When Marvel’s “Luke Cage” debuts on Netflix, it will be a history-making moment for the studio, which has thus far given the world “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” “Agents of SHIELD” and the Marvel Cinematic Universe — it will be the first live-action story they’ve told to feature a black person as the focus point.
While Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) and Falcon (Anthony Mackie) have already made their MCU debuts, neither has had a stand-alone movie — “Black Panther” begins production soon. For Mike Colter, who plays the titular Luke Cage, it’s an honor he takes very seriously.
“It’s important in the landscape of television, but also globally as far as symbols and people … when they look at black culture I think it’s important that they have positive images,” he explains during a panel at the TCA summer TV press tour.
However, while the story is set in a predominantly black Harlem, that doesn’t mean the story isn’t accessible to all who will watch.
“We’re just trying to tell a story,” he explains. “We’re just trying to tell a story about a superhero, who’s going through the same types of changes that superheroes who aren’t black go through.”
At the end of the day, Colter simply hopes people are accepting of Cage, regardless of the color of his skin. While a black hero may seem like a rarity on-screen at this point, something that is slowly changing, it doesn’t make him different than any other superhero out there.
“We have no agenda, but I’m proud that people do think he’s a good superhero and I hope black people can feel good about him as well,” Colter says.
“Luke Cage” premieres on Netflix on Sept. 30.