Black Lighting Season II – Ep. 2 “The Book of Consequences- Black Jesus Blues”- A Review

Posted: 10/20/2018 in Uncategorized

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Maintaining traction from its opener, BL continues to engage with strong personal arcs, cool visuals and solid action along with deepening mysteries regarding Freeland. For the most part, this ep was gold, particularly the sequences featuring Jefferson Pearce/Black Lightning (Cress Williams) struggling to keep his school open at a great personal sacrifice along with his shaky current family dynamic.

The legacy of the “Green Light” Babies comes into play with this run as two survivors of the experiment wreak havoc in various ways. Issa(Myles Truitt), whose abilities cause people to tell the truth, causes rancour among his  own family members and a well intentioned action by Lynne (Christine Adams) causes further issues at the Pearce home as unpleasant truths are aired over dinner. Jennifer (China Ann McLain) gains some currency character wise as she both pushes Khalil/Painkiller (Jordan Calloway) away in a move that will assuredly protect her family as well as her later offering both comfort and counsel to the struggling Issa.

Not faring so well is the generally “better sister”, Anissa (Nafessa Williams).  She seeks out a relationship with a celebrity musician, slights a former friend/lover and allows her ego to take over when she basks in public adulation. She assists BL with clean up after the aftermath of a meta human attack and capers for the crowd with requisite high fives. This sits poorly with BL who wishes to maintain anonymity while serving the people of Freeland in both his identities. He takes a hit in both aspects as his daughter basks in the limelight and he stands disapprovingly on the outside. He takes a brutal hit via his position as Garfield High’s principal made all the more galling by the school board’s choice of a replacement. Ultimately BL is a hero, however, and in ‘the business’ for the right reasons as exhibited by his later actions in which he stops Wendy Hernandez (Madison Bailey) by bringing her to her senses and helping bring her in compassionately. His later chiding Anissa will hopefully not be the dynamic of the season as the close knit family depiction is among the better parts of this series overall.

The rise of Tobias Whale (Marvin Jones III) continues and he again educates the viewer as to the depths of his ruthlessness. Meeting with a former member of his crew, we know what is coming and the dawning of it on the face of his friend plays exceedingly well. Whale’s later meeting with a detective in his pocket plays equally well as this ally doesn’t see it coming. Whale demonstrates his will to do his own dirty work in the absence of his former number one. His interactions with Khalil could lead to an eventual rebellion though it isn’t likely any time soon. Whale is a brutal, stone cold killer and Jones brings a true sinister edge to his character. His rise as the city’s big bad is inevitable and very, very watchable.

There has been some criticism regarding the pacing of this season…only two eps in…namely that there is more of concentration of the dramatic aspects over the action-y/superhero sequences. This is a different kind of super hero show. Honestly, the stepping down sequence where Jefferson Pearce addresses his students and is met with the mantra he challenges each of them with year after year as a form of affirmation and support is beautiful. This show has heart, emotional resonance and with any luck …longevity. Black Lightning remains simply outstanding and well worth your time.

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