Freeform’s Cloak & Dagger is more than just the origin story of an unlikely pair of superheroes. It’s also a cautionary tale about keeping your eyes on the road while you’re driving. (So. Many. Crashes.)
Thursday’s series premiere introduced viewers to Tandy Bowen (played by Olivia Holt), whose life was destroyed as a child when her father — an employee at the infamous Roxxon Corp. — was blamed for a massive rig explosion in which he perished, resulting in Tandy and her mother losing everything. Once a wide-eyed little girl with dreams of becoming a professional dancer, Tandy is now a homeless grifter, living on the streets and carrying out small-time heists with her skeevy boyfriend Liam.
We also meet Tyrone Johnson, a star basketball player still coping with the guilt of his older brother’s murder from several years earlier. Tyrone had stolen a car stereo to prove he wasn’t a little kid anymore, yet his brother was the one killed in cold blood by an evil cop. (Even sketchier, the department claimed that the cop Tyrone saw “doesn’t exist,” and his brother’s on-record cause of death was — wait for it — “drugs.”) But Tyrone never forgot that man’s face, so when he mysteriously sleep-teleports into the trunk of the dude’s car, he gets the distinct feeling that there’s a force larger than himself at work.
Tandy and Tyrone eventually meet at a party in the woods — where she tries to steal his wallet, naturally — though it only takes a single lingering glance for them to remember that they’ve already met once before. The night Roxxon’s rig exploded (and gave Cloak & Dagger their powers!) was the same night Tyrone’s brother was shot, and while he was down in the water trying to locate his sinking body, he inadvertently rescued Tandy from her father’s car.
And things only become more complicated in the second hour: Tandy faces off against her sad drunk of a mother (and her latest short robe-rocking “boyfriend”) before eventually deciding to leave town… and Liam. Meanwhile, Tyrone gathers the courage to confront the man who killed his brother, but just as he begins to pull the trigger on his gun, he’s unwittingly transported to Tandy. The bullet from Tyrone’s gun narrowly misses Tandy and it cuts through her windshield, sending her careening off the road.
Tandy and Tyrone’s powers reveal themselves quite a few times in the premiere, with Tandy witnessing Liam’s hopes for their future together and Tyrone suffering through his own mother’s fears of losing him just like she lost his brother. Neither of them have any sort of grip on their abilities by the end, but something tells me we’re going to have a hell of a time watching them figure it all out.
Did you enjoy your first night with Cloak & Dagger? How many Marvel-ous Easter eggs did you notice? Grade Thursday’s two-part kickoff below, then drop a comment with your full review.