There are only two kinds of people in this world. People that got a good night’s rest last night. And people that had to call in sick because they couldn’t stop binge-watching the first season of Luke Cage this morning.
Today, Marvel released the third superhero series in its growing Netflix corner of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Daredevil set the table with a vigilante that is conflicted by both his religious beliefs and his day job as a public defender. Jessica Jones came out of nowhere and offered one of the most complex female superheroes ever put to screen, while simultaneously touching on themes of sexual abuse and trauma. Today, the neighborhood got even larger as the newest superhero on the block, Luke Cage, will explore Harlem’s defender of justice.
In celebration of the new series’ 13-episode debut, Marvel has released a new motion poster commemorating the day. The poster features the silhouette of Luke Cage, played by Mike Colter (Jessica Jones, The Good Wife), walking directly towards the viewer. Within his body is a car racing down W 125th street past the world famous Apollo Theater. (The same location of the brawl between the Hulk and the Abomination in The Incredible Hulk.) The headlights wash out the screen and the Luke Cage title card bursts through his chest like a fist to the face.
The motion poster is highlighted by the iconic 1969 classic “Walk On By”, by Isaac Hayes. The choice of song says a lot about the new show, as well as a nod to the history of the character. Luke Cage was created during the era of blaxploitation filmmaking and was clearly influenced by movies such as Superfly, Foxy Brown, and Shaft. Hayes won the Academy Award for Best Original Song for his work in Shaft, so the use of his music in the promo is more than appropriate.
The new series was created by Cheo Hodari Coker (Ray Donovan) whose approach of constructing the show’s first season, like a musician would arrange an album, is making waves. Not only does the series feature cameos from a variety of musicians, each episode is named after a song by the seminal hip-hop group, Gang Starr. Along with the solid cast that was assembled including Mahershala Ali (House of Cards), Alfre Woodard (12 Years a Slave), Simone Missick (Wayward Pines), Theo Rossi (Sons of Anarchy), and Rosario Dawson (Daredevil), it’s easy to see why so many people made this weekend a three-day holiday.
Daredevil season 1 & 2, Jessica Jones season 1, and Luke Cage season 1 are now available on Netflix. The Defenders and Iron Fist arrive in 2017. Release dates for Jessica Jones season 2, The Punisher and Daredevil season 3 have not yet been announced.