Luke and Diamondback square off while Mariah and Shades scheme to stay out of trouble in the season finale.
Beware the Spoilers
The finale quickly deals with the threat of Diamondback and it was anything but anti-climactic. Moving back and forth between the main fight and the two men as teenagers. Willis taught Carl how to box as kids. We see how these two used to rely on one another for support and Luke use what Willis taught him to finally defeat his half-brother. Luke challenged Willis to do what he came to do, kill Luke. Willis tried, but Luke stood back and allowed Willis to tire himself and the suit out, just as he was taught. It was powerful seeing the parallels. It really helped to fully explain this relationship. I wish the producers would have thought to do that sooner and the second half of the series could have been much more poignant.
This will not be the last we see of Diamondback I’m sure. Just as I predicted, the hard drive Dr. Burnstein saved will be used to experiment on Willis if that last shot of him is to be interpreted as such.
Defeating Willis Stryker was only the beginning. Candice’s statement about Mariah and Shades framing Luke Cage along with Luke and Claire’s testimony of his whereabouts when the officer was killed allowed for the murder charges to be dropped. Thanks to Mariah letting Carl Lucas’ name slip to the reporters during the big showdown, the Feds were alerted to Luke’s existence and came to take him back to serve the rest of his sentence. Claire knows a really good lawyer and Fish has the folder Mariah and Shades brought to help clear Carl’s name, so I don’t expect Luke to remain in prison for too long. Just a nice way of keeping him in one place until he is needed in 2017’s The Defenders.
What made me really happy with the finale is seeing Mariah in her office at Harlem’s Paradise with Shades at her side. She is the true heir to Mama Mable’s legacy. The dynamic between these two has been the best of the show and now that Mariah is not afraid to get her hands dirty, it is only going to get better.
Misty’s story is only really beginning as well. Candice’s death put a large spotlight on Misty’s loss of faith in the system. If she would have come to Inspector Ridley when Candice wanted to confess the truth, then they would have been better fit to protect the young woman and Mariah would be facing murder charges. Now Misty is back at Harlem’s Paradise where we met her and keeping an eye on things, but this time she is going to have to go about it a different way.
While I wasn’t fond of the how Diamondback was treated in the series, overall the show was a really well done superhero show that exists in a real world. There are plenty of good set ups for the second season and I will be there when it drops.
The titular song from Gang Star made an appearance in the beginning of the episode while the amazing Sharon Jones and The Dap-Kings closed it out with “100 Days, 100 Nights.”
What did you think of “You Know My Steez”? Did you enjoy the final smack down between Luke and Willis? Are you happy to see Black Mariah as the big bad for season two? What did you think of Luke Cage overall? Talk to me in the comments section and feel free to post all of the spoilers you wish. Click here to see all of the Luke Cage episode breakdowns.