Luke Brunner: FUBAR character explained

Luke Brunner is one of the central protagonists in Netflix’s spy-adventure series, FUBAR, with actions and decisions that affect the other characters and the story prominently.

Luke arrives on screen in FUBAR performing a high-stakes CIA mission with great ease and finesse, something that’s made even more impressive when one considers the fact that he’s a 65-year-old man.

Working as a CIA operative for decades, Luke Brunner gained a legendary status before his retirement, something he’s really excited about since it finally allows him a second chance to do all he couldn’t do with his family and loved ones.

The vicious vertical slasher

Working as a CIA operative for forty years and completing deadly jobs across the world, and still being able to not only survive but pretty much come out unscathed from the missions is no ordinary feat.

Luke Brunner can do all that because he’s an elite-level agent, whose talents and legacy are acknowledged by his peers and superiors alike. The first time Luke makes an appearance in FUBAR, it’s as a 65-year-old operative on his last mission, but his cadence, confidence, and physical abilities do not reflect his age one bit.

He’s also rather ruthless when disposing of the enemies, having gained a reputation as the man pioneering vertical throat slitting among the terrorists he had once duped and became their friends to kill the leader.

He killed the leader in a most savage way as well, throwing him off the cliff as he begged for his life, something Luke reveals to the dead terrorist’s grown-up son, who had thought of Luke as a father figure and most trusted friend of his father thus far.

An absent husband

Luke Brunner has been a CIA operative nearly all his life and has kept it hidden from his family. While he embarks on one deadly mission after another at a frequent pace, his wife and other loved ones think he is merely a small-time businessman.

His fitness equipment sales and services store is also a front, backed by the CIA, and the agency even has dedicated agents who actively work to sustain this facade and preserve Brunner’s civilian identity. To his wife and family, his missions are his frequent sales visits, for a business that doesn’t really take off that well.

Luke’s wife, Tally (Image source: Netflix)

This going away at a moment’s notice, being away for so long and so frequently, and being unable, therefore, to give his wife quality or quantity of time, Luke eventually loses her.

Tally tries her best to stick with him and be by his side since she admits how Luke is such a wonderful person at heart, but when his absence breaks her heart for so much of her life, she decides to split up. In the present, Tally and Luke have been divorced for 15 years.

A struggling father

Similar to what he wasn’t able to provide his wife — time — he hasn’t been able to do the same for his daughter and son. He has always been proud of his daughter Emma and wished for his son to carve out a path for himself.

However, he just couldn’t find time for them like an ordinary father would. Unsuspecting of his actual profession, Luke’s children always thought he was away for his business-related trips, which was always a bummer for obvious reasons.

After he learns that Emma has been a CIA operative for years too, he can’t believe it and this revelation drives a new wedge between the father and the daughter. This grand lie being exposed gives Emma a reason to be harsh and upfront about all the fatherly failures of Luke Brunner.

However, throughout their combined efforts, they grow closer again and Luke gains a new understanding of his failings as a father and a husband, and how those failures impacted his loved ones in ways he had little to no clue about thus far.

By the end of the season, Luke Brunner makes strides not just as a lover but also as a father. However, much needs to be done yet, and Luke is on the right path to achieving that.

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