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Netflix is rolling up its Sleeves for Altered Carbon Season 2. By now, you may know that Joel Kinnaman is out as Takeshi Kovacs/Elias Ryker, with Marvel star Anthony Mackie taking over as Kovacs' Sleeve in Season 2. The second season is now in production, with the show's official account announcing the new cast. Two Season 1-ers are returning -- unequivocal best character Edgar Poe (Chris Conner), along with Envoy rebel leader Quellcrist Falconer (Renée Elise Goldsberry). Here's a glimpse of the newbies and returnees:
Here are more details on the new cast members, via Deadline:
• Simone Missick (Luke Cage's Detective Misty Knight) as Trepp -- described as an expert bounty hunter known for her ability to track down anyone in the Settled Worlds, for the right price.
• Dina Shihabi as Dig 301 -- an out-of-work A.I. programmed to assist human archeologists, she finds a new purpose when she meets Poe. (A.I. love interest alert for my man Poe?)
• Torben Liebrecht as Colonel Ivan Carrera -- the colonel is the dogged leader of a Protectorate Special Forces unit known as the "Wedge" and he's on the hunt for Takeshi Kovacs.
• James Saito as Tanaseda Hideki -- this centuries-old Yakuza boss controls organized crime on the planet of Harlan’s World and shares a history with Takeshi Kovacs.
Altered Carbon released 10 episodes in February 2018, introducing this visually stunning and complex world. The series from Laeta Kalogridis is based on the novel by Richard K. Morgan.
Most of Season 1 was set in a future San Francisco called Bay City in 2384. In this world, your memories and consciousness -- what makes you you -- can be stored on a disc called a cortical stack, with that stack implanted at the back of the neck. You can have your stack be implanted in a new human body, or Sleeve, after death. In this way, the super-rich (called Meths) can keep buying new Sleeves and theoretically live forever.
Takeshi Kovacs was a member of the defeated rebel group called the Envoys. In Season 1, his stack was taken out of prison 250 years after the Envoys were destroyed and put in the former body of Elias Ryker (Joel Kinnaman). A Meth named Laurens Bancroft (James Purefoy) gave Takeshi the chance to solve his murder for the chance at a new life.
Renée Elise Goldsberry's Quellcrist Falconer was shown in flashbacks as the leader of the Envoys and Takeshi's love interest. Takeshi Kovacs was played by multiple actors in different Sleeves -- mostly Joel Kinnaman in the future timeline, in the body of Elias Ryker -- but Kovacs was also played by Will Yun Lee and Byron Mann. Kovacs swapped out bodies at the end of Season 1, but the stack will continue in Season 2 in a new Sleeve played by Anthony Mackie (Sam Wilson/Falcon in the MCU).
For my money, Chris Conner stole Season 1 as helpful, lonely, witty, loyal, badass, all-around-fascinating A.I. Edgar Poe, manager of The Raven hotel. He was killed in Season 1, but that doesn't really matter on this show -- for humans or A.I. The more we see of him in Season 2, the better.