Cloak & Dagger 1.04 Review: “Call/Response”

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Tandy and Tyrone finally confide in one another about all the strange things that have been happening in episode four of Cloak & Dagger, “Call/Response.”

Maybe It Was Nothing

After three episodes of chance encounters, Tandy (Olivia Holt) and Tyrone (Aubrey Joseph) are starting to get the hint that there’s a bigger force pulling them together. Tyrone even admits that he saw Tandy in his vision saying, “I saw it in your head. Maybe it was your heart. Maybe it was nothing.”

After the Voodoo of the last episode, this episode draws heavily on spirituality again but using the Christian imagery of the altar candles that light the abandoned church as the two talk.

Throughout the episode, the show cuts between the church scene and the two in the present.

While Tyrone pulls away from his parents, isolating them with his secrets, Tandy actually goes back to her mother in search of answers about the Roxxon case. For Melissa (Andrea Roth), her mother, it’s not just about getting the money back but clearing the reputation of Tandy’s father. 

Flashing back to them in the church, Tyrone says, “there’s something about fear that pushes me, it has my whole life.” Tandy reveals she has visions too and knows about Tyrone’s brother. However her visions aren’t about fears like Tyrone’s are, hers show people’s hopes. In a flash forward to a scene with Greg, Tandy touches his arm and has a vision of the future where Greg stays with her mom.

But as she points out, “character is what you do when no one else is watching,” a lesson her dad taught her.

Ironically she points out another lesson to Tyrone: you don’t pickpocket to make money, you make money by getting to know people. And that’s what Tyrone needs to do to catch his cop, get more intel.

Tyrone isn’t sure hanging out at the police station is a great idea considering he’s a young black man in the South, which to police means a thug.

Although financially Tyrone is more privileged, this scene points out more directly that Tandy can use her privilege as a young white woman to commit crimes without much notice while Tyrone is always a target. Even though the source comic addressed serious issues, it would be easy to throw those away for lighter teen fare, so kudos to Freeform for committing to making Cloak & Dagger socially relevant. 

Tyrone decides to follow Tandy’s advice to act like a victim and “tell a story,” so he makes it look like his bike was stolen before heading to the police. 

Tandy meanwhile decides to double down on the Roxxon case and see what Greg has dug up. It turns out Roxxon didn’t let go of the project after the explosion and left a paper trail behind that revealed a shell corp revealing more suspicious activities. As someone who LOVES these kind of conspiracy plots, I’m excited to see Cloak & Dagger turn its attention back to this. 

Tyrone goes to the police station to report his stolen bike and file a report but can’t go through with it as his anxiety overwhelms him. The sound designers work magic on this scene as the background noise overwhelms the moment making you feel like you’re in Tyrone’s head and feeling his anxiety. 

In the church, Tyrone explains he can’t control his power but it always brings him to that cop… or Tandy. There’s something intimate about the candle lighting and the shaky cam in the scene that underscores the connection between the two. While I wouldn’t categorize it as romantic yet, the chemistry between the actors really pops off the screen in the church scenes and it becomes more and more obvious why they were cast.

Tandy thinks back to the graveyard and wants to know what will happen if they touch again.

Before we can find out, the episode cuts back to the present where both characters learn a little more about the adults in their lives. 

Worried that Tyrone is getting into trouble, Tyrone’s dad takes him to where he grew up in the 9th Ward, a rough neighborhood where Otis used to be like family. Greg tells Tandy he’s still married but almost legally divorced.  Could he actually be a good guy?

Back at the church, they close their eyes, Tandy raises her hand to Tyrone’s face as he takes her own hand and their powers ignite, a flash of bright light and swirling dark. Tyrone describes it as a nice feeling, at first anyway.

In the present Tandy and Greg share a moment, but Tandy’s mom grows cold when Greg’s wife calls which leads to their break up. 

Tyrone learns more about his dad’s heritage as a “spy boy,” something that’s not really explained but a quick Google search tells me has something to do with Mardis Gras. As a part of that Mardis Gras tradition, they make intricately beaded suits, a practice that teaches patience. As he tells Tyrone, “If you can’t control yourself, you can’t control a damn thing in this world.”

Tyrone pours through the regalia, but a beaded cloak in particular, catches his eye. His dad gets angry when he sees him, revealing that the cloak was Billy’s. In a tender moment, Tyrone insists he wants to finish it and wear it in the parade to honor Billy, so Otis teaches him to bead. (Also, this 100% means we are getting a Mardis Gras episode this season, right?)

At the church, they both admit they haven’t told anyone about their powers. No one would understand. Tyrone sadly confides he doesn’t think his parents trust him after that fateful night.

Cloak & Dagger 1.04 Review: "Call/Response"

Survivor’s Guilt

In the church flashback scene, they continue to bond. Tandy points out that Tyrone is too honest and Tyrone points out that Tandy is secretly hopeful. Although I don’t usually like excessive use of flashback, the scene creates this feeling that the characters live in a world of their own, rapidly building a bond that might otherwise play out over several episodes.

“The universe keeps pushing us together.”—Tyrone

“The universe keeps pulling us apart.” — Tandy

The sweet moment is completely shattered when in the present day Tandy walks over to Greg’s office to watch across the street as he’s shot dead and the office is lit on fire. Because, you know, ROXXON IS EVIL. 

At the church their conversation cuts deeper as they talk about survivor’s guilt. Those checks Tandy saw in her vision? She thinks they’re a metaphor. For Tyrone feeling like he needs to atone. 

Tyrone admits as he blinks away the tears that he feels pressure to be perfect because he has to make up for two lives.

Tandy says she goes the other way. She wishes she was the one who died.

In a turn, Tyrone gets angry that she wants to kill herself and tells her that her life isn’t that bad and she should check her privilege. 

Tandy gets angry and almost tells him about the attempted rape, arguing back that she’s had to steal to survive.

He says she’s been able to steal with impunity because of her whiteness, while this country has been trying to kill him every day just for being black.

She calls him out. She saw his hopes. And in his hopes, he commits suicide by cops over and over again. He has his own death wish.

They push each other to the edge and part angrily with Tyrone telling her she should just kill herself then. This time it’s not the universe pushing them apart, it’s themselves. 

In one of the most traumatic scenes since the pilot episode, Tandy is at the docks, wrapping chains around her feet and ropes around her arms before she plunges into the water. The seconds pass on and on, making you hold your own breath until we see a glowing light.

It’s not clear whether the dagger appeared as an instinctual self-preservation method or because Tandy wanted to be saved. Olivia Holt’s face doesn’t betray that answer, just the truth that Tandy is relieved to be alive and have another chance. She goes back to Greg’s law firm, cutting into his secret safe to take the Roxxon documents.

Tyrone goes to the police station, but it’s not for his bike. He asks for Detective O’Reilly.

Additional Thoughts:

  • It’s important to note that Freeform included the suicide prevention hotline information at the end of this episode, something I haven’t seen a television show do before.
  • That said, I hope the show doesn’t stop here in exploring the mental health implications of Tandy and Tyrone’s survivor’s guilt. Now that they’ve set it up as a core part of their characters, it would be a waste to sideline the discussion.
  • The casting on this show is excellent, and four episodes in I can’t imagine anyone else in the roles of Tandy and Tyrone.

Cloak & Dagger airs on Freeform at 8 p.m./7c every Thursday. Stay tuned to The Marvel Report for more coverage. 

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