Our Thursday SDCC ended on what could EASILY be called one of the very best SDCC panels we’ve ever witnessed. Sitting in Ballroom 20 with the other 4,000+ fans, you could feel the excitement and anticipation in the air as we all waited the Marvel / Netflix Luke Cage panel! The lights went down and we were treated to a fantastic sizzle reel for Daredevil, Jessica Jones and glimpses of the Punisher and Luke Cage. After the reel, Marvel’s Head of Television Jeph Loeb came out and welcomed everyone as he prepared to moderate the panel. However, someone else who wasn’t a scheduled panel guest walked on stage and interrupted Loeb.
His name was Jon Bernthal!
Fans erupted in admiration for the Punisher and even stood up for The Walking Dead alumni. Bernthal approached Loeb very seriously and demanded that the sizzle reel be played again. After some not-so-gentle coaxing which was funny to see, Loeb agreed and called for the reel to be played once more. Afterwards, Bernthal made some heartfelt and sound remarks about how much playing Frank Castle means to him and how he was looking forward to the work and time on set again to tell more of his story. Loeb mentioned that the decision, which had previously been heard on the interweb, to give the Punisher his own series on Netflix was indeed a reality. The room erupted yet again.
The attention was switched back to the main focus of why this crowd had waited in line. Loeb brought out the key players of Luke Cage: series creator and writer Cheo Hodari Coker, Frank Whaley, Theo Rossi, Simone Missick, Mahershala Ali, Alfre Woodard and last but sure as hell not least – Luke Cage himself Mike Colter! Rosario Dawson was mentioned as being on the show and wanted to come but Loeb said she was “busy filming something else for Marvel Television” at the time.
Some of our favorite parts of the panel:
With everything going on the world right now…..the world is ready for a bulletproof black man. — Coker
When I picked this [script] up, it was one of the smartest pieces of writing I’ve ever read. It was set in a place I love…..we all had numbers on the Call Sheet but Harlem deserves a number unto itself. I got so excited reading it! — Woodard
I felt the same way as Alfred did. When I read the script, it sort of transported me to another place….it really was and is an important piece of work. — Whaley
The music adds to what I like to call the Wu-Tang-ification of the Marvel Universe. First off, each episode will named after rapper’s songs (Gang Starr). I wanted to the series to kind of feel like an album. — Coker
We have a lot things in store for you guys. There’s something for everyone. For the fanboys we have a lot of action but there’s also a love story…..I just can’t wait for you guys to see it! — Colter
It was a really exciting experience getting to sit down and play this character. I could tell he had depth and that he was complicated. From day one, it was just a constant exploration to look for the truth. It was an amazing journey. — Ali
Luke Cage premieres September 30th on Netflix