DC fans are relishing in all of the new details surrounding Future State, the new publishing initiative that began to great fanfare this week. The new event has already encapsulated quite a lot of characters in DC's canon, showcasing what could be in store for them in a near-future scenario. That especially proved to be the case for The Outsiders, the team that had a backup story in Future State: The Next Batman #1. In addition to providing a major new costume for Katana, the story established a pretty stunning new status quo for one of DC's fan-favorite heroes, Jefferson Pierce/Black Lightning.
Spoilers for the Outsiders story in Future: State: The Next Batman #1, from Brandon Thomas, Sumit Kumar, Raul Fernandez, Jordie Bellaire, and Steve Wands below! Only look if you want to know!
The story saw Katana, The Signal, and company dealing with an attack against the Magistrate, one that grows increasingly complicated as the issue goes along. Matters become even more complicated when a literal black bolt of lightning begins to strike -- and Black Lightning himself shows up on the scene. As Katana quickly learns, Jefferson was cursed by some sort of dark magic, which led to a more esoteric example of his lightning-based superpowers.
While the reveal was hinted in previous Future State promotional material, seeing it in the context of the story takes things to a whole other level. And while it's unclear when we'll learn exactly what happened to Jefferson - either in Future State or in the upcoming Batman: Urban Legends anthology series - the change is definitely significant either way.
That sense that anything can happen in Future State - and iconic characters can be remixed in a new way - has definitely been a through-line throughout the entire event.
"The DC Universe has always been fertile ground for new and refreshing takes on our characters, and DC Future State definitely contributes to this legacy," DC Executive Editor Marie Javins said when Future State was first announced. "When the event begins in January, some savvy readers will not only pick up on some of the breadcrumbs that have already been tossed out in our current titles, but they will also find new hints and clues of what's to come in 2021."
What do you think of the major change to Black Lightning in DC's Future State? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!