The swear jar from Pop’s Barbershop holds significant value to Luke Cage on Netlix’s latest Marvel superhero series. It a reminder of doing things the right way, and how Pop was always willing to help those who needed it — two things that Luke struggles with from time to time.
While it makes a great prop in the show itself, it was initially put in the show for a whole different person. Showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker revealed on Twitter that the swear jar was actually a subtle nod to deceased rock icon Prince, who famously also kept a swear jar in his Paisley Park home. The hope was that they could get Prince to appear in the show, possibly as one of the musical acts at Harlem’s Paradise, the club that belongs to villain Cottonmouth (and later, his cousin).
The “Swear Jar” was for Prince. I was going to show him the first two episodes and convince him to play in episode 13.
— Cheo Hodari Coker (@cheo_coker) October 5, 2016
Sadly, Prince passed away earlier this year, before the show was done filming its first season. The swear jar remained in the show, not only because of the significance it holds for Luke Cage’s character, but also as a tribute to the late musician.