Cage – A classic Luke Cage tale from an animation legend…


Luke Cage is currently experiencing a huge rise in exposure following his debut in the MCU in the Jessica Jones Netflix series and his own subsequent series. And with his upcoming role in The Defenders this August, his profile will continue to rise. But if you are looking for some old school classic styled Power Man, then Marvel have just the thing to scratch that itch with this throwback to his debut years.

On the mean streets of Harlem, shoes are big, shirts are large, bottoms are belled and crime is rampant! But in the heart of the city, the world’s hardest-working, smack-talking, chain-wearing super hero is on the streets and on the case! And his rates are reasonable! He’s Cage! But what happens when he’s out of his element, trapped in a jungle a thousand miles from home, and hunted by savage beasts that walk like men?

This mini-series has plenty going for it. But the main draw is that it is written and drawn by renowned animation pro Genndy Tartakovsky. Tartakovsky since the early 90s has worked on a variety of hit animated shows. But he is best known for creating Dexter’s Laboratory and Samurai Jack – both of which were staples in the late 90s to early 00s era of Cartoon Network and are still highly regarded today (with Samurai Jack even making a comeback this year). It is a real treat to see him illustrating a full comic book series for the first time. The classic 70s style era Luke Cage is the perfect fit for his artwork and has resulted in one of the most unique looking Marvel books currently on the shelves. It works both as a showcase of Tartakovsky’s art and as a tribute to the previous Luke Cage style with retro style villains (the rollerskating Bank Rollers),Tartakovsky’s distinctive art work translating perfectly from screen to page especially in the whacky facial expressions department and having Cage flip from hero of the kids to his more street wise persona. There’s plenty of love shown for Cage’s history as well with Iron Fist and Misty Knight making prominent appearances.

But it is in the jungle setting where Tartakovsky really cuts loose as Cage (along with Dazzler, Brother Voodoo, Iron Fist, Misty Knight, Ghost Rider and Black Panther) is forced to battle against some of the craziest jungle monsters you can imagine. If you’ve watched Samurai Jack, you’ll know Tartakovsky knows how to create some terrifying creatures for his heroes to fight and he once again over delivers in that area with the jungle monster battles bringing some of the series’ most memorable moments.

Cage is the perfect blend of action and comedy along with being a great tribute to the original era Luke Cage occupied. Hopefully, Tartakovsky will want to do more in the comic medium as his handling of the Luke Cage character and clear fondness for the character’s history make for an excellent read. Anyone looking for a more light-hearted off-the-wall super hero tale will find plenty to enjoy here.

Cage is out now from Marvel

9780785127864 – P/B – £10.99

Find more Luke Cage here

Post by Leo

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