When Disney's streaming service (now known as Disney+) began to pick up momentum in the fall of 2018, Netflix's live-action Marvel shows began to receive the axe one-by-one. Only Daredevil and Jessica Jones made it to the three-season mark, while Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and The Punisher only receive two apiece.
It was a real shame for all of them, but Mike Colter's Power Man may have gotten the rawest end of the stick. Recently speaking with TV Guide, Luke Cage showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker teased the third season we'll never get to see.
"It was crazy because we were hitting all these things that are happening in the press right now. I can't on the record talk about what we had planned because, contractually, you know, I still don't want any Marvel assassins coming out of the woodwork to try to take me out," Coker reportedly said with a laugh. "But what I can say is that we had a very good season planned, and it was one that I think would have brought Luke Cage as a character full circle. You see people online that were like, 'Oh my god, I turned Luke into a gangster.' They wouldn't be [saying that] if they had the opportunity to see all three seasons and see the directions Luke would have gone."
Rebuffing reports that the show was canceled because of creative differences, Coker revealed that it actually ended because of a disagreement between Marvel and Netflix. The Marvel Television division (formerly led by Jeph Loeb) that oversaw Luke Cage was recently dissolved as Kevin Feige was named Chief Creative Officer. All of the company's small screen projects are now under the purview of Marvel Studios and will debut on Disney+.
"We had all 13 episodes planned out. We were seven scripts in. I honestly think it was more the dispute between Marvel and Netflix than it was anything else," explained the showrunner. "So the cancellation itself did come as a bit of a surprise. But at the same time, it was frustrating because it's like, if y'all weren't gonna work it out, it would have been nice to have taken some downtime and to not have gotten me back into the room. But we had a great season [planned]. I'm still proud of the episodes we'd written and the story arcs."