The second season of Luke Cage is here and thanks to the expansion of the plot line, film locations have extended to even more of the five boroughs.
Luke Cage debuted on Netflix in 2016, following Jessica Jones and Daredevil. Fans of Jessica Jones already knew who Luke Cage is – he appeared as a bartender with special powers in the show last year. Thanks to a freak event, his body is immune to things that kill must people like gunshots and he’s super strong. In Jessica Jones, he’s keeping it low key while working in the Horseshoe Bar after the loss of his girlfriend in a horrific bus crash. In his own show, he’s up in Harlem working multiple jobs as a sweeper in a barbershop and as a dishwasher in a Harlem club and becomes a bit of a celebrity by season two.
The show shoots some of the locations right in Harlem but filming actually takes place all around New York City. The opening sequence features notable places like The Apollo and the Harlem Casino/Loew’s Seventh Avenue Theater. The location that figures most obviously in the opening imagery is the University Heights Bridge, which is technically much further north in Inwood at 207th Street, which spans the Harlem River to the Bronx.
1. Pop’s Barbershop
Pop’s Barbershop is back as a location in the second season, and our staff spotted the set facade reappear at at 181 Malcolm X Boulevard, on the corner of 119th Street, during the shooting for the season. This storefront, on the lower floor of a Harlem townhouse, is currently vacant. Malcolm X Boulevard also goes by its original name, Lenox Avenue, and the section of the avenue where Pop’s Barbershop is located is part of the Mount Morris Historic District. And of course, the avenue is one of the many places to remember Malcolm X.
Pop’s Barbershop is known as the “Switzerland” of Harlem, where members of opposing groups temporarily hold off their beef. Luke Cage (Mike Colter) works here sweeping up hair and doing the laundry. At the end of the first season, the facade is destroyed but it’s since been repaired. Making rent is a new struggle, however.