Black Lightning: The Book of Blood: Chapter One – Requiem review S2 E5

Requiem sets up a new book for Black Lightning while introducing some potential new plot threads.

The big development is Gambi apparently getting killed in a drive-by that leaves his car a flaming wreck. If Walking Dead taught me anything no body, no death.

Jefferson has a tough time accepting this despite the rest of the family immediately processing their grief. The Pierce cast brought it here with the tears and emotions to truly sell the loss of a “family” member.

black lightning book of blood chapter one requiem - khalil and jennifer

After learning about Gambi, Anissa decides she needs some special and heads over to Grace’s for a quick booty call. Anissa really treats Grace like trash. At least Grace sticks up for herself this time saying it was a mistake.

Grace rolls out of the room before some wacky skin condition flares up. Comic fans no doubt expected this, but Black Lightning probably doesn’t need to give every potential character powers given that the show is already struggling to work in the already established characters.

One of the bigger takeaways was the show is the writers are trying to work in every character every episode. The check in with Tobias isn’t necessary as his subplot of tormenting Khalil again and blackmailing a councilman doesn’t feel essential for this episode.

black lightning book of blood chapter one requiem - lynn and jace

Jace and Lynn keep working in a cure for the Green Light babies, but Lynn can’t figure out a way to save more than 50 percent of the kids. Then for some strange reason, Lynn believes Jace when she tells her they’ve worked out the kinks.

Not so shockingly, the kids start dying and Jace confesses she only told Lynn what she needed to hear. Jace had been treated like a subtle antagonist, but this was a basic mid-tier villain move for no reason.

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Jennifer is starting to kick it with Khalil again while Anissa gets a job helping out at Rev. Holt’s clinic. One of her first cases involves a couple expecting their first child.

The expectant father rolls into the clinic and basically melts away prompting Anissa to do some investigating. I’m looking forward to the eventual Black Lightning spin-off of the Thunder show. There’s probably some potential with a show focusing on the father of two young superheroes making his way as a school teacher…

Anissa’s investigation takes her to the Southside, where she encounters a racist cop. The running joke on Black Lightning is that every white person besides Gambi is racist or a generic villain. Anissa notices some weird stuff going on around the cop with more of that melting substance blurring around. In maybe the realest moment I’ve ever seen in a show, Anissa decides this is not for her and rolls out. Truth.

black lightning book of blood chapter one requiem - two-bits, jefferson and henderson

Requiem asks viewers to buy that Gambi is dead, which is a big stretch. On the other hand it did allow for some strong emotional moments with the cast.

A better balance of the characters clearly is needed to avoid the current feeling of overload. Gambi’s alleged death takes one player off the board for awhile but there’s still plenty of folks taking the spotlight from Black Lightning. There wasn’t any new developments on Jefferson’s issues at the school for example. Tightening those up would go a long way towards bringing back the spark to this season.

Rating: 7 out of 10

Photo Credit: The CW

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