So this episode, yeah, it is starting that dangerous trend that these Marvel Netflix shows have had. Goodness but I hope I’m wrong
Luke Cage s01e06 Suckas Need Bodyguards
writer: Nathan Louis Jackson
director: Sam Miller
What do I mean by dangerous habit? A lot of the Marvel shows have started quite strong. Amazingly strong. And then they just kind of slow down and drift towards merely adequate or even disappointing. This particular episode was firmly in the “meh” category. It wasn’t bad. But it really wasn’t good either. To say things felt forced by plot feels like an understatement.
Spoilers Lurk Below
We’ve known since episode three that Scarfe was a crooked cop. WE learned last episode that there is more crookedness out there. And this episode was the “let’s get the bad cops” show. And it was quite dull. For one reason this show has gone pretty out of its way to make the crooked cops unlikeable. Which just feels like lazy or easy writing. We don’t feel hurt or betrayed, just vindicated in not liking that character. The new bad cop seemed to only have five lines of dialog, and boy did they make sure a few five of them established him as a dill weed.
I really don’t understand the Scarfe / Knight relationship. They gave her a partner. A partner she seemed to have a genuine fondness for even though he acted like a schmuck for many of the episodes. By the way, he’s also dirty and even though Knight is a Super Cop, she had no inkling. So, I guess she isn’t so super? But she is? And we learn he had a kid. Who died. That’s sad. Except it was because Scarfe was a negligent father. So, less sad and more material that makes him a shithead. That Knight feels sorry for and respects. What? I’m so confused. Part of me thinks the kid was thrown in to give Scarfe something to say to indicate he was about to die. It was as if Sanford and Son were played seriously. And Knight felt emotions. But the whole scene never connected to me. It felt fake, despite Simone Missick really putting it out there.
And then we have Alfre Woodard, another amazingly talented actress who has scenes that don’t make since. She comes from a crooked past. A crooked past that only makes since if it is public knowledge. So, when the reporter brings it up why does Mariah pitch a fit? If the threat of Mariah is supposed to be her intelligence and politics, what point does having her throw a tantrum during an interview serve? I’m not sure if this show has a low opinion of its audience or is just not bothering to write a smart script, but I’m just disappointed.
This episode seemed to be set up in order to tick plot boxes off a list. Nothing felt earned and nothing felt authentic. It was paint by numbers. Charismatic leads only take you so far. Give them someplace good to go to. This episode did not provide that.