Anissa Pierce is the daughter of Jefferson Pierce, the hero known as Black Lightning. She was a medical student and did very well in school and her father didn't want her to ruin that by becoming a vigilante. She respected his wishes and waited until the night she graduated before putting on her costume (and blond wig) and becoming Thunder.
Thunder was created by Judd Winick and Tom Raney, and she first appeared in Outsiders #1, August 2003.
Major Story Arcs
Joining the Outsiders
After a few nights on her own, Thunder was asked by Red Arrow to join the Outsiders. She accepted and became one of the founding members of the team. She initially had a problem with Grace Choi, one of her teammates, but other than that, she fit well on the team. Eventually her father found out and demanded she quit. Due to circumstances (namely the villain Sabbac), Black Lightning joined with his daughter and the rest of the team for a short while. After his stay was over, he decided to let Thunder stay a part of the group.
One Year Later
Anissa is shown to still be a member of the team following the One Year Later event. She has been through a lot during the missing year, such as dealing with her father's incarceration, forming a lesbian relationship with Grace, and being deep undercover in an African country. Thunder eschewed the use of the blond wig and updates her costume following the One Year Later jump. During this time period, Thunder is showing that she is becoming a more skilled crime fighter and continues to prove herself a loyal teammate.
Return of Batman to the Outsiders
When Batman returns to leadership of the team, he sends Thunder on a mission with Martian Manhunter. The two complete their mission but Batman is not pleased with her performance and formally removes her from the team.
While Batman sent Catwoman, Grace and Metamorpho on a mission, Thunder accompanied Batman in a surveillance van on Gotham getting play by play analysis of the operation. Batman states that he has allowed her there merely to prove why she doesn't belong on the team as she emphatically tries to reason with him claiming that she should be out there with the rest of the team. Thunder becomes enraged when she finds out Batman sent the team in to take on an OMAC. Thunder proceeds to kick the back door of the van off and leaves. Later back at Thunder's apartment, teammates Grace, Metamorpho and Katanna celebrate while Thunder distances herself from them out on the balcony. Batgirl suddenly appears and throws Thunder through the window.
When the Outsiders are captured by the Chinese while on a mission, Thunder seeks out Dr. Francine Langstrom for information about Grace and the rest of the team. Batman and Nightwing arrive and Batman offers Thunder the opportunity to tag along not he rescue mission. Thunder along with Nightwing and Remac, teleport to China and fight off Chinese military personnel to save their teammates. After freeing the captive Outsiders, they all teleport back to Gotham City to regroup with Batman.
Thunder is persistent and Grace continues to bring her along on missions. Much of her time is spent attempting to convince Batman that she truly does belong on the team. During the events of Batman R.I.P., Dr. Hurt manages to trick the team and blow up ReMac, injuring Thunder and leaving her comatose in the hospital. Grace Choi is devastated and blames the newcomer Batgirl, Cassandra Cain. It was speculated whether or not Thunder was truly dead, but it is stated in The Outsiders Special by Black Lightning that she is indeed in a coma.
During the time the Outsiders split and became criminals, Anissa came out of her coma and she and Grace moved in together. Black Lightning came over alongside Owlman, Metamorpho and Freight Train to see her. During the visit they fought against the JSA and Lightning, causing some tension between the two sisters. She and Grace then rejoin the Outsiders to take down Geoforce's team and invade Markovia. After Batman intervenes and stops the conflict between the two teams, the Outsiders disband and Anissa returns home with Grace.
Alvin Pierce (Grandfather, deceased),
Lynn Stewart (Mother)
Jefferson Pierce (Black Lightning,father) Jefferson Pierce is the Father of Lightning. He has absolute control of the electricity.
Jennifer Pierce (Lightning, Sister) Jennifer Pierce is the daughter of Black Lightning. She has absolute control of the electricity, however she can't interact with anything electrical.
Powers and Abilities
Thunder has the power to increase her body density, particularly at impact points such as her fists and feet, allowing her to make devastating blows and to create shockwaves along the ground. A favorite tactic of hers is to drop onto an opponent from above, increasing her density to increase the force of her impact. The density increase also makes her heavier, making her difficult to move, knock back, or grapple effectively. When using her power, she also has a considerable degree of invulnerability to physical attacks, especially those seeking to inflict damage through force or impact.
Density Manipulation: She has the ability to increase her body's mass while preserving volume, which effectively increases her density.
Invulnerability: In this state she is near-immovable, almost completely invulnerable (a mob enforcer once suffered a compound fracture after trying to punch Thunder in the face)
Superhuman Strength: strong enough to create massive shockwaves just by stomping the ground.
Surgeon: Anissa is a trained doctor, so more than capable of keeping a level head in situations of blood and gore.
Connection: Her inter-personal skills however, are a little sketchy, and she’s better at reading people than she is interacting with them.
Bi-lingual: She can speak French fluently, and although has little use for it, moderate Spanish when the need arises.
Computer Knowledgeable: Her sense of direction is somewhat non-existent, but she does like to compensate with an intermediate knowledge of computers and systems so that if she does fail to meet the grade, she can at least have means to mechanically find an answer.
In Other Media
A younger version of Thunder is a main character in the Black Lightning animated shorts airing on DC Nation.