This is a review of Lucifer Season 5, Part 2. All 16 episodes of Lucifer Season 5 are now available to stream on Netflix.
Fans of Netflix’s Lucifer — Lucifans, if you will — have had a wild ride. They fell in love with the series on FOX, where it aired for three seasons before being canceled and scooped up by Netflix. Netflix later announced it would end the series with a 10-episode fifth season, then reversed course and split the season into two 8-episode chunks, plus signed on for a sixth and final season.
Overall, this second half feels stronger than the first, in part because it does what Lucifer does best. Lucifer isn’t a Breaking Bad prestige drama. It’s fun detective occult fiction! Season 5, Part 2 embraces that campy sense of humor and biblical lore, while paying attention to supporting characters who’ve grown on fans over the years.
This new batch of episodes is a fun, familiar offering that sets up what could be the Old Scratch’s most grandiose arc yet. While the series occasionally trips over its mythology, Lucifer leans into its strengths more often than not. This should please those die-hard fans whose passion has increased its longevity nearly as much as Lilith’s ring of immortality.
Some highlights include a very fun Detective Dan-centric episode, titled “Dan Espinoza: Naked and Afraid,” which is full of references to past adventures. Linda gets her turn in “A Little Harmless Stalking,” which adds depth to her backstory. There are also a few returning faces you may not expect and in places that might surprise you. By comparison, Chloe’s arc is a bit bland this season.
While Lucifer sticks to its police procedural format offering a murder-of-the-week for most episodes, it takes liberties with how Lucifer usually makes the case about himself. And while it teases the truly exhausting will-they-won’t-they dynamic — we know they will, please just give the people what they want! — it’s not the crux of every episode. Seriously, stop pretending this isn’t the inevitable OTP of the show, Netflix!
The season even turns its sporadic musical numbers into a full-blown musical episode in “Bloody Celestial Karaoke Jam.” Thanks to a little heavenly interference, characters spontaneously burst into song and dance. Ella kicks off Queen’s “Another One Bites the Dust” replete with a marching band, as the LAPD investigates the murder of a high school football coach. Dan also does a pretty solid “Hell” by the Squirrel Nut Zippers, assuming God will smite him for once sleeping with his wife, Charlotte/Lucifer’s Mom.
It all leads up to a slightly confusing, yet delightfully over-the-top finale that sets up what is sure to be one of the weirdest paths the show’s taken yet. Oh, and the costumes? They’re a perfect blend of too-much and just-right, perfect for a show like this.
At this point, it’s funny to think about how far this show and its characters have come from the pilot. If you can remember back that far, Chloe found Lucifer “repulsive,” all Linda wanted was to sleep with him, Dan was The Worst, Maze hated all humans, and the stoic Amenadiel despised Lucifer with a passion.
They’ve all had their redemption arcs, which is fitting for a show about heaven, hell, and its denizens. But even when the arcs are well-trod, Lucifer respects those characters and its fans. For example, Mazikeen isn’t the first demon to pine for a soul: Buffy the Vampire Slayer gave us two, with former vengeance demon Anya and the vampire Spike. However, unlike the controversial Spike arc, Maze’s choices won’t make you hate her.
Though the season isn’t without its tragedies and trauma, there’s a lot to love here about how the characters have grown stronger together — and a cast that seems like they’re enjoying themselves, too.
If you could never see past the silliness of Lucifer or its case-of-the-week format, this show probably still isn’t for you. But long-time fans should enjoy the charming absurdity in full display in this tight batch of episodes. It’s fun, sentimental, and endearing, with some great character moments and Easter eggs that harken back to previous arcs. Plus, what’s not to love about a musical episode? Some of the celestial rules are confusing or contradictory, but as Lucifer likes to say: "don't overthink it."