Somewhat inevitably, Netflix have confirmed that Luke Cage will be back for a second season. The reviews to the first were strong, if a little more mixed than for the other Netflix/Marvel shows (I really don't get why, I thought it was fantastic through and through), and as evidenced by Netflix going down on the second day of the series being available, a LOT of people watched it.
The ground for another season was well and truly laid throughout the Harlem Hero's first. Its ending, showcasing a defeated if not defiant Cage being whisked off to Seagate Prison under charges he didn't commit, will certainly have to be addressed in time for The Defenders. Mariah and Shades' new partnership (and romance?), would also form a key aspect of any potential second season moving ahead, but there's much, much more in store for Harlem's Hero for Hire.
Luke Cage is, after all, one of Marvel's foremost properties, and with that position comes an immense pool of literature to draw from. As for what should be included in the second season? Well, we may just have a few ideas...
10. Mariah And Shades Growing More Ambitious
Though we all may lament Cottonmouth's premature departure in the seventh episode of Cage's first episode, it's hard to deny that Mariah and Shades are just as formidable on screen; the former for her ruthless political ambitions, and the latter for his, well, manipulative nature. The two hold the keys to Harlem by the end of the first season, but is this the equal relationship Mariah thinks it is?
Throughout Cage's 13 episodes, Shades was positioned next to her to outmanoeuvre Cottonmouth in an attempted power-grab by Diamondback. It ultimately failed, because you know, Luke Cage was there and all that. But Mariah is well and truly entrenched in both the criminal underworld and the local political sphere by the time the final credits role. Shades, in an elevated role, is now at the epicentre of Harlem's largest criminal network, and is in prime position to pull Mariah's strings to suit his own goals too.
A great way to shift the power dynamic totally would be to keep the two guessing as to who's really in charge. I get the sense even Shades doesn't truly know at this point, so to throw a subtle power struggle into the mix would add a great deal of tension to forthcoming episodes.