‘Power Book III: Raising Kanan’: Do You Need to Watch ‘Power’ Before This Show?

Power Book III: Raising Kanan has debuted as one of Starz highest-rated drama series. The show is the third installment in the prolific Power Universe created by Courtney Kemp and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson. Though the show shares some similarities to the original show, including some familiar characters, it has a very different tone.

If you want to get into Power Book III: Raising Kanan, is it necessary to watch Power first?

Patina Miller gets in a man's face while wearing gold hoops as Raq Thomas in 'Power Book III: Raising Kanan'
Patina Miller as Raq Thomas in ‘Power Book III: Raising Kanan’ | Starz

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What is the ‘Power Book III: Raising Kanan’ about?

Set in the ’90s in Queens, New York, Raising Kanan tells the origin story of Power antagonist, Kanan Stark. Fans were originally introduced to the villain through 50 Cent’s portrayal of him in season 2-5 of Power. Now, Mekai Curtis embodies 15-year-old Kanan who is trying to make a name for himself in his drug queenpin mother, Raquel “Raq” Thomas’ (Patina Miller) organization.

“We meet him, he’s young and impressionable and, you know, he’s just trying to figure his way through life with a bunch of people around him that influence him, that’s why it’s called Raising Kanan,” Curtis told Digital Spy. “You meet him, as this child, a kid who knows nothing about anything, and throughout the show, you get to go on the journey with him and see how he becomes so desensitized. How exactly he turns into the monster we know on Power. That’s been the biggest thing about it, it’s just the journey of watching him lose his innocence.”

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Do you need to watch ‘Power’ before ‘Power Book II: Raising Kanan’?

While many fans of Raising Kanan have also screened the original series as well as the first spinoff Power Book II: Ghost, it isn’t necessary. In fact, if you watch Raising Kanan, followed by Power, and then Power Book II: Ghost you will still be watching the series in chronological order. After all the events of Kanan are set nearly two decades before the timeline of Power begins.

If you’re a fan of crime shows like The Wire or The Sopranos then you’ll be able to get into this well-written and well-acted drama. Furthermore, if you watch Power right after the first season of Power Book III: Raising Kanan, you’ll be in for some jaw-dropping surprises.

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Is ‘Power Book III: Raising Kanan’ on Netflix?

If you would like to get into the Power Universe, beginning with Power Book III: Raising Kanan there are several ways you can do so. Unfortunately, Kanan is not available to stream on Netflix, but Power fans or newbies have several options when it comes to getting into the series.

Hulu subscribers currently have the option of adding Starz for a 7-day free trial. After the trial is over, Starz will charge just $0.99 a month for the first two months. This should enable you to stream the entire first season of Raising Kanan for just a couple of dollars.

Starz is also offering a seven-day free trial for new customers of the Starz app. After the first week, the cost of the app is $8.99/monthly.