Electric Black Guy

The First, and doubtless still The Best.

In 1977, DC Comics revealed their first headlining African-American superhero with Black Lightning. However, due to numerous controversies and licensing disputes, in the many many adaptations of the DCU he has often been used via Captain Ersatz. This eventually developed into a consistent pattern in which Black superheroes had electricity-themed powers.

In short, this trope is when you mix the black person with Shock and Awe.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Naruto has an entire nation of these. The Land of Lightning is the only one with a visible black population (they seem to be the nations majority even) and lightning is their most common elemental powers. Raikage, Killer Bee and Darui are the most prominent, with Darui even having black coloured lightning that he can shape into a black panther.

    Comic Books 
  • Ur-Example Black Lightning. Most other examples are deliberate Expies or Shout Outs to him. His daughter, Jennifer, inherited his powers. Keep in mind, Black Lightning originally had no powers - he just jury-rigged his own electricity weaponry.
  • Static of Milestone Comics, published through DC.
  • Storm from the X-Men uses lightning as her primary offensive power, although being able to control the weather means this is just one of her abilities.
  • Thunder Fall of the Congolese superhero team The Kingdom in Batwing.
  • Volt from Irredeemable; he's very self-conscious about the trope.
    • Sister comic Incorruptible very briefly features a man with electrical powers who is revealed to be a black guy when they fail.
  • DC Comics character Coldcast has "electro magnetic" powers which gives him a slightly broader range of abilities (he can theoretically affect electrons on the subatomic level) but largely boils down to Shock and Awe.
  • In Kingdom Come Jonni Thunder and Black Lightning have a daughter who has both of their powers, named Lightning. Lightning eventually appeared in the regular DC Universe, except her mother was Black Lightning's ex-wife.
  • Miles Morales, the second Ultimate Spider-Man, has the power to deliver electric shocks that paralyze his enemies.
  • Rapture from The Savage Dragon is an Electric Black Girl.
  • Baal Hadad of The Wicked + The Divine, being a god of thunderstorms in an avatar as a black man.
  • In "Godstorm: Hercules Payne", a spin-off of Grimm Fairy Tales featuring the titular demigod, Andre Payne is a black man from the streets of Compton who discovers that he's the eponymous son of Zeus. After Zeus 'activates' his powers, Andre finds himself capable of discharging electricity from his hands.

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 

    Tabletop Games 
  • Aberrant supplement Aberrant: Year One includes the NPC "Electric" William Greene, an African-American "nova" with electrical powers.

    Web Comics 
  • Jiggawatt of Grrl Power may even be a conscious (though female) evocation of the trope.

    Western Animation 
  • Black Vulcan from Super Friends, created as an Captain Ersatz of Black Lightning to save on licensing fees.
  • Juice in Justice League Unlimited (whose whole team consists of Expies of the Superfriends).
  • Soul Power, a retro funk character from the Static Shock animated series. He was originally going to be Black Lighting, until lawyers got involved.
  • Aqualad in Young Justice primarily has water powers, but has electricity as a secondary one used to electrify said water attacks. The same show also featured Static and Black Lightning, meaning half the (super-powered) male black cast fit this trope. Black Lightning's lightning is also literally black.
  • Teen Titans has Bumblebee, a young African-American woman who uses a pair of stingers that blast electricity at the targets. She has the same stinger abilities when she appears in Young Justice.