Luke gets shot, Shades wants Mariah to win, and Diamondback steps out of the shadows.
A shot from out of the darkness buries itself into Luke’s gut. Claire acts quickly to get him to a safe place so she can examine the wound. Only moments before it seemed impossible for Luke to ever receive any kind of invasive wound, but now the game has changed. Rushing to examine, Claire and Luke are stalked through the streets by a voice familiar to Luke.
As Luke fights for his life, Det. Misty Knight investigates the brutal murder of Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes. Evidence suggests Cottonmouth was pushed from the second story and then bludgeoned to death, and a witness points to Luke Cage as the murderer. Mariah and Shades have carefully constructed a lie to to cover Mariah’s passionate killing of Cottonmouth, planting evidence and buying witness testimony to put the blame on Luke. But Misty isn’t buying it. She questions Mariah, trying to find the weak link in her story, before being blocked by her lawyer. Told to refocus her efforts on the prime suspect by Inspector Ridley, Misty searches for Luke, finding him near his deathbed.
Claire manages to get Luke to a closed medical center just before being found by Misty. She’s examined the wound and tried to get the bullet out, but his skin is still impenetrable to ordinary metal, while the Judas bullet used on Luke is made of alien metal scavenged from the Catastrophe. Their attacker returns, sending them for cover as Misty fires back before being taken as a brief hostage and put at the mercy of this new villain. Only willing to deal with Luke, he knocks Misty unconscious and escapes, leaving a trail for Luke to find. Confronting him, the attacker reveals himself to be Willis Stryker, Luke’s childhood friend, and the mysterious Diamondback, Cottonmouth’s weapons dealer. Diamondback repeats his list of grievances to Luke before taking one more shot at him to put Luke Cage down for good.
From the beginning of “Blowin’ Up the Spot,” it’s clear there is a history between Diamondback and Luke, but any detail of this history isn’t revealed until the end. But Luke’s confrontation with the old friend provides more questions than answers, as they trade blows and excuses as to their current feud. But with Cottonmouth dead, it looks to be that Diamondback is a new big bad of the series, already changing the game and putting the normally collected Det. Knight on edge and bringing with him a weapon that and kill the indestructible man.