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When it comes to building franchises, there are some methods that work and others that do not. Weighing in how to properly build them is Luke Cage showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker. The mind behind Netflix's hit Marvel series offered his advice on how to successfully go about it. This is what Coker had to say:
You can't give people something they don't want. I think that's the problem with people trying to build these universes. You wouldn't want to hear from Method Man or Ghostface if the first Wu Tang album wasn't hot. So build your foundation, then invite people into your house. So I think the problem with some of these other properties that are trying to copy Marvel and failed is they say, 'OK, we're going to come out with these five properties like this.' It's like, the one drops and then the whole thing falls apart, instead of focusing on making one thing the best it can be and then spinning off from that.
Building franchises can be a complicated business. And no one probably knows that better than the creators behind the Marvel universe, especially those involved in the TV side of things. Luke Cage showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker shared his wisdom on how to correctly build a franchise with Variety, which explored the growing phenomenon of universes. What many of us grew up looking forward to as a "crossover event" is now in vogue for many shows to do regularly.
Fans of other franchises definitely know what Cheo Hodari Coker is talking about, as rival universes that have not taken Coker's advice have dealt with the calamitous fallout. The formula Coker is speaking about has worked very well for Netflix. As fans well know, Luke Cage was introduced in the freshman season of Jessica Jones, before spinning off into his eponymous, successful series. So what happens when a show within the universe is not met with as rapturous a reception?
In the case of Iron Fist, a crossover with Luke Cage may hold the answer. In its second season, Luke Cage will be opening up its successful doors to Danny Rand and Colleen Wing. Cheo Hodari Coker also shared the value of communication among Marvel's vast number of shows, including when it came to casting Mike Colter as Luke Cage. Jessica Jones showrunner Melissa Rosenberg sought Coker's input on who to cast as Luke Cage in the series. Both agreed that Mike Colter was the best choice.
Luke Cage Season 2 will take place after the events of the crossover series, The Defenders. It is part of Marvel's clever storytelling format. Fans of the superheroes with their own Netflix solo series will probably want to watch the Defenders crossover series to fully know what is going on in each of the superhero's separate stories. Otherwise, Luke and Danny's friendship will not have that same quality of context. And the same goes for watching Jessica Jones to learn about Luke Cage. They are all working in tandem to create a rich universe, and it is working.
The first season of Luke Cage is currently available to stream on Netflix. Season 2 premieres June 22. For more shows that are on the horizon, check out our guide to TV's summer premieres. If you are curious about what else is streaming, CinemaBlend has you covered with our 2018 Netflix premiere rundown as well as our guide to Amazon Prime's premiere schedule.