Having been released just over a week ago on Netflix, many fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have already watched the entire season of Luke Cage. Whether you’re a Marvel Comics aficionado or just someone with a Netflix subscription that thought the series looked interesting, there were a lot of plot twists and surprising developments that kept all viewers on their toes. And while loyal followers of the MCU await upcoming series like Marvel’s Iron Fist, The Defenders, and The Punisher on Netflix, there’s still plenty to discuss about how things ended in the first season of Luke Cage, and how that might affect other series that take place in the same part of the Marvel Universe — including a possible Luke Cage Season 2.
What follows is a list of five of the biggest surprises and twists in the plot of Marvel’s Luke Cage, as well as a note about the disappointing lack of any major crossover cameos or allusions to future Marvel series being produced by Netflix.
Warning: The following contains spoilers for the first season of Marvel’s Luke Cage on Netflix.
Luke Cage sleeps with Misty Knight… right away
Generally, when you have two major characters like the inhuman vigilante Luke Cage and the never-say-die cop Misty Knight, the “will they or won’t they” sexual tension is drawn out for at least a few episodes. For Luke and Misty, it only took one meeting. Less than thirty minutes into the first episode, they were already putting their clothes back on and lying to each other about their true identities.
Given that it only took one invitation to “get coffee” for sparks to fly between Cage and Knight, it may or may not come as a surprise that the subsequent relationship between Luke and night nurse Claire Temple was not consummated in the first season. It will be interesting to see if things are awkward between Luke, Claire and Jessica Jones when they all work together in Marvel’s The Defenders.
Rafael Scarfe is a dirty cop
There’s always at least one or two crooked cops in a series like Luke Cage, but it wasn’t obvious from the get-go that Rafael Scarfe was on Cottonmouth’s payroll. While he eventually turns bad in Marvel Comics, it’s not before he spends quite a bit of time helping out Power Man, Iron Fist and even Spider-Man on occasion. By the time it was revealed that Perez was also working for Cornell Stokes, the level of corruption within the police department in Luke Cage was so prevalent that his misguided allegiance was almost expected.
Mariah Dillard kills Cottonmouth
While Mariah Dillard’s character never came across as one of the good guys, she certainly underwent a major transformation over the course of Luke Cage. In the first episode, she was advising Cornell against selling guns. Who knew that by the seventh episode, the cunning politician would be able to kill her cousin with her own hands?
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Reva Connors lied to Luke Cage
While there were many heartbreaking scenes in the Luke Cage series, the betrayal of Luke’s long-lost love Reva Connors was arguably the hardest to swallow. Fans who watched Marvel’s Jessica Jones already lived through a lot of Luke’s sorrowful backstory dealing with the death of Reva. But for him to find out that she was responsible for his transformation into Power Man was a painful surprise for the character and his Netflix audience.
Diamondback really was Luke Cage’s brother
As noted by Romper, Luke Cage and Diamondback weren’t biological half-brothers in Marvel Comics. They were just childhood friends with a history of crime who eventually grew apart due to issues of jealousy. So when Diamondback first claims to be related to Luke in the Netflix series, it seemed entirely plausible that he meant it as merely a figure of speech. And while viewers may have been able to put the pieces together sooner than Cage and friends, it was still a disappointing revelation when the truth came to light.
— Charlie Schneider (@AwesomEmergency) September 30, 2016
No appearances from any other Defenders
While this doesn’t involve any specific plot twists, it was perhaps a disappointment more than anything that none of the established or future members of the Netflix-exclusive Marvel series The Defenders made a cameo. With Luke and Claire’s direct connection to the character Jessica Jones, it wouldn’t have been hard to write in a reason for her to make a very short appearance. With Luke’s legal problems, it would have been easy to make an excuse to show Claire talking with Nelson and Murdock, attorneys at law.
At the end of Marvel’s Daredevil Season 2, a new trailer played for Luke Cage. While the first trailers for The Defenders (see below) and Iron Fist were already released in July at San Diego Comic-Con, certainly something more could have been revealed about the series starring Luke’s “Heroes For Hire” partner from Marvel Comics, since Marvel recently announced that the release date for Iron Fist will be March 17.
Where To Watch Marvel’s Luke Cage
As of September 30, the entire first season of Marvel’s Luke Cage is available to stream on-demand with a Netflix subscription. The first season consists of thirteen episodes. It follows Luke Cage after he leaves Hell’s Kitchen (as told in Marvel’s Jessica Jones) and sets up shop in Harlem. Both shows, along with Marvel’s Daredevil and the upcoming Marvel’s Iron Fist, are ultimately leading up to the highly-anticipated crossover series Marvel’s The Defenders, another Netflix exclusive.
[Featured Image by Netflix]