Spoilers from the comics ahead
Earlier today, Marvel officially announced that Mike Colter would play Luke Cage in A.K.A. Jessica Jones. Unless he is recast after that series ends, this also means that Colter will play Luke in the Luke Cage series that follows afterwards. By introducing Luke in Jessica Jones’ series, this sets up the character in a similar way that most other TV shows set up spinoff series. However, taking into account the history these two share, their shows will likely be more closely connected than most people realize.
In the comics, Jessica and Luke first met while the two were superheroes. Eventually Jessica quit the costumed adventurer life and set up her own private detective agency. She and Luke maintained an on-and-off affair, and after a drunken hookup one night, she tells him that she’s pregnant. The two of them began a committed relationship, and after their daughter Danielle is born, they got married. Nowadays, Jessica is back in the superhero game, and she and Luke balance their lives fighting crime and unusual threats while taking care of Danielle. It’s one of the more interesting relationships in the Marvel universe, and one we’ll more than likely see adapted for these shows.
While Luke Cage has always been part of the Marvel Netflix lineup, it wasn’t until recently that it was revealed he would be involved with A.K.A. Jessica Jones.The Netflix version of Luke is described as a mysterious man Jessica meets during an investigation “that will change her life immensely.” Whether this means they’ll start out as allies and enemies is unclear, but considering Marvel Studios’ faithfulness to source material, it’s more than likely that these two will enter into a romantic relationship with one another. While marriage and having a kid together would be moving things too fast, it’s a good bet that we could see Krysten Ritter reprise Jessica in a few episodes of Luke Cage. Granted, all these Netflix superheroes are already set to team up with each other in the Defenders miniseries, but if the Netflix versions of Jessica and Luke end up being as close to each other as they are in the comics, it might be better to think of their shows not as two separate 13-episode series, but one giant 26-episode series.
In fact, this trend doesn’t even have to be limited to A.K.A. Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. In the late 1970s, Luke, who also went by the moniker Power Man, was partners with Danny Rand, a.k.a. Iron Fist. Together, the two of them ran Heroes for Hire, and while the business didn’t last long, but the two heroes have remained close friends since then. It’s possible that Luke Cage could show up in the Iron Fist series, which is following A.K.A. Jessica Jones. The two of them could team up together Heroes for Hire-style, which leads into Luke Cage and Luke beginning a more serious relationship with Jessica. With that line of thought, perhaps Daredevil may feature a cameo appearance from Jessica Jones to set up her series. More to the point, though, is that with Luke being set up as an important part of Jessica’s series, it only makes sense if she does the same for his series.
Marvel will kick off their Netflix programming next year when Daredevil airs sometime in May 2015, and A.K.A. Jessica Jones is set to begin filming soon.