Thursday, March 30, 2017


Well, now that the rest of you have gotten your first look at actor extraordinaire Cress Williams as Black Lightning...

Within hours of DC’s release of the above image, I was asked what I thought of the Black Lightning suit designed for what we all hope will be an ongoing Black Lightning TV series on the CW. In fact, I was asked this over two dozen times before I posted some quick remarks on Facebook and took the rest of the night off.

First off, please understand, for a plethora of reasons, that I am simply not at liberty to discuss certain Black Lightning things in any detail. That said...

I’m a cheerleader for Salim and Mara Akil...and the CW...and I like this costume. I think it fits the CW super-hero universe perfectly. If it came in “short and chubby,” I’d wear it. Though I would not look nearly as cool as Williams.

Some things I can address...

Black Lightning's powers are natural. He's a metahuman or whatever they call people with natural powers in the CW super-hero universe. Don't worry. Be happy.

I confess I’m getting a wee bit annoyed by fan calls for Static to appear on this show. Now I love Static and the Static Shock cartoon series, but, were it my call (and it isn't), you would NEVER see Static in this series. Black Lightning doesn't need Static. Static doesn't need Black Lightning. They are great characters who can stand on their own.

The Outsiders. I feel the same way about them, though a live-action Metamorpho would be epic. They are terrific characters, but Black Lightning doesn't need them. Every other DC/CW super-hero show has turned into a show about a team of heroes. Again, though it’s not my call, but I think Black Lightning should be different. Variety is a cool thing.

And, please, all you wanna be Black Lightning writers and actors, stop emailing me. I have no power there...and that's fine with me. Comics and TV are not the same thing. I don't know how to do a great TV show. Salim and Mara do.

If the time comes when I do branch out into TV or movies, it'll be when I feel I've mastered the necessary skills to do those things well. For now, I'm concentrating on the things I already do well.

When I can say more about any of the above, I will. For now, please know I am a very happy man. I am all wrapped up in my cuddly new DC Comics blanket and feeling the love.


Black Lightning is getting all sorts of virtual “ink” from several comics and media news websites. With some reservations, I am over the top thrilled with this coverage of my favorite comics creation and character. However, some of the coverage does come up short in areas I consider key. So I have devised a point system to help you judge those websites.

If a site includes the information that Black Lightning was created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden, that earns the website two points. Legalese aside, companies don’t create characters. Creators create characters.

If the site gets the credit line correct - it’s officially “Black Lightning created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden” - it gets another point. The difference between “and” and “with” may not seem like a big deal to some of you, but it’s the official DC Comics credit. Use it.

If the site spells my friend Trevor’s name correctly - it’s “Eeden” and not “Eden” - it gets another point. Seriously, kids, turn off your auto-correct and look at the actual comic books Trevor’s been drawing brilliantly for decades.

If the site also mentions my friend Eddy Newell’s name and spells it correctly - it’s “Eddy” and not “Eddie” - it gets another point. Eddy drew my second Black Lightning series in the 1990s.

That’s all for today. I’ll be back tomorrow with the first part of my multi-part report on Pensacon 2017. Teaser: little old blogger me had two “hero” moments before I even got to Florida.

© 2017 Tony Isabella


  1. Best of luck on the series. Hopefully, it's grittier and not as "team" oriented as the other CW series. Hope to see the Cyclotronic Man and Dr. Polaris on this baby

  2. I think the costume looks good, and as you say fits in perfectly with the look of other CW characters. Funny you mention Metamorpho, as in the most recent episode of The Flash we see Abra Kadabra stealing from Stagg Enterprises. That at least, along with Kord Industries brings in the possibility that we might see some other DC heroes making an appearance.

    1. We saw Eobard Thawne in his guise of Harrison Wells at Stagg Industries back in Flash Season 1 — murdering Simon Stagg, I believe.

  3. Looks great! Even more important than the suit, of course, is how Jefferson Pierce the man is portrayed, but all signs point in a positive direction on that front so far. Still, as my generation knows from all the '70s live-action superheroes we thrilled to then and cringe at now, the suit can definitely help make the man.