“Marvel’s “Luke Cage” Aims to Be ‘Completely Different’ from “Daredevil” or “Jessica Jones”

“Given that viewers already saw a lot of Luke Cage, as played by Mike Colter, on Netflix’s“Jessica Jones” — and if you’ve watched the show, you know we do mean a lot — they might think they know what to expect when Marvel Television‘s “Luke Cage” solo series debuts in September. However, according to those involved, it will be very different from both “Jessica Jones” and its Marvel/Netflix predecessor “Daredevil.”

Last week at the red carpet premiere event for “Captain America: Civil War,” CBR News chatted briefly with “Luke Cage” showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker and actress Simone Missick, who plays cybernetically enhanced detective Misty Knight. Both stressed that while it’s definitely in the same world as “Daredevil” and “Jessica Jones,” “Luke Cage” will have its own feel — as reflected in part by its setting of Harlem, rather than Hell’s Kitchen.

Coker, a hip-hop journalist and TV veteran who’s worked on “Southland,” “Ray Donovan” and “NCIS: Los Angeles,” also discussed the connection he sees between Luke Cage and albums like “Midnight Marauders” by A Tribe Called Quest, and his long history with comics fandom. In speaking of the importance of playing Misty Knight, Missick remarked, “Misty Knight is so iconic and so important to so many people; you don’t realize until you join the project.”

CBR News: Simone, Cheo, “Daredevil” had a very specific feel; “Jessica Jones” did too, while both clearly inhabiting the same territory. Where does “Luke Cage” fall in the spectrum between those two shows?

Simone Missick: It’s completely different.

Cheo Hodari Coker: Absolutely.

Missick: The colors, the feel, the sounds — everything about this show is its own thing. Harlem is a character in this show. All the other shows took place in Hell’s Kitchen; this is the first one that’s taking place in Harlem, and you definitely feel that. You feel that in the music, in the conversation, in the characters, everything. It’s its own thing. “Luke Cage” is something completely new…”



“How Legends Of Tomorrow’s Vixen Will Be Different From Arrow’s Version”

“Comic shows have been taking television by storm, and The CW is the place to be for an entire universe of superheroes. One of the more unusual characters to debut on The CW recently was Vixen, who first flaunted her magical powers on an animated web series on CW Seed. She later appeared in the flesh as a guest star in an episode of Arrow, and she’ll soon be making the big jump to appear as a regular on Season 2Legends of Tomorrow. As it happens, however, Legends‘ Vixen Legends will not be the one who helped Oliver Queen, as this will be a Vixen of days gone by.

Vixen’s appearance on Arrow helped Oliver out of a very sticky situation, but her powers were just a little bit too fantastical for her to fit in as a regular in Star City. A woman with the ability to use her magical totem to channel the abilities of animals could conceivably work long term elsewhere, though, so a past version of Vixen joining the time-skipping Rip Hunter and Co. could be the perfect way to incorporate her character into the Super-Legends of Flarrow-verse without overshadowing Oliver Queen on his own show.

The Vixen who showed up on Arrow was also known as Mari McCabe, and she was played by actress Megalyn E.K. Unfortunately for those of us who loved her portrayal of Vixen, Megalyn E.K. is too busy with other projects to join Legends of Tomorrow as a regular. Legends will use time travel shenanigans to recruit an earlier version of Vixen who may or may not have a connection with Mari, according to TV Insider…”


“The Last Taboo: Will Smith, “Focus,” And Hollywood’s Interracial Couples Problem”

“Will Smith has already saved the world.

But ultimately that might not be his biggest on-screen accomplishment. Now he’s poised to solve what is arguably Hollywood’s last taboo: interracial couples.

You could say that Smith has also already bridged the gap between black and white audiences. As one of Hollywood’s most bankable actors, Smith has starred in some of the biggest blockbusters that have been marketed and watched on a universal level—no one would call the Men in Black franchise or Independence Day “black” movies. But there’s something deeper at play in Smith’s body of work, and that is the issue of on-screen, interracial romances.


“GREEN LANTERNS: REBIRTH #1 is a ‘Swift Kick in the Pants That This Franchise Needed'”

Spoilers ahead.

“You both were chosen because you have the ability to overcome great fear. Better start acting like it.”

Simon Baz and Jessica Cruz are the newest Green Lanterns of Earth, the former with a gun in his hands and a chip on his shoulder, the latter in way over her head in a universe of good and evil. While these two characters have only just scratched the surface of their potential, Geoff Johns and Sam Humphries’ Green Lanterns: Rebirth #1 is a great outlet for these rookie ringslingers to finally get some of that sweet emerald spotlight.

Baz and Cruz come from the opposite side of the tracks, but both represent a collective point of view we have yet to really explore in the Green Lantern mythos — they’re both newcomers, both come from tumultuous personal lives, and offer a distinctly different perspective than the primarily white male base of the rest of the earthbound Green Lanterns. But while neither Baz nor Cruz have the longevity of their predecessors, Humphries and Johns play this to their advantage, as these two freshmen superheroes give audiences a smooth entree to everything fans love about this crazy space police world — we have Guardians on the run, secret villains in space, the cold robotic Manhunters, not to mention a veteran Lantern tasked with showing these youngins the ropes…”



“Thor: Ragnarok Director Taika Waititi on Working with Marvel: ‘These people don’t act like a studio'”

“For a filmmaker with such a particular, peculiar sense of humor, New Zealand writer-director Taika Waititi has helmed a surprisingly wide range of projects. He’s directed commercials and PSAs, and an charming Oscar-nominated short film (Two Cars, One Night) about two bored kids hanging out together in a parking lot. He’s directed projects with his longtime comedy partner Jemaine Clement, including episodes of Clement’s TV comedy / band spinoff Flight Of The Conchords, and the awkward romantic comedy Eagle vs Shark.

He’s directed a funny Maori coming-of-age film, Boy, that became New Zealand’s biggest box-office hit, and a giggly, improv-heavy vampire mockumentary, What We Do In The Shadows, which he also starred in opposite Clement. But as much as his projects vary, they have some shared elements. Waititi is of Maori descent, and he often works with Maori actors and writes Maori characters. His sense of humor is straight-faced and sincere. His characters — like his put-upon den-mother vampire Viago in What We Do In The Shadows — tend to be hilarious but impotent, and they’re endlessly self-aggrandizing, without realizing how foolish they sound.

It’s hard to see how any of this familiar texture will fit into his current project: he just started shooting the new Marvel Cinematic Universe installment Thor: Ragnarok, currently slated for release in November 2017. But so far, he’s been enthusiastic and upbeat about the process of handling his first huge, CGI-heavy studio movie, and injecting his own personality into it. Some of his optimism may come from the fact that he just beat his own New Zealand box-office record with Hunt For The Wilderpeople, a widely praised adventure-comedy about a cranky, illiterate senior citizen (Sam Neill) and his 13-year-old ward (Julian Dennison) disappearing into the New Zealand bush together to evade child-welfare authorities…”


“Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Will Present a New Side of Darth Vader”

“The Darth Vader that will appear in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story won’t be the Darth Vader that fans remember from the original trilogy, nor will he be a newcomer to the Sith side, like Anakin Skywalker is at the end of Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.

Warning: This post will contain small spoilers for Vader’s role in Rogue One. if you’re trying to go in blind, it might be best to stop reading now.

 Kathleen Kennedy, Lucasfilm president, told Entertainment Weekly a few key details about Vader’s return to the Star Wars universe. James Earl Jones, 85, will reprise his role as the voice of Vader while a new army of young actors walk around in the famous suit. Jones has been voicing Vader on Disney XD’s Star Wars: Rebels, but other actors have lent their talents to game and cartoon properties, imitating the voice Jones made famous in 1977.

Kennedy said that while Vader will be used sparingly on screen, he will appear in one of the most crucial moments of the film. As it stands, Rogue One takes place approximately 19 years after the events of Revenge of the Sith, and Darth Vader still isn’t the menacing force that he eventually becomes in A New Hope. Instead, Vader is still trying to prove himself, and he’ll stand opposite Ben Mendelsohn’s Director Orson Krennic, the film’s main villain, to do just that…”


“What Happened to Bruce Banner and The Hulk After Secret Wars?”

“Between the big screen and the comic book pages, 2016 has undoubtedly been one of Marvel’s most divisive years, at least in a fictional sense, with the launch of Captain America: Civil Warpitting the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s biggest heroes against one another. As a loose sequel to the Cap 3-inspired story arc, the recently launched Civil War II story arc won’t bring any more peace to the superwomen and men of Marvel’s printed page either.

Civil War II poses many interesting and difficult ethical questions to Marvel’s elite superhero forces. Yet for fans of the Incredible Hulk, one question has been prevalent: what the heck happened to Bruce Banner?

In Totally Awesome Hulk #7, fans finally get their answer (via IGN). For those a little behind the curve, the Hulk and Bruce Banner had, shall we say, a parting of ways. Last year’s All New, All Different Marvel reboot saw an end to the Secret Wars saga and the entrance of a new Hulk, that of Amadeus Cho. In the latest Hulk, we find out what actually put Cho in the driver’s seat of the mean green machine. In flashback it’s revealed that Banner/Hulk sacrifices himself to diffuse a fusion reactor meltdown, absorbing a lethal dose in the process. The near-prescient Cho drops into the scene just in time to stop the Hulk from exploding, saving Bruce Banner’s life and the lives of countless innocents…”