China Anne McClain Plans Her ‘Black Lighting’ Exit

by Erik Amaya

Even though Black Lightning‘s days are numbered, it appears China Anne McClain‘s time with the series will be even shorter.

TVLine notes the actor took to Instagram to announce she planned to depart from the series with the upcoming season whether or not it continued into a fifth year. Additionally, she will appear in fewer episodes in the fourth season. “God is moving me in more than one way than just this show. It’s bigger than this show. I’m doing God’s work now,” she said. “And I’m not doing anything else.”

God has clearly been on her mind since the earliest parts of the pandemic. McClain regularly references her faith in Instagram videos, interviews, and during the Black Lightning panel at DC FanDome. McClain further clarified this calling is the main motivation behind her decision to scale back her time with the show. “And people that actually know me,” she added. “They know why I make the decisions that I make.” She went on further to suggest projects initiated by her production company will be part of her new understanding.


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Since the pilot episode, McClain has played Jefferson Pierce’s (Cress Williams) younger daughter Jennifer — aka Lightning. As the show’s resident teenager, Jennifer walked a rough road toward her supersuit while still wanting to be “normal.” She was also romantically linked with Khalil (Jordan Calloway), the character at the center of the in-development Painkiller spinoff. Considering McClain’s announcement, it would seem she will not be a key element of the new show. At the same time, she congratulated Calloway and showrunner Salim Akil on the new project, saying “Please support [Jordan] in that. God did that for him and he’s going to do great, I know it.”

Black Lightning returns February 8th on The CW.

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