On The CW's Black Lightning, the titular DC Comics-inspired hero takes to the street as hero to the people of his hometown of Freeland, but series star Cress Williams wants people to know that you don't have to be a comic book superhero or even have a super suit to be a hero in real life. That's the message he and his Black Lightning co-stars are sharing in a new PSA for Boys and Girls Clubs.
The PSA is part of The CW's CW Good initiative, described on the network's website as "The CW and its talent are passionate about and committed to raising awareness for a number of charitable causes. CW Good is the platform designed to spotlight those efforts and inspire YOU to get involved, as well. Together, we can make the world a better place." You can check out the Boys and Girls Clubs PSA in the video up top.
"Black Lightning always fights for justice, but you don't need superpowers to be a real-life hero," Williams says in video, which also features Christine Adams, who plays Lynn Stewart and Marvin "Krondon" Jones III, who plays Tobias Whale as they interact with children at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta, near where the series is filmed.
Boys and Girls Clubs of America is a national organization of local chapters which provide after-school programs to young people. Founded in 1860, Boys and Girls Clubs currently has over 4,000 clubs across the country.
While the cast's support of Boys and Girls Clubs of America is a very real way to do good, it's also very in line with Black Lightning/Jefferson Pierce's innate drive to good on The CW series. The first season saw Jefferson reprising his role as a costumed vigilante after the local gang threatened his daughters, but his civilian role as principal of Garfield High School saw him standing up for the youth of Freeman. While his educational career shifted in Season 2 of the series, he continued to work to help those within his community, something that Williams told ComicBook.com last year is just a product of the character's own life experiences.
Well, his drive is just simply… He's from Freeland, he's a child of Freeland," Williams said. "He lost his father at a very early age, and thankfully, he had Gambi come in and bridge that gap. Gambi has an activist spirit, and so he's always wanted to make a change. He spent one part of his life making that change in one way, and then he spent a chunk of life making a change in another way, and I think the series is about him discovering that it requires both."
"He lives in the community, and he's in a really nice house in the community, but he lives in the community every day. It's not like he left. He's there, so he can't help but want to make a difference."
Black Lightning will return for its third season on October 21, 2019 on The CW.