Netflix does it again with another dazzling debut of its newest Marvel hero!
“Luke Cage” isn’t afraid to get right into it, showcasing its title character at his most vulnerable, despite being the most indestructible. The season’s antagonist, a sinister weapons-dealing mobster named Cottonmouth, is set up right away, demonstrating his wealth and power when Cage comes face to face with him. Several people from all kinds of Marvel features are name-dropped, from Wilson Fisk to Justin Hammer to Tony Stark.
Misty Knight, another Marvel hero, is introduced in this episode, played by the beautiful Simone Missick. She is centered in her NYPD roots from her pre-superhero days and is shown evaluating a crime scene halfway through the episode after an evening with Luke Cage. Fans of “Sons of Anarchy” will see a familiar face too. Theo Rossi, who played Juice Ortiz on FX’s cancelled biker-gang-meets-Hamlet crime drama, plays Cottonmouth’s ally Shades.
It’s a slow simmering start to what seems like a hopefully explosive season. Tension is applied right away from a montage featuring Cottonmouth making a deal and a shooting in a junkyard. The episode is bright with street neon and theater gold lights and definitely reminds the viewer that the events are happening in the same neighborhood as the events of “Daredevil” and “Jessica Jones” did. This show shows nothing but promise and, with reported appearances by Claire Temple later on, I can only wonder who else will show up as it goes on.