Cress Williams Talks Tonight's Black Lightning Midseason Finale, and Joining the Arrowverse in Crisis on Infinite Earths

Black Lightning star Cress Williams will make his entry into the Arrowverse this week as "Crisis on Infinite Earths" continues to ramp up and the midseason finale of Black Lightning, while not technically a part of the crossover, feels its impact ahead of Jefferson Pierce (Williams) being recruited by Pariah and The Monitor to join the story beginning with tomorrow's episode of The Flash. In the meantime, it seems like Gambi (James Remar) will become aware of parallel Earths and the cumulative effects of the martial law in Freeland and the red skies will take a toll on the Pierce family as a whole, ultimately pitting Jefferson against his daughter Jennifer (China Anne McClain).

And, just like when Earth-1 and Earth-2 met for the first time in the comic books, Jefferson Pierce may not have met these characters before, but he is dimly aware of them. After all, as we have mentioned before -- they are the heroes that inhabit the comic books people like

"I think it's a fun thing for Jefferson because in our world and our universe, a lot of these heroes are fictional. They are comic books," Williams told "They're comic books based on comic books, they're not comic books based on real people. And so, it's fun to interact with them and meet them for the first time. But I think once the crossover ends...the conflict that's going on in Freeland is all meta-based. We kind of already got exposed really at the end of season two that Freeland is not the only place there are metas. We have the whole Markovian conflict, and that's based on the fact that they have metas, and we have metas, and they want more metas. So we kind of already got exposed to the fact that this metahuman thing is, at the very least, global. And then the crossover kind of illuminates that, 'Oh it's more than global. It's almost like a universal.'"

The "Crisis" event brings together the heroes from multiple Earths to battle against the Anti-Monitor (LaMonica Garrett), a godlike villain who threatens to destroy all reality. In the comics, the story ended with the deaths of The Flash and Supergirl, and the destruction of DC's multiverse, leading to a single Earth with a complex history packed with hundreds of heroes.

The event is the most ambitious thing DC has ever attempted in live action, bringing together characters from all six of the current DC Comics adaptations on The CW (Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, DC's Legends of Tomorrow, Batwoman, and Black Lightning), along with characters and actors from Titans, the 1990 version of The Flash, the short-lived Birds of Prey, Smallville, Superman Returns, Tim Burton's Batman, and the iconic 1966 Batman series.

And while Black Lightning's episode is not technically part of "Crisis on Infinite Earths," there are red skies, and the episode's title is "Earth Crisis." So things are not too far removed.

"It was very, very important for me once I read [the script], and saw where we were going, that if we're all in this crossover together, then the realities have to be cohesive," Williams explained. "I'm also kind of a fanboy, and I know that watching as a fanboy, if there's not a sense that it's cohesive, and not a sense that whatever happens pre- and post-crossover actually affects each and every one's show, I wouldn't want that, and be a part of that."

That said, he's hoping that he gets to be part of more of them in the future. The icebound Vancouver actors have expressed some interest in coming to Atlanta for a future crossover, but regardless, Williams is ready for what may come.


"If there were more crossovers next year, and in into the future, I hope we dive into it even more," Williams said.

“Crisis on Infinite Earths” kicked off this week with last night's episode of Supergirl, runs through tonight's episode of Batwoman and tomorrow's episode of The Flash. That will be the midseason cliffhanger, as the shows go on hiatus for the holidays and return on January 14 to finish out the event with the midseason premiere of Arrow and a "special episode" of DC's Legends of Tomorrow, which launches as a midseason series this year and so will not have an episode on the air before the Crisis. Black Lightning's midseason finale airs tonight following Batwoman.