Luke Cage is finally back, and fans are beyond excited to catch up with the heroes of the Marvel Netflix universe as the series returns for Season 2 this week. When we rejoin our cast of characters (both powered and not) this season, they're each navigating a different set of circumstances. Luke (Mike Colter) is adjusting to his new turn in the spotlight as both a superhero and everyman, but a new villain in Harlem threatens the safety of the neighborhood.
Meanwhile, Misty Knight (Simone Missick) is recovering after the loss of her arm in The Defenders, kickstarting a whole new arc for her character—with the help of some epic technology from Rand Industries, of course.
SYFY FANGRRLS spoke to Missick ahead of Season 2's release about Misty Knight's new dynamic with Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick) and getting in on more of the fights this season, as well as who Misty would frak, marry, or kill.
Fans of the comics know that Misty's bionic arm is a really big part of her character, and it was really exciting to see the beginning of that arc start to take shape heading into this season. What were the biggest adjustments for you as an actor in terms of portraying that road to recovery, and what did you want to convey about that struggle for Misty?
So often when we think about people who go through a physical loss or develop a physical disability, you think about the physical pain. We think about soreness at the wound, or phantom limb syndrome. This idea that you've lived your entire life with something, and so to not have it anymore, what is that physically? What I enjoyed exploring the most was the emotional journey for Misty as well, in order to show what it's like for her to have her identity essentially taken away from her. When she loses her arm, she doesn't feel like she can be a cop anymore. She doesn't feel like she can protect and serve, and to be a force of power in that capacity anymore. Essentially, she doesn't know who she is. That was just such a rich emotional landscape to play around in for Season 2.
Then to be able to show her, with the help of those around her, pull herself up out of that depression was very exciting to play. Depression isn't necessarily something that we talk about a lot within our communities and within our homes, but to see a woman being depressed and going through those emotions and experiencing all the stages of grief that go with losing a huge part of yourself is important. And to be able to play that on screen was such a gift.I'm glad you mentioned the characters that she has around her that lift her up a bit, because one of the scenes that we've gotten to see so far is the bar fight with Colleen and Misty, and it really feels like the two of them have more of a sisterhood in Season 2. What was it like to grow that dynamic with Jessica [Henwick]?
Oh, it was such a gift, and it was so great the way that it was set up. When they meet each other in The Defenders, it's like a person looking into someone and seeing themselves reflected back. These two strong, capable women are never gonna take no for an answer, and [they] know that they can make things happen on their own. It was just that quick moment that you saw in The Defenders.
So when we see them at the beginning of Luke Cage Season 2, it's this idea of two women who are both struggling with who they are. Colleen has just killed her mentor. She's no longer a part of the Hand. She doesn't really know who she is. Sometimes it's [the] people who are struggling who can reach out and help people who are also struggling. It's that they both identify each other's pain, and yet at the same time, neither of these women is the type of woman to sit there and cry with you and say, "Go ahead. Wallow in it. Spend as much time as you need." They're both women who say, "All right. You had enough. Now, what are you gonna do?"
So I think that that was beautiful to watch. Oftentimes we see that relationship between men and women on screen. And it's a man who's telling the woman, "Come on. You've got to pick yourself up." You know, like Million Dollar Baby. You see this man motivating this woman to climb out of poverty and being looked at as second class in order to fight her own battles. And here you have another woman telling that to her counterpart. I think that that was so great to see. Then there's just the laughter and the humor that Jessica and I were able to find in Misty and Colleen. It's something that we explore in Season 2 of Iron Fist, which was such a gift to be able to work with her over the course of that season. I think it's something that has definitely enriched me as an actor and as a person.
The important thing about that clip too is that it demonstrates how, in a world with superheroes, women without powers can still be fighters. What's your favorite part about getting in on more of those fight scenes?
The fight scenes were probably the highlight, other than the emotional work. Being able to be physical and to pick up a new skill of fighting. We would spend a couple hours a week in the dojo working out this choreography with my stunt trainer, Alvin Hsing, and the people from our stunt team. So to be able to pick up that and to finally give the fans the physical parts of Misty, the prosthetic arm, and to take her badassery to a whole new level, that was my favorite part of the season, really.
Is Misty going to have any more of those fun fight scenes like we see in the bar? Can you hint at any others this season?
There is a lot of ass-kicking to come, so yeah. Definitely, because crime didn't stop in the bar. We take it up a notch as we near the end of the season.
I think Misty is the perfect go-between when it comes to our superheroes and the police department and law enforcement. She is a diplomatic person, and her compass always points north to justice. But in this season, watching her lose her complete trust for the system allows for her to play in those gray areas, which helps her to identify even more with Luke, and for their relationship to become more of a partnership than anything. I think that as long as Misty is on the force, she's always going to be fighting for Harlem and also fighting to make sure that we get to getting justice served no matter whether it's Luke Cage bringing in a suspect or Misty bringing in a suspect. She wants the quickest point from A to B to happen.
You'll see a lot more of that as the season continues, but then when you examine the source materials, Misty, when we find her, she's a cop for a small amount of time. She has her own detective agency with Colleen Wing, Daughters of the Dragon, she worked as the head of Heroes for Hire with Luke Cage and with Danny Rand. So in any capacity that Misty's in, she's gonna make sure that people who need to be behind bars are behind bars.
At SYFY FANGRRLS we play a little game called Frak, Marry, Kill, so we wanted to give you your own Luke Cage-themed frak, marry, kill: Luke Cage, Cottonmouth, Shades?
Wow. Oh. OK. Between Luke Cage, Cottonmouth, and Shades, she would kill Shades. She would kill Shades. He's a shady, slippery person. I think that she would frak Cottonmouth, because you know all that anger could be used for something good, and she would marry Luke, because they have the most in common.