Alfre Woodard entered the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Captain America: Civil War. She had a small role — Miriam, the grieving mother whose son died in the battle for Sokovia — and she appeared in one scene with Robert Downey Jr. The actress will get more screen time when she returns to Marvel in Netflix’s Luke Cage series, but, as a new poster reminds us, she’s not playing the same character.
In Luke Cage, which gives Mike Colter’s Power Man a headlining saga, Woodard plays Mariah Dillard, a politician who hopes to use her governmental pull to make Harlem a better place. However, her brother, Mahershala Ali’s Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes, could prove to be a problem. But the recently revealed character poster for Mariah is another bullet point in the discussion over the true connectivity between Marvel’s TV division and the big-screen heroes.
Back when the Inhumans movie was still on Marvel’s slate, Vin Diesel teased that he was in discussions with the powers that be for a non-Groot role in the MCU. So there seems to be precedence for an actor to take on two roles. But the difference between Diesel and Woodard is that one would be going from a voice role in a movie to a physical role in another movie. Woodard already showed her face as one character and in her transition to Netflix became another. What does that say for this supposed shared universe?
Joe and Anthony Russo, who return after Civil War to helm Avengers: Infinity War, have teased the possibility of enlisting some of the TV-bound characters, like Daredevil and Jessica Jones, for their mega team-up, but how likely is it really? As we’ve reported before, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. star Chloe Bennett called out Marvel in the media for not considering the events of the TV series — it seems as though TV is constantly reacting to the movies, but not the other way around.
The fact of the matter is that we’ve never seen a TV character pop over to the big screen, but we’ve seen it the other way around with Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Clark Gregg, and Jaimie Alexander, to name a few. It’ll be interesting to see now how Spider-Man: Homecoming exists in the MCU. New York is a big city, but it’s not big enough for a web-slinging teenager to ignore the fact that three-going-on-four Defenders have been fighting crime a subway’s ride away.
Check out the latest Luke Cage posters below: