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DC Finally Remember that Black Lightning is Amazing


It only took a year, but DC have finally moved beyond their Blue Beatle posable action figures and Jonah Hex cuddly horses (so adorbs), and spotted a forelorn, unused toy sat in the playbox.

And it’s Black Lightning, one of the best DC characters of all time. Yes! After months of silence, DC have finally remembered that they should be using Black Lightning all the time, and he will make his return as writer Marc Andreyko takes over for a run on DC Universe Presents in October, with a spotlight story for the character.

Oh, and somebody called Blue Devil is in it too.

No artist is confirmed as of the moment, but Brett Booth has drawn some sketches of how the characters will appear.

But Black Lightning, you guys! First created by Tony Isabella back in the 70s (around the same time he created his other most enduring and popular character, Marvel’s Russian hero Darkstar) with artist Trevor Von Eeden, Black Lightning has been delighting the world with decent stories for decades now. And he’s back, you guys! Totally back! And it’s not the result of time travel or anything!

A five-part storyline introducing the characters as already being relatively famous and heroic, Andreyko sees this as essentially a pitch for an ongoing series starring BLACK LIGHTNING! and blue devil. And who can blame him? As has been established repeatedly and certainly not annoyingly in this article, Black Lightning is amazeballs.

Have I missed the boat on ‘amazeballs’? I just thought I’d try it out and see if people are diggin’ it as a catchphrase.

Also, do people still say ‘diggin’ it’?

  1. Shame on ALL OF YOU (points at internet) for not reading Manhunter by Marc Andreyko. One of DC’s best books that no one read.

    So glad Blue Devil is back. Another fun cool character DC needs to get out there.

  2. Hey, Tony,

    When this book comes out, maybe we can go on the road together. Call it the “Black & Blue” tour, show off our bruises!

  3. Black Lightning has been delighting the world with decent stories for decades? Really? Where? I mean he was ok on the Superfriends…… Oh wait……. That gentleman went by another name……. They let anyone write on this website now, don’t they…….

  4. What point is this article exactly trying to make? I suspect it’s not informing the public of the return of Black Lightning, but other than that I honestly don’t understand.

  5. Also look out for his fantastic “Year One” limited series, by Van Meter and Hamner. It was one of the best reads from 2010!

  6. Not trying to be a jerk … But … (I know you know something relatively jerky is coming up) …

    “First created by Tony Isabella…”

    What does that even mean. Shouldn’t it just be Created by Tony Isabella? I am sure it was just less that perfect choice of wording in a quickly written article. But, to me it seems to slight Isabella some how.

    I don’t know. Maybe I am crazy. Or overly sensitive considering all the grief DC has caused Tony Isabella over Black lightning.

    Putting first before created seems to take away some of Tony’s credit. As if other people also deserve some or maybe more credit. When pretty much everything great about Black Lightning is because of Tony Isabella. Not to take anything away from Trevor Von Eeden, Eddy Newell, Mike W. Barr, Jim Aparo, etc. Hell, I even liked the Year One miniseries quite a bit. But, Tony Isabella is as important to Black Lightning as any creator is to any character in comics.

    That said … I really like Andreyko and look forward to reading these issues of DCU Presents.

    And yes I realize this comment is probably extremely poorly written. So, I have no place critiquing someone else’s choice of words. And I am sure no slight was even intended. I probably shouldn’t have written anything. But that wording just bothered me.

  7. Mark, will the creators — or is the term now “makers”? — be properly credited and compensated for the use of their creations?

  8. I’m all about Blue Devil’s boob window.

    Sorry – I realize I should be putting some explication moves on Mr. Morris’s prose (“first created”? you maker-hating bastard!), but I’m just thoroughly impressed that Blue Devil has been inspired by Power Girl’s old costume. And is that an ab window on Black Lightning? I’m afraid I approve!

  9. How about more Milestone characters getting reintroduced in the 52 ‘verse? I’d like to see Icon brought in, maybe he can be part of Storm Watch.


    your comment doesn’t make sense. Black Lightning wasn’t an entertaining character because he wasn’t Black Vulcan? Black Lightning first has appeared in these things called comic books, maybe you’ve heard of them?

    on another topic, I’m curious to pick this up and flip through it. It looks like it could be interesting.

  11. As someone who collected the Original Black Lightening starting with Issue 1 back in the 70’s, I hope you can do justice to THAT creation!

  12. Nathan — Thank you for saying it. The new Blue Devil is atrocious! The original design had a wonderfully campy look to it. This guy looks like a back-up dancer for Damien Helstrom’s stage show in Las Vegas.

  13. That is like totally amazeballs! AMAZEBALLS! I love Black Lightning, and the redesign is not as bad as I thought it might be, as it mostly harks to the costume he had during the last few years.

    I agree with the Blue Devil costume, though. I wonder why all the New 52 costumes have to be so bloody busy. It’s kinda jarring, and the artists must cringe having to figure those out in proper perspective.

    Still, I am hoping for good stories to come out of this.

  14. @Richard Caldwell

    Horrible idea, re: Xombi. Xombi works best in his own world. Sure, his book may not translate into sales. But JL Dark isn’t selling very well either. I’d rather not see Xombi dragged down with them.

  15. A few comments here.
    1) if anyone can bring justice to Tony Isabela’s creation I think Marc Andreyko could be the one to do it. Other wise Mr. Isabela is correct when he says “Words Fail….”
    2) does this Black Lightning look a little like Virgil Hawkins of Static Shock? Could this be some form of Earth-2 version?
    3) Considering the original concept of Blue Devil was stunt man/actor/FX man Dan Cassidy is magically grafted to his demon movie suit sort of as if Kevin Peter Hall had been magically grafted to his Bigfoot suit in Harry & The Hendersons then had misadventures; this looks more as if he was magically grafter to his make-up in the Stardust revue. It’s going to take a lot to show me different from Dan Mishkin’s Blue Devil creation we know and love over the years.
    4) what is with the chains on Blue Devil? Feels kind of SMBD here for a fun loving hero working off a curse….

  16. I’m very happy about the news. Great creative team. Maybe we’ll get a new Manhunter out of this too. I can’t wait to see what Marc does with Black Lightning.

  17. Loves me some Marc Andreyko. Torso and Manhunter are longtime faves. But I’m afraid this one stays on the shelf. Too much of a Before Black Lightning vibe attached. At least for me. Oh, and those redesigns look much better suited for background fodder at Clark’s Bar. I’m going with DeathStorm and BloodSatan.

  18. If only fans would get as impassioned about the plight of Isabella and Mishkin as they do about Alan Moore, maybe creator rights would be getting somewhere.

    But, for whatever reason, Moore gets thrown into the category of “Saintly and Supported” while dozens of other creators get practically ignored.

    Isabella and Mishkin deserve some support and activism, too.

  19. For those of you that don’t know, DC has repeatedly and consistently screwed Isabella over Black Lightening.

    And then, we have Marc Andreyko showing up ans saying probably the most insulting thing he could say about it.

    Sure, Marc probably meant well, but that’s a stupid, stupid thing to say to creators that aren’t being allowed to write their own creations.

  20. I really don’t get it with the costumes. Since the New 52 began, it’s been like someone was holding a ‘World’s Most Butt-Ugly Costume Contest’, and DC was pulling out all of the stops in order to win it.

  21. carlton, i was not trying to be insulting and don’t know how you interpreted it as such. i just wanted tony and dan and gary to know i have great affection with these characters and will do my damnedest to do right by their creations.

  22. Marc, I wouldn’t take it personally. Carlton is an Internet superhero fighting injustice where he finds it. Thank god you didn’t tell him to shut up and have face his righteous fury.

  23. Marc, they created these characters. Shouldn’t they be the ones writing them?

    I realize you said what you did meaning it to be a compliment, but it’s incredibly crass, and it’s like rubbing salt in their wounds.

    Steve Gerber, before he left us, told the story of being approached by someone who was to be writing a revival of Howard the Duck, a character Mr. Gerber believed to be his (and an extension of himself). This person came up to him and said something like, ‘I’ve always loved the way you wrote Howard. I’m going to write him just the way you would have!’

    Mr. Gerber realized the young man didn’t realize how unbelievably insensitive he was being, but wondered to himself, ‘If you’re going to write him just as I would have, why am I not writing him.’

    Why not try approaching either Mr. Isabella or Mr. Mishkin privately and see what they really think?

    It might be an eye-opener to you.

  24. Oh Carlton, I just commented because it was you. I love hearing your righteous indignation and instruction on correct living. I have convinced myself you must either be a HS or College teacher. That condescension is usually only formed in the rigorous environment of someone who never has to test his ideas against peers. Go forward Carlton instruct the masses we need your guidance.

  25. Great news! Love Black Lightning – 80’s Outsiders are some of my favorite reads! And Andreyko back at DC?!? Even better news!!!

    This is a must read for me! And on the plus side – I’m guessing he will be de-aged and lose the kids (who both just ramdomly appered anyway!!! haha…)

  26. Silly-ass costumes. I don’t hate the idea…I can see the characters playing well together…IF they’re anything like the originals. Mark, I appreciate your desire to portray BD and BL in a way that won’t irritate me, Dan and Tony, and some of the other comments say that you’re a good writer…I don’t read many comics, so I haven’t heard your name before now.

    Your desire to be true to the characters might be more convincing if Dan and Tony and I heard from you for a friendly discussion about how you see our guys. My advice is to make it funny but keep the stakes real for the characters.

    As for compensation…comics don’t sell well enough for there to be royalties. If this generates a movie, toys, or tv show, we might see something. Doubtful. These characters are going to float around in the DC universe for the foreseeable future, in various permutations, some better, some worse. So it goes.

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