The two follow a trail that leads them from Tilda Johnson's wrecked holistic shop to Harlem's Paradise to Turk Barrett's new head shop -- he's gone legit, he insists -- where a dragon-shaped pipe catches Danny's eye, and the proprietor acknowledges him not as the young billionaire, but for his other role. "Madame Gao was no joke," Turk observes. From there, they end up in a marijuana grow house that's been taken over by Bushmaster's men to use in a futile attempt to cultivate more of the strain of nightshade to fuel his power.
That scene provides more pieces to the puzzle of Luke's new foe but, more importantly, it depicts one of the more impressive fight sequences of the Marvel Netflix series. It's not of the continuous-shot technical achievement for which those shows have become famous, but instead depicts Luke Cage and Iron Fist working in tandem. When they become surrounded by heavily armed guards, Luke instructs Danny to punch his palm with his glowing fist -- "patty-cake" -- triggering a shock wave that takes out their opponents. And when a bazooka is introduced into the mix, they improvise with their own version of a fastball special.
But as much as Luke needed Danny, at least within the season's story arc, Iron Fist -- no, make that Iron Fist -- needed Luke Cage more. This one hour did more for the beleaguered character than the 13 of his own first season did. It gives us a character who, sure, is a billionaire with a kung-fu grip, but is nevertheless relatable. He still drops references to the mystical city of K'un-Lun, his victory over a dragon and, yes, the plane crash that killed his parents (in fairness, it's to explain why he prefers Chronic 2001 to The Chronic), but here they're simply part of who he is; they don't necessarily define him or serve as his reason for being.
If this is a glimmer of what audiences can expect from Iron Fist Season 2, then that's a rematch to look forward to.
Streaming now on Netflix, Marvel's Luke Cage Season 2 stars Mike Colter, Simone Missick, Alfre Woodard, Theo Rossi, Mustafa Shakir, Gabrielle Dennis, Rosario Dawson and Reg E. Cathey.