What Luke Cage does effectively is that it is very clear that the show does not function in a bubble, it has a very clear place amongst the other Netflix/Marvel shows and helps to build the world up. This is very clear in ‘Suckas Need Bodyguards’.
Luke vs. Cottonmouth
We have seen Cottonmouth try and fail endless times to get back at Luke Cage and this week he got his comeuppance as he made the fatal error of shooting Rafael Scarfe. Yes, Scarfe was a dirty cop that killed Chico but when he realised that Cottonmouth did not have all the control in Harlem, he tried to leverage more money out of Cottonmouth which got him shot and led him to Luke Cage.
Scarfe was what Luke Cage needed to take down Cottonmouth as he told Luke where he kept his notebook whereby he kept a record of what he did for Cottonmouth before Scarfe died. It was this notebook that caused the police to arrest Cottonmouth. While we know that arrests are not necessarily the end for villains in the Marvel Universe – both Wilson Fisk and Frank Castle were arrested.
I am disappointed in Cottonmouth, that even though he was billed as such a ferocious villain, he was taken down so easily, which makes me wonder if there is perhaps a bigger villain than Cottonmouth – Mariah? Or Diamondback himself?
The excellent female heroines
If there is one thing that the MCU is lacking (and hopefully that will change with Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther) is strong, black female characters and this episode handed it out in spades. First let’s start with Claire Temple, whom we know from Daredevil and Jessica Jones, her introduction into Luke Cage was of her getting off the bus and getting her purse stolen and she runs after her attacker and beats him for daring to steal her purse. It’s a brave and very poignant intro and even though we know how tough Claire is, it just helps to cement her character.
The other female character was Missy, who did not want to believe that her partner, Scarfe was dirty but instead found out that both him and her new partner were on the payroll of Cottonmouth and she has an epic fight in the police car, which is definitely one of the best fight scenes that I have seen in Luke Cage thus far. It is also Misty to whom Luke gives Scarfe’s notebook to, making Cottonmouth, her arrest.
With Claire and Misty representing the positive female characters, on the other end of the spectrum there is Mariah. Not to say that Mariah is bad character, she is so intriguing and complex but bad as in her morals are clearly skewed.
She is definitely a seasoned politician with the way that she talks about Harlem. However with her conversation with Luke and her suggestions to Cottonmouth about how he can kill Luke, it shows that she isn’t a damsel stuck in Cottonmouth’s criminal activities, she an active participant, which makes me think that she might be the one to match Luke with her villainy.
With Cottonmouth arrest, Mariah exposed and Luke on his way out of Harlem, what will the second half of the season focus on?
Last minute thoughts
- What will prompt Luke to return?
- The episode began with Trish Talk from Jessica Jones whereby Trish Walker’s radio show spoke about Luke and what he is doing in Harlem
- There was also references to Wilson Fisk and how he paid off the cops in season one of Daredevil and a lot about this show is reminding me of the first season of Daredevil
Marvel’s Luke Cage is currently streaming on Netflix