Tandy Bowen (Dagger)

And here were are, for the second half of the couple who will hit our screens in the upcoming Cloak & Dagger: Dagger, of course. In the show, Tandy Bowen will be portrayed by Olivia Holt, and she’ll apparently suffer quite a change from her comicbook counterpart: she’ll be always a member of a rich Southern family, but she’ll end up on the streets pretty early on in her story, and she’ll become a thief along with her boyfriend Liam. The same accident that gave Tyrone Johnson his ability to emit and control darkness will give her the one to create light daggers (hence the name), and she’ll eventually break up with Liam, we don’t know yet if peacefully or not, to be with Tyrone instead. That’s as much as we know as for now, so now it’s time to take a look at the original Tandy, another well-known and beloved character in the comics.

Tandy Bowen was born in Shaker HeightsOhio, a wealthy suburb of Cleveland. She was the daughter of Nathan Tyler, a rich landlord, and of his wife, Melissa Bowen, a famous model who pretty much thought only of herself (and who insisted to have Tandy inherit her surname, wanting to “open a road” for her when she would have become a model too). When she was still a kid, Nathan and Melissa divorced, with the first leaving the country altogether to seek inner peace and enlightment in India; Tandy was deeply hurt by her father’s departure, but Melissa wasn’t exactly the best person to understand her pain and to do something about it, quite the opposite: soon after, obviously without caring for her daughter’s feelings, she married another man, Phillip Carlisle. Phillip was a nice man and a caring stepfather, but Tandy didn’t accept him nevertheless, always thinking of her real father. Missing the presence of the one person who she perceived had truly loved her, a sixteen-years-old Tandy eventually started a relationship with an older boy, Rob Daltry, searching in him all the love she was missing…but eventually Rob had to leave for college, and this broke Tandy’s heart once again. Not wanting to stay a day more in a house she didn’t feel loved in, Tandy made up her mind and took the first bus to New York City, leaving behind her previous life. Her first encounter with the Big Apple, however, wasn’t exactly the nicest one, as almost immediately a man stole her purse and ran away; luckily enough, another young man stopped the first one and won her purse back, giving it back to her. Grateful, and realizing that her savior was in need as well, Tandy bought him some food: the young man was Tyrone Johnson, and he had run away from home just as she had, albeit for different reasons. The two became fast friends. Immediately after, a group of men arrived and offered the two teens some food and shelter: naive to a fault, Tandy agreed to follow them, and a mistrustful Tyrone followed her just to make sure this wasn’t some kind of trap. The latter, unfortunately, turned out to be right, and they both got kidnapped.

This goons weren’t “regular” kidnappers, however, as they were working for Dr. Simon Marhsall, a criminal scientist who was testing for Maggia a synthetic heroine, D-Lite…unfortunately, all the teen runaways he had used as test subjects had died in the process. Tandy and Tyrone, however, were different from the others, and the drug awakened some latent mutant gene they both possessed: after being experimented on, they escaped, jumping into the Hudson. When they reemerged, they found they had gained superhuman abilities: Tandy was glowing with light in the dark, and she soon found out she could make that very light a solid object; Tyrone, on the opposite, was now a being of pure darkness. By common accord, the two decided to use their newfound powers to protect other street kids from the dangers they had faced, and they named themselves Cloak & Dagger. First things first, they found themselves forced to defend themselves from Marshall’s men, who had come to collect the only surviving guinea pigs: Dagger struck them down with her light projectiles, while Cloak absorbed them into the darkness he was, killing each one of them. Then, they started hunting for the scientist himself: during their quest, they obviously needed food and shelter, and Tandy, born in a devout Catholic family, asked for help to Father Delgado, a priest who welcomed them in his church. While looking for Marshall, Cloak & Dagger met people who started influencing them to pursue another path, rather than the murderous vigilantes’ one: Brigit O’Reilly, a police detective, and Spider-Man, a young superhero Dagger took quite a liking to, and she even began flirting with him, causing Tyrone’s jealousy (unbeknownst to Tandy, in fact, Cloak loved her more than just as a friend). Despite Spider-Man’s teachings, however, Cloak still killed, as it was difficult for him not to due to the nature of his powers, and this brought to Simon Marshall’s death; Dagger, on her part, stayed with him, and eventually found out that her light powers could feed Cloak’s darkness enough for him not to consume living people. As friends or as something more, the two of them had become apparently inseparable…

Tandy Bowen is a good-hearted and cheerful young woman, who instinctively trusts others and who has no true experience on street life, relying for that on her best friend (and later lover) Tyrone. As Dagger, she’s a living generator of Lightforce, a form of “living light” that grants her several abilities: she can summon daggers of solid light that she throws with expertise, and once they hit someone she has visions on how their life can be different if “enlightened” (and the victims usually change their lives, once touched by Lightforce); through the daggers, she can either absorb people’s lifeforce to incapacitate them or even kill them, or she can on the opposite heal them from poisons, drugs and toxins; she can also create light halos and sometimes forcefields. The day to Cloak’s night, Dagger is a girl full of passion and joy, bent on a violent crusade, but in a way that quells her partner’s brutality, while his seriousness helps her remain focused.

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6 Comments

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  6. […] was distrustful pretty much with everybody outside the group, and she even spoke against Cloak and Dagger, two superheroes and former runaways themselves who offered their help to the group. She […]


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