Monday, January 28, 2019

REVIEW: 'Black Lightning' - Everyone Hopes Khalil Can Survive His Latest Injuries in 'The Book of Secrets: Chapter One: Prodigal Son'

The CW's Black Lightning - Episode 2.11 "The Book of Secrets: Chapter One: Prodigal Son"

Jefferson suspects that Tobias is behind a recent malicious attack. He brings this news to Henderson but doesn't get the answer he was looking for. Lynn is confronted by her past.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of The CW's Black Lightning.

"The Book of Secrets: Chapter One: Prodigal Son" was written by Pat Charles and directed by Rob Hardy

Khalil is dying. That's the overwhelming story of this hour. Even though his spine has been ripped from his body by Tobias, his family and loved ones are trying to find a way to save his life. This is a world of metahumans and crazy science experiments. Tobias notes that Helga Jace was the scientist who created the anti-aging serum that has kept both of them looking so young for so many years. That's a reality of this world. It's miraculous that Khalil has survived this long as well. And yet, the tragedy is inevitable that he is going to die. That was always going to be the conclusion of this story. It was the fear that fueled him and Jennifer when they were on the run. No matter how many alternative paths they tried, it still came down to the same conclusion. This is what they feared happening. And now, it has actually occurred. Tobias once again has destroyed the Pierce family. Someone they love has been taken from them. This season had the daunting task of getting everyone onboard with the Jennifer-Khalil romance once more. Sure, it remained a very one-sided dynamic where Jennifer was the vastly more interesting character. Her entire world is being destroyed here. And yet, she has to remain grounded and centered because of her powers. That's a cruel side effect for her. She's not allowed to have an honest and big reaction. She is still given that moment here. She wants to mourn the loss of young love when the world wants to make it clear that she will always be looked at with suspicion. It's so despicable to watch as a white woman believes Jennifer is breaking into her car. Jennifer lets her vitriol out in the way that Reverend Holt is preaching at the top of the episode. He is asking for his community to rise up and create the change they wish to experience in the world. Jennifer has these abilities and is willing to use them now. And yet, that can't save Khalil's life. She can't jumpstart him like a car. She just has to live with the pain of seeing him die right in front of her. The experimental science just isn't there yet to save his life. Lynn certainly acts swiftly in order to give some semblance of hope that the ASA may be able to become the saviors in this instance. But that hope is futile as well. Khalil dies here. That's tragic for Jennifer. It seems destined to send her on her own path of heroic vigilantism. Henderson is just getting used to the idea that his best friend has powers and has been the vigilante he has been hunting all of these years. Secrets are coming out. That makes this a very explosive time for the season. But again, there is so much uncertainty in the narrative as well. Things come to a concise ending regarding Khalil. He and Jennifer are able to share one last moment together. It may not be the romantic reunion they always wanted. But it's a sweet gesture that ensures that everything is said before the end comes. It's an emotional moment. One that the entire Pierce family is around to support Jennifer with. At the same time though, Tobias is breaking Jace out of prison in order to learn where the pod kids are. That plot development is coming back into focus in a major way. Sure, it's still ambivalent about what all of this means and how powerful Tobias is capable of becoming now. But it's a very menacing sight as well. Tobias is already so strong and elusive. And now, he continues to one-up Jefferson and the police. That is bound to lead to only more tragedy moving forward. Khalil and Reverend Holt won't be the only casualties in this escalating war.