This Lucifer review contains spoilers.
Lucifer Season 4 Episode 5
“I’m not a relationship kind of devil.”
Leave it to the wisdom of Doctor Linda to once again set the Devil on a path that leads somewhere he least expects. “Expire Erect,” the fifth episode of Lucifer’s fourth season, gives Lucifer and Chloe a well deserved and touching opportunity for the closure he feels necessary to close the book on a partnership that ended so abruptly. Nevertheless, the two are thrown together on a case they both believe to be their last, and whether it’s the nagging doubts he has about Eve or the realization that Chloe willingly offers her life to save his, Lucifer puts the past aside and their relationship, both personal and professional, survives.
Eve’s arrival has thrown Lucifer’s life into a state of chaos that seems excessive even by his standards, and now that he’s lived with his ex for a week, he seeks Linda’s counsel after somewhat spontaneously acknowledging the fact that he and Eve are in a relationship. Of course, the Devil doesn’t do relationships, but here we are. It often takes Linda to force Lucifer to admit that which he already knows, and when she points out that he was willing to attempt a relationship with Chloe, his world gets just a little more complicated.
To this point the Netflix version of Lucifer has thematically connected the current murder investigation to personal crises of those in the LAPD family, particularly Lucifer and the detective. That changes here as the murder of a vintage car collector opens a door for Chloe to draw Lucifer back onto the team and perhaps back into her life. Naturally, we expect to see the two drive up in the classic black 1962 Corvette he’s driven for three seasons, and even Chloe seems disappointed that Lucifer shows up with a vintage red Aston Martin. Even more disappointing is his contention that this is the last case they’ll work together, and it’s clear that Chloe will need to be proactive if she wants to change his mind. Fortunately, for her, this case provides all the ammunition she needs.
Certainly Chloe wants to find the killer and put the perpetrator behind bars, but her mind seems to be elsewhere, and it truly does take the entire team to bring the guilty to justice. Watching Lucifer flamboyantly say goodbye to the precinct personnel, she remains convinced that his relationship with Eve is simply something he needs to work through before returning as her partner. This is new territory for Chloe. No one like Eve has ever managed to come between them before, and her assertion that “there is no way she knows the real Lucifer like I do” underscores the misapprehension under which both women operate. Eventually, Chloe learns Eve’s true identity, but that simply complicates the situation further. “This is your girlfriend from the beginning of time?” However, it’s Eve’s deference to the detective that not only wins Chloe over, but allows her to regain her focus and plot a way out of the hostage situation.
The most compelling aspect of “Expire Erect” revolves around Chloe and Eve’s interactions as they size each other up. We know Chloe – what she feels and what she thinks, but Eve is still a bit of a mystery. When she opens up to the detective with a heartfelt admission, it’s difficult to ignore her feelings. “I can’t lose him. Not after we just found each other again.” Of course, it’s possible she’s playing Chloe, which is certainly Amenadiel’s fear, but the more they talk, the more of a bond they develop. Obviously, both women recognize the threat the other plays regarding their individual relationships with Lucifer, so it will be fascinating to watch whether they become friends or rivals.
At the end of the last episode, Chloe arrives at the penthouse ready to confront Lucifer about her true feelings only to find him with Eve. Here, the roles are reversed, and it’s Eve who must look on as Chloe holds the gravely wounded Lucifer who now understands the enormity of Chloe’s action to protect him from danger. We know he’s feeling better physically and emotionally when he catches the detective off guard with his “next time” comment indicating his desire to continue their partnership. Though neither makes a big deal of this announcement, we sense this is not only huge for their relationship but for Lucifer’s with Eve. She tells Amenadiel that “I think she might be good for him,” but the question remains whether she actually believes that.
Since her arrival at the end of episode three, Eve’s influence carries far beyond her interactions with Lucifer and Chloe. Amenadiel worries she may have ulterior motives for leaving Heaven, and he makes his concern for his brother’s well being plainly known. However, it’s the discussion they have about the ramifications of her decision to abandon Silver City for the excitement of Earth that bears watching since she doesn’t seem at all concerned that she won’t be allowed to return. Are we really expected to believe that she’s willing to follow Lucifer to Hell when the End of Days arrives, or is there something about her arrival that’s yet to be revealed? Perhaps Amenadiel is right to be worried especially when we see Eve’s reaction to Lucifer’s acknowledgement that he’s only vulnerable around the detective. She’s clearly thinking about something, but at this point, we’ll give her the benefit of the doubt.
Other than a few shots of Lucifer’s naked backside and the 49 minute episodes, the transition to Netflix has been barely noticeable though it is possible a more traditional network might have issues with Ella’s drug fueled, bomb disarming escapade. It’s been a bit unsettling to watch Ella’s struggles with her crisis of faith, so to watch Eve immediately acknowledge how highly Lucifer speaks of her and then to use Ella’s greatest weapon, the hug, on her makes for a truly delightful scene. Fortunately, the writers avoid the digital countdown but still establish a tension that momentarily gets the better of Ella, leading Eve to employ a sexy kiss that not only gets Ella’s attention, but sparks a much needed shot of adrenaline to the wounded Lucifer. However, despite the mission’s success, Ella’s feud with God carries on sending her down a dark path, and we have to wonder whether a Lucifer reveal will be needed to dispel the notion that “God doesn’t exist.”
Subtlety has never been one of Mazikeen’s strengths, but it’s encouraging that she deals with her loneliness by approaching Dan. Though he feels much the same as she does, he’s reluctant to get too involved with Maze. There’s no question they work well together, and it’s difficult to know whether his impassioned plea to Leona comes from the heart or the head. And though he had no reason to suspect Leona as the mastermind behind this entire drama, he still berates himself for allowing himself to be played by her. Will Dan follow Maze’s advice and think more like a criminal, or will he listen to the voice in his head that tells him to beware?
With half a season still to go, Lucifer stands primed with a wealth of story arcs to explore, and while “Expire Erect” brings Chloe and Lucifer back together, the collateral cost could make for some interesting viewing. Will Eve play the understanding girlfriend to a Devil who doesn’t do relationships, and will Dan finally succumb to Maze’s requests to work on her terms? Hell if I know.