Why Luke Cage Isn’t Our Black Superhero

I’ve been watching. So have you. It’s all over social media and every street corner seems to know what the most shared password of the season is:

Luke Cage. “enter.”

Netflix because of the super duper reception this latest offering necessitated.

Hashtags provided guidance for anyone suffering from mental inertia.

Get off your butts! It’s time to recognize the “Black Superhero” with the swiftness of an arrow that is astutely aimed at the bad guys.

Who are the bad guys? It depends on who you ask.

In the real world, they are dressed to kill.

Armed to slay. Born to rule the world based on skin hue and eye color. Propped for the mission at hand that never changes. And possibly will remain activated for good.

These guys aren’t bad. They aren’t evil. They don’t kill for pleasure or pain. They hunt for blood because they are thirsty.

The ground is awash with the red fluid of life that drowns the dryness in a way that trumps the offering contained in a jug of Kool-Aid.

It’s the fuel to power and hate which in every way — validates the system that thrives on Black bodies being the constant nutrients.

We have leaders. The community was built to last — with a catch. We know what it is but we can’t express it fully.

Why? It’s too bloody hard.

Kids getting shot in the gut for toying around with fake guns in the park. Black men getting shot for being Black in the daylight and nighttime. Punished for being unable to shed their skin.

Black women are tasked with the assignment of documenting the horror playing out in front of their eyes as their children watch with heightened awareness.

These lessons run deep. Sometimes the flesh beckons to the flames of the fire that never burns below the surface.

It’s too dense over here. We feel nothing and hear the waves of violence that usher our footsteps every time we take a breath.

We stay Black and proud.

As the bullets fly above our heads and we stand at attention as the national anthem rings in our ears like an alarm that refuses to be halted — we stay tragically shielded by the darkness of our covering.

Luke Cage is no hero.

He prances around in a hoodie and has the air of vengeance that comes from the trauma of authorization. He sounds smooth and promises to kick ass if you prompt him to.

The show is a sparkling glass of satisfaction. Except the music for the opening credits. It’s too die-hard for the blueprint of blaxploitation that ruled the seventies with earnest. It was perfect then.

Now, we need something a little more true to the movement. Kendrick Lamar or Frank Ocean should’ve been exploited for this one.

Aside from the opening — the innards ring true. We love dramatics and hype up the surroundings that add to our defining numbness. He survives the rain of bullets and tears down the walls of deception.

Justice will be served — hard and black.

Just like I like it. Only this time the organismic release represents the lives that will not be lost over overused hashtags and funnels of repurposed testimonies that are tacked on for traffic flow.

Luke Cage is me. He is you. He is anyone who dares to care enough to discover the utensils hidden in acute voyeurism of the mind and heart.

He’s not super or heroic.

He’s angry and tired. He’s frustrated and determined. He’s hiding and he’s awake. He’s ready and waiting. He’s willing and transient.

He’s not going to take this shit anymore. Even if he has to kill and be killed.

Sound familiar? Enjoy the show.

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