Tyrone and Tandy seek to get justice on the eight-year anniversary of the tragic deaths of their brother and father, respectively. Plus, O’Reilly finds out what happens when you get too close to the fire. Read on for our Cloak & Dagger review.
There’s nothing more satisfying as a TV viewer to find yourself saying week after week that this is your favorite episode. Or that this was the episode where it took things to a different level. But that’s what Cloak & Dagger continues to do. It continues to one-up itself with thrilling and twisty narratives and beautiful character development, especially where our leads Tyrone and Tandy are concerned.
So, I’ll say it again, but this was the episode that delivered some serious emotions and game-changing moves. “Ghost Stories” marked the eight-year anniversary of Tyrone losing his brother, Billy, and Tandy losing her father. So if that doesn’t up the emotional scale by 1,000, well, I don’t know what would.
This episode was all about Tyrone and Tandy exacting their revenge on a day that called for it. The eight-year anniversary of the deaths of Billy Johnson and Nathan Bowen, the emotion behind “today” ignited Tyrone and Tandy into action. Tyrone discovered that he could channel his powers through a cloak, and he used Connors’ fears against him in order to get justice. For Billy. Tandy, with the help of Ivan Hess, located incriminating evidence that would expose Roxxon for the vile villains that they are, and managed to scare Scarborough in the process. But it didn’t come without pain, something that Tandy is very familiar with, as Tandy learned that her father wasn’t who she thought he was.
Following last week’s episode where Tyrone and Tandy embarked on a mission together, you could still feel that unity in what they did this week. Yes, we revisited their individual vendettas, but there was an understanding that they now have each other to turn to in times of need. As evidenced by Tandy showing up to Tyrone’s house on “today,” even though she had ulterior motives for the visit. She’s not that good of an actor. There’s a genuine concern and friendship that’s there, and that’s not going away. You saw the same from Tyrone as Tandy learned a harsh truth about her father and how he “followed” her home to make sure she would be okay.
The wonderful thing about this show is that’s selling point is Tyrone and Tandy, the pair. So there’s still so much to explore in their dynamic as they’ve gone from strangers to acquaintances to friends. Next, we’ll surely get to explore the romantic side to their relationship, which is what we’re all waiting for, quite frankly. But until then, just knowing that these two have come to an understanding that they have each other to lean on when things get tough, it’s enough for now.
But the unlikely storyline that has turned out to be more intriguing and terrifying than I thought it could be is O’Reilly’s dealings with Connors. She’s determined to take him down, and she even got some help from secret cop boyfriend Fuchs. There was a moment where, for the first time, O’Reilly was happy. Where she had nabbed the bad guy, gotten the guy, and felt content with where her life was. But then, reality hit, as well as the reminder that New Orleans is a city of connections. And you’d better watch your back.
“Ghost Stories” was the kind of episode that felt like a season finale — or a penultimate episode. There were so many moments of payoff with grand emotional implications, and Tyrone and Tandy still are unaware of the fate of the Divine Pairing. That’s right, we still have that big bombshell to get to. But with two episodes to go this season, there’s so much left to be explored and so much more left at stake.
Let’s talk a little more about “Ghost Stories,” including Tandy learning a harsh truth about her father, Tyrone haunting Connors, and O’Reilly’s realization that fire does in fact burn.
The Cold, Hard Truth
When you’re young, you worship your parents. In your eyes, they could do no wrong. And when you happen to lose one of your parents, as Tandy did with her father, you want to remember them fondly. You want to remember them as the hero you grew up believing they were. But there’s a side that parents don’t show to their young children. A side that still exists, but a side that a child cannot understand.
Tandy wants justice for her father. More than that, she wants to clear his good name. The good name that Roxxon destroyed when they blamed him for the oil rig exploding. That anger and that fire is what has driven Tandy ever step of the way. So when given the chance, she would burn Roxxon to the ground.
After last week’s episode where Tandy managed to wake Ivan Hess from his catatonic state, she finally found a living witness that could testify to her father’s innocence. And Ivan revealed that, unknownst to Scarborough, Nathan had written a memo warning that Roxxon was cutting corners and that Nathan didn’t trust the oil rig. There was proof, hidden in Nathan’s lock box, that he was the one that tried to prevent the explosion. Roxxon, the ones covering it up, were the real enemy and the reason why so many people had lost their lives that day.
Armed with this new evidence — and a determination to clear her father’s name on the eight-year anniversary of his death — Tandy went Roxxon to confront Scarborough about the truth. Using her dagger and her intelligence, Tandy was able to have a little fun with Scarborough. You see, this wasn’t about “getting” anything. Because the one thing Tandy wanted, was her father. And unless Scarborough possessed the ability to resurrect the dead, there was nothing he could do. This was more about Tandy holding it over his head and letting him know that, with this great evidence, she was going to expose Roxxon and him for the frauds they are. There was nothing he could do to stop it. Even as he tried to buy her off, telling her he’d set her up for life with all the money she could need if she just handed over the evidence. A sign that, yes, she had won. And it felt damn good.
But Scarborough also dropped a bombshell, that wasn’t at the time really considered a bombshell. As Tandy defended her father’s “good name,” Scarborough laughed in her face as he told her “Good name? How well did you know your old man?” Turns out, not so well.
At the end of “the day,” Tyrone joined Tandy and her mother for a memorial to honor both her dad and his brother. In a moment of silence, Tandy’s mother took both of their hands and the two were transported into what appeared to be half fear and half memory. What Tandy saw next, well, that forever changed things.
Tandy’s mother was in a movie theater watching happy moments with her and her husband play out. She was smiling. But then, they flickered off, and once Tandy ripped through the screen — a beautiful metaphor about how people mask the truth behind lies they’d like to believe — Tandy saw that her parents’ relationship was nothing like she had thought. Her father wasn’t perfect. He’d get angry at her mom for wanting to spend time with him and accidentally spilling a coffee she brought for him. And he’d hit her. And while that was the only one we saw, it was clear that it was intended to imply that it’s happened before and would happen after.
Tandy spent the past eight years — and her whole life, really — idealizing her dad. That’s what you do when someone’s dead. You can’t hate them. How could you? How could you not remember them at a time when they were their best self?
Suddenly, everything that Tandy has worked for and had to suffer through seems worthless. She was fighting for a man that she thought was perfect, who she thought was a good man, and he turned out to be bad. Suddenly, all of those good memories of him were tainted with the knowledge that he hit her mother. So Tandy decided to take Scarborough up on his offer. She’s going to hand over the evidence, and he’s going to supply her with money for the rest of her life.
For so long, Tandy has been living for her father. She’s tried to find him justice, to do right by him. But now, with his memory being tainted, she’s starting to put herself first. What’s the point in clearing a “good name” that he never was? Even if he was right about Roxxon. But it’s that anger — that in-the-moment kind of anger — that drives Tandy to make the decision that she makes. So, in the end, Roxxon really did win.
The Ultimate Sacrifice
“Giving your own for another. No greater sacrifice than that.”
Tyrone has spent the past eight years trying to live up to his brother’s memory and trying to find a way to get justice for his murder. He’s put himself in situations that he normally wouldn’t have to find justice for the boy that sacrificed his life to save his younger brother. Because as Billy Johnson stood atop that ledge, hands up, he pleaded for his brother’s life. He asked them to spare him. And one explosion, followed by two gunshots, changed everything.
Giving up your life for someone else. There’s no greater sacrifice.
Even the morning after his brother was murdered in front of him, a young Tyrone understood that. He understood that Billy gave up his life so that he could live. And he’s spent his life trying to be better for him and honor his memory. But there comes a point when you have to fight back. And Ty reached that point earlier this season.
On the eight-year anniversary of Billy’s death, it’s O’Reilly telling him that Connors is after him that drives him into action. “I’m putting Connors where he belongs,” he tells her. “I’m not stopping. Not today.” In fact, Tyrone is going to make sure Connors never forgets the day he killed Billy.
His plan? Get a confession out of Connors. Not for drugs. For murdering Billy Johnson. His course of action? Use his fear against him. Make him think that he, Tyrone, is actually Billy’s ghost haunting him on the anniversary of his death. Driving the knife deeper until the pain is too much and he confesses. Sounds great in theory, but it’s always the execution that has us worried.
As far as execution goes, Tyrone is near perfect. As he’s face-to-face with the monster that killed his brother, he doesn’t lose his cool like he would’ve earlier this season. In fact, he’s cool, calm, and collected. This is a process. It’s going to take time. And he’s going to have to be near perfect to pull this confession out of him. So he uses his fear against him, as Tandy suggested before. And he does it to near perfection.
“You tried to kill me. You can’t. You already did.”
Connors has lost it. He’s breaking, and suddenly all of the pain and guilt comes flooding back as Tyrone keeps driving that emotional knife deeper. Ty keeps taunting him, “You’ve already lost it.” He wants him to admit it. To his face. That he killed “me.”
Connors blames the oil rig explosion. But that’s not a good enough excuse. The rig didn’t fire the gun. Connors did.
“I shot you,” Connors admits and admits to covering it up. “I couldn’t undo it. It was done…I killed you and buried you.”
And that was all she wrote. Fuchs revealed himself to be recording the confession, and O’Reilly was there to arrest Connors for the murder of Billy Johnson.
The difference between vengeance and justice is important. Sometimes, these are two different words that can mixed up. When you allow yourself to get too emotionally gone in these situations, you turn to vengeance. Vengeance, where you want to make the person hurt. You want them dead. But justice is leaving it to the criminal system. It’s doing things by the law. It’s more difficult than vengeance. Because with vengeance, you’re just acting on your emotions. With justice, you have to push those emotions aside.
Tyrone was able to get justice. Not through killing Connors, like he’d wanted to before. No, he did it the way his brother would’ve wanted him to do it. He caught the bad guy, and he managed to save his future in the process. On that’s what Billy would’ve wanted.
Playing with Fire Will Get You Burned
The thing about fire is that it can be beautiful, from a distance. But once you get close, you start to feel the heat. Get too close? That’s when you get burned. And that’s the very thing that came back to bite O’Reilly in the ass on a day that should’ve been a celebratory occasion.
O’Reilly was determined to take Connors down. At any cost. She’s thrown herself out there without a second thought, and it nearly cost her her life. And while the knowledge that Connors had a hand in trying to get her killed has her feeling ancy, the second that Connors sets his sights on Tyrone is when her nerve returns and the reminder that she has to stop this guy before he kills someone else.
It was a genius plan, despite O’Reilly’s initial doubts. But, in her case, she didn’t know about Ty’s abilities to disappear on command. Alongside her cop boyfriend Fuchs, and the civilian, O’Reilly had her chance to nail Connors for the murder of an innocent boy eight years ago.
O’Reilly noticed that Connors was on edge, more than usual, and knew that he had to know that it was the anniversary of his killing Billy. That kind of thing stays with you — even with a guy like Connors, who doesn’t usually have remorse. But he does for this. So Ty suggests using his fear against him. Ty recreates the bloody shirt — bullet and all — and says he’s going to pretend to be Billy. Tyrone plans on haunting Connors, and through his ability, convincing Connors that this boy is actually Bill’s ghost. He’s going to play to his fear and get a confession out of him. A confession for murdering Billy Johnson.
And, you know what, it works. O’Reilly plays it up perfectly as Ty hovers in his cloak, which makes his power easier to control, pretending not to see him. Making Connors doubt himself, doubt his sanity. Maybe he is losing it. Tyrone nags at him until he cracks — and gives a full-blown confession, as Fuchs records it all. There’s remorse and guilt in it, but that doesn’t matter. This is about bringing Billy’s killer to justice — and making the streets cleaner one less corrupt cop at a time.
Back at the station, O’Reilly and Fuchs celebrate their victory and talk about the joys of eating pancakes. O’Reilly isn’t someone that we’re used to seeing happy. There’s clearly been a lot that’s happened to her in her life that has cast this dark shadow around her. So seeing her happy isn’t only weird, it’s satisfying. But that’s also the first moment I knew this was not going to end happily.
The next day, O’Reilly finds Fuch’s dead body stuffed in his freezer, no doubt at the hands of Connors. Because just because Connors is in custody, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have connections. O’Reilly forgets how many people Connors has in his back pocket. Just because he’s locked up doesn’t mean his reign of terror is over. And that’s the scary part.
Cloak & Dagger airs Thursdays at 8/7c on Freeform.