Black Lightning
Cress Williams as Black Lightning. Courtesy of DC Comics

“Black Lighting” joins the list of The CW superheroes TV shows. The US network and DC Comics dropped the first image of the new superhero that will grace the small screen.

The photo shows “Hart of Dixie” actor Cress Williams all suit up as the Black Lightning. The new TV show is the latest addition in Greg Berlanti’s superhero series on The CW. The creator’s four superhero shows, “Arrow,” “The Flash,” “Legends of Tomorrow” and “Supergirl,” as well as “Riverdale,” are all currently airing on the network.

Jefferson Pierce, a.k.a. Black Lightning, first appeared in the comic book “Black Lightning #1” in 1977. He is the first African-American DC Comics hero to have his own standalone comic title. The character was created by Tony Isabella and Trevor Von Eeden.

Pierce is a metahuman and was born with the ability to create an electromagnetic phenomenon by manipulating the bio-electric fields generated from his body. He was able to revive Superman's heart in one occasion after the Man of Steel had suffered from a fatal Kryptonite exposure.

Executive producer Salim Akil has revealed his reason for bringing in the “Black Lightning” on TV. Akil admitted that the story of Pierce is closer to home for him.

“Comics were a great way for me to escape. I was about 13 when Black Lightning was created, and finally there was a Black Super Hero that gave a damn about our neighbourhood and our lives. Resurrecting him at a time in our society when a sense of hope is lacking... Black Lightning will be that hope. And in updating the suit, it will signal to a new generation that it’s time to harness and release our power, and become our own superheroes,” Akil said in a statement released by DC Comics.

In the forthcoming TV series, Pierce, who retired from fighting the bad guys, is pulled back into vigilante life because of his two daughters. The series is penned by Mara Brock Akil and her husband Salim Akil. The duo also executive produce the show alongside Berlanti, Sarah Schechter and Warner Bros. Television.

In September 2016, Fox TV first made a commitment in producing “Black Lighting.” However, the network passed on the series earlier this year after deciding it is not a good fit to its already drama-filled programming slate, Deadline noted.

Soon after, it was picked up by The CW. Now that it is on the network, it is expected that it will also crossover with other DC Comics TV shows of Berlanti.

Meanwhile, the Black Lighting costume was designed by Laura Jean Shannon. The costume expert is known for her works in “Iron Man” in 2008, for which she was nominated for a Costume Designers Guild Award. Shannon is also involved in the upcoming “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” movie.

“Black Lighting” is currently in production in Atlanta. The CW is expected to decide in May whether or not it will include the series for its 2017-2018 programming slate. There is no air date yet for Australia.