September 14, 2021

Review: “Lucifer” Bows Out with a Bang

Somewhere, there’s a textbook that final seasons of established series use to chart out their conclusions. The sixth and final season of Lucifer doesn’t follow that textbook exactly, but it was definitely used as a reference guide.

One luxury that Lucifer can afford with its sixth season, especially with a Netflix budget and no runtime constraints, is being able to reflect on its progress through its five-year run (including flashbacks that show just how much Tom Ellis’s look has changed from the debut season), even poking fun at the formula that its procedural aspect has done to death. The show goes about this in clever ways and doesn’t skimp on giving every character a perspective, showing how far each of them has come throughout the show’s run. Even Dan (Kevin Alejandro) returns — a somewhat puzzling turn after his character conclusion in Season 5 — but it’s for the best, and it’s all in the name of tying up loose ends, another must-do in the textbook of final seasons.

This doesn’t mean that Lucifer completely avoids the (evidently successful) formula, though — granted, for the most part, Season 6’s story beats are different from anything else we’ve seen in the show thus far. The season premiere starts us off with a pretty straightforward mystery, but by episode four the procedural format is essentially left in the dust, as Lucifer continues to self-sabotage and second-guess himself and his purpose just as he’s done for years. We know he’ll get there eventually, but there wouldn’t be much of a story if he didn’t need to fulfill his character journey.

Brianna Hildebrand, Negasonic Teenage Warhead herself, joins the main cast this season as Rory, a previously unheard-of angel with a grudge against Lucifer. Her character addition makes for some interesting developments, but in the end it feels like wish fulfillment on the part of the writers — not to mention the storyline is almost completely borrowed from the fifth season of The Flash. I must admit, though, Hildebrand gives an empathetic and grounded performance, and that makes up for any shortcomings when it comes to her arc.

Lucifer continues to be gripping and engaging, even in its final hour. Wrapping up in expected finale fashion, there’s not much more I could’ve asked for. I love the characters and I love this world, but I appreciate that it’s not being stretched out and overstaying its welcome (as some shows are wont to do). An Arrow-esque ending made my heart soar — Lucifer understands what’s at its core, and it gives the fans what they want. I’m grateful that Netflix gave this show a second chance, so it can get a proper and satisfying ending. [Grade: A-]

Showrunner: Tom Kapinos
Starring: Tom Ellis, Lauren German, Lesley-Ann Brandt, Kevin Alejandro, DB Woodside, Rachel Harris, Aimee Garcia
Rated: TV-14 (language, violence, sex)
Available: Netflix
Fun Fact: Patrick Fabian (Better Call Saul) is one of the many actors returning to the series after a multi-year absence.

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