Simone Missick Explains How ‘Luke Cage’ Relates To Black Lives Matter

missick

Simone Missick plays Misty Knight in the upcoming Netflix and Marvel series, Luke Cage, a character who could become a mainstay with the Defenders. With the show less than two weeks away, Missick has spoken a bit on how current events seem to inform the storyline of Luke Cage and its setting in Harlem.

These events specifically involve police brutality and Black Lives Matter, the activist movement campaigning against minority-targeted violence. With Luke Cage being set in such a culturally relevant location, it seems fitting that the show would incorporate this into its narrative.

Speaking with Home and Family, Missick said (full clip below):

“You know, I think film and TV is this great, powerful, visual medium, but then it also gives you the opportunity to talk about things without necessarily addressing them very heavy-handedly. So we know that right now we’re in a time where we are looking at the black lives matter movement, and that all kind of sparked from the death of Trayvon Martin, who was this young teenage boy visiting his dad and he was wearing a hoodie, and was attacked and murdered. The creator of the show Cheo Hodari Coker and the costume design team and Mike Colter the lead of the show decided that they wanted Luke Cage to wear a hoodie in order to prove and to show and to highlight visually that just because a person has on a piece of clothing and is a color doesn’t mean that they’re a bad person, and it’s sparking conversation.”

If the intent is to start conversations, Luke Cage could be a great vehicle for just that. The show has already earned critical acclaim for its entertaining story, great performances, and soul, as our own critic Andy Behbakt wrote in his review. If there’s a chance for Luke Cage to also bring up important topics that are less easy to discuss at the dinner table, as Missick seems to suggest, than it’s worth the probable backlash.

Luke Cage premieres via Netflix on September 30th.

Source: Comicbook.com

Jon Negroni

Jon Negroni

I write and I know things.

  • Wildsyde7

    I understand her point, but why bring BLM into a comic book movie?? The costume kind of matters to a degree. Luke Cage/Powerman is an amazing character and I think the lack of it, with a “hoodie” replacement is kind of a slap in the face to fans of Heroes for Hire. They’re changing it, just for the sake of change and from what I can from this article, I can’t see how this improves the story or makes it more relevant. A hoodie superhero isn’t a bad thing, however, Luke Cage is a man, and he doesn’t really need to hide. That’s one of the things I enjoyed about the comics. He was never afraid to show himself in public, in costume or not. I do not agree with this costume change, just to appease PC/Liberals with their own agendas.

    I do not want any BLM influence in comic book properties. There’s ways to show Black Americans in a positive light without referencing real world political/social issues that are that raw in peoples minds. I guess creativity has been replaced by PC/Liberal/BLM reps, even at Netflix. I’ll still watch at least the first episode, but after reading this article, if I see more of this encouraged victim-based attitude pushed on more Black Americans, instead of showing how amazing these characters are in their own right, without this propaganda added into the mix from god knows where. I wonder if Iron Fist will incorporate the All Lives Matter movement, or White Lives Matter (wait, I’m not allowed to have pride and/or any type of love for my heritage, but that’s okay, I’ll live) or worse. Comic book properties, whether Netflix or big screen, should be produced without political influence, but that will not happen now. My apoligizes on the rant, however, if BLM was mentioned as a major influence in other properties, like Justice League with Cyborg, I don’t think the audience would agree with that perspective/attitude, considering he rolls mainly with white people. Luke Cage hangs with Iron Fist, does that make Iron Fist a BLM supporter now?

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    • Steve Steve

      I agree with the sentiment of your post. I really dislike the direct reference to Trayvon Martin. The utter disregard the activists had towards the truth of that case was/is astounding. I’ve included a picture of Zimmerman taken the night of the attack.

      Conversely, rightly or wrongly, black Americans identify with the hoodie as a powerful symbol of unity against unfair persecution. I view the Luke Cage hoodie as a marketing device to drive discussion and interest in the series. Perhaps the direct commentary made here is from Missick personally, and not the producers.

      What BLM fails to observe is the widespread persecution of blacks by other blacks. They (BLM) are masters of hypocrisy. Luke Cage, however, will feature multiple black villains who oppress their neighborhood.

      As has been said by people in the production, Luke Cage should be like “The Wire” and tell meaningful stories about urban black neighborhoods and the myriad of issues therein. There shouldn’t be much direct racial-issue preaching from the story. I expect the depiction of the police to be fair, with both good-cops and corrupt-cops. Given the focus on black heroes vs black villains this to be a quality show for any demographic.

      • wildsyde7

        I totally agree with your statement as well. If they do it right this could potentially change the face of comic book properties featuring Black Americans. I think between this series and black panther both will change the landscape as far as diversity goes. The one thing I do not hope for is diversity for the sake of diversity and not for any type of story element. A good example is the current Incredible Hulk run with Amadeus Cho as the Hulk. They took time developing the character, he made several crossovers with other Heroes and stood on his own two feet, first before taking up an existing mantle.

    • SAMURAI36

      Soon as people make the statement “All/White Lives Matter”, then I know that they are not even remotely familiar with the ideology of BLM, nor do they even care.

      However, I partially agree with the notion of not putting real-life politics in comics is always the best idea, however, if it’s done in a subversive manner, then it can be done, and done well.

      Moreover, it’s weird to hear people complain about politics and social issues in comics, when that’s what comics were used for in the very beginning. People don’t with heroes dressing up in American colors to fight Nazis, but they do when a certain segment of society is being oppressed. Interesting…

    • SAMURAI36

      Also, it’s funny that you don’t wanna see anything related to BLM, but are lamenting about pride in your heritage. But hey, carry on.

  • flavortang

    ugh

  • Darthmanwe

    If I know the Internetz right, the sub-racist outrage is due any min-…

    Wow, look at that, you guys are even earlier than usual.

  • SAMURAI36

    Let me be clear. I am a STAUNCH supporter of BLM. However, I do think Marvel will be shooting themselves in the foot by incorporating the BLM agenda directly into their stories.

    I know they are attempting to gain ground on the diversity front, but that’s been failing for them in the comic book arena, and it’ll fail in the movie/TV realm as well.

    Even though there’s an underrepresented segment of comic fans that are minorities, the overwhelming numbers still point to this genre still being white-male dominated, both as fans as well as the people who create this stuff. As such, as we can see in most discussions around the topic at large, white guys aren’t gonna wanna see these characters deal with this stuff. It’s bad enough for them, that there’s a King of Africa, who is more powerful, on different levels, than half the “heroes” of the Marvel Universe as it is.

    That said, I don’t see Luke Cage doing all that well. As much as I am an advocate for Hip-Hop (especially the 90’s NY version), that’s gonna be off-putting to non-Hip-Hop viewers as well, so it’s got that going against it.

    But I guess we’ll see.

    • wildsyde7

      As long as they don’t fall into the Trap of stereotypes I think the series could do well. Luke Cage is essentially Shaft with superpowers, showcasing that on top of a grounded real world environment but hopefully still retaining the super aspects that made the comic so awesome. That being said a grounded real world environment is a double edged sword. I don’t think any political group should be ever involved in a non-political, fictitious property unless it’s FOR a political group. I may be a part of a small demographic but my views on movies and TV have always been like an island, they should be produced without influence from non-industry lobbyists or political groups but with people that are passionate about filmmaking not just for the sake of propaganda to further another group’s agenda.

      • SAMURAI36

        As long as they don’t fall into the Trap of stereotypes I think the series could do well.

        You say this, and then directly turn around and say:

        Luke Cage is essentially Shaft with superpowers,

        Which is kinda an oxymoron. There are stereotypes galore surrounding the character, and have been since his inception.

        Such as this:

        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/afbe5568537688da3e31eb59eb34ac4f288371ee746823506e8467662b11e002.jpg

        And this:

        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8a1e692bd12fe44a473002becb6067c631624e6623628f89258f13bfdf2046ed.jpg

        And with Hip-Hop serving as the “urban backdrop”, it’s hard for this not to be seen as the pinnacle of stereotypes.

        showcasing that on top of a grounded real world environment but hopefully still retaining the super aspects that made the comic so awesome.

        If you say so. I’ve personally never beena fan of the character. I’ve always found him to be a walking contradiction; this is the same guy in the 80’s that criticized Storm for being a “fake” Black woman (to which I actually agree), and not being down for “the cause”, yet Marvel couldn’t wait to portray him turd burgling a white woman, and then having a kid with her. So much for “the cause”, huh?

        Which only serves to prove my point; Marvel doesn’t do political stories very well. They throw them at the audience at fastball speeds, hoping that someone is gonna catch it.

        That being said a grounded real world environment is a double edged sword. I don’t think any political group should be ever involved in a non-political, fictitious property unless it’s FOR a political group.

        I wouldn’t go that far. In fact:

        I may be a part of a small demographic but my views on movies and TV have always been like an island, they should be produced without influence from non-industry lobbyists or political groups but with people that are passionate about filmmaking not just for the sake of propaganda to further another group’s agenda.

        You must not watch alot of movies, then. Hollywood has been notorious for furthering the social, political, religious, economic and academic agendas of various organizations and individuals. In fact, some would go as far as to say that this was the very reason Hollywood was created in the first place.

        It’s safe to say that most of us have been indoctrinated with one agenda or another for all our lives, without even knowing it. It’s just that most studios, directors, etc are better at disguising said agenda within the story than others are.

        I don’t think Marvel is one of those studios. YMMV.

    • Steve Steve

      Sammy: “I love ____, but Marvel will be worse for including it.” LOL

  • DefJ123

    Except Luke Cage and BLM have nothing in common…

    Luke Cage beats up thugs like BLM. He protects people from thugs. BLM is a terrorist organisation hellbent on attacking whitey for whatever ridiculous reason they can find. Nevermind black on black murder is something like 80% of all black related murders.

    Also figures this idiot is choosing to ignore facts (Trayvon Martin was PROVEN to have assaulted the cop) and push a false narrative.

    • SAMURAI36

      Wow, it’s easy to qualify for my block list these days.

      • DefJ123

        Lmao grow a spine.

      • doomdidoom

        Blocking people you disagree with is nothing short of a sign of intellectual weakness.

        • SAMURAI36

          If you say so. I don’t owe anyone a conversation. And being smart enough to not wanna waste my time, is a sign of intellectual strength, not weakness.

          Besides, I’ve been on this earth long enough to know, that once certain statements, phrases, ideas get made, then there’s really no point in carrying on a conversation.

          YMMV.