or risk the quick hook from Fox.
The character development is so crammed and jammed,there isn’t any sense of mystery or history. Instead we felt we were watching a supernatural version of “Elementary” with its “crime of the week” standard plots and forcing the Chloe-Lucifer relationship,he tries to bed her almost instantly and in more then one episode. She is amused by him but since Dan and her are still in love,she has no desire. You wish that Lucifer also had that as well and maybe would be working behind the scenes to break them up. Instead he is reduced to calling Dan “Detective Douche”,a rather childish name for such a character of his level.
What really sparkles about Lucifer is its cast,this is what elevates this series and gives it heart. While Gaiman’s Lucifer was drawn and looked like David Bowie,the show producers decided to not to go that route and we’re glad for it. Ellis is extremely handsome and charming. He can go from teasing and lighthearted to deadly serious in a heartbeat. While I don’t think we should see pure emotion from him for a while,one can understand how he feels being mislabeled as pure evil when in fact this Lucifer is not. He has a SOUL and that makes for a lot different directions to take Lucifer and Ellis is more then up to the task.
Lauren German plays Chloe Decker and it took me a while to warm up to her. She is good actress and plays Decker well,she seems to be bit lost in the first few episodes but when the arc that has her facing distrust in her own department because she suspects a fellow cop of being dirty comes into play,German’s intensity ramps up as well and she is very much into her character as Decker. I hope in season two they have backed off on the need to force Lucifer and Decker together and to let the relationship happen naturally.
DB Woodside as the angel Amenadiel and older brother to Lucifer is again spot on. Woodside’s frustration and eagerness to get Lucifer back to Hell no matter the cost showcases both his strengths and weaknesses. Its a little off putting only in the sense that Lucifer has been out for five human years,that would seem like a blink of eye in the timeline of a angel.
Having Lucifer been on earth for a couple of centuries under different guises would have made Amenadiel’s methods understandable instead of somewhat petty. But his portrayal as the older brother is solid and has room to grow.
Rachael Harris plays Dr. Laura Martin,Lucifer’s therapist and she is very fetching in her role as the doctor who really enjoys Lucifer’s “charms”. It’s Harris’s demeanor as Dr. Harris that raises the possibilities that there are other super powered beings in this earth,she takes Lucifer very seriously from the start. She doesn’t blink when he introduces himself as such and instead begins to help him adjust to his new inner emotions like a good therapist would do. She is sassy as hell and very loyal.
But our favorite character is Lesley-Ann Brandt’s take as Mazikeen,Lucifer’s right hand guardian. She is drop dead beautiful,ruthless and willing to do anything to protect Lucifer and when we saw just how far she did go in the first season,we were blown away.
She is a top flight warrior who can almost go toe to toe with both Lucifer and Amenadiel (but not Angela). Maze was the one who cut off Lucifer’s wings when he came to earth and helped him find them when they were stolen. As with Lucifer and Amenadiel,Maze finds herself changing the more time she spends on earth and we’re not sure if that is a good thing or bad…..but we are looking forward to finding out!
If this show had been on twenty years earlier,Melinda Clarke would have been the PERFECT Mazikeen but Lesley-Ann Brandt is quite alright…
Lucifer was shot in Canada the first two seasons so the guest stars were a little lean. But the stars they got are very good. Rebecca De Mornay pops up as Chloe’s B movie mother (a trait Chloe is trying to live down for different reasons),Tom Sizemore did a nice turn as a biker gang leader who just wants to go straight. One of the cheetah and mine favorite character actors,Lochlyn Munro pops up as seedy cop and Jeremy Davies,who co-starred with Sizemore in “Saving Private Ryan” shows up as paparazzi who may have killed a movie star’s son.Jodi Lyn O’Keefe had a nice turn as a “fixer” in a episode.
The action is good,special effects are above average for a weekly TV series. A lot of the derring-do takes place in the daytime which is refreshing. The stories and plots are a downer because they are beneath a being such as Lucifer,he is immensely powerful being that shouldn’t be baffled by a mere murder mystery. The two episodes,”Favorite Son” and “Wingman” in which Chloe and Lucifer search for his missing wings were the two best episodes of the first season.
The Warner Brothers BluRay release of Lucifer: Season One has several small special features,including character profiles,the cast at 2015 San Diego Comic Con,unaired scenes and a very funny bloopers reel.
We really enjoyed watching the first season of Lucifer and recommend it very highly.
It’s witty,sharp,humorous and sexy. Being as this is a DCEU take on the character,Christians might even find themselves taking a peek at Lucifer,we think they will be quite surprised at what they see.
Paladin and I give this a huge thumbs/4 paws up.
Let us know what you think of the show,who are your favorite characters and stories?
Drop a comment below and share your darkest desires with us……