Black Lightning recap: No more Mr. Nice Guy
Wow, now this was one hell of a Black Lightning episode. So much action, catharsis, and needed explanations…let’s dive in.
The episode opens with Jefferson Pierce returning home to find Jennifer and Brandon, newly escaped from ASA captivity. Jennifer finally comes clean about her work for Odell, including the destruction of the Markovian data center that probably included casualties. She has a good conversation with her dad, saying that he and Lynn made her feel like a freak with all their over-protective attitudes towards her burgeoning powers, while Odell made her feel special for having them. But now that she’s glimpsed the dark future, she doesn’t want to work with Odell anymore.
Jefferson keeps his cool around his youngest daughter, but when he gets to Gambi’s case, he’s so angry he can’t help from sparking electricity. He wants to go directly after Odell, treaty be damned. When he gets there, he meets Gambi’s technopath friend TC, who is recovering from his recent fainting and waiting for some much-needed meta-stabilizing serum from Lynn. Unfortunately, Lynn is running out, which means the only way she can make more is by breaking Tobias out of ASA captivity so she can continue using his DNA. Needless to say, she doesn’t tell her family about this (though she and Jefferson might not be on speaking terms for a while after she went full-on addict last week).
While he’s waiting for the medicine, TC shows Gambi what he discovered before he passed out: Lady Eve is back to life, back in town, and she’s the one who sent those assassins after Gambi.
TC’s not the only one realizing this. As part of his revitalization of the One Hundred, our old friend LaLa sends one of his guys to an expensive brothel. Although the poor guy is clearly salivating at the beautiful women offered to him, he’s really there for spying — and he does manage to take video of Lady Eve in charge. “The last time I saw her, she was in a vat,” LaLa says upon seeing the footage. He has a very specific use in mind for this video: Since he knows how she came back to life, he knows how to make it so she can’t (i.e. kill Lazarus Prime, the guy who puts them in the vats). So she better follow his orders from now on.
Black Lightning is also very interested in changing his power dynamics. He and Thunder raid an ASA convoy and straight-up kidnap Odell — who is very much not a hologram this time. They bring him to the house, and Gambi prepares to (as Ving Rhames said in Pulp Fiction) get medieval on his ass. Odell tries to appeal to Jefferson by quoting Dr. King at him, but all he gets is a chest full of lightning for his trouble. This was such a thrilling scene; after two seasons of Odell running ramshod over everyone (especially this season), it’s awesome to see him get knocked down a peg by someone other than the Markovians.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t last forever. The ASA deploys Khalil to kill the Pierces and rescue Odell. He mostly gets his butt kicked by Black Lightning instead, but this is the first time Jennifer has seen her resurrected cyborg killer boyfriend, and she’s understandably upset. Not sure what else to do, she restrains Black Lightning and Thunder from hurting, which mostly just gives the ASA commandos time to spirit Odell out of there. But the Pierces do knock out Khalil. Maybe they can save him after all?
Odell’s not the only character who gets some well-deserved comeuppance this episode. Lynn succeeds in breaking Tobias out by injecting him with a serum that gives him chameleon powers, but on their way out, he tries to betray her. In return, she reveals she gave herself super strength, calls him a “thick-lipped bastard,” and punches him out just as her ASA man-on-the-inside arrives in their getaway car. That’s right folks: Lynn Stewart gave herself superpowers and it was like the third-most interesting thing that happened in this episode.
A final note: This episode all but reveals that Brandon is really Geo-Force, who in DC Comics is the prince of Markovia. I feel ashamed for not putting two and two together when it came to a guy with earth powers showing up the same season everybody’s talking about Markovia, but now I’m even more excited to see what happens the rest of this season.