LOS ANGELES. Netflix just dropped the first trailer for Season 2 of its hit Marvel series, Luke Cage. It’s the next installment of the ongoing tale of an improbable superhero hailing from and continuing to live in Harlem. Our eponymous hero is bulletproof and spends much of his time fighting evil forces doing harm to the community. It’s something that the New York City cops consistently fail to understand.
As the trailer begins, we find Luke walking away from a big explosion and speaking with a fan who recorded the incident. It’s just another day in the live of your friendly neighborhood superhero. That’s about as in medias res as it gets.
The new trailer reveals that Luke is no longer the man who hides in the shadows. That’s something that Netflix / Marvel fans began to learn when they took in last fall’s first installment of “The Defenders.”
That series was designed to introduce the Marvel “Urban Universe’s” equivalent to the cinematic “Avengers.” In addition to Luke, “The Defenders” also included Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and the Iron Fist. Together, they waged war against New York City’s shadowy, ongoing enemy, “The Hand.” It’s a Southeast Asia-based criminal enterprise that’s worse than MS-13, the Crips and the Bloods combined. (Alas, The Punisher was MIA, off battling other forces of evil in his own new series).
Redeemed from outlaw-hood, at least for the moment, Luke has quickly become a beloved hero to those living in his Harlem community. That’s something again you might not have known if you haven’t seen “The Defenders.” According to Netflix’s press release “Luke will need to confront the fine line that separates a hero from a villain.”
The new Luke Cage trailer also gives us greater insight into the kaleidescopic life of Claire Temple (Rosario Dawson). Her recurring character has been prominently featured in several of Marvel’s Netflix series, including the recent run of “The Defenders.”
In addition, this trailer briefly notes the return of familiar characters Misty Knight and Mariah.
Interesting fun fact: The versatile Lucy Liu of “Elementary,” “Charlie’s Angels” and “Ally McBeal” fame directs the first episode of Luke 2.
Now, back to the trailer. The main thread reveals that Luke will be facing off against a brand new villain known as Bushmaster. Bushmaster (Mustafa Shakir) seems to possess the same superpowers as Luke. In addition, he has the extra-added ability to punch out Luke’s lights with massive powers that vastly exceed those of our already impressive hero.
As if Luke isn’t going to have enough problems dealing with Bushmaster, check this out. Netflix has confirmed that Harlem’s favorite superhero will lock horns with Rosalie Carbone, a underworld criminal power player. She, too, seems to have an agenda targeting Harlem.
Luke Cage superhero news and gossip
Based on the trailer it appears that Luke’s new season will also expand on Misty Knight’s new story. That thread, like Luke’s return to Harlem, began to unfold in “The Defenders.” In that series’ grand finale, a battle to the death with The Hand, Misty (Simone Missick) – a New York police detective – lost an arm, slashed off in a battle by a shadowy Hand swordsman. In that same finale, Daredevil also ended up MIA, along with onetime girlfriend – now arch-enemy – Elektra.
(Hmm. Might Misty’s missing arm get replaced with a bionic edition? Perhaps engineered by a famous industrialist also known to fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe?)
Sadly, Season 2 of Luke Cage marks the final time that Reg E. Cathey appears in the series. He filmed scenes as Luke’s father just prior to his death.
In other news, the series’ star, Mike Colter, has hinted there’s a possibility that Luke may end up having a child with Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter). Problem is, the last time we looked – about midway through Jessica’s own recently released Series 2 – this proposition seemed dubious. That’s because our rather promiscuous detective-heroine was getting it on with her building’s super. And anyway, didn’t she kill Luke’s first wife? Oh, that’s right, she was under the mind-control of the fiendish villain Kilgrave (David Tennant) at the time. But still…
Netflix fans: Don’t miss anything Marvel
It just goes to show you, it’s always something. Like the endless threads of interrelated superhero trajectories in the DC and Marvel comic universes, you can’t miss any episode of any series. If you do, you’ll be left holding the plotline bag of the next film or streaming series that pops. That’s a great marketing ploy for sure, but not so hot if you don’t have endless amounts of time to follow it all. Which, we guess, is why you read columns like this one. As a former Washington Post TV reporter once wrote: “We watch TV so you don’t have to.”
At any rate, the 13 episodes of Luke Cage: S2 will be ready for binge viewing on Netflix on June 22, 2018. Stay tuned.
—Terry Ponick contributed to this article