THE trailer has been receiving rave reactions. Now Netflix’s superhero series, Luke Cage, is ready to premiere on the streaming site. Calling it an “inclusively black” show, executive producer Cheo Hodari Coker (who previously produced Ray Donovan and Southland), a self-confessed geek, says he “has been reading comic books forever”. With a hoodie as costume and Harlem as the backdrop, Mike Colter essays the Marvel character who attains super human powers when a medical experiment goes awry. Here, 44-yearold Coker talks about the relevance of Luke Cage today and the importance of music in the series.
How was it writing for the series?
We have so much complexity within each episode, I think that’s probably the most fun part about writing in this format. Not just in terms of doing a comic book show, but also doing it on Netflix, without commercial interruptions, with the whole bingewatching phenomenon.
Do you feel this Marvel character has more layers?
Luke Cage came out in 1972, the year I was born, within the era of Shaft and Super Fly. So the character was, to a certain extent, Marvel Universe’s reaction to blaxploitation. But all blaxploitation really is the ability for an African Ame r i c a n c h a r – acter to fight, get the girl, and have the low angle shot the same as John Wayne, S e a n C o n n e r y, S t e v e McQueen, or anybody else that defined an era.
Can you tell us about the artistes or songs that are going to appear in the show?
Jidenna Theodore Mobisson does an original song, Long Live the Chief, in episode 105, that’s really great. Faith Evans does Mesmerized in episode 102. Each episode is named after a gangster song. So the music kind of gives this undercurrent of rhythm and a pulse for every episode. Luke Cage will premiere on Netflix on September 30.