That being said, I’m at a loss of what to say. Perhaps this is why I was delaying this post. Luke Cage was another well done Netflix show that found the perfect balance between fun heartfelt moments and raw crime fighting. Also, in a time where unarmed black men are being shot down in the street, Luke Cage touches on those hot button topics. Sort of. Or not at all? I don’t know.
I could give my thoughts on the “Black/Blue/All Lives Matter Movement” but that’s not what this blog is about. At the same time it’s so difficult avoid talking about these issues. Especially since Luke Cage is in part an ode to Blaxploitation films and explores black culture in Harlem, including the police’s role. I’m having a hard time finding the right words to touch on the complicated subject, so I won’t. Only a fool calls himself a wise man.
So I’m going to stick with what I know. Luke Cage as a comic book superhero show was pretty darn good. In fact I would go a step further and say that it was even better then Jessica Jones. It however does not beat Daredevil¸ which has found its stride. The reason I say it’s better than Jessica Jones is because the story has a much better pace. It felt like Jessica was spending 13 episodes chasing one guy, and because of that, it felt like a 13-hour long movie. However, Jessica Jones excelled in creating great complicated characters. Jessica is up there as one of my favorite MCU characters.
To reel my train of thought back in…Luke Cage had much better pacing and clear distinguished story arcs. You could stop watching after Episode Six and still feel like you saw a complete story. This made the show more enjoyable to watch and didn’t make me gouge my eyes out after a six hour binge session.
Unlike Jessica Jones, Luke started “doing his thing” immediately. Is superheroing a verb? Luke, like all our Netflix heroes is battling demons. But rather then dwell on it, Luke is pulled into action within the first few episodes, displaying his strength and invincibility. Throughout the season we see Luke kick ass in a raw street fighting style. This is probably because Luke didn’t have some ancient dojo master teaching him. The Luke Cage raid on Crispus was insane.
I want to be friends with Luke Cage. I’m new to Luke Cage’s story, having read very little about him. What I can say is that he seems like a great guy. His moral compass is true north and takes responsibility for his actions. Special thanks to Pops, rest in peace. But in all seriousness, Luke never once fired a gun throughout the whole season and never killed anyone. He shows discipline and compassion. I actually think that his personality is going to play a key role in The Defenders. He’s likely going to be the one to reign in The Defenders and keep them under control as the level headed voice of reason and stability.
I’m not sure if I like Diamondback as a villain. Cottonmouth and Councilwoman Mariah were great villains seeded in Harlem. They are complex characters with interesting back stories and motives. Then out of the blue comes William Stryker aka Diamondback. Where the hell did this guy come from? The fact that this guy happens to be Luke’s half-brother and a Harlem crime lord makes it even more ridiculous. Are we chalking it up a coincidence that he control’s Harlem, the same place where Luke winds up? Maybe his network is much bigger then Harlem, even so the happenstance is just too much for me to swallow. Diamondback, the half-brother-that-happens-to-become-a-successful-crime-lord was such a weak tie that it upsets me that we have to see him again. I’m sure the diehard fans could analyze the season and argue why it fits, but let’s be honest, just because the shirt fits doesn’t mean it looks good on you. I wanted less Diamondback and more Mariah/Cottomouth.
Sidebar: Luke makes multiple, and I mean MULTIPLE appearances on TV and even went viral assaulting police officers. I find it unbelievable that The Avengers have yet to acknowledge what’s happening literally in their backyard. The heads at MCU better come up with an explanation as to why Tony Stark hasn’t dropped by for a visit.
Another Sidebar: The fact that “Shades” needed to wear his Ray Bans Sunglasses 100% of the time and at night was ridiculous. Just…why?
In conclusion, aside from the groan-worthy connection between Luke and Diamondback, Luke Cage was enjoyable to watch. The fight scenes were great and the characters enjoyable. Misty Knight was another gem; fans are clamoring for more of her story. Claire is great as always. And Luke Cage is wining the hearts of many. I’m at the edge of my seat in anticipation of The Defenders especially since Sigourney Weaver has been brought on board as the main villain! Till next time friends!