‘Black Lightning’ Recap and Review: “Lawanda: The Book of Burial”
After a strong pilot episode and a second episode that saw the death of Will and Jefferson’s former student Lawanda at the hands of Lala, and Lala at the hands of Tobias. Black Lightning returned for episode three last night and continued to show the struggles in Freeland as well as Anissa’s developing abilities.
While the town gathered for Lawanda’s funeral, Anissa is off on her own testing her abilities at the dump. She kicks around a laundry machine and records her actions to keep track of what’s going on. She misses Reverand Holt organize a march and her father and Inspector Henderson try to persuade the man not to hold the event. After Henderson leaves, Holt reveals that he was inspired by Black Lightning, who he feels is a gift from God.
While researching genetic mutation, Anissa meets Grace Choi, played by Chantal Thuy. Grace invites her to a superhero-themed party that’s set to happen on the same night as the march. At a family dinner where Anissa is again absent, Jennifer reveals that she’s ready to have sex and will be doing so that weekend. Caught off guard, Lynn and Jefferson sit in stunned silence for the rest of dinner. Anissa and Jennifer share a laugh at the moment later that night.
Elsewhere, Tobias is ordered by Lady Eve, played by Jill Scott, to disrupt the march or else risk losing funds. Things are tense between Jefferson and Lynn after she suggests Jennifer moves in with her if he’s going to go back to being Black Lightning regularly. Soon after, he confronts Khalil about the boy planning to have sex with Jennifer in a hilariously awkward conversation. Before the march, Jefferson trains with new tech from Gambi so he can focus his attacks.
Anissa goes to the party in a catsuit and dances with Grace. Her girlfriend, Chenoa, shows up and causes a scene. The pair goes outside to talk and end up breaking up. Anissa returns inside and bids Grace farewell to go meet Jennifer.
When the march begins, Jefferson places himself on top of a nearby building. He gets nervous when he spots Lynn and the girls in the crowd. When a gunman runs into the crowd, Jefferson blocks the bullets. He takes out the gunman and two more attackers.
Down the street, Tobias pulls up and is pissed to see Black Lightning still alive. He orders his minion to shot him. She misses and hits Reverend Holt and Khalil with the same bullet. At the hospital, Anissa avoids telling her mom what’s going on with her by only telling her about her break up. In the end, both Khalil and Holt survive, but Khalil may not be able to walk again because the bullet hit his spine. In his house, Gambi deletes an image of Tobias Whale from cameras. The episode ends with the Pierce family sharing a group hug in the hospital hall as a woman thanks BL on the news.
Final thoughts on last night’s episode of Black Lightning
The writers have done a great job so far of balancing the lighthearted family and relationship moments with what’s going on in Freeland and the tougher elements in the Pierce family like custody of Jennifer and Lynn’s mindset on Jefferson actively out in the streets again. I wasn’t expecting Anissa to meet Grace so early in the series or for Jennifer and Khalil’s relationship to be rocked by such an event, but it’s nice to have unexpected events to keep audiences guessing.
Tobias clearly told his minion lady to shoot Black Lightning. The fact that she missed so blatantly makes me think she won’t be around for much longer. I’m interested in seeing Jill Scott’s character a bit more at least over Tobias and his constant stabbing and killing of folks. He’s a great villain so far and has created a great presence, I just want to see what other kinds of evil this show will depict. Sidenote: The soundtrack is consistently awesome and I’m now suspicious about Gambi.
I’m giving last night’s episode an 8.5/10.
Kira McCall covers entertainment for MFST. She’s a freelance writer and alum of Towson University where she studied advertising, public relations, and creative writing. Follow her on Twitter at cocovanilla45 (GirlsofManyFandoms) and kiramira_.
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