Though many elements of Luke Cage garnered high praise, it was arguably the most divisive of Marvel’s Netflix TV projects thus far, and one of the main gripes seemed to stem from the fact that the show’s superb villain (Mahershala Ali’s Cottonmouth) was brutally killed off about halfway through the season. It didn’t help matters that this charismatic, complex character was replaced by the laughably OTT Diamondback, either.
Now, for the first time, someone involved with the show has offered an explanation as to why this happened, and according to Power Man himself, Cottonmouth was always destined to meet his maker. Here’s what Mike Colter had to say during an interview with Stephen A Smith on ESPN’s First Take:
The decision to do that was done way before we started production. It’s a lot of people that’s involved in this. When you do it on paper, here’s what it is. It’s like running a play in football. You do it in practice. It works. Looks good. In the game, it doesn’t work, and all of the sudden in retrospect, it seems stupid.
Though that may sound like Colter wasn’t a big fan of the decision, he does go on to suggest that Cottonmouth’s death succeeded in doing what it was supposed to: shocking viewers. However, the general gist of his comments do imply that he doesn’t think it worked out as well as it could have.
Following his upcoming stint with The Defenders later this year, Luke Cage will return for a second season at some point. Let’s just hope they’re able to balance the show’s social commentary and grittier elements with a slightly less cartoonish stand-in for Cottonmouth this time around.