Though FOX passed on Greg Berlanti’s Black Lightning, The CW swooped in to save the day ordering a pilot for the potential series!
If the network moves forward with the show, which is very likely, it will join Berlanti’s four other DC/Warner superhero shows — Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl and Legends of Tomorrow. When Arrow debuted back in October 10, 2012, who could have imagined it would be the start of a massive shared DC Universe on The CW? I am thrilled an African-American fronted superhero series is finally in the works. Sure, Marvel’s got Luke Cage on Netflix and though I loved that series… it’s not broadcast TV. This is a pretty big deal.
Deadline reports that although Black Lightning is being “tweaked” for The CW, it’s written by the husband-and-wife team of Salim Akil (EP/Director on The Game, Being Mary Jane) and Mara Brock Akil (Creator of Girlfriends, The Game and Being Mary Jane).
Black Lightning was “one of the first major African-American superheroes to appear in DC Comics” in 1977 according to Wikipedia. He was created by writer Tony Isabella and artist Trevor Von Eeden. Interestingly enough, Isabella had written for Marvel’s Luke Cage before bringing his own superhero to DC.
Jefferson Pierce is a metahuman, born with the ability to generate and magnify externally-localized electro-magnetic phenomena by manipulating intense bio-electric fields generated from his body. Tell me those powers don’t sound like perfect storytelling opportunities for ties to The Flash? The 2017-18 CW DCTV crossover is going to be insane, you guys. The fact Jefferson has two daughters, who are also superheroes (Thunder and Lightning), really sets this character apart from the other “Arrowverse” leads.
In the comics, Black Lightning has crossed paths with Batman, Green Arrow, Mister Terrific, Vixen, and Firestorm among others. Look for casting announcements and other updates in the coming months. Are you excited for a fifth Berlanti superhero show? Personally, I can’t wait. In the meantime, here’s a synopsis for the *fingers crossed* upcoming CW series.
Jefferson Pierce made his choice: he hung up the suit and his secret identity years ago, but with a daughter hell-bent on justice and a star student being recruited by a local gang, he’ll be pulled back into the fight as the wanted vigilante and DC legend — Black Lightning.