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Recap / Black Lightning 2018 S 3 E 16 Liberation

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The Pierce family and their allies go to war with Gravedigger's forces.


  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us:
    • Gravedigger assaults the Pit to get his hands on the metas.
    • Major Grey leads her elite commandos in attacking Gambi's shop and the Sanctum to retrieve the briefcase.
    • A subtle one, but when Khalil attacks Painkiller, he does so in the former's training facility, not in the hallway outside his mother's apartment, where they've fought their previous battles.
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  • And Your Little Dog, Too!: In a direct contrast to his previous behaviour of leaving Khalil's mother be back in season 2, Tobias threatens Nurse Allen by having already murdered his father and threatening the life of his mother. By the end of the episode, he's also killed Allen himself.
  • Back for the Finale: Commander Williams returns for the first time since his defeat by Black Lightning.
  • Badass Boast: Gambi response to Major Grey and a whole bunch of heavily armed ASA agents busting into his hideout is not being concerned, but instead thanking Grey that she brought along everyone who knows the Pierce family's secret so he can kill them all, which he does.
  • Battle in the Center of the Mind: Khalil goes up against Painkiller again, and this time comes out on top.
  • Beam-O-War: Brandon and Jennifer combined their powers into one powerful stream of energy, which Gravedigger counters with Eye Beams.
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  • Berserk Button: Gravedigger reacts very poorly to Jennifer mocking his goals. Jennifer in turn gets pissed when Gravedigger disrespects Martin Luther King.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Markovia's invasion is stopped and the ASA is finally taken down, but Henderson is dead, Grace is in a coma, and Gravedigger and Tobias are still on the loose. Also, it appears that Lynn has fallen off the wagon and is taking Green Light again.
  • Brought Down to Normal: Lynn succeeds in shooting Gravedigger with the anti-serum, which enables Jefferson to knock him out. It isn't clear whether this is permanent or not.
  • Character Death: Jamillah Olsen, Commander Williams, Major Grey, Bill Henderson, Nurse Allen and Dr. Jace, from all appearances.
  • Characters Dropping Like Flies: This episode has an extremely high body count among major characters.
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  • Crazy-Prepared: Lynn once again gave herself meta invulnerability before going to the Pit to work on a countermeasure against Gravedigger. This allows her to survive Commander Williams' attempt to kill her and then take him out.
  • Cruel Mercy: Black Lightning convinces Khalil not to kill Odell, as it will be worse for him to face trial and imprisonment for his crimes.
  • Danger Takes a Backseat: Odell gets in his car to flee Freeland, only to find Khalil seated behind him with a gun.
  • Deadline News: Jamillah Olsen is gunned down by a Markovian soldier while reporting on their invasion.
  • Defiant Captive: Jennifer is not impressed with any of Gravedigger's goals and dares him to let her out so she can kick his ass.
  • Dragon Their Feet: Odell is captured right before the last commercial break. The last act then opens with Major Grey carrying out his previous orders to her to retrieve the briefcase from Gambi.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Henderson saves Black Lightning from being shot by a bunch of Markovians, which ends in his own death.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Subverted. Major Grey and Commander Williams are both clearly unsettled by Odell's decision to abandon and nuke Freeland, but they still go along with it.
  • Everyone Has Standards: While Brandon is Not in This for Your Revolution, his friendship with Jennifer is enough for him to help Jefferson bust her out.
  • Genre Savvy: As soon as Lady Eve hears that the ASA is pulling out of Freeland, she realizes that they're going to nuke the city.
  • Godzilla Threshold: Finding out that the ASA intends to nuke Freeland is enough to convince Lala and the 100 to join the Enemy Mine against the Markovians after Lady Eve informs him.
  • Hauled Before A Senate Subcommittee: At the end of the episode, the Pierce family all testify before a congressional committee (which is composed of judges for some reason) about the ASA's crimes.
  • He Knows Too Much: Commander Williams's orders to destroy all sensitive information in Freeland includes killing Dr. Jace and Lynn, with him succeeding in the former.
  • Heroic BSoD: When Jefferson asks Lynn what happened to Commander Williams, all she can offer is "I don't want to talk about it."
  • Heroic Rematch:
  • Heroic Second Wind:
    • Khalil is on the losing end against Painkiller at first, before finding his footing and winning.
    • T.C. gets one after the ASA's countermeasures overwhelmed him.
  • Karma Houdini: Tobias and Gravedigger both get away to scheme another day.
  • Karma Houdini Warranty: Odell finally faces justice for his crimes.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Jefferson retreats from his first battle with Gravedigger.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: Gravedigger decides he doesn't have time to fight Grace and Thunder, so he tells the former to kill the latter.
  • Luke, You Are My Father: Jefferson informs Gravedigger that they're related. Gravedigger doesn't care.
  • Motive Rant: Gravedigger explains his motivations to an imprisoned Jennifer, as he wants to establish a metahuman nation on Markovian soil.
  • Neon Sign Hideout: Averted with the surface entrance to the Pit, then the aversion is Lampshaded.
    Henderson: It doesn't look like much.
    Gambi: It's not supposed to.
  • Never Found the Body: Gravedigger, Lady Eve. The former, at least, is later shown to still be alive.
  • Never My Fault: A newscast at the end of the episode reveals that the Markovian government is refusing to accept responsibility for Gravedigger's assault on Freeland, citing the ASA's actions as provocation.
  • Not Quite Dead: Gravedigger somehow survives the explosion of the Pit unscathed.
  • Not Worth Killing: Jefferson points this out to Khalil in regards to Odell, saying that he should rot in prison.
  • Nuke 'em: What Odell wants to do to Freeland.
  • Redemption Rejection: Lynn tries to appeal to Commander Williams, in pointing out that he is a metahuman too. He doesn't take it, which ends in his death.
  • Revenge: Tobias kills Nurse Allen, as well as his father. He spares his mother, however.
  • Sacrificial Lion: Jamillah is killed in the episode's prologue, and is the first of many to die in the episode.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Odell eventually decides that the war with Markovia isn't worth the effort and orders that the ASA evacuate the city and prepare to nuke everything.
  • Self-Destruct Mechanism: Odell triggers one in the Pit in order to Destroy the Evidence of his crimes.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Spotting the Thread: Gravedigger quickly realizes that Jennifer is Jefferson's daughter.
  • Thicker Than Water: Jefferson tries to convince Gravedigger to stand down due to their blood relation. It doesn't work, as he barely even believes him.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Khalil, enough so to break out of the firewall and beat down Painkiller to regain control of his body.
  • Trash the Set: Gambi's tailor shop looks to be a total loss, Sanctum included. Ditto the Pit, which Odell blows up.
  • Uncertain Doom: Lady Eve is once again severely injured in a shoot-out. That said, if she does die again, Lazarus Prime could just yet again resurrect her.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Painkiller doesn't take Khalil seriously, which ends badly for him.
  • Useless Spleen: Invoked by Khalil after shooting Odell.
  • Villainous Rescue: Lala, Devonte and a bunch of his other men save Henderson, Two-Bits and the rest of the resistance from being overrun by the Markovians.
  • Wham Shot: One of the attendees at the congressional hearing deactivates a holographic disguise and reveals himself to be a still-alive Gravedigger.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Henderson hates being in the forest.
  • Wild Card: Eve rats out Gambi to the ASA, but turns on them once it is clear that they want to nuke Freeland.
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