Thursday, March 1, 2018

Lucifer, Season 3, Episode 15: Highschool Poppycock

Lucifer is having ominous dreams about Chloe and his dreams which he puts down to needing to defeat daddy dearest. He explains this to Linda who tries, yet again, to explain that maybe maybe maybe it could be about his issues with Chloe

Of course, like always, Lucifer ignores this and instead focuses on needing to defy dad, again. Linda is getting a habitual tired but unsurprised expression on her face from his shenanigans. Of course to defy dad he needs to kill Caine and he is all out of ideas on that front

This is this episode’s Lucifer obsession - him getting inspiration.

Chloe has her own theme this episode - starting with her avoiding a party invite from Ella. Through the episode we learn that Chloe, as a child actor, never really did the fun partying thing when young, never went to prom, never really even went to high school and part of her wondering whether she missed out on something.

So to the murder - the death of a famous YA author who has finally released her latest book after several years of writer’s block. Of course Lucifer seizes on this, along with taking advice from everyone he can for various levels of shenanigans which, frankly, I’m getting a little annoyed by his irritating behaviour

Ella is super geeky of course and no-one questions the sheer weirdness of a 21st century author writing an entire book on a typewriter and keeping no copies at all and that book is missing. Which annoys Lucifer because the book contains the afterward where the author describes how she defeated writer’s block and gained inspiration.

Lucifer does read the other books she wrote and has some rather scathing put downs for YA which he finds boring and dull and lacking in requisite adult shenanigans. This is somewhat averted when we reach suspect/red herring #1 who is both an adult man (I get that this is an idea of countering the stereotype of YA - but I honestly really hate the creeping “justification” for YA with the idea that more than young adults - specifically young women - read it. Being primarily - or even entirely - liked by women and/or young women specifically does not reduce it’s value, nor is it more valuable because a man liked it) and has a huge passionate defence for the quality of writing. And though he had a social media spat with the author over how long the next book was coming out. But he claimed they made up and he even sent fanfic to her.

I am sure every author everywhere totally supports this validation of how to connect to them and are not in any way inventing new, creative curses for the writers of this episode.

Chloe also reads these books - and spends all night reading - becoming extremely, incredibly invested and enthused about them

So time for some brainstorming and they realise that said YA author actually based all her characters on real life classmates, not even changing their first name and apparently having some kind of magical spell preventing her being sued by, just about, ALL THE LAWYERS EVER. There’s a reason why “resemblance to people, living or dead blah blah” boiler plate exists. Instead they think that these people who had all of their highschool dramas turned into best-selling books that maybe they’d want to murder her.

I would call this justifiable homicide.

Since, coincidentally, the author’s highschool reunuion is coming up, they decide to go undercover. Rather than, y’know, interviewing everyone like actual police. Is it just me or are they pushing these convoluted undercover excuses a lot? They pick a student and have Lucifer pose as him (a student who is vastly unpopular and unlikely to be in touch with the others) with Chloe as his plus one. To ensure that he doesn’t attend, at Charlotte’s advice (or, rather, her warning that such a thing would be illegal and she’s totally going to her office so she doesn’t overhear said illegalness) is to sic Maze on him.

So they can go to the reunion and Chloe is geeking over meeting the characters from the books, clearly seeing them as the characters she’s fallen in love with and almost hilariously, Lucifer has to tell her to stay on mission. Of course for his own selfish purposes, but this is definitely a role reversal.

As they talk to everyone Lucifer does manage to uncover, among all the drama, so much drama, that they all had an alibi. But that Todd, the guy Lucifer was pretending to be, seemed to be in contact with the murdered woman… so time to interview todd.

But what did Maze do with Todd?

Well Maze knows about Amenadiel and Linda and is Not Happy. She takes advice from the unrealistically mature Trixie, about how she should make them tell the truth.

And like Lucifer getting advice from Linda, she interprets this in the worst possible way: time to torture them. So she coerces Linda onto a blind date. A blind double date. With her and Amenadiel and Linda and Todd: perhaps the worst possible date in the history of dates.

She is gloriously evil. Do not mess with Maze

Linda breaks, realsies what is going on: Maze is torturing them because she knows and way better to talk about this and Maze being mean. Maze hits back about their lies and how that hurt her - but Linda, rightfully, points out that that Maze does rather overreact (hence her stabbing the table).

After a snarl at Amenadiel (calling him “daddy’s boy”) she calls Linda selfish - which is a break for Linda since she spends her whole life listening to their problems and for once she finally did something for herself. And that her relationship with Amenadiel is important and special

To which Maze, shockingly, cries and leaves the restaurant, saying Linda was her friend.

Which is when lucifer and Chloe arrive to interview a confused Todd

It turns out he did help her finish her book - inspiring a finale with no drama, no conflict and everyone getting along without cliques or outsiders etc etc. which sounds beautifully utopian and… very very very very very very boring.

The editor agrees - hence the murdering. And destroying her book and plan to pass off fanfic as the actual work to earn all the money.

Lucifer is furious and even a little broken at the book being dead and his opportunity to do in dad is lost.

In the aftermath, Chloe and Lucifer speak and she acknowledges that she did miss all of these high school experiences, that also wasn’t her. It’s not what she actually wants. Still Lucifer has created a mini prom just for her which is super super nice and sweet and completely unselfish. And he almost ruins the moment when her advice on writers block gives him an idea: re-write history!

Uh-huh no way this will backfire. Chloe’s advice was actually to move on. Lucifer never takes advice

While Linda breaks up with Amenadiel, again - because she acknowledges Maze was right. She knew what she was doing with Amenadiel would hurt her and she did it anyway, it was selfish.

Argh, I find this storyline infinitely frustrating. Yes I get respecting your friend and her feelings and honouring that; but equally I think this idea of eternal wariness of even their most unreasonable desires is equally dubious, unhealthy and not something therapist Linda would promote

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, we need Chloe to be in on the big secret already. Though I do like further connections between them