[Review] Luke Cage Episode 2×01: “Soul Brother #1”

written by Kiara Williams


It’s only the first episode, and the season is already starting to ramp up the tension.

“Just because you’re a woke superhero doesn’t mean you have to be a broke superhero.”

We’ve fast-forwarded to after Luke has been released from Seagate Prison. Even after Luke’s return, Harlem is still feeling the effects of his battles from Season One, both positive and negative. Pop’s Barber Shop has become a landmark in Harlem, but now the insurance on the building has doubled so Luke will have to move the shop. Misty is learning to move on after her injury, but the trauma and loss of limb still affects her greatly, both physically and emotionally. (The constant ableist jokes throughout the episode don’t help, I’m sure.) Luke himself has had a new problem pop up in the form of his father.

Whew! Props to the actor who plays Luke’s father, because his personality pisses me right off. He’s a pastor who calls out arrogance while practicing his sermon, but is clearly arrogant himself. Everything we’ve seen of him oozes hypocrisy which, growing up in the Bible Belt, is something I’ve seen way too often. His character is interesting; I really wanna see what his deal is, but I also wanna deck him in the face.

I think it’s very interesting that there’s a discussion about whether Luke should accept a sponsorship for all his superheroing. In my opinion, why shouldn’t he? Now that the Judas Bullet is common knowledge among the baddies, he really is risking his life for Harlem. Luke wants to keep his focus on protecting Harlem, but Bobby says he should get something for his efforts, like I quoted at the beginning. Black people tend to be the backbone of social movements, all for no reward, and a lot of the time, no credit. Yes, you know MLK and Malcolm X and Rosa Parks, but they didn’t do it alone. Name another important figure in the Civil Rights movement. Go on.

Meanwhile, Mariah’s trying to go legit, but it’s hard to tell by her actions. Even while trying to clean up her family’s name, she still tries to kill Luke Cage and threatens Claire. Also, a new villain who goes by Bushmaster is hoping to make a move in taking over Brooklyn. We find out that he’s bulletproof as well, immediately setting him up on an inevitable collision course with Luke.

This first episode has opened up a ton of storylines that I can’t wait to see more of. I’m very excited!

…Just…not excited enough to dab. Can we not do that again, Luke? Thanks.

Luke Cage is available now on Netflix. Kiara can be reached on Twitter @DJPrincessK and her webcomic can be found at http://www.electricrosecomic.com/.

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