The latest issue of EW is dedicated to Marvel’s The Defenders (headed to Netflix this summer) and is loaded with info for fans hungry to find out how these four heroes will come together. In the latest bit, Luke Cage actor Mike Colter discusses his role as the “wisdom” of the team and updating the classic Power Man and Iron Fist bromance for 2017.
Fans will recall that the last time we saw Luke, he was back in Seagate Prison after having owned up to Carl Lucas’s escape from the prison in the wake of the experiment that gave him his powers. It’s a no-brainer that Cage can’t stay in lock-up for long, but Colter reassured fans that his Power Man will not only be free from prison, but also the secrets that haunted him:
“It’s safe to say Cage is not going to spend the entire season of The Defenders behind bars,” Colter says, laughing. “He’s been able to come clean and deal with his past… The difficulty with Cage [in the first season] is that he has this secret, he has this thing that he’s been trying to run away from and deal with, and that’s a big burden to bear. That weighs on you, that changes who you are as a person. Now that that’s out of the way, I think we can give him a different approach to life.”
Part of that new approach to life seems to be carrying on in the spirit of his mentor, Pops, as a touchstone for wisdom and maturity. As the Defenders come together, Colter says Cage will be the “conciliator” and adds, “I’m the guy, the wisdom. If you want to make sure something works, run it up the flagpole.“
It looks to be in that role as the wise councilor of the group that Cage will lay the foundations for the legendary comic book friendship between him and Danny Rand. It seems Cage will be a foil to Rand’s brashness and youth. Colter says of Rand (played by Finn Jones and first appearing in Marvel’s Iron Fist on March 17th):
“He’s a young guy. There’s an exuberance that Iron Fist comes with that Luke Cage wants to temper a bit,” Colter teases. “It can’t help but have a wisdom-versus-youth quality… Danny comes out like a bull in a china shop in some ways, and I think Luke has seen the world and knows certain things. It’s a cool combination that’ll work out.”
This looks to be a bit of a different spin on the relationship that the two forged in the Heroes for Hire comics, but one that, according to Colter, will still hold on to some of what avid fans crave, “We definitely want to pay homage to the fanboys, but we want to make it make sense in this time period.”
Just what that means in terms of how Luke and Danny will interact remains to be seen, but it seems that Luke will try to help Danny avoid any fiddle-faddle that could be handled without punching through it. As showrunner Marco Ramirez says, Cage has had the spotlight on him by “openly walking around as a hero.” That experience seems to be a big part of his role in the Defenders, but it also continues to define who he is because, as Ramirez states, “there’s a lot of pressure that comes with that (being a public hero).” We will see how that pressure helps define not only Cage, but his relationships with the heroes he will stand with against a threat big enough to bring them all together.
Marvel’s The Defenders will stream sometime this summer on Netflix with all 8 episodes being released simultaneously. All this recent coverage smells like we might expect a new teaser soon and we can almost certainly expect something substantial when Marvel’s Iron Fist streams in March.