Luke Cage S1 Ep1 – The Moment Of Truth

The King

After what seemed like endless anticipation, the show is finally here!

And so far it’s superb. As a pilot, this episode needed to introduce our hero without making the backstory just exposition, let us see who the villains and supporting characters will be, and show us the beginning of the season’s arc. We got all of that, and it definitely left me wanting more.

When we meet him, Luke is currently working two jobs for cash under the table (since he’s still a fugitive), barely scraping together his rent. As a floorsweeper at a barber shop, his boss is a guy called ‘Pop’, who clearly has history with him and isn’t shy about giving him fatherly advice. I like Pop, and I’m afraid he’s a clear candidate for the guy with the heart of gold who gets murdered later in the season to push our protagonist even more in his quest to clean up the town.

Misty and Luke

I kinda ship Jessica and Luke, but these two sure are both dreamy.

Cornell ‘Cottonmouth’ Stokes is our villain. Not totally unlike Wilson Fisk from Daredevil, his aim seems to be to clean up Harlem by classing it up – which he’ll fund through arms deals and other shady business. But in this show we get an interesting partnership with his cousin, Councilwoman Mariah Stokes. She doesn’t really want to be seen as part of the ‘family business’, but she does want Cornell’s money and grassroots support (by which I mean, thugs who’ll make sure the locals do what she wants).

We also meet NYPD Detective Misty Knight, although I don’t believe anyone calls her by name in this episode. She and Luke immediately hit it off – and I hardly blame either of them, considering that they’re both gorgeous and awesome. That they have a fling right away, I did not necessarily expect. But I am interested to see how that develops, especially since Luke is going to be questioned in regards to the double murder that she and her partner are investigating.

You want some?

Unbreakable.

Which brings me to the larger arc. We haven’t gotten much yet, but I appreciate how all the characters are immediately woven together. I’m sure Chico, the one surviving kid involved in the robbery of Cottonmouth’s goods, isn’t long for this world. I bet Luke and Misty aren’t destined for a sweet, drama-free relationship, either. And I wonder how long Luke will be able to stomach working in Stokes’ club – or how long Stokes will keep him on the (unofficial) payroll, once the news starts getting around. Also, I’m eager to see what the backstory is between Luke and Shades.

Obviously there will be fallout from Luke revealing his powers to save his landlady’s family. (Also, nice reference there, having Luke tell her, “I’m not for hire.”) I have to say it was kind of genius to wait until almost the end of the episode for a ‘real’ superhero moment from Luke. He may not want to be a hero, but he won’t stand by and let innocent people be walked all over or hurt. And I can’t wait to see where that leads him. Roll on!