Monday, May 22, 2017

Luke Cage #1 Review - Marvel Monday

Captivating Cage Conflict

Written by: David Walker
Art by: Nelson Blake II, Marcio Menyz and Joe Sabino
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: May 17, 2017
Review by: Aaron Anderson

The build up to the Defenders show, in August, continues for me with Luke Cage #1. I have not read very much Luke Cage maybe one or two appearances in Marvel Team-up. I'm not even sure if that is fact. Most of my knowledge about Luke comes from listening to podcasts and from the Netflix show. My most recent experiences with the newer Marvel comics has lead me to believe that the less baggage you carry with you going into a title the better. So let us see if that trend continues.

We open with one of the coolest super hero introductions. In six pages David F. Walker and Nelson Blake II give you all the heart, passion reasoning, morals, and some of the over 45 year history of the character Luke Cage.

Luke nonchalantly walks into a seedy bar. He demands to be let into the "special" banquet room. Paying for any damages he may cause before hand and proceeds to kick some ass.

It's obvious from the art and story Luke is well known here. Luke has more of a bull in a china shop approach to fighting. As we witness him take down six fools in three panels. Tossing the wanna be bad asses around as if they were nothing but papers on a desk waiting to be swept off. He makes his way to the head of the group of thugs. He is holding a girl hostage for five grand. Which Luke intern points out to the main man how stupid that is by flicking him in the forehead.

I really like how they put that sequence before the credits/introduction page. This comic is very new user friendly.

After that fight scene Luke returns the girl to her parents. Then we get a very sad and poignant phone call that clearly disturbs Luke fading the background to black.

Next we see Luke at a funeral in New Orleans. His friend and creator Dr. Noah Burstein has died. Which has shaken Luke to his core. We get a little flash back to his origin. Then a Dr. Lenore Mornay snaps Luke out of it by introducing herself as a colleague of the deceased doctor. She fills us in on the cause of death, suicide, and she propels the story forward. As she takes Luke to meet more associates of Dr. Burstein. As a mysterious figure remains lurking behind them silently mourning at Burstein's grave.

We are next at the Morgan estate. A posh plantation style house outside of New Orleans. Cyril Morgan says he and his family are also mourning the good doctor's death. You get the impression though he is more mourning the loss of his knowledge than the man's life. Cyril explains to Luke that Dr. Burstein was helping his ailing son Caleb. Caleb was dying from a devastating rare disease and Dr.Burstein cured him of it. Using the knowledge he gained from creating Luke Cage.

Cyril and Lenore are busy kissing Luke's ass as creepy Caleb just kind of stares off into the distance. Cyril makes the scene even creepier by complementing Luke's genes and calling him a perfect specimen. Dr. Mornay also picks up the weird vibes and comments on how late it is and quickly shuffles Luke out the door. Giving Luke a ride to his hotel.

Once in the car Dr. Mornay divulges her hopes and fears of the work Dr. Burstein had been doing. Noah had continued his experiments into perfecting the super soldier serum with the aid of Cyril's money. There are some risks in said experiments. It might make the human who is exposed to the treatment a psychopathic killer. Like in the case of Mitchell Tanner. That name drop by Dr. Mornay isn't the most disturbing part of the conversation. She mentions to Luke that there are "others".

Lenore is explaining to Luke how she didn't know this was going on. That she doesn't think Dr. Burstein took his own life. When their car is suddenly ran off the road by three men in masks. One of which is Luke's equal in power. He bests Luke by surprising him with his strength. Also with the aid of a whip sword that has the capability of cutting through Luke's skin. Just when the unknown assailant is about rain down the death blow upon Luke. His ass is pulled out of the fire by the shadowed mourner from the beginning of our story.

Bits and Pieces:

This is an outstanding number one issue. It gave me all the information and tone I need to keep moving on with the story. It also gave me all the action and intrigue I need to keep buying the comic. The dialogue is great. Walker gives everyone in the comic their own voice. The art team is stupendous. They convey action and emotion extremely well.


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