Netflix has delivered a body blow to Luke Cage.
One week after giving Iron Fist its walking papers, the streaming giant dropped the axe on Luke Cage as a continuing series according to Deadline. “Everyone at Marvel Television and Netflix is grateful to the dedicated showrunner, writers, cast and crew who brought Harlem’s Hero to life for the past two seasons, and to all the fans who have supported the series,” the company said in a statement. The site reports scripts were already in development for the third season, which would have featured titular character Luke Cage (Mike Colter) as the boss at Harlem’s Paradise. Apparently, creative differences over that storyline and tension in the writers’ room lead to the decision to end the series.
Which is a surprising and sad fate for the series. It’s second season was an improvement over the first, making each episode feel more vital than the strange split between the opening and back halves of the first season. The focus on crime bosses Mariah Dillard (Alfre Woodard) and John McIver (Mustafa Shakir) gave the show an added oomph and set up an intriguing situation for Luke as Mariah handed him the poison chalice.
Of course, the widening split between Marvel Television and Netflix could have something to do with Disney’s upcoming streaming platform. Though all parties involved said the Marvel Netflix series would go on, the sudden quick cancellation of Luke Cage and Iron Fist suggests the streamer is more than ready to sever ties with shows produced by their soon-to-be rival.
Which could mean a Heroes for Hire series is in the offing over at Disney. Bringing the key characters of Luke Cage and Iron Fist together could lead to something which never quite happened at Netflix: a worthy team-up. But until that becomes a reality, we’ll mourn Luke Cage and the Season 3 we’ll never see.
The other remaining Marvel shows, Jessica Jones and The Punisher, still have upcoming seasons. But one has to wonder if they will return. Daredevil‘s third and possibly last season at Netflix went live today.