Black Lightning season 4, episode 1 review: Collateral Damage

Black Lightning -- "The Book of Reconstruction: Chapter One" -- Image Number: BLK401fg_0004r.jpg -- Pictured: Cress Williams as Jefferson -- Photo: The CW -- © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved.
Black Lightning -- "The Book of Reconstruction: Chapter One" -- Image Number: BLK401fg_0004r.jpg -- Pictured: Cress Williams as Jefferson -- Photo: The CW -- © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved. /

Jefferson’s personal and professional life are becoming undone in the premiere of Black Lightning season 4.

Previously on Black Lightning, Black Lightning, Thunder, Lighting and Lynn all got the A.S.A. out of Freeland. After, Jefferson testified in front of the government and gave them everything they needed to prove everything the A.S.A. was doing. All the evidence of A.S.A.’s experimentation on and unjustified incarceration of black people, breaking and entering, and more were provided.

For a moment, it looked like everything was finally going well for the Pierce family – except Tobias was loose and looking to get back to his previous kingpin of crime status. And, as the trailer for this upcoming season of the Arrowverse series showed, Jefferson may be calling it quits as a superhero. Let’s see what’s happening in the Black Lightning season 4 premiere.

Black Lightning season 4 opening

Black Lightning season 4 starts with a very somber moment. Time has passed since Markovia and A.S.A. attacked Freeland. Jefferson is paying his respects at Henderson’s grave, talking to his dead father. Jefferson declares that Black Lightning is dead. He feels like the city no longer needs him and that he caused the death of his best friend. As Jefferson is driving home, he sees one of his students being attacked by the police for no reason. In response, he uses his powers to intervene – an irrational but justified decision. This, however, is only the beginning of his problems.

The last battle didn’t just affect Jefferson as a hero. His personal life took a hit as well: He and Lynn are fighting and he’s apparently not helping his kids. Soon after, however, we see Jefferson and Lynn are in couple’s therapy. It’s here that we discover how Lynn blames Jefferson for being distant since they defeated the A.S.A. and that Jefferson is hurt that Lynn dove right back into work after Henderson died.

It’s a tough conversation but the discussion makes sense. When your friend dies, things change. And if you don’t feel like your loved ones are getting that, then your attitude could very well change as well. Throw in Tobias Whale being Freeland’s “savior” and your daughter and wife wanting to kill him and you have a recipe for anger and rage.

Things get worse in Jefferson’s world

Jefferson argues with Anissa and Lynn over the prospect of killing Tobias. Jefferson is completely against murder but Anissa, Jennifer, and Lynn have all killed people and they both agree that he has to die. Jefferson isn’t hearing it, of course, as he claims Tobias is off-limits to anyone except him. Later, however, we see Lynn using powers – side-effects of the Green Light she’s been taking. Her powers are lasting longer than before and it’s concerning.

Then, Jefferson gets a call from Henderson’s phone. The voice on the other end claims that Henderson gave him the phone. He then tells him to go to the docks and grab the envelope there.

That message came from Henderson’s mentee. He’s disappointed that Black Lightning quit on Freeland. Honestly, you can’t blame him: Henderson praised Black Lighting for being this amazing person; now, he’s sitting on the sidelines. He’s looking at a man whose mentor put him on a pedestal. So when they finally meet, he realizes that the broken man is not close to who he was built up to be.

Black Lightning, Black Lightning season 4, Black Lightning season 4 episode 1, Black Lightning season 4 review
Black Lightning — “The Book of Reconstruction: Chapter One” — Image Number: BLK401fg_0005r.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Cress Williams as Jefferson, Nafessa Williams as Anissa and Christine Adams as Lynn — Photo: The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All rights reserved. /

Jennifer and Annisa

While this is going on, Anissa and Jennifer easily break up one of Latavious Johnson’s gun runs. This leads Johnson to call for Lightning’s death since she’s the most powerful of the heroes. He hires someone to do it and, though they get the shot, it doesn’t doesn’t kill her. In fact, Jennifer is more powerful than before so she heals faster than normal.

Jefferson is furious about his daughters’ actions, knowing that this was planned properly because they hit two of Latavious’ previous drug deals. He warns them against going after anyone if they can let this happen. However, Jefferson also finds out who the shooter is and pays them a visit. The former Black Lightning then proceeds to beat the shooter down and erases his memory. Jefferson isn’t like himself. He’s becoming more emotionally driven than normal.

Lightning Round

Can Jefferson trust Detective Hassan Shakur? Sure, he says he’s Henderson’s former mentee, but is that enough?

Also, what’s up with the new Police chief Ana Lopez? There’s no way there’s not something funky going on with her. You can’t have two positive people that high up in the Freeland Police force, right?

How long until Jefferson goes too far? His emotions are getting the best of him. Will he kill Tobias in the middle of being enraged?

The end of the episode shows Jennifer plummeting from miles up. Does this mean her powers were affected from the shot?

What is Tobias’ endgame? He knows who the Pierce family are and confronted Lynn at her job. He’s also stated that he wants her romantically.

Will Gravedigger come back? Hopefully he will. His character was phenomenal. And, with everything going on, the last thing they need is him showing up. Therefore, he probably will.

A. This was a strong way to start the season, with Jefferson’s emotional storm over retiring as Black Lightning setting it apart from previous premieres. Furthermore, the mystery surrounding Tobias’ true motivations remains an intriguing hook as the Pierce family’s conflicts over the best course of action to take – and the consequences from some of those actions – set the stage for one heck of a final season.. Black Lightning. S4E1. Collateral Damage

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What’s going to happen to the Pierce family now? Did you enjoy the Black Lighting season 4 premiere? Let us know in the comments below!