PRESS RELEASE

JAMES REMAR (DEXTER) AND DAMON GUPTON (BATES MOTEL) JOIN ELECTRIFYING CAST OF BLACK LIGHTNING

Fans Learn More Details About The CW’s New DC Super Hero During Saturday’s Comic-Con Panel

AN DIEGO and BURBANK, Calif. (July 22, 2017) — The excitement surrounding The CW’s latest addition to its DC Super Hero lineup was electrifying at Warner Bros. Television’s Black Lightning Comic-Con 2017® panel Saturday, July 22, as fans learned that two new characters will enter the beleaguered community where local hero Jefferson Pierce secretly fights crime as masked vigilante Black Lightning. Executive producers Salim Akil & Mara Brock Akil announced at the session that James Remar and Damon Gupton will light up the screen as two new series regulars when Black Lightning premieres midseason on The CW. Fans were also charged up to view a special sneak peak of the upcoming series.

James Remar

James Remar (Dexter, Django Unchained, The Warriors) joins the cast as Peter Gambi, the oldest friend of Jefferson Pierce (series star Cress Williams). Gambi is Jefferson’s father figure, mentor and “tailor.” His history with Jefferson goes back farther and deeper than anyone knows, and Gambi’s role in Jefferson’s life will become a painful window into the past that will affect the future of their relationship forever.

Damon Gupton

Damon Gupton (Bates Motel, Whiplash, La La Land) will play Inspector Henderson, a veteran officer of the law who is now the highest-ranking detective on the force. His role in the community puts him at odds with Black Lightning (Williams), but they soon become unlikely allies.

Based on the characters from DC, Black Lightning is from Berlanti Productions and Akil Productions in association with Warner Bros. Television, with executive producers Greg Berlanti (Arrow, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, The Flash, Supergirl), Salim Akil & Mara Brock Akil (Being Mary Jane, The Game, Girlfriends) and Sarah Schechter (Arrow, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, The Flash, Supergirl). The Black Lightning character was created by Tony Isabella with Trevor Von Eeden.

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Last night's episode had the funniest line reading I've ever seen on a superhero show. Two words, said at a dinner table. I was dying.

We had to rewind and watch it again. This is an amazing cast.

I'm sure last night's episode was better than what I watched.

Less preposterous, too!

Caught up last night. You know, I think I'm enjoying the "family drama" aspect of the show more tyhan the "superhero" aspect.

Me too -- I think, for once, they're not dismissing the questions and concerns raised by Lynn. They're good questions, and coming from a good place. And they're treating them with respect, while still taking the stance that sometimes you have to put yourself out there for the greater good. 

Is Henderson's first name "Inspector"? 

Apparently.

In the comics it's William (or "Bill").

I actually am a bit bamfoozled about Henderson. As written, he's really incompetent, but evidently we're not supposed to think so. But he keeps telling people "let the police do their job," when it's pretty obvious the police aren't doing their job. I mean, that hotel-slash-brothel was open with impunity, apparently with girls snatched from the neighborhood. And for the march on that hotel, a march against well-armed and ruthless criminals, one likely to end in violence and the death of innocents, the cops spared one -- ONE -- squad car. Jeez, Memphis police use more cars than that for a traffic stop, and when we had a neo-Confederate rally scheduled (it fizzled), the cops shut down Midtown entirely. Is it possible he's working for The 100? Because otherwise he's really bad at his job.

ClarkKent_DC said:

Is Henderson's first name "Inspector"? 

Captain Comics said:

I actually am a bit bamfoozled about Henderson. As written, he's really incompetent, but evidently we're not supposed to think so. But he keeps telling people "let the police do their job," when it's pretty obvious the police aren't doing their job. I mean, that hotel-slash-brothel was open with impunity, apparently with girls snatched from the neighborhood. And for the march on that hotel, a march against well-armed and ruthless criminals, one likely to end in violence and the death of innocents, the cops spared one -- ONE -- squad car. Jeez, Memphis police use more cars than that for a traffic stop, and when we had a neo-Confederate rally scheduled (it fizzled), the cops shut down Midtown entirely. Is it possible he's working for The 100? Because otherwise he's really bad at his job.

I might be giving the producers too much credit -- I like them, I trust them, they've done good work on their other shows* -- but maybe Freeland is a dysfunctional place like Hub City in The Question. A place where good, well-meaning people can't do their jobs because the bureaucracy won't allow for it. 

And, as Denny O'Neil frequently reminded us, Hub City was modeled on a real place.

* Mara Brock Akil and Salim Akil's credits include South Central, Girlfriends, The Game, and Being Mary Jane.

Yeah, Hub City was modeled on East St. Louis, Ill. I took a wrong turn trying to get to Busch Stadium in St. Louis (or failed to exit when I was supposed to) and was abruptly taken across the Mississippi.* I got a look at East St. Louis before turning around. I don't know what the whole place looks like, but downtown looked uninhabited and uninhabitable.

* This is by no means an indictement of St. Louis. In Memphis, if you don't know what you're doing on the expressway downtown, you might abruptly find yourself in West Memphis, Ark. When dealing with a large geographic obstacle like the Mississippi River, wrong turns are unforgiving.

I'm from the St. Louis area. That's a pretty fair assessment of East St. Louis (Illinois).

This is my favorite CW show right now ... by a country mile.

I'm assuming that Jennifer can name check Vixen for the same reason that Lynn can name check Supergirl.  Namely, that they're both comic book characters on Earth:BL.

I know nothing about Thunder in the DCU, but the preview for next week revealed something cool (and logical) about her in the Arrowverse.  

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