Luke Cage will soon make his way back to the small screen along with the other superheroes of Netflix for The Defenders, but progress is also being made on the second season of his solo series. While we don't yet have a premiere date or too many hard details about what the plot will entail, we do know a couple of the new characters who will appear. For one, Mustafa Shakir of Quarry has signed on the play a bad guy of Marvel comics fame.
Mustafa Shakir will play John McIver, who is a charismatic leader able to win the allegiance of people around him. He has a mission of his own, but it's not one focused on justice. No, McIver wants vengeance for the harm that has been done in and to Harlem. Marvel Comics fans will undoubtedly know John McIver by another name: Bushmaster.
In Marvel lore, John McIver was a crime boss and crime financier. He underwent the same experimental procedure that gave Luke Cage his powers, and he would later go on to gain the ability of absorbing the energy of others. He was known to interact with the likes of Iron Fist, Misty Knight, and Claire Temple as well as Luke Cage, and he could prove to be a fascinating foil to the hero of Harlem. John McIver is only one of the two exciting new castings Marvel has made for Luke Cage Season 2.
Gabrielle Dennis of Rosewood will play the character known as Tilda Johnson. Tilda is a brilliant doctor who has a complicated history in Harlem. Using holistic techniques, she sets herself apart as a physician. Unfortunately, however, her attempts to stay out of trouble tend to fail and she gets pulled back into action. Comic fans might know Tilda as Nightshade, who is definitely not somebody many of us might want treating us.
The Tilda Johnson of Marvel lore used her scientific leanings to kick off a career as a criminal scientist, which ultimately resulted in a bizarre story that transformed Captain America into a werewolf. As a member of a number of criminal organizations through the years, she proved to be quite the thorn in the side of Marvel heroes. She was later reformed somewhat, but she is definitely best known for her villainous tendencies.
The news that Tilda Johnson will appear in Luke Cage actually comes as a surprise. We learned last month that Nabiyah Be will portray Tilda Johnson in the upcoming film Black Panther. Given that the Netflix superheroes technically exist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it's an unexpected twist that two versions of one character will appear. I have to wonder if the Luke Cage version of Tilda will be given a backstory that makes her a relative of Black Panther's Tilda.
Only time will tell. We still don't know when Luke Cage Season 2 will debut, but you can catch all 13 episodes of the first season streaming on Netflix, and Mike Colter will be back as Luke Cage in The Defenders, which premieres on Friday, August 18 at 12:01 a.m. PT. Our 2017 Netflix premiere schedule can show you your other streaming options. Check out our breakdown of what we know so far about Luke Cage Season 2 as well.