The CW has unveiled an official synopsis for their upcoming Black Lightning series, which will not crossover with the Arrowverse shows for the time being. It still seems hard to believe that we have a cohesive shared DC Universe on TV now, and one that not only shares heroes but also has multiple Earths and ruptured timelines. Whilst the CW network works on the next seasons of Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, and Supergirl, a new suit is about to arrive in town and fans are looking forward to the new addition to the CW hero roster.
Black Lightning, whose alter-ego is African-American Jefferson Pierce, is being played by Cress Williams from Hart of Dixie, and we've already had our first glimpse of him suited up for action in a costume that echoes the real-world sensibilities of the other CW shows. The series is due to get a midseason premiere sometime during the 2017-2018 television schedules. But seeing as Arrowverse originator Greg Berlanti had at one point intended to launch it on the Fox channel, there were questions as to where it would sit or relate to the other CW shows.
Well, this is the subject of conjecture no longer as the CW President Mark Pedowitz spoke during The Network 2017/18 Teleconference, and responded to a direct question from Entertainment Weekly's Natalie Abrams, when she asked if there will be a big five-way crossover:
"We do not aim to do a five-way crossover. Black Lightning at this time is not part of the Arrowverse. It is a separate situation. But there will be a big fourth quarter crossover with all four shows on in the fall."
The use of "at this time" is interesting, since it could mean Black Lightning will indeed segue into the Arrowverse at some point, in the same way that Supergirl did. On the flip side, it's possible it will remain as a separate narrative, maybe on another Earth. Previous hints have been that the show may have a slightly darker tone than its counterparts.
As well as the above statement Pedowitz also made the full synopsis available for the first season. You can read it below:
Jefferson Pierce (Cress Williams) is a man wrestling with a secret. As the father of two daughters and principal of a charter high school that also serves as a safe haven for young people in a New Orleans neighborhood overrun by gang violence, he is a hero to his community. Nine years ago, Pierce was a hero of a different sort. Gifted with the superhuman power to harness and control electricity, he used those powers to keep his hometown streets safe as the masked vigilante Black Lightning. However, after too many nights with his life on the line, and seeing the effects of the damage and loss that his alter ego was inflicting on his family, he left his Super Hero days behind and settled into being a principal and a dad.
Choosing to help his city without using his superpowers, he watched his daughters Anissa (Nafessa Williams) and Jennifer (China Anne McClain) grow into strong young women, even though his marriage to their mother, Lynn (Christine Adams), suffered. Almost a decade later, Pierce’s crime-fighting days are long behind him…or so he thought. But with crime and corruption spreading like wildfire, and those he cares about in the crosshairs of the menacing local gang The One Hundred, Black Lightning returns — to save not only his family, but also the soul of his community. Based on the characters from DC, BLACK LIGHTNING is from Berlanti Productions and Akil Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television, with executive producers Greg Berlanti (“Arrow,” “The Flash”), Salim Akil & Mara Brock Akil (“Being Mary Jane,” “The Game,” “Girlfriends”), and Sarah Schechter (“Arrow,” “The Flash”). The Black Lightning character was created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden.
From those words, it seems that the show will indeed stay very close to the comic book origins and show the ground-breaking hero with all his problems and conflict. Whilst the comic-book version regularly teamed-up with such heroes as Batman and Green Lantern, it looks like (at least initially) he won't be fighting alongside the Arrowverse heroes for the time being.
Black Lightning premieres on The CW at an unspecified date. Supergirl airs Mondays at 8pm on The CW, followed by The Flash on Tuesdays at 8pm, and Arrow on Wednesdays in the same timeslot. Legends of Tomorrow will return for season 3 on The CW.
Source: The CW
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