Red Hood isn’t the only character plaguing the team on the third season of Titans, airing now on HBO Max. Damaris Lewis’ Blackfire is exploring her boundaries after Kory (Anna Diop) released her in Episode 4, and Lewis says she fully intends to explore those boundaries moving forward. In the second half of our interview, we talk about what’s keeping Blackfire from fleeing and why she’s so intrigued with life at Wayne Manor.
Lady Vic returns to Gotham City in “Lady Vic,” the new episode of Titans that just dropped today. With Scarecrow, Red Hood and now Lady Vic wreaking havoc, the team’s focus is split, and resources are limited after losing Hawk and Dove. And it doesn’t help that Blackfire is now living in Wayne Manor, adding an additional layer of danger to an already precarious situation.
Blackfire is enjoying a new experience at Wayne Manor
Interestingly, Blackfire didn’t try to escape after her sister freed her from the government holding facility. She left willingly, and she’s not trying to run. “She could’ve [left], absolutely, I think,” Lewis told us, “and that’s a really great point. Blackfire is having a very new experience at Wayne Manor. She walks in like she owns the place, and then is quickly reminded that she doesn’t, but she doesn’t care.”
Blackfire has spent her life living in Kory’s shadow, and she’s now looking for her own place in the sun. Might Wayne Manor be that place? “Blackfire is in pure observation mode in 306, but also, too, what’s the thing she’s wanted her whole life? She’s wanting to feel like she belongs,” Lewis said. “So maybe she doesn’t feel like she belongs, but it can surely look like it at this point. And so, yeah, I think what she does is she says to herself, ‘Hm, my sister’s stayed here for so long, what’s this about? Why didn’t she come back? Let me try to find some clues while I’m here.’ And I think that’s what you see in 306.”
As she tries to find her equilibrium, Blackfire gets to know the members of the Titans team, which is difficult because they’re all wary of her; Blackfire’s dangerous reputation precedes her. She offers advice (it’s not great advice, but it’s also not horrible advice) and seems like she’s constantly pushing her sister’s buttons.
“That’s one of the beauties of Blackfire, right? Nobody knows anything about Kory,” Lewis said. “So she spent the past two seasons really being the star. Not much can shake her, except her sister. And so in that particular moment, her sister has realized that these people don’t know her. And I think [Blackfire] now realizes what she can do to get under her skin. It’s a little bit of payback, but it’s payback that she can’t get in trouble for because she’s not doing anything wrong.”
Instead of directly confronting her sister, Blackfire is playing a very different game. She knows Kory can’t go to her friends and complain about her. “That’s not what superheroes do,” Lewis said. “Blackfire is definitely finding the grooves that are safe, that she can just play with [Kory] a little bit, but she’s also telling the truth. It’s almost as if she doesn’t know what the truth is going to get her, so she tries every single way to go about it.”
For Blackfire, the journey to finding belonging is as important as the destination. “I’m not saying that Blackfire is manipulating anybody, but surely she knows how to, if she wanted to, because how else would she survive?”
Damaris Lewis: Blackfire is “full of try” in Titans season 3
Titans season 3 has featured some of the heaviest moments of the series thus far. The team is still reeling from Hawk’s death, but there’s no time to stop and mourn him properly with all of the threats still looming over Gotham City. For Blackfire, this is all an eye-opening adventure, and she immediately starts pushing the boundaries of the other team members. “She walks into Wayne Manor [and sees Connor] and she goes, ‘Koriand’r. I see you’ve prepared a welcome gift, have it washed immediately and brought to my chamber.’ And everybody’s like, ‘What? What are you talking about?’”
Lewis slipped back into her character effortlessly at this point of our interview, reciting Blackfire’s lines to make her point and reflecting her keen understanding of the character. “But that’s her idea of leaving her stench,” she said. “She walks in, obviously the red carpet is going to be thrown out for her and that doesn’t work. So what does she try? ‘Is the strapping one not your manservant?’ No, okay. ‘Is the green one not yours?’ Nope, okay, try something else. ‘Who’s going to run me a bath?’ Okay, nope. ‘Well, guess we’re going to have to do this all over again tomorrow.’ She is full of try, and I really think that the more you try, the less accepted you are in your realm.”
Lewis’ performance thus far has been amazing, and she said it was fun bringing Blackfire to life. “I will say I had the best time.”