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SYFY WIRE Arrowverse

The CW's Black Lightning to strike one more time, end with Season 4

By Josh Weiss
Black Lightning

The CW's superhero series Black Lightning will come to an end after its upcoming fourth season, Variety confirmed today.

"When we first started the Black Lighting journey, I knew that Jefferson Pierce and his family of powerful Black Women would be a unique addition to the superhero genre," series creator/executive producer Salim Akil told the trade outlet. “The love that Blerds and all comic book fans around the globe have shown this series over the past three seasons proved what we imagined, Black People Want To See Themselves in all their complexities.”

Based on the character created by Tony Isabella with Trevor von Eeden, Black Lightning stars Cress Williams in the titular role. By day, Jefferson Pierce is just a mild-mannered school principal, but by night, he's the electrifying protector of Freeland, Georgia. Prior to last year's Crisis on Infinite Earths crossover event, the show was disconnected from the rest of the wider Arrowverse.

Black Lightning

Speaking of which, it truly is an era of multiverse upheaval. Arrow ended earlier this year and Supergirl will close out for good after Season 6. With that said, the conclusion of these other shows will help make way for new content like Superman & Lois and the recently-announced Black Lightning spinoff centered around Painkiller.

Plus, there's still Legends of Tomorrow (which Black Lightning could conceivably join?! Hey, it's picked up folks from every other show at one point or another), The Flash (coming up on its seventh season), Batwoman (now shooting its second season, with a new star in the title role), Stargirl (now a CW exclusive, but not a part of the Arrowverse, its second season is expected in 2021), and the upcoming original series Wonder Girl in development. And that's not even mentioning the possible Canaries project that could still be spun out of Arrow. Point is: when one door closes, another one opens and The CW won't be wanting in the DC department for some time to come.

“Thank you to the phenomenal cast, writers and crew without whom none of this would’ve been possible. I’m incredibly proud of the work we’ve been able to do and the moments we’ve been able to create in bringing DC’s first African-American family of super heroes to life for the culture," Akil continued in his statement to Variety. "I’m very grateful to Peter Roth, Warner Bros. TV, Mark Pedowitz, The CW Network and Greg Berlanti for their partnership and support of my vision at every step of this journey. While Season Four may be the end of one journey, I’m extremely excited to usher in a new chapter and continued collaboration with The CW as we tell the story of Painkiller.”

The showrunner is writing, executive producing, and directing the backdoor pilot for the potential spinoff. The episode will air during Season 4, which is set to premiere in early February 2021.