Hear Method Man Spit Luke Cage Spoilers In the Official Track for “Bulletproof Love”
“Bulletproof Love” is a great track, but you probably shouldn’t listen to it until you’ve finished watching all of Luke Cage on Netflix. Oh, and you also probably shouldn’t read the rest of this post unless you’ve watched through episode 12, which is the episode in which this song appears.
So anyway, a slightly different version of this song happens as part of the diegetic music on Luke Cage, with Method Man free-styling the verse himself on an episode of Sway’s Universe. In case you didn’t know, Sway’s radio show is a real one from our reality–and apparently, it also exists in the Marvel Universe. (Luke Cage also includes a brief snippet of an episode of “Trish Talks,” so there are both fictional and real talk radio hosts making cameos in the show.)
I somehow managed to miss seeing the trailer that revealed that Method Man would actually be appearing on Luke Cage, playing the role of himself, and I definitely didn’t know that Sway and Heather B. would also be appearing and that Sway’s Universe would be part of the show at all. The episode shows us how if Luke Cage were a real person, radio personalities would discuss him and musicians would write songs about him. They would write songs like “Bulletproof Love,” in fact, which is the song that Method Man performs in his fictional radio show appearance and has also released as a “real song” in our world.
This version is mixed differently than the one that appears on the show and features slightly different instrumentation and orchestration, put together by Luke Cage‘s co-composers Adrian Younge and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, and still featuring Method Man on the lyrics. Younge was also the composer for Black Dynamite, by the way, and Ali Shaheed Muhammad is best-known as one of the members of A Tribe Called Quest. Here’s a great video from them and the rest of the creative team about how they wrote the score for the universe of Luke Cage, and how they saw each episode as an album unto itself:
I have seen some reviewers say they thought the Sway’s Universe scene on the show felt corny, and maybe watching Method Man perform a song that is literally about the hero of a show does seem a bit on-the-nose… but I totally loved it. That’s probably because I’m a total cornball, but also, I love the “musical theatre” trend that has happened with TV shows in the past few years (Nashville, Empire, The Get Down–the list goes on). Luke Cage‘s musical score–particularly the nightclub performances, which featured both pre-existing songs and also completely original music written for the show–took the show from “great” to “excellent” for me, because they added so much to the overall world-building. The music was performative and fantastical, while still being grounded in an alternate-reality of how music personalities might react to the goings-on in Luke Cage.
If superheroes existed in real life, you can bet that people would be writing songs about it, and Luke Cage encouraged some fantastic musicians to take that brain teaser and spin it out into music, showcasing how the scene would change if someone like Luke became a local icon. Their effort really paid off, in my opinion, and I’m super excited to have access to the full Luke Cage soundtrack on October 7th. Until then, this song is already available for download and streaming, and the Luke Cage Spotify playlist is a great listen as well!
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