“Black Lightning” Casts Wayne Brady as Season 3 Super-Soldier Gravedigger

We’ve officially made it to one of the greatest months of the year: October – which means The CW‘s “Arrowverse” shows have started sticking some sweet superhero three-point landings with the returns fans have seen so far. Arrow is shuffling off the network’s programming coil after an abbreviated 10-episode eighth season (making The Flash the “elder states-show” of the “Arrowverse”), Ruby Rose-starrer Batwoman joining the family alongside Supergirl, and a looming “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover that could change things dramatically – including Black Lightning this time around.

Face facts, CW DCU fans: the 2019-2020 season isn’t exactly going to be lacking in change – and the news hasn’t slowed down.

black lightning
CBS Studios/DC Comics

While Black Lightning may have just started its third season, it’s never too early to look to 2020 – which is when Let’s Make a Deal host and actor (and the baddest man on Chappelle Show… sorry, Charlie Murphy, and rest in peace, Rick James) Wayne Brady is set to join the Arrowverse series. First reported exclusively by ET Online, Brady is set to play Tyson Spikes aka Gravedigger and is expected to premiere after the massive “Crisis on Infinite Earths” crossover event.

Brady’s Spikes/Gravedigger is described as a World War II-era member of the U.S. military who became a “super soldier” after a secret experiment gifted him with enhanced strength, agility, tactical genius and hand-to-hand combat expertise. After the war, Spikes defected to the country of Markovia rather than return to a segregated America. His aim to create a sovereign land for metahumans within Markovia sets him on a collision course with the ASA and Black Lightning.

Viewers can’t say they weren’t warned in advance. At the end of 2018’s CW Arrowverse “Elseworlds” crossover that brought together The Flash, Arrow, and Supergirl (and nearly DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, but they let it go to machine – way too busy for all that), we saw that the end was only the beginning… of the end. As Barry (Grant Gustin) and Oliver (Amell) shared what felt like a final toast and Kate Kane’s Batwoman (Rose) returned to protecting the streets of Gotham – with a sense that something felt a little off – we got a small taste of what’s still to come in 2019…

crisis
CW

“Crisis on Infinite Earths!” Worlds will live! Worlds will die!

And the CW’s “Arrowverse” will never be the same…

The season’s eighth episode will be the “Crisis” crossover episode – comprising the fourth hour of the crossover:

Supergirl – Sunday, December 8th (8/7c)

Batwoman – Monday, December 9th (8/7c)

The Flash – Tuesday, December 10th (8/7c)

Arrow – Tuesday, January 14, 2020 (8/7c)

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow – Tuesday, January 14, 2020 (9/8c)

Black Lightning will also be represented during the crossover event… and yes, legendary Batman voice actor Kevin Conroy will star as a future version of Bruce Wayne. We’re even getting 60’s Batman “boy wonder” Burt Ward making an appearance.

If that wasn’t enough, Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch are returning as “The Man of Steel” and Lois Lane… alongside another of the crossover’s Supermen: Brandon Routh (DC’s Legends of Tomorrow), returning to the cape for the first time since his cinematic turn in Superman Returns, portraying the Kingdom Come version of the iconic superhero.

Still not enough Superman? How about Smallville co-stars Tom Welling and Erica Durance joining the crossover as Superman/Clark Kent and Lois Lane, respectively (and rumblings that someone from Smallville isn’t too happy about the way they were approached regarding being a part of “Crisis”).

Johnathon Schaech’s Jonah Hex (DC’s Legends of Tomorrow) is also set to saddle up for the crossover, and John Wesley Shipp will be reprising his role as The Flash of Earth-90. Ashley Scott will be returning to the role of Helena Kyle aka Huntress from The WB‘s short-run 2002 series Birds of Prey.

Osric Chau will recur in the role of physics professor Ryan Choi, who would take on his idol Ray Palmer’s (Routh in DC’s Legends of Tomorrow) former position at Ivy University – with the future Justice Leaguer following in his footsteps in the “hero department” as well.

Let’s not forget Arrow co-star Audrey Marie Anderson‘s Lyla Michaels, who is set (appropriately enough) for the role of The Monitor’s Harbinger:

For most of their respective seasons, things have been “All Quiet on the ‘Crisis’ Front” when it came to Arrow, The Flash, and Supergirl – but that changed in a big way during their respective season finales… even for DC’s Legends of Tomorrow!

In Arrow season finale “You Have Saved This City,” the Monitor (LaMonica Garrett) returns to cash in on the favor that Oliver owes him: help him save the multiverse – taking a moment to tell him the “fine print”: Oliver’s going to die during “Crisis” and there’s nothing the Monitor can do to stop it.

Then there’s that matter of Future Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) and the trip she’s taking with the Monitor to see Oliver… somewhere… and it’s apparently a place she can’t come back from. Hmmm…

Over at The Flash season finale “Legacy,” some recent maneuverings with Time moved up the date on Barry’s “red skies/2024” newspaper warning just a wee bit… to say, 2019?

The fourth season finale of Supergirl “The Quest for Peace” had the Monitor speaking to a hooded figure, telling him that now is the time for him to lead “his people” and to take revenge on his captor… and brother: J’onn J’onzz (David Harewood). Meanwhile, just because Lex Luthor (Jon Cryer) may have shuffled off this mortal coil (???) doesn’t mean his role in the upcoming “Crisis” is over quite yet…

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow season finale “Hey, World!” found the plan to take down Neron (Brandon Routh) resulting in a major status quo change for Zari (Tala Ashe) – a change that the suddenly-appearing Monitor does not appear to approve of in any way, shape, or form. At least he got some popcorn out of it – and yes, that is The Book of Destiny he’s using to balance it.

The CW’s Batwoman and Supergirl premiere Sunday, October 6; while Black Lightning premieres Monday, October 7. The Flash premieres Tuesday, October 8; with Arrow joining them all on October 15.

About Ray Flook

Proudly serving as TV Editor, Ray started with Bleeding Cool in 2013 as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought aboard as staff in 2017. Counting John Cusack as his pop culture "spirit animal," his "word fu" stays strong as he continues trying really hard to be the sheppard...

twitter   facebook square   instagram   envelope