TV Recap: Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger – I’m Failing. I’m Flailing. I’m Cursed …

Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger
“Stained Glass” (Episode 103)
June 14, 2018

Before reading and watching tonight’s episode of Cloak & Dagger, make sure you catch up with my recaps from Episode 1, “First Light,”and Episode 2, “Suicide Sprints.”

Quick reminder that last week ended with Tandy, still driving her stolen “Just Married” convertible, taking a bullet from Tyrone – Tyrone having apparated in front of her just as he was trying to kill Connors, the bad cop. Ty, man. You have to learn to control your Cloak skills. For. Real.

On to the episode recap & review … after the jump (Spoilers Ahead)!!!

We pick up with a scene that looks like maybe it was an outtake from Westworld with a 3D printer-type machine molding some kind of … thing. I don’t unclear. Title Card.

The real episode picks up with a dazed Tandy stumbling from her near death experience at the hands of Tyrone and his gun.  Tyrone, gun still in hand, tries to warn to take it easy what with the devastating car crash and bullets and all – she may have a concussion he warns. From Tandy’s point of view, she’d rather never see again this guy she keeps running into (“the party, the cemetery, the beach,” she reminds him and us) and who now has a gun in his hand. As police sirens begin to flare in the background, Tandy backs up the convertible and takes off. Girl is ALWAYS running.

Hospital.  Detective Brigid O’Reilly (she finally has a full name) arrives to interview the douchebag rich kid that Tandy shanked 2 eps ago with her light dagger (I love recapping television shows because I get to write sentences like that).  Thinking he’s got someone working on his side (his family has connections after all), O’Reilly becomes a favorite character of mine when she seizes on what are obviously defensive wounds on his face – Tandy’s fingernail scratches – and the fact that the paramedics found him with his pants unbuckled.  Hrmmmm, odd, no?  Mr. Cotton (I guess that’s his name, not douchebag rich kid) claims he isn’t sure if it was a man or woman that attacked him – him and his boys had gone “pretty hard” that night – and after he hears the Good Detective’s tone of question, he is pretty sure he needs to save his voice and rest.

The Bowen Abode.  Mama Bowen catches Tandy cleaning up in the bathroom and wonders why she is back there and why she is bleeding.  All good questions but table that for now because Det. O’Reilly is at the door with some questions …

In a rare display of motherly concern, Mama Bowen and even druggie lawyer beau, stone wall O’Reilly at the door – even though she says she’s there because she thinks Tandy is a victim and not a criminal.  Anyway, by the time Mama Bowen makes it back to the bathroom, Tandy has done a Tandy out the window … predictable.

Hey, you know the feeling when you’re on a train and then everything vibrates and then you’re alone on the train and then you walk off the train into an over-saturated dreamscape where a young Tyrone is bouncing a basketball on a basketball court?!? No? Hmm, well, Tandy knows that feeling because that is exactly what happens to her as we head into commercial.

When we return, we are back with the 3D printer which seems to be making some kind of statue … maybe?

Okie doke, so now we’re back at the car crash but this time from Tyrone’s point of view so there is no fuzziness or dizziness shots because, you know, he wasn’t the one in the car crash … anyway, we know how this scene plays out so moving on.

After failing to convince Tandy not to drive and trying to explain his disapparating/apparating tricks, Ty jumps in the bushes as the cops pass by. Smash cut over to him getting his prayer on at St. Sebastian’s.   At first,I think he’s praying to God, trying to understand what whatever is happening to him is happening but then he calls on Billy – says how much he misses him.  Tyrone tells his dead brother that he’s trying to live like him but that “I’m failing. And … and I’m flailing. And, I’m cursed.” Which … is just beautiful writing.  Evita walks in and its clear she’s overheard at least this end part.  But no worries, she might be able to help him out with the cursed thing …

VOODOO!!!

Seems that Evita runs a Voodoo Tour in New Orleans, Damballah Voodoo Tours and Shop to be exact, and Ty joins her tour group as they head out for some education, including that Marie Leveau, maybe the most well know Voodoo practitioner (thank you American Horror Story), was Catholic. Interesting

** Fun Fact: According to Wikipedia, “Damballah is one of the most important of all the loa (the spirits of Voodoo). Damballah is the Sky Father and the primordial creator of all life. He rules the mind, intellect, and cosmic equilibrium. White rum is sacred to him. Damballah, as the serpent spirit and The Great Master, created the cosmos by using his 7,000 coils to form the stars and the planets in the heavens and to shape the hills and valleys on earth. By shedding the serpent skin, Damballa created all the waters on the earth.”**

Evita, using Tyrone as a volunteer, walks the tour group through the proper way to make a wish to the voodoo spirits.  And as he claps his wish into existence, we cut to commercials.

When we return, Evita takes Ty to meet her Voodoo priestess auntie, Auntie Chantelle, who senses from Tyrone that he doesn’t believe he deserves to be helped. But, we came her for some voodoo shit so that’s what we are going to get get. Auntie Chantelle begins dealing the tarot cards and tells Ty that he’s looking at the Joker in the Hopes and Fears position.  Diagnosis? Tyrone needs a bath of the spiritual cleansing kind.

Hey, you know the feeling when you’re sitting naked in your tub taking a spiritual cleansing bath while your maybe girlfriend guides you through the process and then all of a sudden, you’re all alone in the bathroom and alone in the house and then you head outside and you’re on the roof of the Roxxon Corp at nighttime and there is a Young Tandy there with you in her little girl ballerina uniform?  No? Me either but that’s exactly what happens to Ty in this last scene when he tries to clear his spiritual sinuses.  Commercials.

We come back to Tandy and Young Ty in the over white world – she’s got some questions on what the fuck is happening. She gets no answers but she does get to watch a scene with Young Tyrone and his brother Billy.

The Scene: Billy’s boys come round the basketball court trying to get Billy to come with them – they found the guy who ripped them off and their going to take his radio in revenge, you in? Billy hesitates but then chooses to stay with (a very pleased) Young Ty and play some ball. When the friends leave, Billy hands Tyrone some sort of check but then we’re out of the fantasy.

** Its clear now that this is NOT the way the thing actually happened as we saw in the Pilot so maybe this is Tyrone’s subconscious wish on how that day played out?  That Tandy is tapping into somehow? **

And we bounce into another fancy … this time, Tyrone is his adult self but dressed like a Hamilton cast member. On an ornate table, he picks up a dueling pistol, turns and fires one into the chest of Connors the Cop (in his Duty Clothes from way back when Billy was killed).  Ty’s parents look on pleased and we see Ty now has two checks in his hand.  Both are bloodied. Both are made out to Tyrone Johnson (one is from his Father (Otis) and one is from his Mother (Adina)) Both are blank checks.  The Memo line on Dad’s Check seems to read, “Pride in My Son” — I cannot make out what mom’s says …

Photo: Freeform

The cops descend on Tyrone and the scene resets.  This time, Tyrone choose the hangman’s noose while Tandy tries to convince him it won’t work.  He doesn’t hear.  He winds up n the noose as the Riot Police descend on him with torches.

Scene Reset. Hamilton Dressed Tyrone pauses as Tandy implores him to try something else or else, he’ll keep getting the same result.  She produces a light dagger and this gets Ty’s attention. When he picks it up, it’s become handcuffs and Duty Clothes Connors takes off running when he sees them.  This breaks the cycle and …

We cut over to Tyrone in the Young Tandy Fantasy sequence. An unseen taskmaster takes Ballerina Tandy through her paces as Tyrone watches. She falls near a puddle of water which has been electrified by the Roxxon sign. Tyrone runs to cover her as the scene shifts.

Adult Tandy, still in ballerina dress, is standing outside a glass atrium.  Inside, a group of men cast a vote against her father – who I’l note is strapped into his driver’s side car.  The Vote having gone against him, the men begin to waterboard her father.  Tyrone tries to do something but can’t get inside or make it stop.  Tandy? Yeah, she runs off.  Cause, that’s what Tandy does.

Scene Rest. Tyrone beats on the window as we watch Mama Bowen yelling at the Roxxon Men (Dad Bowen is still in the room and still strapped in the seatbelt but not being water boarded … yet). Tyrone Yells. Tandy Runs.  This time she runs straight into a mud pit.  “Where do you think you’re going? What do you think is on the other side,” Tyrone asks her.

Scene Reset.  Young Tandy is inside the atrium now. She’s trying to free her seatbelt strapped father. The Roxxon Men move her as the other begin to water board him. Tyrone begs adult Tandy to do some thing. To help. She starts to run and he screams “Stop!” And Tandy freezes. And, inside the atrium, the Roxxon Men Freeze. Everyone is stopped. Well done, Ty.

“Please. Please stop running. You have to try something else.”

(Freeform/Alfonso Bresciani) WAYNE PARE, AUBREY JOSEPH, OLIVIA HOLT

As Ty speaks to her, his black smoke envelops her. Hearing his words (though not acknowledging them), Tandy produces a light dagger and approaches the atrium walls.  As she goes to …what? stab the wall? I dunno.

The scene shifts and Tyrone is alone in a forest.  He enters an abandoned looking house.

Adult Tandy is in the white-drenched world. She enters a check cashing place which is littered with blank checks made out to Tyrone Johnson. She finds Young Ty crying on the floor but a locked door separates them.

Tyrone enters a church, filled with Tandy-related stained glass windows. A line has formed to take communion from Young Tandy who is the altar server while a chorus sings, Good Night Irene. Douchebag Rich Kid is on the receiving line.  So is Liam.  It looks like its only men, actually.  All the men fall dead after taking her communion.  Interesting subtext there.

Adults Tandy and Tyrone are drawn a stained glass window in their respective fantasies.  A window depicting the Virgin Mary if that matters. They approach, Ty with smoke coming off his hand, Tandy with her hand glowing. As they make contact – hand to hand save for the Stained Glass Pane between them, each wakes from their reverie. Tandy, on the train and Tyrone, in his bathtub. Commercials.

When we return, Connors (from Vice) approaches Det. O’Reilly late at night as she gets in her car (creeper) and hands her Douchebag Rich Kid’s driver’s license. Connors says that it was found on a dead drug addict – seems Mr. Cotton’s case was just a mugging gone wrong – no need to pursue any further.

He also mentions that O’Reilly is from the NYPD. Interesting tie in there, huh?   None of that fits the evidence, O’Reilly says but Connors doesn’t let things like that get in his way. Case is closed. End of Story. She’s not happy.  Connors is an asshole. No time to dwell though because Det. O’ Reilly gets a call from Tandy who says that if the good detective was serious, Tandy is willing to stay and face “this.”

Somewhere else in town, Evita and Tyrone walk and talk.  Ty says overall, he feels better after the cleansing and while he didn’t get his answers, he thinks he knows how to get them now at least. As they walk, he spies an abandoned church with some interesting stain glass pieces.  For her part, Evita says she made a wish too … apparently it involved making kissy faces with Tyrone.

In her car, O’Reilly and Tandy talk.  We only see the end of the conversation and O’Reilly apologizes so I imagine there was just some real talk about how Douchebag Rich Kid is untouchable.

Wrap Ups.  Auntie Chantelle is the one that has been using the 3D printer all episode and it looks like she has finished a mini-Tyrone statue?  The intricate details are difficult to ascertain but that’s my take.

Tandy makes her way into the abandoned Church and Tyrone is waiting for her.

“Hey. I think we need to talk.”

Photo: Freeform

And Scene.

Thoughts. This show!!  That fantasy sequence in the middle – the details involved and the weight of their meaning — that is AAA show writing and honestly, so much more than I expected from a Summer show, especially one not from a bottomless pit money studio like Netflix or HBO.

Every week, the nuance of the writing and acting performances, combined with the colors (light and dark plays so heavily into the storytelling here),  music and mood set by the show’s look, come together to make Cloak & Dagger a completely immersive experience. Which, is what I want from TV. Its one my main criteria for a show if I am going to give you my eyeballs and my time.  Make me invested … suck me and don’t let go of me for an hour. Keep me engaged and watching until you say its time to go.

I don’t check my phone during Cloak & Dagger, I don’t fold laundry during Cloak & Dagger, I don’t make snacks during Cloak & Dagger (except on commercials) — no, I am sitting there trying to unravel it all and put it all back together again.

I have so many questions and theories but this is already a week late and I have to get it posted. We are going to talk more about this though after next week’s episode.

 

 

 

 

 

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