Much as I love Mahershala Ali, I’m kinda glad to see him go in the context of Luke Cage: He’s one villain too many, or the show just plain ol’ has one villain too many, and if one of ’em had to go, Cornell Stokes makes the most sense. (Don’t feel too bad for Ali: 2016 is his year, vis-a-vis his appearances in, like, fucking everything, from Luke Cage, to Kicks, to the upcoming Hidden Figures, to Free State of Jones, to Moonlight, which, but, if you’re anticipating Moonlight, come back to this space in a few days.)
If you’re going to lose Ali, though, you might as well get an Erik LaRay Harvey in return. Funny how one change can help a show bounce back from being hopelessly muddled. Go check out my recap of the seventh and eighth episodes of Luke Cage at Paste Magazine, and you’ll get what I mean.