Finally, back home, Luke Cage is eager to spend quality time with his wife, Jessica Jones, and his daughter, Danielle Cage. Jessica tells her husband that Danielle has been having a rough time at school, made worse by the fact that her parents have been so busy in their own affairs lately. Luke goes to comfort his daughter, and she has him tell her a story.
Luke Cage #170 shoots for a Princess Bride setup, with the bulk of the issue consisting of Luke and Danielle co-telling the story to one another. The story is an anarchic yet charming mixture of superheroics, fairytale fantasy, and Danielle inserting the problems she’s been having.
It’s an incredibly sweet story. We get a glimpse at Luke Cage as a father and a husband instead of a Hero for Hire, Defender, or Avenger. It’s a story where you can see a hero deal with a very real problem in a unique and visually creative manner. It’s simple yet brilliant.
Danielle is a wonderfully endearing character. She’s becoming brash and stubborn like her parents. She still has some emotional vulnerability but can stand up for herself.
There are little quirks that add a lot. Danielle has learned “badass” from Jessica, and Jesse thinks its hilarious. Danielle has arms that can turn into snakes, and the snakes have names. Luke is wearing a shirt that says “Huggy Bear” on it; that’s just awesome too.
Guillermo Sanna’s art continues to be a sold fit for the book. It leans on exaggerated features to set the characters apart but has enough realism to feel grounded. The real-world sections are lighter on detail than usual. The panels depicting the fairytale are more heavily inked to add to the fantasy aesthetic. There’s a surprising amount of blood given that it’s supposed to be a story in-part crafted by a child, but it’s not too distracting. It’s just dissonant with the theme.
Marcio Menyz’s color art is bright and cheerful. It’s given more gradience in the story sections as an additional measure to reinforce the fantasy.
Luke Cage #170 is a heartwarming beat on which from this series. It’s adorable, charming, and the art from Sanna and Menyz continues to support the book well. David F. Walker wanted to this ending to mean something, and it does.
Luke Cage has been one of my favorite heroes since I started reading comics around the time of the original Marvel Civil War. While this series wasn’t perfect, it was still great to get an ongoing solo series about the Power Man for the first time since in my lifetime. This was a personally important series to me, and it will be sorely missed. Mr. David Walker, Mr. Nelson Blake II, Mr. Guillermo Sanna, and Mr. Marcio Menyz, if any of you get to read this, know that this series was greatly appreciated and enjoyed. The same goes for Power Man and Iron Fist, Mr. Walker.
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