Jefferson Pierce (Cress Williams) has had it with the ASA occupation of Freeland. Luckily, he is not alone in feeling it is time to openly resist the police state they’ve established. And as this preview of next week’s Black Lightning reveals, everyone will take to the streets to restore their city to its … well, its relative normal. And since this is the first part of “The Book of Resistance,” we expect Jeff, Lynn (Christine Adams), and the rest of the core group are going to have some tough days ahead.
Meanwhile, we were surprised to learn Henderson (Damon Gupton) has been the leader of the Resistance all along. We have to admit the character has always felt a bit extraneous — particularly after he learned Jeff’s secret. And his towing of the ASA line since the Occupation began only made him seem a weaker character. So props to the show and Gupton for concealing Henderson’s true role so well. It’s a great note to end the season’s first book on.
Nonetheless, there are still issues to confront, like the growing resentment of the Purdi toward Blackbird. That is going to blow up in Anissa’s (Nafessa Williams) face much quicker than she realizes. Of course, that’s presuming Anissa is still Blackbird. The Painkiller venom killed Tavon (Jasun Jabbar) stone dead pretty quickly, so we wouldn’t been surprised to see Anissa in some sort of coma as Gambi (James Remar) works out an antivenom — the preview even shows her in a bit of a seizure. And as Grace (Chantal Thuy) proved this week, she can pull off a reason facsimile of her girlfriend. If it turns out that was her at the end of the episode, then the ruse will work as long as “Blackbird” avoids using her powers.
It is interesting, though, that Henderson had to wait for both Tavon’s death and Jeff’s beating to get the citizen’s of Freeland properly outraged. Considering the program’s overall metaphor — to say nothing of choosing the name “Tavon” for the ASA’s first non-meta victim — it is a pretty pointed commentary on complicity and something the show will no doubt have to address in the “Book of Resistance.”
Black Lightning airs Mondays on The CW.