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Black Lightning (real name Jefferson Pierce) is a superhero, the chairman of the Justice League and a former member of Nightwing's team.

Physical appearance

Black Lightning is a bald African American male. He wears a black and blue unitard with lightning motifs, blue sleeves, black pants and black shoes.[5] He has also worn a costume with shorter pants and blue and yellow sneakers with no socks.[6]

To hide and/or protect his eyes, he wears small goggles with yellow lenses.[5]

By 2018, he has regrown his hair and gained a beard. His costume is also slightly altered and has traded his goggles for orange sunglasses.[3]



Jefferson Pierce debuted as Black Lightning in 2012.[7]


Jeff in civilian clothing.

Suicide Slum
December 1, 10:46 EST

When the Collector of Worlds trapped downtown Metropolis, Jeff was in Suicide Slum, also inside the sphere. He tried contacting the Watchtower, to no avail. Zeta-Tubes were offline too. He could get contact with Batgirl, who was also trapped.[8]

December 1, 13:45 EST

Black Lightning blasted the force field with electricity from inside, while Zatanna tried to breach it with magic from outside, to no avail.[9]

December 1, 14:01 EST

Lightning waited at the edge of the field with Jim Harper and Batgirl.[9]

December 1, 16:22 EST

After Nightwing displayed a holo-message telling those inside the force field about the probe that may be generating the field, Lightning went to investigate. Jim volunteered to go with him.[9]

December 1, 16:56 EST

Lightning peered into the large, gaping hole left by the probe's impact.[10]

December 1, 17:54 EST

Lightning reported to Beta Squad the exact location of the probe, and requested that they attack it from the inside out.[10]

December 1, 18:16 EST

Black Lightning and Jim Harper cracked down a group of looters at an electronics store. Batgirl called Lightning, but he could not help her with Match.[6]

December 1, 18:31 EST

With all looters arrested, Black Lightning advised people to head home, and reassured them the Justice League was on it. Jim guarded the tied-up criminals.[6]

December 1, 18:33 EST

Black Lightning and Jim Harper made it back to the park, where they helped up Batgirl. There was no sign of Match.[11]

December 1, 19:03 EST

They noticed the force field was down, but also that those who were inside were 20 percent smaller.[11]

December 1, 22:03 EST

Black Lightning stood with the other heroes as they met up to discuss the next steps.[11]


New Orleans
January 4, post-21:59 CST

After Gamma Squad saved hostages from the Kroloteans, Black Lightning arrived on the scene with the rest of the Justice League members and the Team.[5]

The Watchtower
February 13, 21:50 EST

Black Lightning watched the activation of the Zeta-Shield from the Watchtower's observation deck.[12]

Washington, D.C.
April 1, post-21:24 EDT

Black Lightning blasted the force field surrounding the Hall of Justice, to no effect. Later, he was present when the Reach ambassador arrived and deactivated the field.[13]

The Warworld
June 19, 04:20 UTC

Black Lightning, along with Black Canary and Captain Marvel, were guarding the key chamber on the Warworld, when Vandal Savage appeared through a portal. They attacked him.[14]

The Watchtower
June 19, 05:24 EDT

Savage transported the three heroes, unconscious, to the Watchtower via boom tube.[14]

June 20, 08:16 EDT

When magnetic field disruptors planted by the Reach threatened the Earth, Black Lightning joined 39 other heroes of Earth in a briefing in Metropolis. The heroes would use a computer virus provided by Lex Luthor to safely disable the disruptors. The heroes were paired off with another into twenty squads: one member would run interference against weapons guarding the disruptors, allowing the other to get close enough to plant the virus.[15]

Dakota City
June 20, 07:35 CDT

Black Lightning was assigned to Delta Squad,[16] and worked alongside Virgil Hawkins to defuse a disruptor planted in the sewers below Dakota City. He distracted the Beetle-tech drones, allowing Static to plant the countermeasure safely. When his young partner expressed a growing fondness for the hero life, Black Lightning complimented him on his natural aptitude, and offered his services as a mentor should Virgil ever desire one. A few minutes after their success, all squads had succeeded in their mission.[15]

The Watchtower
July 4, 21:16 UTC

When the Team was summoned to the mission room for a face-to-face meeting with members of the League, Black Lightning was among the leaguers present. Batman informed them that they would now operate side by side with the Justice League from the Watchtower. Not because Mount Justice was destroyed, but because they earned the right to do so. The League then left the Team to its own devices.[15]


July 2018

July 16, 00:16 UTC
The Watchtower
July 27, 19:57 EDT
July 29, 22:16 EDT
July 30, 00:00 EDT
July 30, 19:23 EEST
July 31, 00:02 EEST

August 2018

August 01, 10:38 EDT
Happy Harbor
August 04, post-12:25 EDT
Happy Harbor
August 05, post-21:04 EDT
Infinity Island
August 06, post-00:41 ECT

September 2018

September 08, 18:21 EDT
September 25, 23:18 EDT
September 26, 00:56 EDT
Owings Mills
September 29, 13:02 EDT

Powers and abilities


Black Lightning's electricity generation.

  • Electricity generation: Black Lightning is able to create bolts of black and blue electricity from his hands. They are capable of harming fellow electricity manipulators such as Livewire.[9][13]
    • Electrical sense: Black Lightning can sense electricity running from power cables by touching walls.[17]


  • Intelligence: Black Lightning is intelligent enough to serve as the chairman of the Justice League. He is also well-read, being familiar with literature, such as Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven.[18]



Background information

  • In the comics, Black Lightning is Jefferson Pierce, one of the first African-American heroes. He was a teacher in Metropolis's Suicide Slum, a member of Batman's Outsiders, and after a term as Secretary of Education under Lex Luthor's presidency, he joined the Justice League. The uniform he has here resembles the one he wore when he was with the Justice League.
  • This is his fourth animated appearance; he previously appeared in Superman/Batman: Public Enemies, Batman: The Brave and the Bold and Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths. He was planned for inclusion in Static Shock, but legal issues caused the character to be changed to "Soul Power".


  1. Weisman, Greg (2012-10-02). Question #16211. Ask Greg. Retrieved 2012-10-02.
  2. Vietti, Brandon (writer) & Zwyer, Mel (director) (August 20, 2019). "Terminus". Young Justice. Season 3. Episode 23. DC Universe.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Weisman, Greg (writer) & Berkeley, Christopher (director) (January 4, 2019). "Princes All". Young Justice. Season 3. Episode 1. DC Universe.
  4. Dubuc, Nicole (writer) & Zwyer, Mel (director) (January 11, 2019). "Away Mission". Young Justice. Season 3. Episode 5. DC Universe.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Weisman, Greg (writer) & Divar, Tim (director) (April 28, 2012). "Happy New Year". Young Justice. Season 2. Episode 1. Cartoon Network.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Weisman, Greg (w). Jones, Christopher (a). Atkinson, Zac (col). Abbott, Wes (let). Gaydos, Sarah (ed). "Players, Chapter Five: Milburn, Edgar and Jake" Young Justice 24 (January 23, 2013), New York, NY: DC Comics
  7. Weisman, Greg (2018-04-09). Question #24029. Ask Greg. Retrieved 2021-07-02.
  8. Weisman, Greg (w). Jones, Christopher (a). Atkinson, Zac (col). Sienty, Dezi (let). Gaydos, Sarah (ed). "Players, Chapter Two: Directly to Jail" Young Justice 21 (October 17, 2012), New York, NY: DC Comics
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 Weisman, Greg (w). Jones, Christopher (a). Atkinson, Zac (col). Abbott, Wes (let). Gaydos, Sarah (ed). "Players, Chapter Three: Landing on Boardwalk" Young Justice 22 (November 20, 2012), New York, NY: DC Comics
  10. 10.0 10.1 Weisman, Greg (w). Jones, Christopher (a). Atkinson, Zac (col). Abbott, Wes (let). Gaydos, Sarah (ed). "Players, Chapter Four: Do Not Pass Go" Young Justice 23 (December 19, 2012), New York, NY: DC Comics
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Weisman, Greg (w). Jones, Christopher (a). Atkinson, Zac (col). Abbott, Wes (let). Gaydos, Sarah (ed). "Players, Chapter Six: Rolling Doubles" Young Justice 25 (February 20, 2013), New York, NY: DC Comics
  12. Weisman, Greg (writer) & Divar, Tim (director) (May 19, 2012). "Salvage". Young Justice. Season 2. Episode 4. Cartoon Network.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Dubuc, Nicole (writer) & Murphy, Doug (director) (January 12, 2013). "Cornered". Young Justice. Season 2. Episode 11. Cartoon Network.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Weisman, Greg (writer) & Divar, Tim (director) (March 9, 2013). "Summit". Young Justice. Season 2. Episode 19. Cartoon Network.
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 Hopps, Kevin (writer) & Murphy, Doug (director) (March 16, 2013). "Endgame". Young Justice. Season 2. Episode 20. Cartoon Network.
  16. Weisman, Greg (2013-03-18). YOUNG JUSTICE: INVASION: "Endgame": stuff cut for time. Ask Greg. Retrieved 2013-03-19.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Robinson, Andrew (writer) & Zwyer, Mel (director) (January 4, 2019). "Royal We". Young Justice. Season 3. Episode 2. DC Universe.
  18. Krieg, Jim, Adams, Jeremy (writers) & Zwyer, Mel (director) (August 27, 2019). "Nevermore". Young Justice. Season 3. Episode 26. DC Universe.