The fourth season of “Lucifer” became available on May 8 (my last day of finals), and you better believe that I walked out of my economics test and immediately started binge-watching all 10 episodes on Netflix.
The premise of “Lucifer” might sound a bit silly to anyone who has never seen it, but curiously enough, the plot works. Set in present-day Los Angeles, “Lucifer” follows the adventures of the devil himself after he decides that he no longer wishes to rule hell. Lucifer’s persona is charming, manipulative, arrogant and quite funny, allowing him to get his way most of the time. He is loosely based on the DC Comics character of the same name.
In the show’s pilot, the audience learns that Lucifer is the owner of a popular nightclub called “Lux.” When a close friend of his is murdered there, he becomes determined to find the killer and “punish” them, as punishing people is in his job description and, moreover, a fundamental part of his identity.
Chloe Decker, a detective for the LAPD, is assigned to the case and forms a begrudging partnership with Lucifer. Eventually, Lucifer becomes a civilian consultant for the police and works with Chloe on various investigations. However, his otherworldly counterparts and day job frequently collide, resulting in a “procedural cop drama adorned with supernatural elements and existential question.”
“Lucifer” ran for three seasons on Fox before being cancelled due to consistently low ratings. However, it ended on a massive cliffhanger, and expectant fans rallied to save the show. The show’s cast even joined in on the effort, fully encouraging a resurgence; at one point, #SaveLucifer was the No. 1 hashtag trending worldwide on Twitter.
For some time, it looked like the Twitter craze wasn’t enough and the series was really done for good, but Netflix eventually stepped in to pick it up. Tom Ellis, the actor who portrays Lucifer, soon took to Twitter to express his gratitude and accredit the show’s revival to its dedicated fans. The 10-episode long fourth season became available for streaming on May 8, almost a whole year after the Season 3 finale.
When a show switches producers, there’s always potential for the new company to make substantial changes that affect the dynamic of the series. There were concerns that the characters of “Lucifer” would not be written correctly or that the plot would feel out of place. However, the vast majority of fans have been pleased with Season 4, as it has a 90 percent approval rating by 1,490 users on Rotten Tomatoes and many positive critic reviews.
Perhaps the most noticeable change is the quality of the show’s special effects. Lucifer’s devilish face, which he primarily uses to scare criminals, has shown vast visual improvements throughout the series. Netflix continued that trend through Season 4 and also added a full-body devil transformation, along with adjustments to the angels’ wings and a few other minor digital improvements.
Season 4 also stressed character development in a more noticeable way. Some of the flaws demonstrated by the characters were at least partly to blame for past show ratings. For example, Lucifer’s consistent refusal to take responsibility for anything is comical at first, but quickly gets old. The same is true for Maze’s (his demon friend) inability to show more tender emotions and Amenadiel’s (Lucifer’s angel brother) overly self-righteous tendencies.
In the latest episodes, audiences see the characters begin to grow away from these flaws. Lucifer comes to term with his self-hatred, Maze falls in love and experiences rejection and Amenadiel begins living for himself, rather than for just his father (AKA God).
The package is satisfying to watch and moves the plot along in a much more effective manner. Netflix also managed to accomplish this without sacrificing each character’s personality, something that has historically shown difficulty when production companies are switched.
Though I was a little disappointed to learn that there would only be 10 episodes in Netflix’s revival (as opposed to the usual 20+), the length actually works out quite nicely. “Lucifer” remains captivating and suspenseful the entire time, free of any fillers or fluff. Each episode serves a very distinct purpose and ties back to larger themes or plotlines.
Another criticism I had of previous seasons was that, much like the characters’ development flaws, their problems and conflicts were drawn out. It got a little frustrating to watch Lucifer, Chloe and their gang continually go in circles. However, Netflix has eliminated this issue in its Season 4 release.
A final change to the series was taken as an improvement for some and a drawback for others. Netflix can afford to be less cautious with censorship and, as such, Season 4 is a little raunchier. In fact, a huge marketing tactic used to promote the revival was Tom Ellis’ sex appeal.
One of the teaser trailers was literally a showcase of Lucifer walking out of a hot tub in slow motion, with the camera panning in on his abs. Another promo includes Tom Ellis saying, “You might just see a bit more of me,” before dropping his robe and walking away with his backside exposed to the viewer.
Am I complaining? Absolutely not. Frankly, I think the sexier elements fit the vibe of the show. After all, the devil represents temptation. And, while the actual amount of nudity in Season 4 is not as large as the advertisements made it seem, it was a good marketing tactic and makes any increased edginess that exists fun to watch, including the more graphic and violent scenes.
This was definitely my favorite season of “Lucifer,” and I highly recommend checking the show out if you’ve never seen it before. I’ve already seen speculation of the fifth season online and I sincerely hope that it happens, because I’m excited to see where Netflix takes this next.