In Review: Black Lightning: 1×04: “Black Jesus”

“Black Jesus” brought Jefferson’s (Cress Williams) role as the Principal of Garfield High School to the fore.

Synopsis: BACK IN TOWN – Black Lightning (Cress Williams) is recruited to rally against The 100 gang. Anissa (Nafessa Williams) investigates the new drug hitting the streets. Meanwhile, familiar faces begin to reappear. Christine Adams, James Remar, Damon Gupton III, and Marvin Jones III also star.

Review: “Black Jesus” brought Jefferson’s (Cress Williams) role as the Principal of Garfield High School to the fore. His interactions with the board and the restrictions they placed on him were the most realistic things I’ve seen yet on this show. Moreover, the fact that he was forced to use his powers on a student at the school perfectly juxtaposed the two parts of his life and demonstrated the stakes.

I also really liked how Anissa’s (Nafessa Williams) storyline progressed, at least as it related to Anissa. She got her first taste of using her powers in the field and was confronted with the consequences. Her subplot fell apart for me, however, as it related to Gambi. The man continues to have a flexible relationship with surveillance, and I can smell the CW secret keeping a mile away. It’s painfully obvious that Gambi will find out about Anissa first, and viewers will have to sit through a number of episodes in which Anissa’s begs Gambi to not tell her parents. I just hope that the writers find the most mature variation possible.

I’m also getting a whiff of the CW from Tobias Whale’s (Marvin Jones III) new dynamic with Khalil. There’s an obviousness to Whale using Khalil to undermine Black Lightning that I hope the writers find ways to subvert. The other issue I’m having with Whale as a villain is that Lady Eve, played with ghoulish glamour by Jill Scott, continues to outshine him in a single scene per episode. Added to that, it looks like he may be eclipsed by his own sister (Taylor Polidore) before this is over.

For now, I’ll push these niggling feelings aside and enjoy this strong show. Hopefully, the writers can avoid CW pitfalls.

Written by: Pat Charles

Directed by: Michael Schultz

Black Lightning: 1x04: “Black Jesus”
  • Story, Performances
  • Getting a whiff of the CW internal logic.
  • Story
  • Performances
  • Music

Raissa Devereux became a life-long genre fan at the age of four when she first saw The Wizard of Oz at a screening at Arizona State University. Years later, she graduated from A.S.U. as an English major, History minor, Whovian, and Trekkie. Now a Florida transplant, she loves the opportunity Sci-Fi Pulse has given her to further explore space travel, time travel, masked heroes, gothic castles, and good yarns.
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