The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks star Kyanna Simone Simpson has joined Black Lightning, The CW's latest superhero drama. Deadline reports that Simpson will appear in a recurring role as Kiesha, "the partner-in-crime/best friend of Jennifer Pierce, who also attends Garfield High School."
The report describes Kiesha as "the daughter of Inspector Henderson," who "will encourage Jennifer to challenge her image as the perfect principal’s daughter." Per the description, it sounds like Kiesha will goad Jennifer into becoming a troublemaker, echoing what China Anne McClain said of her character at Comic-Con International in San Diego: "I’m kind of getting into trouble at home and I’m in my little world and I’m isolated."
In addition to The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Simpson's past credits include HBO's Show Me a Hero, Being Mary Jane, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and more. She is also set to appear in White Boy Rick, which stars Matthew McConaughey, in 2018.
Created by Tony Isabella and Trevor Von Eeden, Black Lightning first debuted in Black Lightning#1 in 1977. The character was the first major African-American superhero at DC Comics. Isabella was tasked with creating the character due to his work with the Luke Cage character at Marvel Comics. The first season of Black Lightning will see Jefferson going up against Tobias Whale, a mobster who heads up the One Hundred in the comics.
Debuting on the CW in 2018, Black Lightning is a production of Akil Productions starring Cress Williams, China Anne McClain, Nafessa Williams and Christine Adams.