Lucifer S03E07 “Off The Record” REVIEW
Available in the UK via Amazon TV, new episodes every Tuesday
Writers: Jen Graham Imada (story), Chris Rafferty & Mike Costa (teleplay)
Director: Eduardo Sánchez
Essential Plot Points:
- A year ago (in Lucifer continuity) a journalist called Reese Getty almost dies and decides to make the most of his second chance at life by getting back with his ex-wife, whom he still loves.
- His ex-wife is Dr Linda and this is the period when she was shagging Lucifer. She’s not so into getting back with Reese.
- Reese finds out and decides to get his revenge in Lucifer by writing an exposé on his unorthodox methods helping the LAPD.
- But during an investigation into a serial killer Lucifer calls “The Completely Justified Killer of Phoneys” because he poisons fakers, Reese starts to admire Lucifer.
- Until he accidentally oversees Lucifer going all “devil face” on a suspect.
- He tells Linda that Lucifer really is the devil but she says she knows.
- He dives into a year-long investigation into Lucifer to try to expose his secrets, becoming obsessed.
- He works out that Chloe makes Lucifer vulnerable.
- And when Chloe and Lucifer come to him for help with the ongoing “The Completely Justified Killer of Phoneys” case, which may have a link with his newspaper’s small ads, he also works out who the murderer is.
- He approaches the murderer, Alvin, and convinces him that Lucifer is a phoney.
- He then engineers it so that Alvin is in a position to poison Lucifer at the Lux while Chloe is in the vicinity.
- But Alvin falls for Lucifer’s charm and poisons another night club customer instead.
- Lucifer realises what Reese has done and challenges him. Reese demands to know why Linda would knowingly sleep with the devil. Lucifer says maybe it’s because he showed her his true face.
- Reese visits Linda and tries to show her his true face by apologising for everything unreservedly, but she can see it’s a gambit rather than truly heartfelt. She also works out he’s done something very bad and calls the police.
- Finally realising how far he’s fallen, he makes amends by leading the police to Alvin but not before he unwittingly takes a swig out of a drink Alvin has poisoned.
- Reese wakes up from his near death experience and vows to make the most of his second chance at life…
- Y’see, he’s actually in hell, reliving his worst experience over and over and over…
- A thoroughly entertaining, self-contained episode based on a really intriguing, format-breaking central concept that gives a refreshing new spin to the show.
- Lots of great continuity references for loyal viewers, especially if you freeze frame Reese’s evidence board.
- Two twists that threw us completely. We weren’t expecting Linda to be Reese’s wife, and the final revelation that Reese is in Hell is the perfect ending to a well-told tale of revenge gone wrong.
- Despite being self-contained, the episode subtly raises a lot of interesting questions about the show’s internal lore, especially Lucifer’s motivations and nature of the devil.
- MAZE! All too briefly, but appreciated.
- Excellent performance from Better Call Saul’s Patrick Fabian as Reese – he carries the episode.
- The scene in which Lucifer proves his worth to the LAPD by determining the cheap quality of silicon breast implants is great fun. There should be more scenes like this where, with Lucifer’s louche lifetstyle giving him the edge in an investigation.
- “Uretha Franklin.”
- “Roosters of award winning size.” Yeah, we could see where that one was going.
- Edible sex toys – yep, that’s Lucifer through and through.
- We find it hard to believe that a cop would own the kind of designer duffel bag that Lucifer would be interested in.
- How did Linda jump to the conclusion that Reese had possibly killed someone? Okay, she was right, but we’re not sure how she inferred that from what he said.
- We’d have preferred a bit more gap between standalone episodes because, as good as this episode is, there is a feeling of lack of inertia this season in the arc plot.
And The Random:
- This week’s hellish playlist includes:
• “Give It Up” by The Beaches – Reese takes flowers to his (ex-)wife and overhears her shagging Lucifer, whom he follows to the Lux.
• “Dancing in the Fire” by JC Autobody – Reese asks Lucifer how he came to work with Chloe.
• “Devil’s Head Down” by Pearl And The Beard – The montage with Reese assembling his evidence board.
• “Ready for the Devil (No Mercy)” by Vision Vision – Reese wrecks his office.
• “So Tied Up (featuring Bishop Briggs)” by Cold Wars Kids – During the poisoning at the Lux.
- In such a continuity-heavy episode is it a mere coincidence that Alvin’s house number is 2016, the year Lucifer premiered?
- And while we’re on the subject of Alvin, he’s played John Billingsley, most famous for playing – under a load of latex – Dr Phlox on Star Trek: Enterprise.
- This is the third of the four standalone episodes held over from season two.
Review by Dave Golder