The sixth episode of Luke Cage and the first major character death has arrived. So long Detective Rafael Scarfe. Frank Whaley is an actor I’ve always seen in stuff ever since I can remember, a true character actor. When he was promoting the show at San Diego Comic Con, it was easy to forget that he was playing the only major white character on the show. It would be easy to peg him as being a racist or corrupt cop and while the latter turned out to be true, he really defied expectations. He had a great rapport with Misty that never turned out to be disingenuous as the two greatly cared for one another. Despite finding out her partner was crooked, Misty shedding tears as she was losing her friend seemed authentic and never forced. We also learned that Scarfe was something of a sad clown. That his young son killed himself by accident after Scarfe left his gun unattended and the fact that we see his apartment and a picture of him and presumably his ex-wife. Scarfe was an unexpected surprise and will be missed.
Now to the episode proper, Cottonmouth is on his wits end thanks to Luke Cage. After a tense confrontation with Scarfe where the detective tries to extort the crime lord, instead of cutting his losses or outright killing him, he just leaves the detective wounded and in the wind. It’s a stupid mistake that Mariah calls him out on and one that does come back and bite him by the episode’s ends. Luke and Claire also reconnect as it turns out that Luke doesn’t even remember Claire from their meeting in Jessica Jones. A concussion would probably do that but they instantly click which turns out to be a good thing as a wounded Scarfe goes to Luke for help.
The thrust of the episode revolves around helping Scarfe and vice versa. Coming clean about his deeds in helping Cottonmouth and noting that he’s kept notes of all the misdeeds that crime boss committed. But Luke and Claire also have to keeo him safe as people are after the detective. The show does a good job of realizing that nothing and no one can hurt Luke Cage so hurt the people around him. That is what’s going to keep the suspense going. But ultimately the two fail in their attempt to save the detective but have put a hurt to Cottonmouth and his organization.
Mariah also gets more chance to shine as her connection to her cousin is brought up in a televised interview. We have seen that Mariah wants the best of both worlds. She sees herself as a politician but can’t seem to shake her criminal family legacy. When confronted with her family history, Mariah does not take it well at all. Sure the reporter was obviously trying to get under her skin but the fact that Mariah knows these questions will come up and still does not act “presentable” shows she may not be cut out for the world of politics…at least the city hall kind.
The fall of Cottonmouth has arrived and it’s only the sixth episode of the series. It is clear that something big is going to happen and soon. But what that is, is unknown. There is frequent mention of Diamondback who is the arch enemy of Luke Cage in the comics. No doubt that this character will play a role in the series but of what sort? Either way Luke has a new ally, and possible love interest, in Claire. So things are looking up for Luke but for how much longer?