Michael Throws a Wrench in ‘Lucifer’s Plans in Episode 3 (RECAP)
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Season 5, Episode 3 of Lucifer, “¡Diablo!”]
Lucifer gets meta with the murder of the showrunner of a TV show about the devil solving cases.
Lucifer (Tom Ellis) — the real Lucifer — returns to Los Angeles after angel Amenadiel (DB Woodside) takes a quick trip down to hell to inform his brother of his twin’s recent doings (namely, talking to God and leaving the Silver City). Leaving Amenadiel in charge of hell (and to continue a bit of torture via clowns), the devil doesn’t get quite the warm reception he’d been hoping for from his love, Detective Chloe Decker (Lauren German) but is persistent and joins her for the latest case.
Meanwhile, demon Maze (Lesley-Ann Brandt) begins facing her feelings about the past, only for a certain devilish angel to drop a bombshell on her.
Like Looking in a Mirror
Understandably, Chloe thinks it’s Michael approaching her when Lucifer walks up to her, but he proves who he is easily: with the hair, pocket square, and his mojo, asking an officer what she desires. She’s happy to see him, but that hug is all he’s going to get once he admits that yes, Michael was telling the truth about her being a gift from God. And to make matters worse, he reveals he’s known for over a year and didn’t tell her, even after she knew and accepted the truth about him. While he may not care about that and knows his feelings for her are real, it matters to her, and she’s more than eager to escape the conversation with a case.
But Lucifer follows her to the scene of the murder of a TV writer. To Chloe’s surprise, he recognizes the victim; he’d helped Matt get his career started and spoke to him at length … about his work with Chloe. Matt then turned that into a show, Lieutenant ¡Diablo!, in which the devil solves cases alongside Detective Dancer, who was previously a stripper.
The actress playing the detective says she’s not surprised someone stabbed Matt because he was a control freak. Cue the parallels as Chloe wonders if it bothers her she has no say in what her character does or says — as she feels now that she knows she was a “gift” — but the actress says she doesn’t. The stars point them in the direction of Matt’s No. 2, Carrie Bellwood, who did all the work on the scripts, though he took the credit.
Carrie, too, calls Matt a control freak. He never came into the writers room and changed all the scripts, so it sounds like she’d have a motive for killing him. She not only has an alibi, but she hasn’t been coveting his job: the showrunner gets the credit, but also has to take all the blame from the network. It’s from her that Chloe finds out Matt had a drug problem; he had her bring a script to a seedy motel one night.
When Lucifer reunites with Maze, the demon immediately attacks him — and doesn’t let up when he tells her he’s not Michael, to his surprise. “You went to hell without me. You left me,” she says. But he figured she’d find her own way down there (like via Amenadiel and his wings) if she wanted to join him. That doesn’t help his case.
The real detective-devil partners run into their TV versions at Matt’s hotel room. (The actors are trying to solve the case using their “experience.”) Lucifer recognizes the room as where Matt was living when they first met. He was using it to write where no one could find him, not to do drugs. Still, Chloe has to bag evidence, and that means kicking out everyone who isn’t a cop, including Lucifer.
She finds a vape cartridge belonging to the actor playing Diablo in the room (though he’d claimed to have never been there before), but Lucifer can’t believe his counterpart is the killer. After all, Matt gave him the role of a lifetime. Maybe he didn’t like being someone else’s puppet, Chloe suggests. (Ouch.) But when they go to question him, they find Diablo has been killed in his trailer.
Forensics specialist Ella (Aimee Garcia) identifies the weapon as a prop from the show, supposedly the only blade able to kill the devil. (She shows it off by stabbing Lucifer with the rubber version, and moments like these make it so much fun that she’s still in the dark about who he really is.) With a free moment they have at the crime scene, Lucifer tries to talk to Chloe again. He knows how powerless he felt when he found out, but he wants to fix things.
But then Detective Dan Espinoza (Kevin Alejandro) interrupts with a lead: a PA was supposed to be outside the actor’s trailer but was called away, via a message passed through several people and originating from Carrie. She denies sending it, but when Lucifer finds the murder weapon in her cabinet, Chloe arrests her. Case closed, right?
Wrong. As Lucifer discovers while reading a script about Diablo in space out loud with Dan, the actor playing Diablo had written his notes about the case in the margins. As he saw it, people killed because they had a “yearning,” and Matt’s killer’s was “freedom.” He also thought the killer was the No. 2, which, as they realize, wasn’t Carrie but someone else. (She also wouldn’t have been able to stab someone with her injured wrist, Ella reports.)
And that someone else is the No. 2 on the call sheet: the actress playing Detective Dancer. Now, she’s free to pursue other roles, she explains to Chloe on the site of the TV show’s club, Hades, and that’s a far cry from her earlier remarks that this was an amazing gig. The real detective realizes she’s with the killer and pulls her gun. She even ends up using the character’s stripper pole as she takes down the actress.
With the case finished and Chloe still not sure how he can fix things, Lucifer returns home only to encounter Michael. And his twin has a bombshell for him: he has been manipulating Lucifer all along, planting the idea to rebel, the sexcapade in the Garden, even his vacation to Earth, all because the devil thought he was better than his brother. The brothers fight — take note that Lucifer’s in a white shirt, while Michael’s in darker clothes — until Lucifer gets the upper hand and is confident the decision he’s making is his own as he uses one of Maze’s blades on Michael.
Lucifer then goes to see Chloe to tell her he took care of the Michael problem and share what his brother told him. “Must be terrible to not control your own fate,” Chloe remarks before expressing how she’s been feeling in a way that’s completely understandable. He’s an angel, while she’s new to dealing with “celestial craziness.” And it’s enough that she’s dealing with the fact that she’s in love with the devil, only to then find out she was “made” to feel that way. They both imagined what their reunion would look like (not like this), but right now, she’s questioning if what they had was even real. That’s a hard pill to swallow as she walks away.
Not Exactly a Lie…
Watching Lieutenant ¡Diablo! reminds Maze of the simpler times, when it was her and Lucifer side by side, before people left. Linda (Rachael Harris) assures her she’s not going anywhere, and even when she does, she’ll be down in hell, so they can spend eternity together. Maze brushes that off — she doesn’t see anything wrong with that since she turned out fine after growing up there — but Linda focuses on the demon’s obvious fear of abandonment instead. It comes from someone important letting her down in her youth, the therapist explains. In Maze’s mind, though, she doesn’t have such issues, even if Lucifer, Chloe, and Eve left her.
She tries to then reach out to Chloe at the end of the episode, only to find Michael (sporting a nasty cut on his face from his encounter with his twin) waiting in the detective’s empty home. She’s no longer upset with Lucifer, but his brother suggests she should be. Sure, Lucifer always tells the truth, he continues, except when he leaves things out, like the secret he’s keeping from her. And Michael can tell her how to find out exactly what that is herself, since he knows she won’t believe it if it comes from him…
But hey, at least Lucifer’s back on Earth. As much fun as it was to see him in hell in the premiere, the show’s just not the same without him in L.A.
Lucifer, Season 5, Part 1, Streaming Now, Netflix