WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Jessica Jones Season 3, streaming now on Netflix.
With the cancellations of Netflix's Marvel dramas, audiences likely believed they'd seen the last of the Defenders. However, the finale of Jessica Jones sneaks in one final, albeit brief, team-up.
In the third and final season, Jessica (Krysten Ritter) must to stop a serial killer, only to find Trish Walker (Rachael Taylor) must also be brought to justice. Now imbued with cat-like reflexes, Trish becomes a masked vigilante who takes her bloody crusade too far, again and again. After finding, and then losing, her mother in Season 2, Jessica must grapple with the thought of putting her adoptive sister behind bars. It's a feeling Luke Cage knows well.
Jessica finds the Hero of Harlem (Mike Colter) waiting outside her door, serving up advice, as well as a coda, of sorts, to Luke Cage's second and final season.
Sharply dressed in a three-piece suit ("Still the same guy under these clothes"), Luke confides to Jessica about his half-brother Willis Stryker, aka Diamondback. "He started with nothing," he says. "But he always found a way to lose more. He deserved better. But those lives he ruined, that was on him."
Pressed by Jessica about sending Willis to prison, Luke replies, "Worse, I sent him to the Raft," referring to the Marvel Cinematic Universe's underwater prison for people with superpowers. "Killed me to do it, but it was the right thing to do."
While it's unclear whether Luke's visit influences Jessica's decision to go after Trish, it does cast a little more light on the conclusion of his own Netflix series. The second, and now final, season ended with Mariah Dillard dead, and Harlem's Renaissance in Luke's hands. From his new perch at the crossroads of the neighborhood, Luke intended to keep a watchful eye as the new "sheriff." He seemed convinced he could have all of that power without being corrupted by it, but Misty Knight -- and the audience -- wasn't so sure.
In his fleeting appearance on Jessica Jones, it appears as if the Hero of Harlem may have his doubts, too. "If I ever go to far," he says, "I hope that someone gives enough of a shit about me to take me down."
"Is that a risk these days," Jessica asks, "going too far?" Without missing a beat, Luke replies, "Some would say it's inevitable."
Streaming now on Netflix, Jessica Jones Season 3 stars Krysten Ritter, Rachael Taylor, Carrie-Anne Moss, Eka Darville, Benjamin Walker, Jeremy Bobb, Sarita Choudhury and Rebecca De Mornay.