Netflix ‘Luke Cage’ full season 1 review: Mike Colter leads like a boss, Alfre Woodard delights as Mariah
There’s a lot to like about season 1 of “Luke Cage”, but there were also a few problems. Do we think that this would be enough to stop a season 2 from happening? Not even close. The problems that we had with the show were nothing compared to what we liked and there is so much to love. We have been posting reviews for each episode this season, but now we want to give readers a chance to see our take on “Luke Cage” as a whole.
What we liked about Luke Cage:
Mike Colter: We liked him in “Jessica Jones”, but we loved him as a leading man. He was smart, funny and his fight scenes were so much fun to watch. This character could’ve easily turned into a darker character like a Batman with everything that happened to him in prison and everyone that he trusted betraying him, but he used that pain to become a better person and that’s not always something we see with vigilantes (like Punisher, or Batman). Colter makes this show as good as it is and anyone else playing Luke Cage would’ve been tragic.
The Style: There was something really seamless about the way they blended together the feeling of 1970’s Harlem and modern day technology. We weren’t sure at first if this was going to work, but after the first scene in the club we were all in. The music also really helped to fill out the over all style and feel of this show, and while music isn’t normally something we pay attention to, there’s no way you couldn’t in this case.
Social commentary: In a world where so many people want to have their voices heard it’s hard to actually be heard. We loved the episode with Method Man, because it brought focus on important social issues that were not only affecting the characters in this show, but are also affecting everyone in society today. Not many television shows out there touch on these subjects, but “Luke Cage” was not afraid to bring it right to the forefront and give it the spotlight.
What we would like to see changed:
The villains: Normally we are the biggest cheerleader for “Netflix” when it comes to their villains. When you look at Wilson Fisk and Kilgrave the bar has been set impossibly high. Cornell had the potential to be great, especially with actor Mahershala Ali behind the character, but the writing just wasn’t there. Cornell was weakened from the first episode and continued the downward spiral until he was gone mindway through the season. With a character as strong as Luke Cage, you need a villain that can outsmart him. The other villain we had a hard time buying into is Shades. While we love Theo Rossi, he just didn’t feel that threatening, so when he first appeared and Cornell was worried about him, we weren’t convinced. Diamondback started off as a terrifying force, but his daddy issues pulled that apart fairly quickly. That being said, we loved Mariah and wish she had been on the throne from the beginning since she is the only villain that really knew how to play the right kind of political games to destroy Luke.
Not enough action: One of the things we really like about “Daredevil” and “Jessica Jones” were the fight sequences and for us Luke Cage was sorely missing this factor. When the fight scenes were happening, it was incredible to watch (we will never look at a car door the same after watching Luke wrap one around a bad guy), but they were so far and few between. Maybe we are just spoiled with shows like “Daredevil”.
Overall we really enjoyed season 1 of “Luke Cage” and the positives easily outweighed any of the negatives. We can’t wait for season 2 (and to see everyone united in “The Defenders”), because we know that like Luke, this show is only going to grow stronger as it goes on, especially with Mariah in power over Harlem. Season grade: A-
What did you think of the first season of “Luke Cage” and what would you like to see change next season? Leave us a comment in the box below and share your opinion with us. If you want more scoop on what’s coming up next for the “Luke Cage” series then head on over to the link here. (Photo: Netflix)