Season 1 Episode 12: "Soliloquy of Chaos"
How could I possibly start my review of this episode any other way than by mentioning that epic—and epically random—cameo from Method Man as himself?
Method Man is having himself a hell of a year between this cameo and his role in Keanu, and I couldn't be happier. He's definitely one of the more charismatic rappers turned actors and his impromptu rap about Luke Cage (Mike Colter) is honestly the highlight of the series since poor Cottonmouth was sent to an early grave. I also dug the way men all over Harlem were showing solidarity with Luke by wearing hoodies riddled with bullet holes. I thought it was a nice way of illustrating that point without going full on "I am Spartacus" or "I am Malcolm X" or "I'm Brian and so's my wife" or whatever version of that oft-ripped off moment you're most familiar with.
Meanwhile, Misty (Simone Missick) is demonstrating that she is no longer defending the system she swore to protect, because she's seen first hand just how corrupt it has become. Her bait and switch on Candace (Deborah Ayorinde) was one of the more clever moments of the entire series, and the first time I really and genuinely loved Misty on the show.
Diamondback (Erik LaRay Harvey) on the other hand is making nothing but absurdly stupid decisions. His attempt to get rid of Shades (Theo Rossi) backfires in spectacular fashion, ending with Shades in possession of incriminating evidence against Diamondback. Then he shows up at the very end of the episode dressed like a literal snake, complete with ribbed undershirt and stupid helmet, all of which he's donning in the name of being "impervious to pain... and bullets." The whole thing is just the perfect stupid cap on a perfectly stupid character.
Overall, this was a pretty great episode that helped restore a lot of the faith I'd lost in the series when it jumped the shark by killing off the brilliant Mahershala Ali. Had that been done in the name of putting Alfre Woodard's Mariah front and center as the series' main antagonist, I would have been fine with it, but to unceremoniously kill him off just to introduce a severely less nuanced villain in his stead was about as boneheaded a moment as there has been on a Marvel Netflix series to date. I think the show will wrap things up in a very satisfactory way on the next episode, I just hope it takes these lessons forward into future seasons.