Those who know me are well aware that I adore the television series Lucifer, with its irreverent take on Christian mythology. And one of my favourite characters is the title character's best friend and right-hand demon, Mazikeen (Maze for short).
Whereas Lucifer is conflicted about his purpose and nature, Maze is confident in her own path. She is on Earth to protect Lucifer and enjoy herself with sex, liquor and violence. It's only as Lucifer shifts into doing more and more good that she begins to doubt her place. She and Lucifer have been partners for millennia. She was his head torturer and second in command. If he is abandoning that part of his life, its a rejection of her as well.
The rejection leaves her lost in a society she doesn't understand. Human customs seem arbitrary and hypocritical. For all that she enjoys physical pleasures, they aren't enough for her.
Any one would be overwhelmed when faced with the diminishing of a long-term partnership, and the erosion of our understanding of the world. Most of us would give up.
Mazikeen returns to Lucifer and demands respect and acknowledgment. In his narcissism, he doesn't understand why this is so crucial to her. She takes the incredibly scary step of following through on her ultimatum. She leaves him to find her own place in the world.
In doing so, she discovers a richness she'd previously despised: the humans. She begins a friendship with Linda, a psychologist who knows the truth about demons on Earth. Linda helps her to understand human customs (though not without some setbacks and misunderstandings). Mazikeen also befriends Trixie, a young girl who is not afraid of the supernatural. The relationship with Trixie brings out Maze's protective side. No little girl has ever been safer from anyone looking to hurt her.
She finds a job that she loves and excels at, a bounty hunter. She can find any bad guy and bring them back easily. She revels in her skills and how easy it is for her to show-up the more macho, experienced bounty hunters. Watching her take unrepentant pride in her accomplishments rather than dismissing them is frankly inspiring. So often women are trained to accept compliments with a "here's why I don't deserve this" instead of "damn right, I am awesome."
In season 4, Mazikeen does something that will forever cement her as one of the bravest characters I've had the pleasure of watching. Throughout the series, she has protected herself by keeping a flippant distance from even her closest friends. She rarely admits any feelings beyond rage, and tends to be dismissive of her relationships (even though she's taken incredible damage in order to protect her friends).
In this most recent season, Mazikeen falls in love with Eve (the actual Eve, as in the original human woman mentioned in the Bible). Eve is in love (or at least infatuation) with Lucifer, and enlists Maze's help to win his heart. Mazikeen takes the risk of telling Eve how she feels (in a glorious cover of Oasis's Wonderwall), knowing that it is most likely that Eve doesn't feel the same way about her.
Mazikeen allows herself to be completely vulnerable. And when Eve misunderstands the gesture, Maze has the courage to accept that what she wanted isn't possible.
She could physically force Eve to be with her. She could have lied and tricked Eve into a relationship. But she wanted something genuine and wasn't willing to settle for anything less.
Because Maze knows what she's worth. And she's worth the happily ever after with someone who adores her and whom she adores, the challenging job that she's brilliant at, and the respect and friendship of those in her life.
We shouldn't settle for anything less either.
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