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Black Lightning Confirms Another Comic Book Hero That'll Show Up In Season 1

Black Lightning is set to premiere on The CW later this month, and fans who have been waiting the better part of a year to see the titular superhero in live action are in for a treat. The new show is going to be something very different from the shows of the Arrow-verse, and it'll feature a whole new cast of good and bad guys. Now, The CW has confirmed a DC Comics hero who will appear in Season 1: Thunder. Check her out!

black lightning thunder

(Image credit: Image courtesy of The CW)

Actress Nafessa Williams will bring the DC hero known as Thunder to life, and this first look at her in costume indicates that we're in for some pretty epic action from her on Black Lightning. Thunder is the alter ego of Anissa Pierce, who is the eldest daughter of Jefferson Pierce, a.k.a. Black Lightning. While she seems like an entirely normal and non-superpowered young woman at first, viewers (and Jefferson himself) will learn that Anissa is a metahuman with powers of her own.

All things considered, Anissa's costume as Thunder looks similar to Jefferson's as Black Lightning, although there are some notable variations. Thunder's outfit seems less armored and more form-fitting, and her goggles have yellow lenses. The pattern on her belt and torso is also more ornate than what can be seen on Black Lightning. It should be interesting to see if the suits function differently for these differences or if they're simply aesthetic differences. DC fans may have expected to see her in a blonde wig like what Thunder wore for a time in the comics, but the wig seems not to be a factor for the Black Lightning incarnation of the character.

We'll probably have to wait until Black Lightning actually premieres later this month to get a good look at what Thunder is capable of as a superhero, although we can probably make some educated guesses based on what her comic counterpart can do. In DC Comics lore, Thunder can control her own density by increasing her body mass while preserving her volume, which can result in invulnerability for her. Given the dangers of fighting crime, invulnerability is certainly an asset and would probably set Jefferson's mind a little bit at ease.

The comics version of the character is also capable of creating massive shock waves by the simple act of stomping the ground, which would make sense as a power for a daughter of Black Lightning. On the non-superpowered front, Thunder was trained in medicine, could speak multiple languages, and was skilled with a computer. Only time will tell how many of these powers and abilities will be present in the TV version of Thunder.

Now that we've seen images of Black Lightning and Thunder, I have to wonder if we'll soon get a look at Jennifer Pierce as Lightning. She's the younger daughter of the Pierce family, and it's possible that Black Lightning will want to hold off for a while on teaming up Thunder and Lightning. Still, we have reason to believe that Jennifer will embrace her fate and become a hero like her father and sister.

You can catch the series premiere of Black Lightning with the Pierce family on Tuesday, January 16 at 9 p.m. ET. Black Lightning will be taking over the Legends of Tomorrow time slot, which in turn will take Supergirl's slot on Mondays. The Girl of Steel will be off the air for nine weeks after February 5, which at least means she'll be in action later into the year than the other superhero shows on The CW. For all the superhero premiere dates you need for the new year, take a look at our midseason TV premiere guide and our 2018 Netflix premiere schedule.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.