Lucifer – Season 2 Episode 8
“Trip to Stabby Town”
Lucifer dials down the emotional intensity as the consequences of the death of Uriel still linger on for all concerned.
When I say that the emotional intensity is dialled down I don’t mean that this episode is a laugh a minute but it is a significantly lighter affair than we’re used to for this season. After 7 episodes of tension it’s good to let off a little steam and remind us that Lucifer can be a really fun show with a lot of depth to offer.
This episode sticks to the norm for the season with the case of the week having a close personal connection to Lucifer. In this case, the Angel Blade used by Uriel has somehow fallen into human hands and is causing a significant body count. A recurring theme in this show is that divinity and humanity don’t mix and this episode shows us a really visceral example of that when random people become murderers after simply touching the blade.
I like that it is acknowledged that this is a mess of Lucifer’s own making and it’s up to him to clean it up. Leaving the blade in the ground with Uriel’s corpse was definitely a bad idea but I can believe that Lucifer wouldn’t see it to be a problem since he had no reason to believe that anyone could find the unmarked grave in the middle of nowhere. It was definitely a stupid thing to do but strangely in character for Lucifer who rarely considers the consequences of his actions. Kudos to him for owning up to his mistake and going about sorting it out.
This presents an interesting conflict between Lucifer and Chloe as he is currently making sure that she doesn’t find out the truth about hum. His experience with Linda has made him wary of opening up to other people so he spends a lot of the episode trying to be one step ahead of Chloe while using her resourcefulness to find information. It’s a really funny dynamic and Tom Ellis really sells how frantic Lucifer is to solve the case before she does. We get lots of moments of Lucifer acting confident that he knows the answer before immediately back-pedalling which confuses Chloe no end.
One thing I really appreciated is how this episode makes fun of love triangles in TV shows. Lucifer asking Ella to help him out on the sly is a good idea because he needs her forensic skills and thinks she has enough distance from him to not figure out his secret based on the compartmentalised information he gives her. Of course Ella is smarter than that and figures out that there’s a connection between Lucifer’s favour and the case they’re investigating which causes her ethical problems.
Meanwhile, Chloe is suspicious that Lucifer and Ella are sleeping together while trying to hide it from her. She doesn’t come across as jealous at all but definitely wants them to stop hiding things from her. Lucifer is her partner and her view is that partners shouldn’t have secrets from one another. There’s also the fact that Lucifer is a really bad liar which tips her off that something is going on pretty early on.
This is a fun send up of love triangles as none of them are romantically interested in anyone concerned but the episode goes through the motions as if they are except with a comedic edge. I doubt there is a blooming relationship between Lucifer and Ella or Lucifer and Chloe or even Ella and Chloe anytime soon but the fact that any of these could happen in a different show makes the situation even more comical while also playing to the strengths of each of the characters. Chloe is the observant detective picking up on the subtleties of their behaviour, Ella is being warm and quirky and Lucifer is just being himself so the whole thing just comes together wonderfully.
Outside of the comedic interactions there are signs of a spiritual connection developing between Ella and Lucifer. The favour she asks for in return is for Lucifer to accompany her to church -which is kept secret until the end to suggest that the favour could be sexual in nature- despite his misgivings on entering it. For Lucifer a church represents a monument to everything he turned his back on but for Ella it represents comfort and clarity. She mentions that life started to make more sense after she forged her own relationship with God and that he faith gives her strength. It’s a very practical and mature way to look at it which I find refreshing as this could have so easily come across as Ella trying to impose her beliefs on others. I think that the next step of this arc is for Ella to help Lucifer make peace with his own feelings about his father and start to move on.
The investigation itself was really interesting as it played out in the normal way but didn’t get to the resolution as we would expect it to. Evidence leads Lucifer to Charlotte who has been leading people to Uriel’s grave deliberately so that they will be tempted to wield the blade and go on a killing spree. Her master plan is to cause enough carnage on Earth with a divine weapon that God will have no choice but to take notice. It’s definitely cold but there’s nothing sadistic about it as Charlotte doesn’t see humans that way. She thinks herself above them and treats them like puppets that can be used to further her goals. There is a little bit of jealousy in there as well since God chose them over here but mainly she doesn’t consider their lives worthwhile so having a few of them dead doesn’t seem like a big deal to her.
It’s good to see that Charlotte’s scheming is trying to take shape as we get hints of what her overall plan is and it seems simpler than I expected. All she wants is some attention from God so that they can be a family again. Whether she wants the family unity that she’s talking about is up for debate but she definitely wants access to her kids and is clearly willing to do anything to make sure that happens. We also learn that she wants to get back into Heaven because she feels that is where she belongs.
Amenadiel actually agrees with her which makes sense given that his original purpose was to make sure Lucifer went back to Hell. He has always thought that divinity has no place on Earth and the blade is the last thing he’s willing to tolerate. It seems that Charlotte and Amenadiel will unite to find their way back to Heaven but I don’t think Amenadiel has as loose a morality as Charlotte does so it probably won’t be so easy.
Lucifer’s feelings on the matter are quite different. To him, Heaven is what most people would consider Hell which is quite the statement coming from him. He wants to stay right where he is and is quite passionate about it. Of course his passion is heightened by exposure to the blade but the episode fully establishes that it releases innermost thoughts and emotions. Charlotte sees the opportunity caused by Lucifer’s reaction to the blade and has that mischievous grin on her face that just tells us she is up to no good.
Having different reactions to being on Earth obviously leaves room open for conflict but it also shows how far the characters have come. For Lucifer being on Earth was a distraction but now he has passionate about remaining there since he has found a purpose that he never had before. Maze shares that sentiment as she has started to figure out her place in the world. Humans still amuse her because of their petty rivalries that cause them to kill each other but she’d rather be on Earth than in Hell. I look forward to seeing how these differing opinions clash in the coming episodes.
The case of the week isn’t about any specific murder as such as it is more concerned with the blade which behaves just as any cursed object tends to do. It goes from person to person, does its damage and carries on. There are some entertaining diversions along the way such as a fitness guru who has let himself go which had me in stitches because of Lucifer’s sharp quips.
Since it’s all about the blade the whole thing feels more frivolous than it should and relegates the case of the week into background time filling territory. Entertaining time filling territory for sure but still feeling somewhat pointless. I know I keep going on about the case being the weakest part of the show but it’s hardly a problem this season when it was a significant issue last season.
The blade ends up finding its way to Dan who has an awful lot of pent up frustration just waiting to be released. He has an ongoing problem with Lucifer who he blames for the breakdown of his marriage as well as his career problems. His anger is misdirected as he is entirely to blame for everything that went on since most of it happened before he knew Lucifer existed. It’s amusing that most of Dan’s attack on Lucifer focused on the missing pudding that Dan mentions earlier in the episode. Lucifer is as inconsiderate as ever by ignoring the label that Dan puts on it and just eating whatever he likes. It’s a strong intense moment that is completely balanced by comedy as it’s amusing to watch a man driven to kill someone over a pudding.
Interestingly Dan shows inner strength by fighting the influence of the blade and is more clear headed afterwards. It’s as if confronting the issues that it brings to the surface allows people to move past them which means that Dan lets go of a lot of his animosity. Could this apply to Lucifer in the coming episodes?
Linda is still struggling with Lucifer’s true identity and this episode allows for a role reversal in the therapist/patient relationship. She is the one struggling to accept the truth and Lucifer is trying to help her through it. Questions are asked about torturing Hitler which are definitely valid but Linda wants to understand Lucifer in her own way and applies her psychological training to the situation. By the end of the episode she can start to move forward as she can focus on Lucifer’s dysfunctional family and the emotional issues that causes him. Linda really has a solid place in the show now and her relationship with Lucifer as well as the other characters is fascinating. It’s possible that her acceptance is coming a little too quickly but I suspect that there’s plenty more development to come.
An excellent episode that is a lot more fun than the previous one but not lacking in depth. The Angel Blade is a great opportunity to explore the relationship between Lucifer and Ella as well as Lucifer and Chloe while making fun of the love triangle trope. Ella and Lucifer seem to be developing a deep spiritual connection which is definitely interesting so far. The reveal that Charlotte is behind the blade falling into human hands starts to shine a light on her plan while still leaving plenty of mystery to it. We now know that she wants to get back to Heaven to be with her family but there’s a sense that there is more to it and I’m sure Amenadiel will get more than he bargained for when siding with her.
The blade itself is a great device for moving plot forward as it lets Dan open up about what is bothering him about Lucifer as well as allowing Lucifer to show how passionately he enjoys being on Earth. It behaves like a cursed object which makes the case of the week feel oddly detached but that’s less of a problem when everything else is so interesting. The role reversal between Lucifer and Linda in the therapist/patient relationship is fun to watch and Linda trying to simplify her thoughts on the situation works really well though it does feel a little too quick as resolutions go.
- making fun of the love triangle trope
- Lucifer and Ella’s spiritual connection
- some insight into Charlotte’s plan
- complex characterisation
- no shortage of fun moments
- the case of the week feeling oddly detached from the bulk of the plot
- Linda’s acceptance of Lucifer feeling a little too quick