Luke Cage S1 Ep5 – Just to Get a Rep

Claire is not scared of you, pathetic purse-snatcher.

Claire is not scared of you, pathetic purse-snatcher.

Before anything else, I have to say: “Welcome back, Claire Temple!” There wasn’t a lot of her in this episode, but it was high quality. Her first scene was just awesome. I <3 you, Claire. Please stick around a while. Also, you’re basically already employed as a nurse to the superheroes (and heroines), so I’m glad you’re interested in doing more of that.

This episode, Cottonmouth tries to get back at Luke by sending his goons out to trash various Harlem businesses and tell the victims it’s Luke’s fault. Though this does rile up the people, I wouldn’t call it a success. Shades thinks it just makes him look weak. It definitely makes him look desperate.

Speaking of Shades, I got my answer re: whether or not he recognized Luke before. When Luke comes calling at Stokes’ club, and shows his prowess against the men Stokes sends at him, Shades finally realizes that Carl Lucas didn’t die at Seagate. By then it’s clear that conventional attacks won’t kill Luke, but unfortunately, Shades’ boss Diamondback has access to a special kind of armor-piercing round that appears to explode and incinerate on contact. He and Cottonmouth seem pretty convinced that it could take down Luke. I’d rather not see them try – obviously Luke’s not going to die during this series, but we know from Jessica Jones that he can be seriously hurt.

Clearing the air.

Clearing the air.

On the Scarfe front, the seeds of doubt have been planted in Misty’s mind. Her captain privately tells her that Internal Affairs is investigating her partner. The fact that Misty doesn’t believe Scarfe could be dirty is less troubling than the fact that their lieutenant is dirty, too, and warns Scarfe about the investigation. The last we see of Scarfe this time around is him deciding not to deliver to Cottonmouth the guns that the police had recovered from the original robbery. What his plan is, instead, I can’t say, but it is clear that Scarfe would prefer Cottonmouth not to be around anymore.

The other main event of the episode is Pop’s funeral. (Side note: can I also interject that as many times as Luke wants to crush peoples’ guns with his bare hands, that will be totally cool with me?) It was disturbing that Cottonmouth’s eulogy had people cheering and agreeing. It was coherent and sounded like it hit the right buttons, but in the end it was rabble-rousing. Of course, one could argue – and it seems Misty would prefer to take this tack – that Luke’s speech was just a different version of that. Either way, he ‘won’ this battle. I’m sure Cottonmouth’s retaliation will be memorable.