Some might call it crazy, but since the start of the Crisis event, the only thing I have genuinely looked forward to is how all of this affects Black Lightning and everyone around him. He never truly needed to be tied into the Arrowverse, but they have done it now, and it might as well be the most interesting thing to look forward to. Especially since they have decided to tackle this through Jennifer of all people being afflicted by the wave of anti-matter energies tearing through the multiverse. Now what’s really crazy? That would be the fact that they have decided to also make this the winter finale for Black Lightning.
The best thing about this winter finale is how for the most part this is centered around Jennifer. It was definitely for the best. Jennifer has been somewhat of a problem since the minute she decided to work with Odell. She is the only one in the family who currently actually thinks that on some level the ASA is trying to help the people, in spite of everything they have done already to hurt the very people they are there to protect. This was the most essential point for them to being addressing what happens when Jennifer begins to open her eyes to the reality of her choices. This was the most creative way to do so as well. I personally found it a bit humorous that with everything wild that this family has experienced the past three seasons, the concept of multiverse theory is something they aren’t ready to accept yet. While this of course is something you would have to see with your own eyes to believe, you would have thought that at least one person aside from the guy with the tech to be open to the idea.
I loved that the approach towards this could involve them showing what happens when three different Earths clash. From the looks of the promo, it was easy to think that another version of Jen was going to come to her Earth, but it was smarter that three versions would simply phase over top of one another. This allowed for three different opportunities to see where Jennifer’s choices could have led her. There’s her current path, one where she actually took action as a hero, and one where she went a step too far in helping Odell. Both experiences were unique, engaging, and intense for everything that could have gone wrong for her. I’m sure that some may have wanted to see one version where things do go right, but what would she learn from this is if the answer was simply given to her? It was quite brilliant that she could see things with her own eyes, understand where there has been holes in her current thinking, and actually have one of the most adult conversations she has had all season. That is even if it was with herself.
The effects throughout all of this? Excellent as well from the red lightning, to the red lightning which consistently ran through Jennifer. Even better than this was the actual fight that we got from the darker version of Jennifer. That is what you expect a fight between two people who use lightning to look like. Not chaotic, but directed and with umph.
On the side, it was still good to see that the world was still turning around this family. There was still a war with the ASA that was escalating after the Battle of Franklin Terrace, and of course this was going to start becoming more personal for the ASA considering they are not the kind to allow others to impede their progress. I was actually happy to see Odell back in action because compared to the other two, he is the man with the plan. The other two are more of the show of force in contrast to being the big thinkers.
We only saw a bit of it this episode, but it was sad to see what has come of Lynn since her escape from the Pit. We will obviously have to wait for any real time to be spent on her addiction and how this is putting a strain on her relationship with the family. Though for now the best takeaway is that her battle is going to be more personal.
Overall, Black Lightning “The Book of Resistance: Chapter Four: Earth Crisis” was one of the most daring and character driven episodes we are going to get out of the series. Call it a tie-in or call it Crisis on Infinite Earths part 2.5, they jumped in and made this their own brand of insanity. Even though Jefferson’s world has now been wiped out, there is no denying that at the end we will return to a world where Jennifer knows where she stands as a hero and part of her family. Lynn will be a whole other beast to deal with when we come back, and I wouldn’t be surprised if that takes more than an episode to get her back on the right track.