Cloak & Dagger 2.01 and 2.02 Review: “Restless Energy” and “White Lines”

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2.02 “White Lines”

In an episode that uses nonlinear storytelling, the puzzle of how Tandy, Tyrone and O’Reilly’s paths cross unfolds.

We see the few minutes inside the backroom before Tyrone and Tandy arrive to see a drug dealers marking a strange symbol out of cocaine before bleeding to death. Tyrone recognizes it as a Vodun symbol.

But before they can investigate further, O’Reilly forces them to leave the scene so she can do damage control.

As contrasted with the hopeful tone at the end of the last episode, Tandy reasons no matter how many drug dealers they take off the street, people will still find a way to buy drugs. A stubborn Tyrone doesn’t buy her nihilism and insists they owe people more than that judgment. They may be a team, but they still come from different worlds drives a wedge in their moral understanding.

Tyrone goes to see Evita’s Auntie Chantelle to identify the symbol, who identifies it as a veve (symbol) that’s used to request a Loa (Voudu spirit) of death who can be called on for revenge. It prompts a conversation about spirituality and Chantelle tells him he needs to learn how to pray and heal.

“You have a wounded soul, all that you’ve been through. But if you let those wounds become scars you’re going to look at yourself one day and not recognize what you see.”

Before he can leave, Evita walks in, seeing him for the first time in eight months. Noëlle Renée Bercy puts in a great performance in her first big scene of the season, showing Evita’s vulnerability and loyalty. Last season we saw her progress into much more than a generic cheerleader love interest, and I’m hopeful she’ll play a big role this season.

Again, Tyrone thinking he knows what’s best for everyone else has actually made things worse. He reveals his powers to her, thinking it will show her why he has to hide, but instead Evita gets even angrier realizing how easy it would have been for him to visit her.

Back at the church, Tyrone prays to the Loa to find his way. Instead he ends up transported to the back of an ambulance where the woman Tandy tried to help the last episode is being drugged and held against her will.  It’s shown him something, but not at all what he expected. He escape before he can be attacked.

Now showing the episode from Tandy’s point of view, Tandy’s in group therapy listening to Mikayla talking about her abusive boyfriend who she claims is changing his ways. Tandy lashes out at her, telling her it’s her choice to stay with an abuser. After everything Tandy has been through she’s still struggling with seeing people the way Tryone does.

Like the previous episode there are some artful scenes of Tandy practicing ballet that powerfully contrast between the control of the dancing and Tandy’s boiling emotions as her power surges through the lights.

But once Mikayla goes missing, Tandy changes her mind about helping others and feels responsible for helping her, teaming up with new character Andre Deschaine (Brooklyn McLinn), another counselor at the clinic. He tells her about a safe house where some women go. As he interrogates why Tandy is choosing to help Mikayla she has a vision of her father and freaks out.

The final piece of the episode’s puzzle is brought together when we see the the episode from O’Reilly’s point of view.

We turn to a flashback cut of O’Reilly downing shots at a bar right before Tyrone and Tandy call her. But instead of cleaning up the scene after they leave, she calls it in before returning back to her drinking. Again, she’s no longer the cop Tyrone and Tandy think she is, just a shell of her former self.

All three characters are battling with the effects of last season, none of them admitting the truth.

She has a weird vision of a version of herself in a reflection in the puddle beside her berating her. It looks like O’Reilly could be suffering from multiple personalities, as she charges back to the scene like she’s Sherlock Holmes instead of a drunken mess.

After identifying one of the victims she even goes as far as to harass his wife to find out the truth about his criminal dealings. One clue that we’re closer to the evil Mayhem persona teased in the pre-season? A sharp fingernail painted bright green that O’Reilly uses to slash a priceless painting in the victim’s home.

Her lead brings her to same junk yard as Tandy, where private ambulances are stored. Private ambulances tha look a lot like where Tyrone found Mikayla.

Tandy discovered the connection after finding out Mikayla’s in the hospital and uses her powers to read her memories, seeing her kidnapping. The orderly tells her Mikayla was brought in by a private ambulance.

Tandy and O’Reilly team up to take down the ambulance driver, with Tandy even showing off a new trick of blasting balls of energy (yes!). But something isn’t right. After sending Tandy off, O’Reilly doesn’t cuff the suspect. She slits his throat. Mayhem has begun.

Evita finds Tyrone at the church to apologize, and his prayers bring him back to the hospital where Mikayla is staying. He goes to tell O’Reilly what he saw but there’s a major problem.

O’Reilly is bound and gagged at her apartment the same time she’s with Tandy… Confusing Tyrone, O’Reilly tells him they have to stop ‘her.”

And only two episodes into the season, we’re faced with an explosive plot twist. The Mayhem villain teased leading up to the season isn’t just a new evil persona of O’Reilly. She’s a completely separate person.

Additional Thoughts:

  • After hyping up O’Reilly’s breaking bad turn all pre-season I thought she might have been the one who showed up at the drug scene and killed everyone. But the truth ended up being a lot less predictable. By making Mayhem O’Reilly’s double instead of her alter-ego, they’ve added an explosive twist that has me anxiously awaiting the next episode.
  • Using different storytelling formats is something to be applauded but instead of building suspense, in this case, the cutting back and forth slowed down the pace too much for my liking.
  • Two episodes in there are still several ( living) characters from Season 1 who haven’t played much of a role. While I usually complain Marvel shows try to cram in too many characters, I wouldn’t mind seeing some key figures from last season make a reappearance to shake things up.

Cloak & Dagger airs Thursdays on Freeform.

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