Further proving The CW’s signature ability to produce fresh, captivating, electrifying origin CBM S1’s [no matter how mixed they might get afterwards S2-on], Black Lightning is the black superhero TV series the genre has been waiting for – a pseudo-Static Shock live-action complementation to Black Panther with critical race themes from its opening police scene, star-making performance by its principa[e]l patriarch, and intriguing gang villain in The 100. 7.6/10.
Plot Synopsis: The principal of Freeland High School, Jefferson Pierce used to don the suit of a vigilante known as Black Lightning to protect the streets of his city. However, when a new street gang called the 100 and their mysterious leader start causing havoc once again, even reaching his family and daughters Jennifer and Anissa, he sees no choice but to once again don the suit he did as a young man in this new type of superhero show exploring the intersection between family life and its effect on superheroics.
*Possible spoilers ahead*
Best Episodes: 1. Pilot, 2. The Resurrection and the Light: The Book of Pain, 3. Lawanda: The Book of Hope, 4. Sins of The Father: The Book of Redemption, 5. Shadow Of Death: The Bok Of War
Full Review Coming Soon
Pros: Incredible opening sequence that instantly hooks and wows you, Cress Williams a phenomenal actor who portrays a strong, complex, and intriguing retired hero with baggage and an axe to grind, great characterization and strong writing (definitely characteristic of DCTV’s early seasons of each show and Greg Berlanti’s (man who set up almost the entire Arrowverse and DCTV) work – interesting characters you can invest in, good character development, and a good job of keeping people not even related to this culture involved, I love the political angle and the show for having the balls to discuss issues that people may not want to hear like racism and police brutality (not a popular opinion and why the show is getting torn reviews by audience members because not everyone wants to watch politics in their free time but important nonetheless), incredible action sequences and fight choreography especially with the lightning – one of the dopest superpowers to have, good cinematography and attention to detail setting up shots (something the DCTV shows admittedly run into problems with in later seasons but deliver in the opening seasons), The 100 an intriguing villain and out-of-the-box, Black Lightning’s alter-ego being a principal a bold and inventive, out-of-the-box move, great soundtrack and music choices, AWESOME comic refrences and easter eggs like GREEN LANTERN’s sister, good costume design and groundreaking Lana becoming the first black LGBT superhero – will undoubtedly be inspirational for that section of people; and she has a dope suit, intriguing storylines set in motion in this power struggle like Gambi playing both sides as BL’s biggest helper and also a potential villain in cahoots with Freeland businesswoman and even shooting up someone and the Resurrection, amazing soundtrack embracing its hip-hop modern roots with sweeping samples as well as african-american history like with smooth soul and jazz melodies, cannot get over how beautiful it is having the standard Netflix 13-episode format – FINALLY CW learning that this is the correct number of episodes for a season so that each one is important and non-filler contributing to the overall story arc, Gambi a phenomenally written and mysterious character with huge twists, incredible reveals and side villains including the vice principal being a spotter selling kids from her own school to the ASA – shocking, Pierce is such a loveable and good soul the way he interacts with kids and teaches them to aspire to better is a treat to watch and alone makes this show a huge hit he and Gambi elevate it with their acting and presence to another level, honestly one of the greatest soundtracks I’ve ever heard in a TV show it’s unbelievable, different exploring the intersection between family and being a superhero who already has one when most superheroes don’t out of fear for them, great side villains like Khalil coming back to with a swagger and look with great acting, pairing superheroics with a well-decided school an awesome choice that makes for crazy action scenes like the classroom Thunder/Lala assistnat battle, Thunder and Black Lightning dope suits,
Cons: gets a little political at points pushing agendas, Tobias White just isn’t a very compellingly-acted villain – portrayed as almost a lite version of Kingpin from Daredevil by an actor who just lacks the intimidation and delivery of good villains, too many superheroes already in the whole family when S1’s should focus mostly on the titular hero
Overall Rating: 7.9/10