Created by Archie Goodwin and John Romita Sr.
1st appearance: Luke Cage, Hero for hire #1, 1972
Notes: Luke was one of the earliest blacks in comics, the 4th to be exact He was also one of the first Black Characters to have his own self titled series, the 2nd actually the first being Lobo
Team Affiliations: Avengers, Thunderbolts
Legal Status: US citizen with criminal record
Height: 6’6 Weight: 445 llbs
Eyes: Brown Hair: Black
Relatives: Jessica Jones (wife), Danielle Cage (daughter), James Leonard Lucas (father), Esther (mother, deceased), James Jr. (Coldfire, brother)
Powers: Superhuman strength able to lift about twenty five tons and near invulnerability grants him protection from gunfire and explosions to a degree.
Luke grew up in New York Cities, Harlem. As a teen he was involved in gangs until he realized the effect it had on his family. As a young adult he found suitable employment. Around this time a former friend plants heroin on him and alerts the police even though Luke had previously saved his life. Wrongly convicted and unjustly imprisoned he was later altered in a failed prison experiment that gave him bulletproof skin and super-human strength.While a prisoner he idolized the African King T’challa the Black Panther. With his new powers he escapes prison and decides to uses his powers for personal gain. He donned his most well known costume, (Yellow shirt and the tiara XD) and brands himself a “hero for hire”. He faced many super-villains around this time as well including Chemistro, Discus, shades and Comanche, each of whom had varying degrees of connection to Luke himself via his time in jail. Cage also gains friends in the superheroes Fantastic four, Spider-man, Iron-man and his future wife Jewel whose strength and passion match his own. He also does battle with future thunderbolt “Atlas” for the title of “Powerman” he wins the match and the title. He then serves briefly on the Fantastic four and the defenders. Cage soon legally changes his name from Carl Lucas to Luke Cage and partners with Iron fist after briefly working for Misty Knight‘s Knightwing Investigations. Him and Iron Fist soon become the best of friends and become the heroes for hire duo. He is also cleared of his original charges.
Soon after he starts operating as Luke Cage hero for hire and drops the costume which had originally been his trademark. He clashes with his brother who later dies sacrificing himself for him. In the vacuum left after most of earths superheroes were believed dead him and iron fist expanded the Heroes for Hire franchise briefly until the heroes return. Luke then has a one night stand with Jessica Drew, which results in her becoming pregnant and their eventual relationship and wedding. He joins with Captain America’s New Avengers after a chance link up at a prison break at the raft. It is here that his innate leadership potential is honed by Captain American and Ironman. During Civil war he sides with the Anti Registration and continues to operate as a hero even when it is outlawed. When Captain America is believed dead he rises up as the leader of the new avengers. When his daughter is born he names her Danielle in honor of his best friend Danny Rand the Iron Fist. In the heroic age with his street smarts and unending determination to do right, he fights for the common man! Now a dedicated family man he leads both the New Avengers and Thunderbolts teams.