cloak & dagger

SPOILER ALERT: This article contains some information from the ‘Cloak & Dagger’ comic books, which may be adapted to the live action TV show.  So if you don’t want to be SPOILED, you may wish to turn back.

Freeform’s ‘Cloak & Dagger’ is looking to cast two important supporting characters from the comics for their new live action drama.  Both are allies of the two teen runaways who wind up with superpowers after criminals use them as test subjects for a synthetic drug.  Now with powers of darkness and light, the pair declare war on drug dealers and other street level criminals.

As in the case of nearly all adaptations of this nature, the casting call descriptions use fake names, but it’s fairly easy to figure out who these characters really are.  The first casting description is referred to as Pastor Francis Diaz, but it actually appears to be Father Francis Xavier Delgado.

Pastor Diaz–Recurring Male( 25-40)– didn’t always intend to become a man of the cloth. Struggling with many demons, Francis Diaz joined the military looking for guidance and stability. But he found himself in religion, becoming a chaplain and pursuing advanced degrees in theology and education to try to discover his own humanity. Still without answers but armed with a position at a prestigious prep school, Pastor Diaz is now helping sculpt young minds. As a school counselor and priest, Diaz is a rock to Travis and sees a lot more in the boy that he would be comfortable admitting. Oppressed by the collar, he leads more through words than example as he still struggles daily with the chaste life he has chosen. Try as he may, Francis still finds himself slipping. He can’t escape his own deep shame. To pay penance, he forces himself to witness the life he could have had, seeing the love that got away. Pastor Diaz is constantly seeking redemption in spite of the fact that he’s not sure he deserves it. But it is in his raw humanity that we see the hand of God. RECURRING

Father Delgado is a pretty tragic figure in the comics.  He starts off as an ally of the pair, providing them with shelter and food as well as guidance.  But things go downhill from there.  First he becomes obsessed with Tandy/Dagger and tries to come between her and Tyrone (“Travis” in the casting description.)  He eventually becomes mentally unhinged, believes that Cloak’s powers are demonic in nature and winds up in a mental institution.

The TV version also sounds like a tortured soul and what’s a YA series without a love triangle of some sort?  However, this sentence stands out to me: “As a school counselor and priest, Diaz is a rock to Travis and sees a lot more in the boy that he would be comfortable admitting.”  That sounds… a little creepy, no?  It’s entirely possible that in this version, Father Delgado’s longing is directed at Ty rather than Tandy.  The age range is curious as they are seeking someone between the ages of 25-40.  25 is still too old to be fixated on a teenager of any gender, but 40 is SUPER creepy.  But Freeform shows can be edgy at times– ‘The Fosters’ created controversy by airing a kiss between two male characters that were (supposed to be) roughly 13-14 years old and has also featured a trans male character who was part of a love triangle with a cis female and her cis boyfriend.  But, not to make light of tragedy, but isn’t the whole Catholic priest/schoolboy thing a bit played out?

Moving on, the next casting call is for a character who, in the comics, is named Detective Brigid O’Reilly.

Bailey Callahan-Recurring Female (30-37) – A self-possessed woman in her 3os, Detective Bailey Callahan comes off as cold or unfriendly upon first impression. Her New York sensibilities have hardened her from being too friendly or open, setting her apart from her Louisiana counter parts. Accustomed to working in a man’s world, Callahan isn’t looking to be “one of the guys.” She isn’t going to let a room full of men dictate how often she changes the color of her fingernails (almost daily). She won’t meet expectations of women cops as ball busting bitches. The rest of the station need to find their way to her impression of the world, not the other way around. Callahan believes in justice and doesn’t think that anyone should be above it, including other cops. Especially other cops…RECURRING

In the comics, Detective O’Reilly persistently dogged Cloak & Dagger, who were viewed as dangerous vigilantes and spent most of her time determined to capture them and bring them to justice.  Eventually, she realized that they were nonlethal and only targeted dangerous criminals, and became an ally.  However, she later underwent a super powered transformation herself.

Turns out the police force Det. O’Reilly was part of, was full of corrupt cops.  When she attempted to bring them down, high ranking officer Roger Falcone gassed O’Reilly and her fellow honest officers.  With her dying breath, she swore vengeance.  Cloak & Dagger attempted to save her but appeared to fail.  O’Reilly was resurrected as the green-skinned Mayhem, whose pores constantly released paralyzing/hypnotic gas.  She also grew razor sharp claws, which could be used as weapons on their own or to expedite the effects of her toxic fumes.  With these new powers, she sought revenge against the crooked cops that had killed her, including Falcone.

Obviously, we don’t know if the TV version will go down that route or if they will keep O’Reilly as an ordinary police ally for Cloak & Dagger.

Comic fans (including myself) are really curious as to how Freeform’s ‘Cloak & Dagger’ TV series will turn out.  The network is mainly known for sitcoms and YA-skewing dramas.  But the Disney-owned network has been creeping closer to The CW territory.  They already have ‘Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments’, based on the best-selling YA angels vs. demons book series.  And this fall, ‘Cloak & Dagger’ will be debuting along with another Marvel series ‘The New Warriors’ as well as a dramatic show called ‘Siren’ about killer mermaids (that’s a new one).  Keep in mind, Freeform used to be called ABC Family, which explains the majority of their existing programming, but now that it’s called Freeform, it appears to be broadening its horizons.

‘Cloak & Dagger’ will debut sometime in 2018.  The first season will consist of ten episodes and it is reported that Freeform has already okay’d a second.  Joe Pekaski (‘Daredevil’, ‘Heroes’) serves as the showrunner.  The pilot will be directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood.  Aubrey Joseph and Olivia Holt  star as Cloak/Tyrone Johnson and Dagger/Tandy Bowen, respectively.  The series also stars Andrea Roth, Gloria Reuben, Miles Mussenden, Carl Lundstedt, James Saito, J.D. Evermore and Noëlle Renée Bercy.

How does this series sound so far?  Do you think Freeform will do justice to these comic book characters?

Source: The Hashtag Show