Luke Cage: The Creator
July 1, 2018 10:59 AM - Season 2, Episode 11 - Subscribe

Shaken by Mariah's latest act, Luke combs the city for a witness. Flashbacks reveal a fateful encounter between the Stokes and McIver families. (written by Nicole Mirante-Matthews & Matthew Lopes, directed by Stephen Surjik

AV Club review - Flashbacks invigorate Luke Cage but don’t do much for character development

*At Gwen's, Luke surveys the crime scene with Misty. Misty notes that there are 9mm shell casings all around, except by Anansi, who she speculates was shot at close range with a revolver. They notice a blood trail leading away from the scene and realize there is a surviving witness somewhere.

*Sheldon has Tilda working on an unconscious Bushmaster. In flashback to mid-80's Kingston, we see young Bushmaster working at a resort, while young Mariah and Cornell enjoy the pool. Bushmaster witnesses part of a meeting between Mabel & Uncle Pete + Ben Donovan, with Gwen and her lawyer. Gwen wants her share of the profits from the rum business and Harlem's Paradise, and her lawyer presents the old napkin which Buggy and McIver signed as their partnership agreement, but Mabel and Pete laugh it off.

*Back at Harlem's Paradise, Alex shows Mariah and Shades the safe room being constructed with Atreus Plastics tech in the club basement. Mariah loves it but Shades is dismissive that there's any hiding from Bushmaster after what Mariah has done.

*Mariah visualizes the massacre at Gwen's, and realizes that Anansi's wife, Ingrid, must be the survivor.

*Luke roughs up various crime gang members, but they all insist that none of them or their organizations were behind the massacre, and Misty confirms from surveillance camera footage that Ingrid did leave the scene. At Chief Ridley's command, Misty heads a press conference, though she'd rather be out working the case.

*At the club, Shades tries to get Mariah to explain her actions, but seeing the press conference news, she tells him she needs him to be Shades, not Hernan, and to find Ingrid.

*Sheldon tells Tilda the story of how, when he and Bushmaster were children, a bunch of them were given free (mystery) vaccinations, and all of the vaccinated kids but Bushmaster died. In flashback, we see young Bushmaster's escape from the house fire, only to witness the house collapsing on his mother. Mama Mabel arrives and throws papers on the fire, telling the weeping boy "sorry babe, told your mama I wasn't dealing with no lawyers."

*Misty gets the ballistics report from Det. Bailey that the bullet in Anansi is from a 38, and it's a match for the one that killed Candace.

*At the club, Mariah meets with Yangsi Goshi, saying she wants in on the heroin trade, and they shake on it.

*Luke checks a walk-in clinic (on the advice of a hospital nurse), and finds two guys roughing up a worker, and drives them off, telling them to tell Mariah that he's coming for her. He finds Ingrid hiding in an exam room, and brings her outside to sneak away through the West Indian Day Parade, but Shades grabs her when Luke's back is turned. He pulls her back into the clinic, and she recognizes him from the massacre and begs for mercy. Shades ultimately cannot bring himself to kill her and runs away before Luke sees him. Luke and Ingrid talk a bit, then slip away in the parade.

*Tilda applies more nightshade at Sheldon's direction. In flashback to 2 years after Gwen's murder, Bushmaster is working as a street vendor in Trenchtown, and a man shoots him in the gut, saying it was "for Buggy." Young Anansi carries the wounded boy to a healer who uses nightshade on him, and his body heals and expels the bullets. In the present, Tilda's nightshade heals Bushmaster, and he comes to. Ingrid, hiding with Luke in her friend's kitchen restaurant, tells Luke the flashback story too.

*Misty finds another old case with a ballistics match, a man shot in the chest and found in the river. She brings it to Ridley, but Ridley points out that it's a case tainted by Scarfe's involvement.

*At the club, Mariah has a martini, then visions of Mabel and Pete who she argues with.

*Bushmaster asks Tilda what the nightshade has cost him, and she tells him it has poisoned his internal organs, but she doesn't know how badly or if it can be undone. He thanks her for her help, then a crying Sheldon brings the news of Anansi and the massacre.

*Luke tells Misty that Ingrid doesn't want to testify agains Mariah, she just wants to take Anansi's body back to Jamaica.

*Tilda, Bushmaster, and Sheldon look over the crime scene of Gwen's. Sheldon asks what to do about Tilda, but Bushmaster lets her go.

*At the club, Shades arrives to find Mariah having a drink with Alex, and attitudes him away. He tells Mariah she's lost her heart, and broken the rules of the game by killing so many innocent people. She taunts him for losing his nerve, and says he hasn't been the same since Comanche was killed, then mocks him when she figures out that they were in a prison relationship. The argument escalates to Shades choking her, but he stops himself from killing her, calls her pathetic, and leaves. Tilda arrives to ask Mariah if she really ordered all those people killed, and she scoffs and tells her she didn't order anything, that she lit the match and pulled the trigger.

*Outside the precinct, Shades approaches Misty and tells her that Mariah has gone too far, that he wants to help Misty stop her, and he allows Misty to handcuff him.

*At the morgue, Bushmaster arrives at the same time as Ingrid and Luke. She cries over Anansi's body while Bushmaster and Luke talk. Bushmaster delivers a "we're not so different, you and I" speech, and Luke tells him that the next time they fight he's going to put him down permanently. Luke leaves the morgue alone, and is approached by Sugar, who tells him that Mariah is out of control and someone needs to take over. Luke agrees that maybe Harlem "needs a king."
posted by oh yeah! (3 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
That pink dress of Mariah's was gorgeous.

I'm really not liking Misty's crime-scene visualizations this season, aside from that one in an earlier episode where she was wearing Shades' shades, and they merged the setting between the interrogation room and the crime scene. I feel like in season 1 they did a better job of using her mind-walk through the crime scene to show what a smart super-cop she was, but this season they're mostly just full on long clips of scenes we've already watched, of dialogue she wouldn't have any way of knowing, and just serve to unnecessarily pad the episode length rather than serve the character.
posted by oh yeah! at 12:02 PM on July 1, 2018 [4 favorites]

Bleh. Shades should've finished strangling Mariah.
posted by minsies at 6:36 PM on July 14, 2018 [1 favorite]

Bushmaster delivers a "we're not so different, you and I" speech

No, he says that very sentence. Some writer put a placeholder in the script [we're not so different you and I] to be finished later, and they accidentally filmed it.

I swear I would have forgiven this show for every line of terrible dialogue if Luke Cage had snorted and said something like, "Do you know how many assholes have said that shit?"
posted by straight at 8:28 PM on October 6, 2018

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