In the next episode of season 5 of Lucifer, we head back to the 1940s as Lucifer shares a story, and the episode fully embraces the time period. It’s shot like a classic film noir: black and white, lighting that helped define film noir, and music to top it off. Read on to find out what happened in episode 4, “It Never Ends Well for the Chicken.”
Warning: There are spoilers beyond this point.
The episode begins with Lucifer getting ready for a game night when Trixie walks in sans Chloe. He offers to keep game night going anyway, but instead she asks him to tell her the story about his ring. He agrees, and the setting changes to New York 1946, shot in black and white.
Lucifer reminisces about the time period. His main story begins when he’s on his way to meet up with a friend at the Garden Club about the case. His friend, who happens to be Lilith, is a singer at the club. After her performance, they go talk in her dressing room where she tells him she needs help finding her stolen ring.
As this was before Lucifer was a detective, he enlists the help of Jack Monroe, a private investigator. However, Jack isn’t too keen on helping Lucifer until he tosses a stack of money on Jack’s desk. They start their investigation, heading back to the club where they question a bartender, Gertie, about whether she saw anything. She gives them a description of a man known as Lucky Larry. Jack confirms this with another man sitting at a table, who tells Jack he has information and to meet him in the back alley. When Lucifer and Jack head to the alley, they’re confronted by Tommy Stompanato, who isn’t happy about them sniffing around. His henchmen beat up Jack, who leaves with Lucifer, a black eye, and no helpful leads.
After calling it a night, Jack heads home, where things are a little tense with him and Shirley, his wife. Someone knocks at their door, and Jack goes to check. When he opens the door, he’s greeted by Lucky Larry, who falls dead at Jack’s feet with a knife in his back. The police arrive, along with Lucifer. He’s more focused on trying to charm Shirley, who’s lamenting about Jack. Meanwhile, Jack is on the phone and learns that Larry was in a fight with bratwurst heir William Kincannon, aka Willie the Sausage Prince.
The next morning, Jack and Lucifer go question Willie. Lucifer gets right to the point, asking about the ring, but Willie claims he doesn’t know anything, so Lucifer begins to look around for it. While he does, Jack asks about Larry’s murder, but Willie has an alibi. He says he meets with Larry because Larry knows Willie likes history and shares historical artifacts with him. He mentions also meeting Larry at his apartment, which is where Lucifer and Jack head next.
Back at the Garden Club, Lilith and Gertie are talking about the ring. Lilith mentions that things between her and her husband, Adam, weren’t good, and they were worse with his father. When they cast her out, she took the stone set in the ring from the Garden as a reminder that she doesn’t need anyone. Gertie then brings up her husband, Bill, who’s wounded and may not survive. Despite Lilith’s deep cynicism about love and marriage, Gertie tells her it’s a gift.
At Larry’s apartment, Lucifer and Jack realize something went down. Jack pieces together what happened, recreating the moments leading up to Larry getting stab. Lucifer finds a cigar stub, which the duo connects to Stompanato.
They head to Stompanato’s, trying to understand why he’d steal the ring when they notice a pool of blood. They follow the blood trail, first finding a dead man at the top of the stairs, and then Stompanato in his bed, his heart missing, and a symbol painted on his eye. They realize it’s the sacred Eye of Horus, which leads them to a shop called Sacred Eye.
Once they arrive, they are greeted by a man who asks if they are there for books or the secret cult ceremony, to which Lucifer says they are. They go to a back room where they find the high priest named Melvin. They ask him about the Eye of Horus and a ceremony that requires taking a heart. Melvin responds with a sales pitch for the ceremony. Lucifer asks him about Stompanato, using his powers to try and coerce an answer out of Melvin with no luck. Jack and Lucifer realize Melvin is innocent but think one of his parishioners is the thief/killer.
Lucifer goes to break the news to Lilith that he can’t find the ring. She’s upset, understandably, as the ring was important to her. Lucifer moves away from the subject by asking her where the idea it makes her immortal originated. She tells him, and when she’s done, he realizes the thief doesn’t know the ring won’t make them immortal, so they’ll be searching for a way to make it work.
Going off this, Lucifer and Jack make a plan to lure the thief to steal a bracelet that will “activate” the ring’s powers. Jack tells Shirley, who’s helping, the plan. Shirley, however, drops the bomb that she’ll be taking a bus to Des Moines later. While they talk, Lilith watches. Lucifer approaches her and she asks if he’s ever connected emotionally to a human. He vehemently responds he hasn’t, but seemingly affected by her earlier conversation with Gertie, Lilith yearns to connect with someone.
The plan is set in motion. Lilith begins her set, with Lucifer accompanying on piano. As she sings, Jack watches for anyone suspicious. Eventually he notices a man head towards the back after Shirley, only to find out he was going to the restroom. Shirley tells him, however, that there was a man who went into the dressing room. Jack goes to investigate, and the man is none other than the Sausage Prince himself.
Willie confesses to stealing the ring and killing Stompanato. Shortly after, Lucifer and Lilith arrive, and so does Gertie, holding a gun. She reveals that she ordered the hit on Larry and, in classic noir style, reveals the whole plan. We briefly flash to present day Lucifer and Trixie, who fill in the gaps.
Back to 1946, Gertie continues by saying she did it for her husband. She believed the ring had powers because she saw Lilith get caught in crossfire. Lilith tells her the two are unrelated, but Gertie doesn’t believe her. To prove it, Lucifer picks up another gun and shoots Willie. Gertie sadly returns the ring to Lilith, saying, “Truth is, I’d rather die today trying to save the man I love than live forever without him,” which further solidifies Lilith’s desire.
Later, Willie is arrested, and Jack says they can pin the rest on Stompanato or press charges on Gertie. Lilith decides they should let Gertie go and let her enjoy the rest of her time with her husband. Jack walks off to talk with Shirley. He asks about her bus, and as she walks away, he stops her. He tells her he’ll go with her to Des Moines, which makes her happy. Lilith and Lucifer are also parting ways. Lilith confirms her wish to be mortal, putting her immortality into the ring and giving it to Lucifer. She tells him not to tell her children and she walks away, now essentially human.
Lucifer’s story ends there. Trixie thanks him and she leaves. When she gets in the elevator, Maze is waiting for her, and she asks if Trixie got the story. She hands Trixie a small roll of money, and Trixie begins to tell the story.
The episode ends with Maze in an apartment building. She reaches her destination, knocks, and is greeted by an older woman who turns out to be Lilith. Maze confronts her, wanting to know why Lilith abandoned her and the rest of them in Hell. Lilith says it’s because she wanted to make them stronger, but Maze doesn’t accept it. She turns and leaves.
Season 5A of Lucifer is now streaming on Netflix.