He is a cold-blooded, devil-worshiping psychopath who murders women and leaves satanic messages in blood on the walls. He is the primary antagonist of Series One: Episode 3, following the abduction of young mother named Kirsten Ross. Rose Teller links this crime to the similar disappearance and murder of Grace Allen ten years earlier, with the blood on the walls of Ross' house being identified as Grace's. Burgess was originally implicated in the Allen murder, but had to be released after undercover cop Richard Henley beat him to a bloody pulp before any hard evidence was brought forth.
Smug, cocky, sadistic and insufferable, Burgess was the textbook example of a psychopath. He was a successful author who presented a respectable face to the world and could be charismatic and charming when the occasion called for it. An intelligent man, he went about his crimes in a highly methodical manner. Burgess was an egotistical individual who underestimated his opponents and was obsessed with gaining respect and fame. When not granted the fear and respect he desired by Luther, he abandoned his cold, arrogant facade and broke down into an infantile, diva-like temper tantrum.
- Burgess was likely a homage to real life hedonistic, satanist writers such as Aleister Crowly and Anton LaVey although fortunately neither men engaged in murderous behaviour, despite having a predilection towards sadism.
- His first name "Lucien" comes from the Latin "Luci" meaning "Light", from which the name "Lucifer", another name for the Devil meaning "Light-bringer" is derived, again a reference to Burgess's satanism.