Misty is talking to a shrink to assess her fitness for duty. She thinks she should be back on the street looking for Cage, but the shrink tells her if she doesn’t talk to him she’ll be a desk jockey. He shows her a security camera still of Striker holding a gun on her. The shrink wants to know what pushed her to manhandled a witness. Misty just gets more adversarial. Luke wakes up in the garbage truck in pain and bloodied, but at least he’s still breathing. He rolls out of the truck and tries to get his bearings. Opening credits.
The Delphonics are rehearsing on stage at Harlem Paradise while Shades watches from the office. He chews his men out for being unable to find Luke’s body. Striker walks in and shoots one of them, and shoos them out so he can talk to Shades. Turns out that Striker is Diamondback and he’s not amused that Shades manipulated Dillard into killing Cottonmouth. He almost kills Shades but Zip points out he could still be useful. Diamondback Striker orders a more diligent search for Cage. Cage meanwhile swipes some clean clothes from a laundromat.
Misty tells the shrink about the night she met Luke and still isn’t willing to admit her first impression was the right one. Dillard meanwhile is at the funeral home talking to Cottonwood’s corpse. She laments the way things turned out for him, but not her part in it. She still believes she tried to protect him. Shades enters and tells her she did what she had to. But he tells her Diamondback wants Cage and that she has to take over the business he thought was going to be his.
Beat cops spot Luke and he gets the “walking while black treatment. When they realize who he is they flip out, and he knocks them both out. Dash cam records it all but Luke takes their car. Shrink brings Misty a lemonade and wants her version of a story in her file. She tells a story about an incident in 1995 wherein she went to the store and came back to find her mom gone. Her body was found weeks later and her killer was never arrested. You’d think she wouldn’t have such faith in the system knowing that.
Shrink pulls some sexist bullshit about her emotions and she calls him on it. He bullies her about losing her gun to Striker and choking Claire and she walks out. Dillard shows up at Domingo’s gym to talk to Chico. She plays on his ego to get him in line to work under her. She tells him to gather all the bosses because she has a proposition.
Claire is sitting in her mom’s diner trying to figure out a way to get around Luke’s elastic skin cells so she can get the shrapnel out. Luke arrives gasping. Claire wants the story behind Strikers revenge obsession. She still has the thumb drive he gave her in Jessica Jones, and suggests they look into finding the doctor who changed him.
Dillard’s aide shows her the dash cam footage of Luke knocking out the two cops. He thinks she can use it to her advantage, to spin it in her favour to get her funding back. Misty returns to the shrink, and he goes back to asking her about Striker getting her gun. She angrily chastises herself for not disarming him and getting the drop on her, and that she felt like he took her control away, and realizes she choked Claire to regain her feeling of control. The shrink tells her this is how she wins, by facing her control issues and owning them.
Claire and Luke are in a car on a deserted highway surrounded by trees on either side so I’m guessing she put her foot down about taking Luke to see the sketchy prison doctor about fixing him. They arrive at the doctors house in the boonies. She convinces him to look at Luke after telling him Luke survived his treatment. They offer him Reva thumb drive to help them. He unlocks the decryption and it contains everything he thought he lost in his lab when it exploded. He takes them to his makeshift garage lab he made with whatever equipment he could salvage.
He tells Luke that he was already tapped for the secret experiment program even before Reva begged him to save Luke. The Doc and Claire figure out how to get at some of the shrapnel but it isn’t pretty. Luke passes out as they drain some blood from his stomach the hard way.
Misty and her Skeevy LT have a discussion about whether or not she deserves her badge. The LT still rigidly insists that Luke should be her only focus, dismissing her attempts to talk about Striker or Dillard. She gives Misty back her badge and tells her to just get Luke after showing her the dash cam footage. Shades meanwhile peptalks Dillard before she talks to the gang leaders. She offers to sell them all of Cottonwood’s assets in exchange for her walking away clean. Striker shows up and dusts everyone while Dillard and Shades watch nervously. He leaves Domingo alive because he doesn’t want beef with Mexico, then he Mexico talks shop with Dillard. She smooth talks him and spins how they can turn all of this business with Cage to their advantage. He likes her moxy, but tells her she is most definitely NOT “out”. Then he tells Domingo to tell everyone else the consequences if they step to him.
Back at Harlem’s Paradise the Delphonics are performing for a sold out crowd while Striker and Shades discuss the dash cam footage going viral. Misty studies her crime wall. Claire and the doctor talk about how Luke got the way he is. Luke wakes up, and the doc proposes a really messed up way to treat his wounds. Luke reluctantly agrees. He tells Clair to get Reva data back if the procedure fails so no one can recreate the procedure and make more of him.
I am… SOOOOOOOO not describing what happens next. Just have a really strong stomach when you watch it. The procedure goes sideways and Luke flatlines. End of episode.
Tags: Luke Cage, marvel, Netflix