I have said this before, and I will say it again, it is so important to give veteran characters their due diligence. And, that is what happens with Luke Cage #1: Everyman Chapters 1 & 2. The due diligence is satisfied.
When it comes to characters you know and appreciate, it’s important to keep that. And, Anthony Del Col, Jahnoy Lindsay, VC’s Clayton Cowles, and Ian Herring do just that. Throughout Luke Cage #1 and straight from the beginning of this two-parter, we get Luke Cage the family man.
This version of Luke Cage, I love. I love the version of Luke Cage and Jessica Jones being endgame. So, right off the bat, I was here for this. I can tell you there will be spoilers, which are hard to not talk about in this issue. There is an important plot point that will be discussed. If you have yet to read this wonderful issue, please do so.
What Is Luke Cage #1 About?
With a huge heat wave currently erupting in Harlem, the citizens turn to the one and only Luke Cage. However, the heat wave is not the thing on Luke or anyone’s mind — someone has their sights on the city’s rich and powerful. The 1% of Harlem is being taken out one by one and no one can figure out how or why.
…And, it’s up to Luke Cage to figure out why this is happening and try and save Harlem. But, along the way, he must come to terms with his own diagnosis. Luke is in for a rude awakening on each end of the spectrum in this new wonderful two-parter Marvel Digital Series. Just like Jessica Jones #1 happened, Marvel did it again, and they are on a roll.
Everything Works In Luke Cage #1
From the artwork to the writing, each end of the spectrum works and it works really well. Restarting Luke Cage is one thing but adding in [spoiler] a CTE diagnosis is another conversation to be had. While I don’t want my man Luke to be in any pain, this conversation is important.
So, let’s begin with the writing. The writing is impeccable, Del Col does an outstanding job with the writing in this issue. Both parts flow well, you get the intensity of the issue after his diagnosis is stated, and above all else, you get the sense of urgency.
Luke Cage Is Important
We are so used to these characters being perfect, in a sense. Not necessarily perfect to the point where they are unflawed, they are very much so flawed. But, health wise — we are used to them having a clean bill for the most part. We never truly get an otherwise, so there was no reason for us to think so. Nonetheless, Luke Cage #1 changes this for us. It alters the narrative.
The narrative is altered in a way that brings up a conversation. A conversation about CTE and at the end of this two-parter, we get an interview about the topic at hand and more information about it (if you don’t know much about CTE). The writing is impeccable, but the diagnosis is something that makes sense. It makes sense for Luke to have CTE with all the head trauma he does get on a day-to-day basis.
The Artwork Excels
Luke Cage #1 has impeccable artwork to follow the writing and topic of this issue and series to follow. Cage and his daughter both look unique, all the character do, but the main characters which are those two stand out.
In the times of stress and anxiety, you get in the panels by the artwork that extra oomph. When Baptiste gets a letter or the 100 dollar bill with the same message, you get that immediate stress. You see this in the panel and screaming off the page when you get to the specific scene. When Luke gets his diagnosis, you can feel the anxiety. Not even really anxiety just kind of… shock. The immediate
“I have a daughter, what am I going to do?”
Please, Read It — A Million Times Over!
Again, as aforementioned, since this is such a powerful issue — everything has to flow well enough to get that it’s a serious issue. That comes off perfectly. There are no hiccups with this issue, there is no confusion, it is effortless. You can tell a ton of thought went into this issue, a ton of conversation beforehand, and overall it shows.
If you have the time this week and any time in the near future, give this issue a read. Again, we have spoilers about one huge aspect of Luke Cage #1. But, there is a new sort of villain at the end that is disclosed.
We won’t spoil that for you, but there’s a method to his madness so far… at least from what we can see. But, this conversation about CTE is something we needed in comics. I am excited to see where this wonderful series goes from here. It has promise, and honestly, that is rare these days.
So, appreciate this issue as much as we did because it is worth it.