Marvel Comics 2018
Written by Dennis Hopeless
Illustrated by Francesco Manna
Coloured by Giada Marchisio
Lettered by VC’s Travis Lanham
CLOAK AND DAGGER ARE BACK TOGETHER as a team of super police consultants! However, TANDY and TYRONE are another story, as each find themselves embroiled in new relationships… Will they finally be able to move on or will the tension of watching their ex with someone new be enough to break their newly reformed team apart? PLUS, something strange is occurring in L.A.’s underground reservoir system and when Tandy goes to investigate she finds herself face to face with an old nemesis!
When Cloak & Dagger first appeared I was an instant fan and from Spider-Man through their own series and the shared Strange Tales I formed an unbreakable bond with these two. Their team-up/appearance in the New Mutants and Tandy’s run as a Marvel Knight brought me huge joy, so it’s a shame she isn’t in the current Marvel Knight's book. There’s a reason I bring all this up and that is Dennis manages to incorporate their history into the feeling of this book. It feels familiar and yet is totally brand new and the combination for me showcases why Dennis is a writer whose work I gravitate towards.
This issue makes me feel like I have missed something in their story so far and that is a shame and I hope that while it’s a “digital exclusive” (don’t get me started) people still need to know they are still having new stories done. I love seeing Dennis taking on these characters as I feel that he excels at showcasing “forgotten” heroes. The man can structure a story like no one’s business and the way we see that here is sensational. Right from the opening which is in the middle of a fight it grabs our attention, piques the curiosity and makes the reader want to see more.
So while the pair have been around a while, a fact we tend to forget, seeing them at this stage in their lives has opened up a myriad of new avenues to be taken. Tandy’s boyfriend and their private and professional lives being so intertwined is bloody brilliant in how we see it on the page. Dennis’ characterisation here is phenomenal and it doesn’t matter which character or person we see they all have the same treatment given in fleshing them out so to make them feel complete. I also love how the dialogue we see is used as much for story & plot development as it is in bringing them to life.
Francesco and Giada do some absolutely stunning work on the interiors here. The linework we see here is stellar stuff and how it’s been manipulated through it’s varying weights to bring us these big bold and over the top moments filled with such attention to detail is utterly marvellous. There is a confidence in the work that shines through to a confidence we see in the characters or in things like the motorcycle which is extraordinarily detailed. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels shows a stupendous eye for storytelling. The way that backgrounds are utilised expand the moments and bring us a size and scope to the story. Then there’s the way we see the colours being from Tandy’s light powers or Ty’s darkforce or my personal favourite their old friend and every time they appear sigh.
The story is strong, the introduction of a girlfriend for Tyrone is a double edged-sword for me and I don’t want my feelings about her to be right but we’ll see. I’d like to see him have some true happiness for a while at least. There is nothing about this oversized issue that doesn’t make the reader happy, thrilled, excited and leave you wanting so much more. The writing is bloody brilliant all across the board and the interiors feel inspired I just wish this were a print book.
Marvel needs to learn how to promote books outside the X-Men and the Avengers because this is what a solid series should look like. With the show entering season two this should have advertising everywhere so I guess I’ll do it. This book has a team of creator’s in a league of their own here!