Luke Cage was the third of four Marvel series to debut on Netflix before The Defenders, but the team-up isn't dictating Luke's solo adventure. Prior to its debut, Mike Colter's solo series was praised for being one of the strongest series to date. However, once the full season was made available, that narrative changed as many found the back half of the season had a significant drop in quality. Even so, the enthusiasm for Colter's return as Luke Cage has not diminished as fans have maintained their excitement for all that season 2 will have to offer.
Not only will Colter be back as the bulletproof hero, but it will also see Cheo Hodari Coker continue his role as showrunner. While the events of season 1 largely stood alone, the temptation post-Defenders is undoubtedly to make things even more connected. However, Coker has assured that is not going to be the case.
Mashable spoke with Coker about his aspirations for season 2 and the possible connections and influences it will have with Defenders. The team-up will surely change the way Luke sees his role protecting New York, buth those watching Defenders should not expect to see major setup for Luke's next story.
It’s like the Wu-Tang. You’ve got the Wu-Tang Clan record, which is what The Defenders represents. Say that Luke Cage is Ghostface, say that Jessica Jones is Method Man. It’s like they’re all kind of part of the same clique, but each record sounds different.
So that’s really the analogy I would make, is that they acknowledge each other, but they're not really dependent on each other. But because it’s the same crews, and the same family, the same feel, it’s all interconnected — but it doesn’t mean that one really dictates the direction of the other.
So, even though Defenders won't mandate a direct future for Luke, it will still have an effect on it. There will be at least two other Luke Cage cast members in Defenders alongside him, but Luke will also meet Daredevil and Iron Fist for the first time here, plus reunite with Jessica Jones. With that in mind, it would make sense for some to pop up in Luke's neighborhood, but Coker again casts doubt on that happening.
You always got to raise your hand and ask permission. I’m honestly just cool with what we have.
In a world where fans continue to push for interconnectivity between properties, there is nothing wrong - and something somewhat refreshing - seeing Luke Cage take this approach. In reality, this has been the way all of the Marvel/Netflix properties have progressed to this point. But, much like Daredevil season 2, it is very possible that Luke Cage's sophomore outing will go bigger even without including those familiar faces.
Season 2 has not yet started production but is set to start rolling this summer. With an all-but-confirmed 2018 release in the cards, it is only a matter of time before more official word on the season comes along. Simone Missick will be back for season 2, and Theo Rossi recently confirmed Shades will return as well. It is expected that Rosario Dawson (Claire Temple) and Alfre Woodard (Mariah Dillard) will return. Meanwhile, casting breakdowns have offered a possible tease of some new characters, but we will have to wait and see if that is confirmed.
The Defenders arrives on August 18th, with The Punisher coming later this year. Daredevil seasons 1 and 2, Jessica Jones season 1, Luke Cage season 1, and Iron Fist season 1 are now available on Netflix. Premiere dates for the next seasons of Jessica Jones, Daredevil, and Luke Cage have not yet been revealed.