Thursday, October 13, 2016

Round Two: Luke Cage

Luke Cage: Season 1, Episode 2 “Code of the Streets” (B)

I’m still trying to see what makes this show unique and worthwhile in the Marvel universe, and what was most interesting to me in this installment was how little Luke appears and how much of the show is devoted to the likes of Cottonmouth and Misty in only tangentially-related plotlines. Unlike Jessica Jones, Luke is someone who believes in inherent goodness and wants to spread that to other people, even if he doesn’t show it on his steely face. His opening monologue about using disrespectful language across from a building named for a righteous person was pretty momentous, and very representative of his worldview. I wasn’t prepared for the shocking and devastating death of Pop, who seemed like he would be a permanent fixture after getting a flashback to reveal the intimate details of his past with the mogul who game in for a shave with a razor. Frankie Faison is a great actor and was tremendously used in these two episodes. It’s interesting that Shades didn’t want to shoot up the shop, making him less of a bad guy in a way, and Cottonmouth dealt swiftly with Tone in a manner that no one is sure to soon forget. Luke calculating the reaction time of Shades and the other guys in the barbershop was intriguing, and I hope we’ll see some more of that action as the show goes on. I like that Misty challenged the basketball players to a game of horse to get information, and Luke gave her a really hard time for lying about who she was. She’s on to him and the fact that he had to have gotten shot, and shooting himself just to intimidate others isn’t going to help keep his profile low for long.

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