Episode 6/ Three Sevens: The Book of Thunder
Directed by: Benny Boom
Written by: Charles Holland
Picking up right where we last left off, Dr Lynn Stewart (portrayed by Christine Adams) quickly emerges as the nexus for most of this episode and its players, and spotlights her respective relationships with them. Lynn manages to straddle the line of helping Jefferson professionally, while repelling his affections, having learned all too well from the fallout of their marriage. Her yin/yang relationship with Gambi over the “soul” of Jefferson/Black Lightning remains strongly dichotomous, but this time around, Gambi, like Dr Frankenstein, is starting to show trepidation for the “monster” he has created. She is also drawn into Anissa’s mysterious familial investigations, given her mother’s medical expertise.
Besides the nightly vehement vendetta our hero wages with the revelation that his arch-nemesis is alive, the day-time segments focus on protesting and counter-protesting on campus and the needless, sadly inevitable consequences. There is also some attention given to cyber-bullying through the sub-plot of Jennifer from last episode. Jefferson’s scolding of Anissa for participating in the protest comes off hypocritical, but his advice and counselling of Jennifer is more sincere. Sadly, both commentaries and messages are light and are drowned out by the larger plot going on.
The episode culminates with the fateful confrontation we were expecting since Anissa became (unofficially) “Thunder”. And with that, the shady past with Gambi only deepens with his bold confrontation with another major player in Freeland’s criminal underworld.
As can be expected Christine’s character and performance is the shining star here. Anissa gets more growth with her further embracing being a superhero and the somber repercussions of her (and Jefferson’s) short-sighted actions. Even the nebulous Jennifer feels as though she is making some momentum with her character. The sub-plots aside, the weakest elements this week are Black Lightning’s brief stroll on the dark side, as well as the muddled spiral towards villainy a certain character makes. Overall, this episode is a bit stronger than the last, mainly for the payoffs, and it makes an earnest effort to address contemporary problems through the lens of Freeland’s citizens and the civil identities of the Pierce family.
Hailing from the eastern-most Caribbean island of Barbados, Fabian Wood has long since been fascinated by the power of storytelling to inspire and invoke emotions – whether in film, comics or videogames. No longer content to be just an avid comic book reader and videogamer, he’s eager to exercise his literary acumen as an aspiring writer and reviewer.