Black Lightning S3E15 ‘Book of War Chapter 2: Freedom Ain’t Free’ Breakdown!

The war with the Markovians has FINALLY come after well over a season of buildup. I didn’t think that this moment would ever come and it feels a lot different then I thought it would. For starters, who was expecting Gravedigger? In the last episode, the team learned from that infamous briefcase that he was the very first meta after being experimented on 80 years ago. Now, he is coming to Freeland with a mission.

Bury All the Enemies

The opening of the episode gives us even more insight into Gravedigger, mostly about where he got his name and what is mission is for Freeland. In the war when he was first a meta, his job was with the Grave Registration Service and since he makes sure that after every kill, he takes the time to bury the body properly. How moral of him.

His mission is to come to Freeland but not to capture the metas, but to free them. This doesn’t exactly sound like a bad thing even if he is willing to kill anyone that stops him. I mean, some of them have been enslaved with the ASA for 30 years.

Jefferson and the team know that Gravedigger is in route but they don’t know that his plan is to liberate and not capture the metas. They also fear that he is going to attempt to recapture Lynn and Dr. Jace in order to get the meta stabilization cure. He already has his hands on the meta power booster which gives him access to any meta power. After some test with Lynn and Jace, they also realize that this gives him the powers indefinitely. This is on account that he is the first meta and his genome is different than anyone else. As if all that wasn’t enough, if Black Lightning and the others fail to stop Gravedigger the government is going to nuke the city.

Black Lightning’s plan is to put him, Thunder and Grace on the front line with Jennifer, TC, and Brandon in the rear for back up. Jennifer doesn’t like the idea of not being in the front, while Brandon isn’t interesting in fighting at all as he is more concerned with finding out everything that Jace knows about his father. To boot, Gambi isn’t sure that Gravedigger is in the wrong here.

To bulk up their ranks now that the ASA are not willing to help, Black Lightning and Thunder reach out to Lala and his men, but he has his own thing going on and isn’t interested in helping.

The Fight for Khalil

As a side story that I think is going to play a major part next episode is Khalil and this war within his own mind. For the last few episodes he has had Painkiller hidden within the door of this firewall. Last episode Painkiller slipped out and almost killed Jen. Now on the run he is confronted by the Markovians and to save himself, Khalil unleashes Painkiller. However, now that he is out, he must fight him to get him back in behind the firewall. Instead, Khalil loses the fight with Painkiller back in control and ready to get back on the mission of killing the Peirce family.

Tell Me About My Family

Khalil isn’t the only one that has lost control. Brandon is so consumed with getting even with Jace and finding out everything that she knows about his family, he abandons the rest to seek out Jace. He gets to her at the lab, but then we later see her tied up back at this place. Nothing else comes of this in this episode but I think that we will get some answers in the next episode.

Die Without A Kiss

As for TC and Erica, they are both getting used to the idea that they are headed into war without really experiencing life. TC even makes a play by declaring that he has never had a kiss. Erica does give him a peck but before anything else can happen Jen interrupts. She asks TC to monitor to border with his tech abilities and to let her know when Gravedigger arrives.

Back on the Board

Another side story here that I think we will see play out either in a small way next episode or in next season is Lady Eve and this deal she is making with Odell. Last episode she seemed to be turning over the forgiveness leaf with Gambi after trying to kill him but giving him the long sought-after briefcase. Now she is meeting with Odell and on the promise that she tells him where the case is, she will get her seat back on the Shadow Board, the secret organization that runs the ASA. Not only is this pitting Odell against Gambi but it opens the possibility of finally learning more about this board that has been hinted at briefly back in season one. I also think that it is interesting that Eve’s resurrection project is called Lazarus and there is a shadow board. Yes, I am refereeing to the League of Shadows and their Lazarus pit! With Black Lightning now on the same Earth as the others could this open them up for something with the League or bringing in other Arrowverse characters?

It isn’t too long after this encounter that Lala calls in Lady Eve wanting to know when the last time Tobias was seen. Turns out the last person they know of is Dr. Blaire, the doctor that took over at the ASA after Lynn left. At the end of the episode we see Lala torturing him for information. However, Tobias was last seen in Markovia when he escaped.


With everything else going on, Jefferson has even more added to his plate. After working at the lab and discovering Gravedigger’s new abilities, Lynn runs another test. In this test she learns that Gravedigger and Jefferson are related. This explains why when Jefferson was given the vaccine as a child that he was stable instead of needing to go in a pod like the other kids. This even explains why Jen and Anissa also have stable powers. Jefferson also remembers that he has a great uncle that was said to have not returned from war, so Gravedigger must be this long-lost great uncle.

Getting Married

Gravedigger isn’t the only addition to the family this episode, well, almost. After dating for most of this season, Grace and Anissa decide that they are going to tie the knot at the family dinner with Gambi being the officiator. That Gambi really can do it all. Lynn and Jefferson are a little concerned about how fast this is but in the end are both supportive. Before the wedding happens, Jen runs off when TC tells her that Gravedigger has arrived. A short time later the rest of the group learns just as the ceremony is about to start. I guess this will have to wait until after the war.

The War Begins

With Jen already in route to Gravedigger she arrives well before anyone else. Unfortunately for her Gravedigger has done his research and is super powered. She may be strong but she doesn’t even hurt him. Instead he knocks her back into the perimeter board the ASA has up. Her powers are enough to overload the tech and take the wall down giving Gravedigger access to Freeland.

Luckily Black Lightning arrives in time to literally catch her in the sky and administer CPR. She does begin breathing which allows for Black Lightning to now focus on Gravedigger. He last thing we see in the episode is Black Lightning absorbing as much electricity as possible.

Check Out All of My ‘Black Lightning’ Breakdowns!

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