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The First Look at BLACK LIGHTNING’s Thunder

The First Look at BLACK LIGHTNING’s Thunder

Step aside literally every other superhero on TV right now, because Black Lightning is about to electrify the comic book world in a way that no one could have predicted.

The CW’s newest Greg Berlanti-produced superhero drama hasn’t even debuted, but it’s poised to be great. From the writing to the acting to the special effects, even down to the music, Black Lightning is the inclusive, representative superhero drama fans have been craving. It may have taken years, but the comic book world finally listened and delivered. And while photos and trailers featuring Cress Williams as Jefferson Pierce suited up as Black Lightning have made the rounds since last year’s Comic-Con, Nerdist finally has your first look at his adult daughter Anissa Pierce (Nafessa Williams) suited up as her superhero alter ago Thunder. She looks even more badass than her dad, which honestly that didn’t even seem possible until now.

Check out her full superhero costume below:

Retired superhero Jefferson’s older daughter Anissa is strong, confident and an out-and-proud lesbian, both in the comics and on the show: She’s one of only a very small handful of LGBTQ POC superheroes in all of DC Comics. Her no-nonsense attitude that will make you fall in love with her; she says exactly what you’ll be thinking and has no time for any cliche tropes.

When Black Lightning begins in the series premiere, Anissa has made something of her life despite many of her peers getting sucked into the One Hundred gang. She’s a successful and respected teacher, is in a complicated-but-committed relationship and keeps her head down and out of the dangerous local gang activity. She has no idea about her father’s secret identity, but based on the fact that the network has released a first look at her suiting up as her comic book alter ego, it’s not that much of a stretch to assume she’ll learn the truth about her father moonlighting as Black Lightning and be inspired to suit up herself.

For those unfamiliar with the Black Lightning source material, Anissa Pierce is a meta-human, born with superhuman abilities like making herself bulletproof and blasting shockwaves by stomping on the ground. While she wanted to follow in her father’s footsteps and use her abilities to fight crime, she struck a bargain with her parents: she would graduate from college before becoming a vigilante. The night of her graduation, she officially became Thunder, and her younger sister became Lightning. Anissa was recruited into the superhero team Outsiders where she first butted heads with another member, Grace, before they fell in love. And while Jefferson at first demanded that Anissa leave the Outsiders, after fighting side-by-side with her, he eventually came to respect her as a crime fighter in her own right.

First created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden for DC Comics in 1977, The CW’s retired version of Jefferson Pierce is a bit different than what fans may be expecting. As the only Greg Berlanti-produced CW series to exist outside the Arrow-verse, Black Lightning will be a standalone series, grounded much more in reality than the others (meta-human powers aside).

When the midseason series begins, it has been over a decade since Jefferson hung up his superhero suit to focus on family and his job as a principal of a charter high school,  a safe haven for young people in a New Orleans neighborhood overrun by gang violence. No longer a vigilante superhero because of the stress it put on his marriage and family, he’s now a hero to his community in the light of day. But he’s pulled back into that dangerous life-or-death high-stakes world when his daughters, Anissa and Jennifer (China Anne McClain), dealing with their own fledgling powers, get caught up with local gang the One Hundred.

What are you most excited to see from Black Lightning? What do you think of Thunder’s super suit? Tweet me at @SydneyBucksbaum and let’s chat all things Black Lightning!

Images: The CW

 Black Lightning will premiere Tuesday, January 16 at 9 p.m. on The CW.

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