Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9 Review: Back Breaker

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An enemy has been found on Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9, and their name is "Tandy's guilt."

The white dagger-wielding hero let herself spiral into major depression after finding out the truth about her father on Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 8. Her world shattered due to the news and, to true Tandy style, she plotted to take down everyone with her. No one could be happy when she was miserable.

That theme seemed to prevail throughout "Back Breaker" because each plot seemed to be more depressing than the next.

Downward Spiral - Cloak and Dagger

Tandy's resentment towards Nathan suited the grieving process you'd come to expect from her.

For so long, she held up her father in such a high regard that she only viewed him as the unbeatable Nathan Bowen. However, his true persona turned out to be more fiction than reality. Let's never forget that he hit his wife and possibly was involved in Roxxon's illegal activities too.

The truth destroyed the last bit of hope that Tandy kept near and dear to her heart. So, her using the hope touch to steal the hopes of her unsuspecting victims was her way of coping with that loss, and her chance to feel it again.

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Tandy has an addictive quality to her. Similar to her mother, she uses drugs to subside the emptiness and anxiety she gained after her father's death. Forcibly taking someone's hope fueled her addiction even more once she got the taste for it.

The connection between Tandy's and Melissa's coping mechanism was an interesting comparison. Both characters resort to a similar fashion with addiction when they feel all hope is lost. Minus the superhero ability that Melissa doesn't have, of course.

(Side-note: How did she discover that she could steal hope? I might've missed it in my rewatches. Share in the comments if you remember when she learned that ability!) 

Liam Returns - Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9

Stealing hopes might be the most villainous action Tandy has made yet throughout Cloak and Dagger Season 1.

Sure, she's conned people by drugging them, accidentally murdered someone, and she did a few questionable things in her pursuit to get the truth about Roxxon. Those actions were either in self-defense or toeing the line of good vs. evil. However, eliminating someone's hope created a new low Tandy had never reached before.

Tandy is the personification of light and hope in Marvel's Cloak & Dagger pairing, so eliminating that light only left someone with emptiness and darkness. You could see the change once she made her move.

The drunk guy who wanted a threesome looked visibly shaken, Mina dimmed her brightness and killed a bee, and Liam was on the verge of tears. Everyone seemed to be missing a part of themselves. Tandy took their light away to bask in the euphoria of hope.

She'll no doubt come to regret the lies she told and the moves she made in the long-run.

Liam: What is up with you?
Tandy: What do you mean?
Liam: Saying nice things. You’re talking about marriage.
Tandy: Yeah, so?
Liam: When is that you? It’s so normal?
Tandy: You know the dreams I dread before I go to sleep. The good ones... the happy ones... the hopeful ones. Because then you wake up and you’re back to your own life. I realize something when I was without you: It’s my own fault. I’m the reason I dread those dreams because I’m not doing anything to make my life any better.
[She reaches over and grab his hands]
Tandy: It’s gonna stop. I wanna build a life. A happy one. Finally.

And, we can't ignore that Tandy had multiple opportunities out of the dark spiral she fell into.

Mina offered her a job! Sure, the role worked for Roxxon Corp, but it was a great job nonetheless. She could finally follow in her father's footsteps to help the earth and do some good.

In Liam's case, I'm not sure if Tandy truly wanted those same things or if she manipulated him to get his hopes. Liam wanted to marry Tandy and spend a life with him; she was about to steal his light before Tyrone showed up. Do you think she was being genuine?

It's a shame that her addiction changed Mina's attitude from the happy-go-lucky scientist we grew to love with the frustrated person who killed a bee she saved. And, the Tandy/Liam relationship might never be repaired now that he stole all the Peter Scarborough money.

Now you know how it feels.

Tandy

Tandy reaching out to her mother about Nathan was the right thing to do. She needed to talk to someone, and the person who knew best about the REAL Nathan was Melissa.

Unfortunately, they have that mess with the watercooler assassin to deal with.

Odds seem to be that Tandy will save Melissa in time. A little throw of the white dagger might be the trick to stop the killer from harming Melissa as she did with Greg. Plus, we can't lose her mother this soon!

She needs to learn the truth about Tandy and have their heart-to-heart. And, a redemption story would do Melissa wonders for her character development in the long-run.

Protective Parents - Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9

Tyrone's sadness stemmed a lot from the real world challenges that affected his life.

No one was ungrateful for the work he did to capture Billy's killer; they were more so worried for his well-being and the retaliation he could face with Connors behind bars. Closing the book on Billy's killer only opened up more wounds.

Still, Tyrone acted like a spoiled brat before his heart-to-heart with Adina. Did he expect a parade or a celebration for confronting a killer? 

Related: Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 8 Review: Ghost Stories

Don't get me wrong, Adina and Otis should've acted happier learning that their son's real killer had been apprehended. Though, from their point-of-view, their entire world had been shaken by the truth. What they had known for eight years turned out to be a lie.

No one would be peachy keen after a bombshell like that. Neither parent was ready to engage Tyrone in his comments until they processed the reality of the situation fully.

Tyrone disregarded his parents' grieving process to fuel his inner conflict and sadness. He and Tandy are similar in a lot of regards; they like lashing out and coming across as the victim when, in their opinion, the whole world is against them.

Will Tyrone Find Happiness? - Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9

His frustration hit its peak during the punishment from Delgado. Being forced to lift up books wasn't so bad; he could've been in more trouble had the priest not given him a second chance.

Plus, his comments to Delgado about faith were more so fueled by resentment and spite than his actual stance. Once he gets a clear head, we'll have to see if his opinion on the matter changes or if he's given up hope. (I'm leaning toward the former because he seemed more inclined to hurt the priest than make his conclusion.)

Speaking of the priest, did you expect the car crash to be his deep dark secret?

Based on his lessons about being a hero and seeking redemption, he was definitely hiding something. Causing the death of a young kid in a drunk driving accident most likely was the reason why he turned his life around. 

Though, the revelation would've had more of an impact on his character development had he been involved in more of the storyline. The priest, for the most part, felt like a gloried extra than a main character. We were more emotionally tied to Mina, Evita or Greg than Delgado.

His inclusion doesn't seem to connect to the rest of the plot.

Adina: If you were telling the truth then that meant a cop murdered a teenage boy and covered up the crime. And the only way to do that means that he had help doing it. A lot of help. And that cop gets nervous and he decides he needs to tie up loose ends. What happens to that little boy who’s the only living witness to what he did?
Tyrone: I wasn’t afraid of him.
Adina: Well, that’s a luxury you had. Your father and I couldn’t afford that luxury. We had to be afraid because you alive or you dead meant nothing to them. It still doesn’t. And what you did...
Tyrone: I had back-up! We got him on tape.
Adina: You had a white cop on tape confessing to killing a black kid. Have you been paying attention, Tyrone?! Because in the world that we live in that means absolutely nothing!
Tyrone: So I should just, what, throw my hands up and give up, is that what you’re saying?!
Adina: You put yourself in their crosshairs again.
Tyrone: Someone has to, otherwise nothing will change.
Adina: I’ve already lost one son, Tyrone!
Tyrone: And if I don’t stand up it will be for nothing!

Adina and Tyrone's heart-to-heart might be one of the best scenes.

For the longest time before Connors ended up in jail, both mother and son tip-toed around each other instead of discussing their issues head-on. Adina and Tyrone were finally open and honest with one another about how they felt with the Billy situation. And it's a conversation that needed to happen to progress their development further.

Adina's revelation helped us connect with her even more.

Everything she did, and how she acted, to Tyrone was propelled by the fear of potentially losing her son. She didn't want him to be any situation that could be dangerous; it's, unfortunately, one of the reasons why Tyrone felt so sheltered after all these years.

Her parenting made sense because she loved him so much.

It's a shame that he got framed for murder because if they had more time, they could've resolved all of their issues. We'll have to wait and see how they complete their chat now that her son is on the run.

Hopeless - Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9

Did you expect Evita to have voodoo powers too? My jaw dropped when her mind pushed Tandy out of the dream world.

Evita's powers presented an interesting twist because she used to act dismissively toward her aunt seeing visions. New Orleans' destruction caught her interest, but being faced with the divine pairing changed her mind completely. She could no longer doubt that Tyrone was involved in something mystical.

Related: Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 7 Review: Lotus Eaters

With Evita's discovery, does that mean she'll get involved in the plan too? Could she help her aunt ward off the Roxxon evil heading to the city?

Cold Case - Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9

Brigid's spiral caused her the most pain out of anyone.

You could feel her heartbreak at the bar when she poured her sorrows into alcohol. And Connors only made it worse by visiting the memorial like nothing happened. He orchestrated Fuchs's death and cheered to it.

Did no one connect Fuchs' death to Connors? Did any of them care?

The cops here were the absolute worst. Sure, Brigid hit Connors first with the back breaker, but he let loose on her and kicked her when she was down. All the police officers did was watch from the sidelines.

I can't wait until Brigid takes on her superhero alter-ego. She's going to cause a lot of mayhem for criminals like Connors. Hopefully, she gets her chance to fight him again.

Tyrone: Have you even talked to your mom about this?
Tandy: No, but you know what, we’re both on the same page. “If you don’t hurt, you get hurt.”
Tyrone: That’s not how I see it.
Tandy: You will if you ever grow up. And learn that there is nothing you can ever do to bring your big bro back.
Tyrone: Well, excuse me if I don’t take wellness advice from the Brown family.
[Tandy places the white dagger to his throat]
Tandy: Screw you, Tyrone!
Tyrone: I’ll see you in your dreams.

What did you think of "Back Breaker"? Will Tandy's stealing of hopes cause long-term negative effects? Why do you think Liam left Tandy? Will Tyrone be able to clear his name?

If you missed the latest episode of Cloak and Dagger, you can watch Cloak and Dagger online via TV Fanatic. Come back here and share your thoughts in the comments about the episode.

Back Breaker Review

Editor Rating: 3.7 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (36 Votes)

Justin Carreiro is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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Cloak and Dagger Season 1 Episode 9 Quotes

Liam: What is up with you?
Tandy: What do you mean?
Liam: Saying nice things. You’re talking about marriage.
Tandy: Yeah, so?
Liam: When is that you? It’s so normal?
Tandy: You know the dreams I dread before I go to sleep. The good ones... the happy ones... the hopeful ones. Because then you wake up and you’re back to your own life. I realize something when I was without you: It’s my own fault. I’m the reason I dread those dreams because I’m not doing anything to make my life any better.
[She reaches over and grab his hands]
Tandy: It’s gonna stop. I wanna build a life. A happy one. Finally.

Tyrone: Have you even talked to your mom about this?
Tandy: No, but you know what, we’re both on the same page. “If you don’t hurt, you get hurt.”
Tyrone: That’s not how I see it.
Tandy: You will if you ever grow up. And learn that there is nothing you can ever do to bring your big bro back.
Tyrone: Well, excuse me if I don’t take wellness advice from the Brown family.
[Tandy places the white dagger to his throat]
Tandy: Screw you, Tyrone!
Tyrone: I’ll see you in your dreams.