Saturday, June 9, 2018

Cloak and Dagger Series Premiere Review

Spoilers Ahead
We've had 245 episodes of Marvel TV across 15 seasons of ten different shows across broadcast and two different streaming services. Now, Marvel expands to basic cable with Cloak and Dagger, a show set in New Orleans that features teenage characters like Runaways on Hulu, one of whom runs away by the end of the two episodes, which I'm grading as one because of their air date. Because it's a pilot episode, things move a bit more slowly because they gotta set up New Orleans in the MCU, which hasn't seen anyone vanish into dust (Click here for an IGN article on the TV side's timeline placement). We start off with a flashback to Tandy struggling in her ballet lesson as a child, and Tyrone struggling with peer pressure regarding stealing a car stereo. Long story short, an oil rig's explosion and the loss of a loved one for each of them throws them together. Fastforward to the present for the show, and what follows is teenage drama that reunites these two. For the most part, it makes sense, but given this is a TV show, we don't get much explained. The two leads are portrayed in a relatable manner and developed well, whether Tyrone is displaying his trouble with anger management and the pressure he feels his mother puts on him, or Tandy is shown to be addicted to opioids and running scams. The visuals are believable, with the most VFX heavy parts being their powers, which come off as believable on screen, but Tyrone's is poorly explained. My best guess would be he can see the fears of people he touches, such as the grim vision he got from his mother, but I'll have to wait and see. Everything on screen advanced the plot and built the world we'll see for the next eight episodes. As for the soundtrack, there was a lot of music I would put in the "teen angst" genre, which fit perfectly given the age of the characters and the likely-teenage target audience, but it all fit in place. There is no humor I could find here, and it was very appropriate for the serious tone. I don't usually watch Freeform, so I can't be sure if this is typical of them, but the lack of humor doesn't distract, unlike some of the Marvel movies' bizarre joke placements. There's a couple of uses of number one on George Carlin's list of seven when Tandy has an argument with her mother, but it also falls right into place and doesn't feel forced. I'll conclude by saying I look forward to seeing if the show utilizes the New Orleans setting more than it did here, as well as how it explores the teen drama aspect and the conspiracy with Roxxon.
Final Score: 91%, A-,
Plot
-Pacing 7/10
-Coherence 8/10
Characters
-Relatability 9/10
-Development 8/10
Picture
-Visual Believability 10/10
-Purposeful Scenes 9/10
Soundtrack
-Emotional Resonance 10/10
-Appropriate Use 10/10
Dialogue
-Appropriate Humor 10/10
-Appropriate Cursing 10/10
Numeric Breakdown
0. Unbearable
  1. Awful
  2. Really Bad
  3. Bad
  4. Weak
  5. Mediocre
  6. Questionable
  7. Good
  8. Great
  9. Amazing
  10. Perfect
Letter Grade
100%-97% = A+
96%-93% = A
92%-90% = A-
89%-87% = B+
86%-83% = B
82%-80% = B-
79%-77% = C+
76%-73% = C
72%-70% = C-
69%-67% = D+
66%-63% = D
62%-60% = D-
59% or below = F

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