Hands down, my favorite part of LA Comic Con was the ‘Meet Marvel’s Newest Hero: Luke Cage’ panel, as I loved ‘Luke Cage’ (make sure to check out all of my reviews!), and think Mike Colter did an amazing job in the titular role. And based on the massive crowd at the panel, I am not alone in feeling that way. Mike Colter came out to a cheering crowd, who we quickly learned, only had about 3 members in it that had not actually seen the first season of ‘Luke Cage’ all the way through.
Understandably, Mike has a lot to say about ‘Luke Cage,’ as did the fans when he opened the floor up for questions. He, of course, loves the character, loves that he got to introduce Luke to the world in ‘Jessica Jones,’ loves that Luke Cage is a ladies man but “not because he is trying to be’ (making sure to point out that Luke has had dalliances with Jessica, Misty, and Claire), and the fact that unlike the other Netflix heroes, Luke is kind of a more mature hero. He did not get his powers as a kid, he got them as an adult, which means he was an ordinary man and lived life that way long before he became bulletproof, and has more humility and maturity because of that. When asked about getting into the original Luke Cage outfit, Mike said that he loved getting into the costume and how it was built into the story, but was very happy that he did not need to stay in that retro get-up for the rest of the season.
During one of his stories about the show, we were treated to Stan Lee himself walking out on stage for a surprise appearance, which we knew was genuine as Colter himself looked shocked. Stan went up to Mike, shook his hand, and congratulated him on the extraordinary success of ‘Luke Cage,’ and the audience went WILD. Seriously, it was my favorite part of the convention, and it was amazing to behold. They posed for a couple of pictures (Stan groaning that “I hate posing with bigger, better looking guys), and then Stan commenting on how proud he was of the character and the show, then exiting the stage, but not before telling Mike that “…if anyone tampers with the show, you call me.” It was a great moment, and reminded us all that it is Stan Lee’s convention, and the man is very deserving of his legions of fans.
Shortly after, Colter got into some more serious topics with his fans, namely the importance of having an African American character like Luke out in the world today. Colter commented that he recognizes the importance of Luke and feels the love of the fans, and always felt it was important to him that “[Luke Cage] is not a black superhero, just a superhero who happens to be black.” When asked about the significance of a black man being impervious to bullets in today’s world and whether that factored into the creation of the show, Colter was quick to point out that “Luke Cage’ does not cater exclusively to a minority audience, but it is clear that there are some echoes of the Black Lives Matter movement throughout. In his words “Black Lives Matter… it’s underneath the surface of who he [Luke Cage] is.”
Colter’s final words had to do with the future, especially in looking forward to the coming bromance with Finn Jones when his character and Luke Cage meet on-screen and hopefully form the Heroes for Hire Agency. When asked which other Netflix heroes he would like to spar with he says the whole idea is unfair as Jessica Jones, Daredevil, nor Punisher would be able to hurt him, and he would only be able to spar with them if he was to be their punching bag as they practiced their moves. He says would love to some day work with Captain America or Iron-Man and ride around in a quinjet, though he has no idea what the future has in store for his character. And of course, when asked what he thinks of DC, he gave a very classy answer, stating that there are some DC comics that he enjoys (not that he could mention any), but he recognizes that the two rival companies are important to each other as their competition is what pushes both to continued excellence.
Best answer I’ve heard yet from an actor about that question, and definitely shows the character of Mike Colter, and makes me love the man and his show even more.