Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Black Lightning Episode Guide: Season 2, Episode 4 - The Book of Consequences: Chapter 4: Translucent Freak

For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.


With Tobias Whale behind bars, Jefferson ponders the future of his life - as a teacher and as Black Lightning. But as much as he'd love to explore rekindling his romance with Lynn and hang up his costume, he finds himself fighting Anissa when he discovers that's been playing Robin Hood with money she's stolen from Freeland's criminals.


The Black Lightning comics of Tony Isabella.


Nafessa Williams and China Anne McClain do a great job playing up the relationship between Anissa and Jennifer here.


While it's immediately obvious that it is a dream sequence, the opening where Jennifer fights Painkiller after he kills her family and Issa Williams as she's getting ready to go to a dance with Issa, is brilliantly shot and well choreographed.


The quote we see on the blackboard in Jefferson's classroom is from Langston Hughes' Let America Be America Again.

(It never was America to me.) 
 O, let my land be a land where Liberty 
Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath, 
But opportunity is real, and life is free, 
Equality is in the air we breathe.


Sean Phillips - one of the Green Light Babies - was experiencing rapid mitochondrial degeneration. He apparently had the power of cryokinesis but froze himself solid in his pod while Dr. Jace was watching him die.

Jefferson, Anissa and Jennifer all have stable metahuman DNA profiles.  Jefferson's DNA shows signs of having taken The Green Light vaccine. Jennifer and Anissa's do not.

Dialogue Triumphs

Henderson: How is it you never seem to age?
Tobias: Well, a vegan lifestyle with a little yoga really does work. I keep saying black folks gotta get off of that fried chicken & watermelon, Kool-aid diet. Plus I do my best to stay out of the sun.

Henderson: You forgot something, you translucent freak. You are not going to get away with this!
(Henderson turns to leave the room. As he gets to the door, Tobias speaks.)
Tobias: Deputy Chief Henderson? "Translucent." That's a very interesting choice of words. It means you can see right through me. And if you can see right through me, then you know what I'm thinking.

Kara: You lying old hypocrite! You ain't no better than I am!
Gambi: No, I'm not. But I've had time to atone. You don't.


Jennifer has a nightmare about fighting Painkiller after he kills her family.

The dream suggests that Jennifer has feelings for Issa Williams.

Jennifer still can't confine her fears in a box in her head. This seems to be tied to her feelings for Khalil before he became Painkiller.

All the DNA evidence in Alvin Pierce's murder disappeared in the last week, as Tobias was captured. It is implied that Detective Summers was the cop who stole the evidence before Tobias killed him.

It is further suggested that Tobias called the cops on himself, so that his name would be cleared on the murder charges that sent him into hiding.

The District Attorney of Freeland is a woman named Ms. Montez.

Gambi tells Jefferson about the Anissa robbing the mobsters in 203.

Anissa moves out of Jefferson's house after he plays the "As long as you live under my house..." card.

Anissa finds out that Painkiller is still texting Jennifer. Jennifer says she still hasn't responded.

Jefferson refers to Lynn killing a man with a shotgun in 113. Lynn says she has made peace with that.

Jefferson reveals to Henderson that he saw Tobias Whale murder his father. He says he never revealed this before because Gambi was afraid it would make Jefferson a target.

Kara Fowdy is revealed to be alive, barely, after collapsing in Gambi's home in 203. Gambi is caring for her but she has sepsis and says it is only a matter of time before she dies.

Jefferson is apparently teaching English at Garfield High now.

Armed security guards are now walking the halls of Garfield High.

Principal Lowry has instituted a zero-tolerance policy, with whoever throws the first punch in a fight being automatically expelled and the other fighter being suspended for one week.

Principal Lowry makes it clear that he doesn't want Jefferson around, doesn't want his input and that he doesn't care about nuance, thinking that zero tolerance policies make it absolutely clear what the rules are to everyone.

Anissa crashes with Gambi for a few days.

Dr. Jace lets one of the pod kids die so she can monitor his vitals as his heart fails and chart what powers he developed. Lynn, naturally, objects to this, but can do little as all the evidence says the boy was going to die before they could try to treat him anyway.

Tobias grants the mobsters Anissa robbed permission to try and deal with her violently on one condition - set up facial and body recognition monitors outside Rev. Holt's clinic in case Black Lightning shows up.

Tobias' new goal is figuring out who Black Lightning is, so he can kill him for causing his sister, Joey Toledo and Syonide to die, albeit indirectly.

Jennifer accidentally destroys her computer after Painkiller sends her an IM.

Dr. Jace says that she is basing all her theories around the fact that the Green Light Babies can't be saved. Lynn's are based around predicting improvements and trying to save them.

Dr. Jace discovered Lynn's DNA samples of Jefferson, Anissa and Jennifer. She says the ASA would love to find a family of metahumans to experiment on.

Black Lightning and Thunder do manage to stop the free clinic bombing, but the woman who planted the bombs gets away.

Jefferson offers to let Anissa move in to Alvin Pierce's old home.

Jefferson speaks to DA Montez and she agrees there is no way Jefferson's testimony would be enough to convict Tobias Whale.

Gambi says he destroyed all the evidence Jefferson was at the crime scene to protect him.

Jefferson and Lynn decide to home school Jennifer because she can't control her powers.

Kara Dowdy tells Gambi that Tobias has Proctor's briefcase.

Jennifer replies back to one of Painkiller's texts and meets with him in Garfield High at night.

Tobias Whale is cleared on all charges related to Alvin Pierce's murder and announces his intention to become a pillar of the community in Freeland again.

Tobias Whale throws a massive party for The 100, reaffirming his leadership of the gang.

The Bottom Line

A solid episode that pushes all the storylines forward a bit. It's not quite as surprising as last week's but how can you top Tobias Whale suddenly being arrested.  Great stuff, all around.  It may not be The CW's showiest superhero show, but all in all I think it may be the strongest of the 2018 Fall Season.

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