CW's upcoming superhero show Black Lightning sounds like a blast, but some news this week has us in shock: Black Lightning will not take place in the same universe as its other hero shows, including Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and, to a lesser extent, Supergirl.
We can expect a big crossover next season, but the CW's newest vigilante won't be part of it.
"We do not aim to do a five-way crossover," said CW president Mark Pedowitz, reports Entertainment Weekly. "Black Lightning, at this time, is not part of the Arrowverse. It's a separate situation. But there will be a big fourth quarter crossover with all four shows that are on this fall."
This is a good thing, and it makes a lot of sense
I love my intricate, expanded universes as much as the next geek, but this is for the best. The biggest things preventing this are logistical. For one, EW points out that Black Lightning films in Atlanta, while the rest of the Arrowverse films in Vancouver, British Columbia.
More important, though, is that people are only willing to watch so many shows at once, and the CW is smart enough to see that.
"Our belief is that we will never have more than four DC shows [on] at a time… so we'll always have a rotation of some sort," Pedowitz said. While the Arrowverse is a fall-to-spring set of shows, with Arrow, Flash, and Supergirl putting on full seasons, Legends of Tomorrow has had shorter seasons. This year, that ended up being a huge boon for the show, while other shows have suffered with the longer seasons. CW is holding Black Lightning until mid-season. A shorter season should make for a tighter show and, if they hold it out until spring, it could even be something to fill out the summer.
And really, four at a time is enough. Adding another interconnected show to the lineup could bring the whole thing crashing down.