The newest Defender finally made his solo debut in Harlem today.
After much anticipation, Luke Cage finally premiered on Netflix, and it was worth the many months of waiting. We first saw Luke Cage (Mike Colter) in Jessica Jones but in Marvel’s Luke Cage we see him acting as an independent hero. The series opens on an extraordinary man just trying to lead a low-key, ordinary life, but, unfortunately for him, that’s not how things will play out.
Luke Cage introduces Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes (Mahershala Ali) who, in some ways, feels like Harlem’s version of Wilson Fisk. Actually, Stokes makes reference to Fisk in the pilot which helps tie in with Marvel’s Daredevil. The amazing Alfre Woodward plays Stokes’ cousin Mariah Dillard, who is a local politician on a mission to clean up Harlem. The only problem is she’s just as corrupt as her cousin. In addition to having to take on Stokes and Dillard and their crime ring, Luke Cage also faces Shades (Theo Rossi), his nemesis.
Luke Cage definitely introduces some wonderful villains and Harlem has a great hero on their side. But one of the best characters the show introduces is Misty Knight (Simone Missick). Knight is a detective, but more than that she is the strong independent female character we’ve been waiting for. I can only hope that Misty will be key in Luke Cage taking out Stokes and Dillard.
And of course, title character Luke Cage is the new great addition to the Defenders lineup. It’s not his unbreakable skin or super-strength that make him a superhero but rather his heart and integrity. He, like Jessica Jones doesn’t seek out the role of a vigilante like Daredevil but rather gets drawn into the fight in order to defend his home.
Luke Cage is a series we’ve been waiting for ever since Daredevil premiered on Netflix in 2015. Netflix’s master plan is to create four individual series which will culminate in a collaboration project called Marvel’s Defenders. Luke Cage is the third installment in the Defenders project which will feature Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist.
Season one of Luke Cage is currently available to stream online on Netflix.