Marvel's Luke Cage is finally back for a powered-up second season on Netflix this Friday, and to get us all primed and ready for the Hero for Hire's (played by Mike Colter) return to our TV screens, we caught up with executive producer Cheo Hodari Coker.
In the second part of his interview with SYFY WIRE's Karama Horne, the showrunner named Francis Ford Coppola's The Cotton Club (which also takes place in Harlem) as being influential in his decision to feature some amazing artists in Mariah's (Alfre Woodard) club. He then went on to explain why the show is like a Trojan horse that allows them to explore black culture.
The show's EP also revealed which Season 2 episodes were his favorites, and addressed the fact that the show’s sophomore season feels a bit more like an ensemble drama than Season 1 before explaining why.
"We were able to get into everybody's stories," Coker told us. "Misty [Knight] had her own challenges because of her losing her arm, so this is about getting the cool arm that you see in the teasers, but it's also about the evolution of what she goes through with losing her arm, so we get into that. We get into Luke's identity and also his anger because his father, played by the late Reg E. Cathey, comes into play."
Coker then went on to talk about the fact that almost half of Luke Cage's second season is being helmed by female directors, including: Lucy Liu, Millicent Shelton, Kasi Lemmons, Neema Barnette, Steph Green, and Salli Richardson-Whitfield. As for the theme he would like viewers to walk away with this season, Coker had more than one answer.
"My favorite Mike Tyson quote is when he said: 'Everybody's got a plan, until they get hit in the face,'" Coker said. "And so that's really what we test with Luke Cage. It's two notions. First, when you have to get hit, how does that affect who you are? And then the second notion is, of course… I believe it's a Japanese proverb: 'Fall seven times, rise eight,' which means how many times you get knocked down, you have to get up one more time; and we really explore that with Luke. And then of course I would also say the other theme is 'family first always.'"
Dig into our exclusive video for more, and let us know if you plan on catching up with Luke Cage when Season 2 hits Netflix on June 22.
Additional material by Nathalie Caron.