It's the dawn of a new day for Thunder and Lightning. Jefferson finally presented a harmonious future for the crime-fighting family on Black Lightning Season 2 Episode 15.
Anissa and Jennifer will soon get to embrace their powers without any of Jefferson's control or lectures. All they need to do is agree to a few rules. Simple enough?
In the world of Black Lighting, nothing ever runs smoothly especially when Jennifer refuses to bend from her own wants.
The Jefferson Pierce here who welcomed his daughters into the superhero world was a vastly different Jefferson from Black Lightning Season 1.
Think about it, Black Lightning from a year ago would've never wanted his family to fight. He did everything he could to stop them; so much to shelter and suppress their powers. The fear of the fight held him back.
Now, he's someone who wants to foster their powers and give them a bright future. He hasn't completely changed his controlling side though; Jefferson can't shed all his bad habits. But, it's a significant change from the past.
This is the character development we've all been waiting for two seasons to happen.
And with all things considered, a 3-step superhero code is a good trade-off deal for Anissa and Jennifer. Jefferson was more than reasonable with his rules for fighting evil.
To be a superhero, most caped crusaders follow the same credo of secret identities, having a back-up, and not murdering their enemies. It is more of a situation like The Flash than Arrow or Gotham. It's nothing new in the grand scheme of superhero life.
Jennifer pushing back on the deal came across as her typically reckless and self-involved side.
Getting revenge on Tobias is pushing her motivation to be a fighter; it's her reason for becoming Lightning. But, not killing him doesn't mean that she won't achieve justice. Jennifer can get honor for Khalil's memory without murdering his killer.
Lynn: Your father wants to protect you. It’s a good thing.
Jefferson: But I need to be able to trust you. Okay, I need to know that we’re all rowing in the same direction. So, I’ve come up with a code. Three rules that we will follow. Rule Number #1: We don’t tell anybody who we are.
Anissa: Hmmm... well, that’s for you two blabbermouths. I’m all good with that.
Jefferson: Rule Number #2: You always have back-up.
Anissa: Gambi counts?
Jefferson: Gambi counts. Your mother and her best friend, the “shotgun,” counts.
[They all laugh]
Jefferson: Even though going in alone, doing anything power-related, okay?
Jefferson: Rule Number #3: We don’t kill. Ever.
It's frustrating that she can't see the forest from the trees in this scenario. She can get everything she wants if she only starts thinking with a clear head and patience.
Jefferson should've reiterated the importance of how murdering is a slippery slope as a metahuman. If Jennifer used her powers to get a selfish want now, what's stopping her from using her powers like this in the future?
On the other hand, nothing would've changed Jennifer's mind. Jefferson talked blue in the face at the dinner and the fast food place. Jennifer had her mind set on a bad decision.
Calling her surprise attack on Tobias a "failure" is an understatement. Jennifer's first turn as Lightning was a slow train wreck from which we couldn't look away.
How many times did Gambi have to tell Jennifer that (1) her suit wasn't ready, and (2) it would be dangerous if she used it? Jennifer never listens!
The implosion of her mission could've been easily avoided had she planned ahead and worked with her family. Plus, did she not think about the aftermath of her murdering Tobias? Her family would not be cool with her committing cold-blooded murder.
Hopefully, she uses the time from her recuperation to reflect and clear her head. Jennifer can't keep spinning her wheels with endless bad decisions; it's tiring and redundant.
Jennifer: Do you ever get a static problem?
Jefferson: You mean like with the electricity?
Jennifer: Good! I don’t want the powers to mess up my hair.
Agent Odell is a creepy man. Like, beyond the level of being a shady monotone self-aggrandizing villain.
He didn't need to watch Anissa change in her room with his secret cameras. All she did was switch into a new top; he wasn't learning anything new about the Pierce family's powers. Agent Odell crossed a lot of lines here.
I've said before, but I can't wait until he's defeated.
On the powers front, his cameras confirmed the possibility we all feared: he discovered the truth of Black Lightning, Thunder, Jennifer, and Lynn. Now he has the smoking gun to make a big move against Lynn and get everything he wants.
However, him not using the evidence to take Wendy away was a strange action. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy he didn't take her, but it was an out-of-character move. He made it known that he wanted Wendy for military use, and he had the power to gain the upper hand.
And yet, he gave up on his pursuit for Wendy. Strange ... very strange.
Could he be holding out for a bigger target, like someone from Lynn's family?
When Agent Odell mentioned Black Lightning and Thunder to Lynn, that tease made it clear that he knew the truth of the Pierces. Lynn may not have picked up on it, but we as viewers knew the truth. That moment made Agent Odell even scarier due to the possibilities of what he could do.
If he wants a trained fighter, he could force Black Lightning or Thunder to join his side. Or, if he wants to train someone, similar to his intentions for Wendy, he could go for Jennifer.
That cliffhanger foreshadowed that something menacing might happen, and it's a powerful moment that Black Lightning did right from a tension standpoint.
Lynn's motherly quality is a character trait that adds a lot of heart to Black Lightning.
Even in an intense situation with the pod kids and working with Agent Odell, she stills perseveres. Lynn made sure that the priority of the kids was acknowledged; she fought for their rights and happiness.
I loved how easily she morphed from a doctor role into a motherly figure for Wendy. She genuinely cared for Wendy's well-being, and she wanted to protect her since Wendy had no one else in the world. Regardless of Agent Odell's shady motives, Lynn's thoughtful tactics did work.
As fans of Black Lightning, it's essential that we recognize that some of the most powerful moves are not those from metahuman abilities. It's the decisions made by people and the paths led by head and heart. Lynn is a hero, just like her family members.
Wendy's touching thank you to Lynn showcased the powerful impact that Lynn had on someone's life without abilities. Wendy will get to live the life she was always meant to lead.
Let's hope there isn't a shocking twist that takes it all away! (The emotions can't handle another Lynn heartbreak.)
Tobias needs to start listening to Dr. Jace about his metahuman tactics. She may be a murderous sociopath, but she's an intelligent murderous sociopath.
What she said about not rushing into battle or having the Masters of Disaster (MODs) battle against Black Lightning, and Thunder made a lot of sense. None of the MODs were fully trained or recuperated from their time in the pods. They JUST got freed, after all!
A smarter leader would've realized their untrained metahuman killer wouldn't be a match against two fully trained superheroes.
After causing the chaos with Councilman Parker, the plan should've involved sending Joe back to the base. Tobias is lucky that Dr. Jace knocked some sense into him. If Black Lightning and Thunder had won the fight, he would've been down two MODs since Marcus was already injured.
Plus, if he plans to make money from selling metahuman fighters, he can't recklessly kill his supply. That's bad for business; anyone could tell him that.
Dr. Jace: I think that Cutter is a little too possessive. A long time ago, I was too proud to retreat and I ended up indentured to a rogue nation and then the worse people in the US government. I lost everything because I didn’t have the good sense to stop.
Tobias: That sucks for you.
Dr. Jace: I’m smarter than you are. It’s not an insult, it’s a fact. I’m smarter than virtually everyone I met. It’s annoying, but I’ve learned to live with it. What I lack is your genius for survival! I think we’d make a great team. I can kill people with a whisk, but my big brain can solve a whole lot of problems.
Tobias: So far, I’m not impressed. And I actually appreciate Cutter’s possessiveness.
[He walks away]
Lala might be what finally finishes Tobias once and for all.
There were some doubts at first regarding his revenge mission, especially since he did the murderous act. And Lala isn't the immortal killer that he appears to be. The ghost-like criminal has died before.
However, anyone who can brush off several attacks by Cutter and walk away with his strength is a powerful force to be reckoned with.
Lala won't go down without a fight. He's going to do whatever it takes to finish Tobias so that he can finally rest in peace; eternal rest is a better motivation than Jennifer's need to kill for Khalil.
Could we be watching a Terminator-like scenario here? You know, without the robots and future plotline.
Last Thoughts Lightning Round:
For the curious minds: a little Google research into the MODs shows our four villains as Rebecca (New-Wave), Darrel (Coldsnapp), Marcus (Shakedown), and Joe (in a gender-bending role as Heatstroke).
Wendy (in the comics) was also a member of the MODs for a while as Windfall. Could she be posed to be a villain too later on?
- The fight scene made me ecstatic! The special effects looked visually stunning; Black Lightning put a lot of tech work into blowing out the elemental battle. Plus, the battle was a challenge for Jefferson! (More of these fights, please.)
Anissa: Look, Gambi said something about a shapeshifter; someone who could be a danger to Grace. Jenn, I think the shapeshifter WAS Grace. Grace is a Meta, and she ran because she thought I would reject her. If I’d just told her who I was then...
Jennifer: Find her. Screw the rules, Anissa! Find her and tell her who you are.
Kudos to Anissa for finally putting two-and-two together about Grace. Now that she's here with the rest of us, there's hope for the reunion of her relationship!
Cape Guy: The hero Freeland never knew they needed?
- All Jefferson needed for his memory montage of young Jennifer was a cheesy background song. The right tune would've turned it into a Hallmark commercial.
Now, over to you, Black Lightning fans!
What did you think of "The Book of Apocalypse: Chapter One: The Alpha"?
Does her suit cause Jennifer's pain, or could it be something more menacing? Will Agent Odell make a play for Lynn's family? Will Black Lightning and Thunder defeat the MODs?
If you missed the latest episode of Black Lightning, you can watch Black Lightning online via TV Fanatic. Come back here and share your thoughts in the comments.
Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.