At a police station in the city of Freeland, Jefferson Pierce and his daughter Anissa waits and watches a newscast about another of the 100 gang's shootings. The father whose son is dead insists that the 100 controls the streets, not the police. Protestors took to the street but the 100 opened fire on them. Inspector Bill Henderson tells the press that the police won't tolerate violence, and the newscaster notes that many residents have lost faith in Henderson, who came up through the ranks fighting the vigilante Black Lightning, who mysteriously disappeared nine years ago.
A police officer watching turns off the TV and says that she wishes the press would give the police credit. Jefferson's other daughter Jennifer comes in and tells Jefferson that they're ready. As they go, Jefferson complains that Anissa went to the protest and got arrested. She insists that it was a peaceful, but Jefferson warns that returning violence with violence just leads to darkness. The police pull them over and tell Jefferson to step out of the car. He complains that it's the third time this month and one officer shoves him on the hood, and the other officer draws his gun.
Anissa takes footage but Jefferson tells her to put her hands on the dashboard like the officers say. they take him over to a car and ask the woman inside if Jefferson is the guy. She nods in the negative and the officer leads Jefferson and wishes him a good night. When Jefferson demands answers, the officer says that her liquor store just got robbed. Jefferson insists that he's no robber, but the officer ignores him. Jefferson's eyes flare blue and the nearby lights flicker out for a moment. After a moment, Jefferson gets control of himself and the lights go steady.
Later, Jefferson, his two daughters, and his date Kara Fowdy attend a fundraiser. Senator Nina Martin says that Jefferson, a former Olympic Gold Winner, came back to his old neighborhood and now Garfield is an oasis of hope. Anissa teaches at the school as a health educator, and Jennifer is a standout scholar-athlete.
Jennifer is in the bathroom preparing for a party with her friend Kiesha. Anissa comes in and complains that Jennifer is blowing off the party, and Jennifer says that she and Kiesha are going to Khalil's house party. She promises to be home before Jefferson gets home, and Anissa finally agrees but tells her to be home before their parents get home.
Jefferson takes the stage and his students all recite that they will live their lives by any means necessary.
Jennifer and Kiesha go to Club 100 instead and Jennifer spots a teenager, Will, watching from the balcony. Jennifer gets together with him and tells him that she's not going to have sex with her.
Bill approaches Jefferson and tells him not to let all of the praise go to his head. Jefferson thanks him for pulling strings to get Anissa released, and Bill warns him that the police will get violent. He says that the guys who pulled Jefferson over aren't his and he'll check into it, and leaves to make a call. Kara comes over and tells Jefferson that he needs to talk to a woman about donations. Jefferson sees his estranged wife Lynn and goes over to her greet her. She's heard that Anissa was arrested and warns that it's not a good look, and warns him that Anissa is not a child anymore. Lynn says that Anissa is a lot like Jefferson, always fighting for change. Jefferson gazes at her, and Lynn tells him not to do it and reminds him that Kara is waiting for him. She says that he looks good in the suit and walks away.
After the fundraiser, Jefferson returns home and discovers that Jennifer isn't home. He calls Anissa, who admits that she went to a party. Jefferson texts Jennifer and goes to find her.
Jennifer is half-jokingly arguing with Will, and two gangers come over and sit down. They tell Jennifer to stay and Lala agrees. Jefferson is on the balcony and spots the gangers dragging Jennifer to the back room. A gang lord, Lala, is waiting and wonders why Will has been ducking him down. Will insists that he's just trying to the make the money he says he owes him. Jennifer tries to go and Lala tells her to stand there and be cute. He reminds Will that he had the best attorney in Freeland when he got arrested, and punches Will. Lala then tells Will that Jennifer should start working at the Seahorse Motel to pay off some of Will's debt. Will hastily agrees, but Jennifer says that she's nobody's bitch and knees him in the groin.
Jefferson goes to the door and the guard stops him, going for his gun. Concentrating, Jefferson says that he tried to do it the right way... and the lights go out. as the club goers panic, Jennifer runs out and Lala and his men fire at her. Jefferson takes them out with a combination of punches and lightning bolts. The lights come up and Jennifer sees the bodies. She runs out, and Jefferson goes out into the street. The police pull up and order him to put his hands up. He does so and they order him on the ground. Jefferson doesn't and they shoot tasers at him. He absorbs the electricity and fires it back through the wires, stunning the two guards. Jefferson then blows up their car and walks off.
Tailor Peter Gambi arrives at his shop and finds a wounded Jefferson unconscious on the floor.
Anissa tells Jennifer that she got lucky that she didn't end up drugged up in a Motel room. Anissa reminds her sister that the 100 go there, and Jennifer insists that she's not Jefferson and she's not the Queen of Garfield. Her sister yanks her phone away and turns on the TV. Henderson is on the news saying that two policemen were attacked. The reporter says that Black Lightning was involved, and Henderson insists that it's fake news.
Jefferson and Peter are watching the news, and Jefferson admits that it's been nine years since he used his powers. Peter point out that Freeland needs Black Lightning, and asks if Jefferson remembers why he became Black Lightning. The tailor says that he wanted to give the people hope against evil, and now evil is running rampant. Jefferson insists that he became Black Lightning to take on Tobias Whale, and then every crook until he realized that there's no bottom. He figures that he and Lynn might reconcile and he has a shot at putting his family back together, and he's not going to let Black Lightning jeopardize that. Peter tells him that Jefferson is like his son and they both knew that Jefferson's promise to retire had an expiration date.
Lynn finds a wounded Jefferson in the tub, and says that she can't stay there with the girls watching him kill himself. Jefferson promises that he'll retire.
The next morning, Lynn is watching a commentator talking about black vigilantes. Jefferson comes home, and Lynn tells him that Jennifer was at Club 100 and she came over to calm her down. He claims that the board had him hemmed down, and Lynn tells him that she's a teenager and now she knows what can happen. Jefferson agrees and Lynn tells him that she played bad parent. She insists that she's not paying when it comes to keeping their daughters alive, and asks if Black Lightning is back. Jefferson tells her that she knows better and that he's saved more lives as a principal than Black Lightning. Lynn says that she doesn't want to see him wounded again, and admits that she cares about him. She unbuttons his shirt, and Jefferson tells her that she's not going to find a costume underneath and he's just a man who wants his woman back.
Anissa sees Jefferson bleeding, and Lynn says that he might as well be a crackhead. She tells him that she wants a divorce.
Inside, Jefferson checks his wound where Peter stitched up his wound.
Tobias Whale drowns Will in his super-sized aquarium. His henchwoman Syonide calls him over to the TV, where Roland Martin is speculating that Black Lightning is back. Roland says that people are praying for the vigilante to come back to the city but so far there are only rumors.
The next morning, Jefferson jogs with his daughters and then goes to Garfield. He complains to Kara that the board wants to put metal detectors in the school, refusing to treat his students like criminals. Jefferson refuses to turn his school into another jail, and Kara agrees to relay the message to the board. When Jefferson checks his emails, he finds a message from Peter saying that Black Lightning did a lot of good. There's also a video of a store owner talking about how Black Lightning saved him from two robbers. The store owner says that he wouldn't have lived to see his grandchildren if it wasn't for Black Lightning.
Will goes to Garfield to find Jennifer and ask if they're cool. She says that he's stalking her, and he grabs her. Anissa runs over and tells him to leave or she's calling the police. When Will grabs her arm, she flips him just as Jefferson comes out. When Will goes for a gun, Jefferson stops him and asks if he's going to shoot two women in front of witnesses. Will says that Jefferson doesn't know who he's messing with, and Jefferson admits that he doesn't but says that the police don’t either and will shoot Will for fun. The teenager says that it's not over and walks away.
Back in his office, Jefferson tells his daughters that they put the whole school in danger. He tells Anissa that she should have let school security handle it, and Anissa says that it's about the community. Jefferson tells them that it's about him keeping his daughters alive, and Anissa asks him when he abandoned his people. The bell rings and Anissa and Jennifer walk out.
In the cafeteria, Jefferson notices a student drops drugs from his backpack. Lala comes in and Jefferson greets him by his real name, Latavious. Lala, a former student, says that he heard what happened to Will. Jefferson says that he's had an unofficial arrangement with the gangs to keep violence out of Garfield, and says that he needs Lala to keep Will away from his girls and Garfield. Lala says that Will has been lost since he got out of prison, and tells a young student Malik to shake Jefferson's hand and introduce himself. The gang lord says that he heard that Malik isn't giving school his best and grabs him by the arm as he tells him to focus on reality. Jefferson objects but Lala ignores him. When Jefferson grabs Lala, Lala draws a gun and aims it at him. He tells Jefferson to never to put his hands on him again, and says that he'll teach them his way and Jefferson can teach them his way. Lala takes Malik's phone and has him sweep the floor, and then tells Jefferson that he'll do him the favor but he owes him. Jefferson says that they're good and Lala walks away, smiling.
Later, Will and two of his gangers walk into the school. They bust into Anissa's classroom, shove her aside, and Will draws a gun on Jennifer and drags her and Anissa away. When Jefferson receives word of the incident, he calls in Henderson and Lynn. Henderson wants to confirm that the girls were taken to Seahorse Motel. Jefferson wants to go in on his own, and Henderson complains that Jefferson didn't tell him what was going on. He asks Jefferson to let him do his job, and Jefferson agrees. Once Henderson leaves, Jefferson tells Lynn that he's going to get their girls. Realizing what he plans to do, Lynn tells him to bring them home.
Jefferson goes to Gambi's and tells him that the 100 have his daughters. Gambi closes up and goes downstairs with Jefferson. He shows him a better costume that he's been working on.
That night at the Seahorse, Black Lightning steps out on the top of the Seahorse wearing his new costume. He jumps down and attacks the gangers, letting the suit's armor absorb any bullets.
Lala is in a room beating will for bringing the girls there. He's furious that Will did it without permission and tells him to kill the girls and lose the bodies or Will will do the same.
Black Lightning walks down the balcony taking down anyone who comes after him. Will leads Anissa and Jennifer out, a gun to their head, and shoots Black Lightning in the chest. The armor stops the bullet, and Black Lightning blasts Will over the balcony and into the air as Jennifer and Anissa run off. Black Lightning demands to know where Lala is, and a sobbing Will says that he doesn't know. The vigilante sees Will's car, says that it was nice, and slams him into it.
Later, the police arrive and arrest everyone there. Jennifer and Anissa tell them that Black Lightning was there, and Black Lightning secretly watches from the rooftop.
Lala is driving down the street when a SUV cuts him off. Syonide steps out and takes a blindfolded Lala to Tobias. Tobias shoots him in the shoulder with a spear gun and then reels him over. He says that he killed Black Lightning, and asks if Lala can take care of the problem.
Lynn greets her daughters when Henderson brings them home. Jefferson arrives and hugs his family. Later he goes in and takes a shower, and lets the blood from his wound drip down. Jefferson then looks in on his sleeping daughters, and goes to the kitchen where Lynn is pouring herself a drink. She thanks him for what he did, and he says that it's not over yet.
Jennifer wakes up and goes to the bathroom. She remembers what Will and Lala did to her, and her hands glow red. Jennifer loses control and yanks the sink off of the wall.
Written by Gadfly on Jan 17, 2018