Black Lighting Season 1 Episode 13: ‘Shadow of Death: The Book of War’ Review

[Featured Image: The CW]

The music playing during the funeral was very powerful, especially when mixed with the rain, and everything being in black and white. You can tell that that was the moment that Gambi decided he was going to look out for Jefferson and then even more once Jefferson used his powers for the first time.

An interesting thing the flashback shows us is that, like in present day, Jefferson’s powers surface when he feels strong emotions but in the flashback he tries to jump an electrified chainlink fence and fortunately, his powers allow him to absorb the electricity, however, it doesn’t seem like he consciously did it, much like how Jennifer has used her powers in situations but without intending to.

These flashbacks continue on throughout the episode and give us an insight to Jefferson’s relationship with his father and his life as a teen. Jefferson, while still being ill, seems to be reliving the flashbacks we’re seeing, and although the aesthetic stays the same they change and we Jefferson, as an adult, speaking to his father about everything that happened. This finally leads to him coming back, and it was really great to see all of them, including Gambi, reuniting.

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[The CW]

It was really nice to see Jennifer and Gambi talking, they haven’t really had the chance to since she found out she had powers. It was nice to see that Jennifer was finally being filled in on everything, making sure she’s a little less in the dark. This, and everything else that happens this episode might be enough to change her mind on wanting to suppress her powers, but we’ll have to wait for the second season to know fully where she stands. By the end of the episode, she does seem happy, so it’s going to be the right decision for her regardless.

I also loved seeing Gambi talking to Anissa and Jennifer about Jefferson. I definitely want more of Uncle Gambi in season 2!

During his initial talk with Jennifer, he informs her (and us) about Syonide and we get some backstory. She’s been around for a while but really we know nothing about her. Now, we know that she was taken out of a horrible situation by Tobias and trained by him to become an assassin, pretty much the same thing he’s doing with Khalil.

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[The CW]

When the cabin becomes surrounded which creates a problem because the military men have weapons designed to use against Thunder, Black Lightning no longer has powers, and Jennifer isn’t prepared to use hers. However, once Jefferson decides to suit up and use himself as a distraction, Jennifer taps into her powers and clings to him, allowing his powers to come back. It seems like her actions were partly subconscious and partly intentional. Between that moment, and when they face off against Proctor later, it’s clear that she’s becoming more in touch with her powers as time goes on.

It was also great to see the Jefferson family stand together and refuse to leave Freeland and its people behind. The music playing while the military men move in to attack made the whole thing even better. Black Lightning knows how to fit in a lot of fight scenes without making them feel repetitive.

It makes sense that Thunder was the one to get caught because the weapons being used were made specifically to use against her, and it only made the fight scenes grow more intense because the stakes were even higher, and thankfully it’s not long before Black Lightning gets to Thunder and sets her free.

A funny moment throughout all of this was Jennifer and Gambi’s surprised faces when Lynn knows how to use a gun.

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[The CW]

While the attack fails, Tobias, Syonide, and Khalil breach the facility that Proctor is at. He manages to get away but runs into the Pierce family at the warehouse. Of course, a horrible little man like that went rogue and was doing all of this for his own twisted reasons. That doesn’t make the things the ASA have done any better, if Proctor could prove his work, they probably would have supported him, but he was such an arrogant character that it was fitting when we found out he worked in secret from the government.

It was satisfying to see Jennifer use her powers against Proctor before Gambi shoots him several times. I’m actually quite happy it was those two because the former has been struggling to use her powers and this moment was so controlled and deliberate. And Gambi has felt guilty about his involvement with the ASA so to be able to take out a threat must feel so good for him.

Proctor is a horrible little man and I’m so happy he was dealt with this season, I don’t think I could handle much more of him.

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[The CW]

Although the experiments seem to be coming to an end, it’s not all over. Tobias has the briefcase and there’s still a lot of things that have been left unanswered.

Tobias seemed to have full control over Lala now which means when Proctor questions him, Lala can’t tell them where Tobias is. Lala is turned into a bomb and blown up, but Proctor notices it before it happens. I’m actually surprised that this might genuinely be the end of Lala, they already brought him back, so it doesn’t really make sense why they would kill him again. Regardless, there were too many good moments throughout this episode to really care enough to wonder about Lala.

The one telling thing we got from all of this was that Tobias is in the business of reanimating people and clearly it’s not a perfected method. Black Lightning managed to close up a lot of the storylines while leaving enough open to continue on season 2. I did start to wonder if they could wrap it up well enough before the end because there was a lot going on this season but it worked fairly well, and as long as they keep getting renewed, pacing future seasons like this could work too.

 

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Author: Danielle Murray

twenty-three / infj / british / england

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