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Recap / Luke Cage 2016 S 2 E 6 The Basement

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As a wave of violence rocks Harlem, everyone races to connect the dots between Piranha, Mariah, Bushmaster and the grisly find at the clinic. Meanwhile, Misty makes a decision concerning her job.

Tropes in this episode include:

  • Armour-Piercing Question: Comanche gives one to Shades asking him why he is content with simply being a Hyper-Competent Sidekick to other villains when, with his brains and skills, he could be a leader in the criminal underworld himself.
  • Artistic License – Geography: Some scenes of Luke and Piranha evading Bushmaster's men are clearly not filmed in Harlem, but in Queens under the IRT Flushing Line.
  • Bait-and-Switch: D.W. Griffith calls Luke to tell him that two gangsters are in the barbershop that don't look like friends of his, which sounds like it's referring to the Stylers setting up there. Then we see it's actually Shades and Comanche, hoping that Luke will bring Piranha there.
  • Call-Back: The episode plays out very much like "Condemned" from Daredevil season 1, with the main character (Matt; Luke) having to hide a criminal associate (Vladimir; Piranha) in an abandoned building while outmaneuvering hired goons looking for them (corrupt cops on Wilson Fisk's payroll; Bushmaster's henchmen).
  • The Cameo:
    • Lonnie Wilson briefly appears, as Sheldon stops him on the street and asks him for information on Luke. Lonnie is smart enough to realize something's off about Sheldon, and after giving him directions, calls his mom and tells her to stay off the streets.
    • We also see Connie Lin again, for the first time since Cottonmouth blew up her first restaurant. She's opened a new place called Genghis Connie's Too.
    • Dr. Gabe Krasner, the shrink from season 1 that Misty had a session with after attacking Claire in custody, comes back. He's left the department and is now running his own practice.
  • Disappeared Dad: Piranha was the son of one of Mama Mabel's prostitutes, with his biological dad being a married banker who used her services. So he never grew up with his father. In fact, the one time he tried approaching his father as an adult, the guy had him escorted out by security. In a touch of irony, Piranha became a very successful broker whereas his father was bankrupted in the 2008 recession. Piranha then got his revenge when his father came to him looking for money, so he had him escorted out by security.
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  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: While opening up to Luke Piranha reveals that he has a very good relationship with his mother and, after becoming a success on Wall Street, financial set her up for life to make her comfortable.
  • Foreign Cuss Word: Luke gets cussed at in typical Jamaican fashion by one of the Stylers.
    Luke: 'Rasclaat'. What does that even mean?
  • Gayngster: Turns out Shades and Comanche were lovers in prison. They have different opinions of it, though, as Shades insists it was just a prison thing, while Comanche feels it was more than that.
  • Good Feels Good: According to Piranha, while kicking his absentee father out of his life when he came locking for a handout was great, what was better was making sure that his mother was financially secure for the rest of her life.
  • Heroic Rematch: Subverted. At first Luke is getting the upper hand, but then Bushmaster pulls out some paralyzing powder and throws Luke right into the river.
  • Love Confession: Comanche admits to Shades that his feelings for him haven't changed since their time in prison. When Shades asks why he is telling him this Comanche points out that they could die tomorrow so keeping secrets would be pointless.
  • Mythology Gag: Piranha tells Luke that he is his Hero for Hire, to which Luke retorts, "Well where’s my money, honey?" his famous line from when he traveled to Latveria just to squeeze Doctor Doom for payment owed for his services.
  • Pet the Dog: Piranha of all people is presented in a very sympathetic light this episode, as he opens up about his troubled childhood and even encourages Luke to finally talk to his father, which he does.
  • Saying Too Much: Ridenhour inadvertently lets slip that he has a snitch in Mariah's crew when he mentions knowing how Tone died.
  • Showdown at High Noon: After Luke issues his challenge of a showdown atop the High Bridge, Bushmaster insists it take place at high noon... because he likes cowboy movies.
  • Shout-Out: Sheldon is seen clinking beer bottles together while calling for Luke to come out of hiding.
  • Situational Sexuality: While they are staking out Pop's barbershop, Shades tells Comanche that their time together in prison was just a way to survive in a place without intimacy and trust and that the rules are different outside. Comanche however denies this and tells Shades that he did what he wanted to and he still cares for him.
  • Take It to the Bridge: Luke decides to challenge Bushmaster to a rematch of their first fight atop the High Bridge.
  • Turn in Your Badge: Misty quits, as she fears that if she plays by the rules she won't accomplish anything, while if she doesn't she'll become like Scarfe.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Mariah is on the edge due to her clinic's opening being ruined by Bushmaster's gruesome display.
  • We Can Rule Together: Bushmaster makes the requisite offer of teaming up instead of fighting. Luke points out that for better or worse, he's The Hero, and thus can't take that offer.
    Bushmaster: You Talk Too Much to be a hero. Heroes DO! [they fight]


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