Tandy Bowen was born in Shaker Heights, Ohio, an affluent suburb of Cleveland. Bowen's mother, Melissa, was a celebrated and self-centered model who had become rich not only from her own career but also from receiving her previous husband's estate. Tandy's father had left for India seeking "spiritual rebirth." Subsequently, Melissa married Phillip Carlisle. Although kind, Tandy was still hurt by her father's leaving and did not accept Phillip. Her mother also neglected her.
Feeling unloved, Tandy turned for affection to an older teenager named Rob Daltry. But when he left for college shortly thereafter, the despondent Tandy left home on a bus for New York City. While there, a man tried to rob her but was stopped by the homeless Tyrone Johnson. She bought him food and the two became friends.
Kidnapping and Experiment
Dr. Simon Marshall and his men rounded up runaways, offering them food and shelter. Naive, Tandy agreed, and Tyrone went with her, suspecting things were not right. There, they were knocked unconscious and injected with a designer drug the Maggia wished to use as a replacement for heroin. Because of latent mutant genetic factors and some magical interference by D'Spayre, Tyrone and Tandy survived while the others died due to the drugs' effects. They escaped, along with another prisoner, the Chinese human-carrier who would become Mister Negative, jumping into the river, and both began manifesting superhuman powers. They discovered Tandy could keep Tyrone in check. Marshall's men attacked, but were consumed by Cloak's hunger then hit with Dagger's light daggers.
Cloak & Dagger
The two became Cloak and Dagger, pledging to protect other young people from the dangers they had encountered. Tandy is fiercely loyal to Cloak. Even when offered to be reunited with her stepfather, she remained with Cloak.
Cloak & Dagger also teamed with Spider-Man and others to halt a murderous supervillain rampage led by superhuman serial killer Carnage; later, Dagger helped rescue the New Warriors from the supremely powerful Sphinx. She accepted an offer of New Warriors membership, though Cloak declined to join. Serving as a Warriors reservist, Dagger also undertook a single mission with the informal Secret Defenders group.
Cloak was manipulated by Nightmare into wanting to consume all lawbreakers. Dagger sought the assistance of Daredevil, Black Widow, Moon Knight, Shang Chi, Doctor Strange, and the Punisher. Eventually, Dagger was forced to use her full power on Cloak, which seemed to transfer his darkness to her, reverting him to normal. Cloak eventually regained his powers from Dagger and the two continued to adventure.
More recently, the secret criminal group known as the Pride tricked Cloak & Dagger into trying to retrieve their superpowered children. An encounter with these young Runaways soon convinced Cloak & Dagger of the Pride's true nature, but before they could act on this knowledge, the villains erased the duo's memories of the Pride. Cloak & Dagger continued to roam the mean streets, bringing the light of hope to the innocent and dark justice to the guilty.
Orderly Reginald Mantz managed to replicate Cloak's powers with Mutant Growth Hormone. He then beat Dagger and left her hospitalized. The Runaways and the New Avengers found evidence of "Cloak" acting this way and confronted the real Cloak and Dagger; however, they eventually discovered the truth. She and Cloak were able to regain their memories of the Runaways.
During the conflict around the Superhuman Registration Act, she joined the Secret Avengers. She and Cloak were captured in a stratagem of Captain America to make S.H.I.E.L.D. trust his circumstantial ally Wilson Fisk. They escaped, were recaptured, and freed for the final battle. As the Negative Zone Portal was closed, Tandy convinced Tyrone to open a portal to Manhattan where the battle continued.
At some point, Cloak and Dagger were active in Colombia, destroying drug plantations. The drug lord hired Iron Patriot via the H.A.M.M.E.R. to take them down. Instead, he recruited them into his own X-Men, and used them against San Francisco rioters and Stephen Lang's Bio-sentinels.
When Emma Frost and Namor eventually revealed their true allegiance, they asked Cloak and Dagger to stay back and, following the traitors to the newly built mutant nation of Utopia, were presented by Cyclops as being part of his plan from the beginning so they would be accepted in the community.
Cloak and Dagger's powers were switched thanks to Mr. Negative during the events of Spider-Island: Cloak now provided the light, while Dagger provided the dark, and had to feed from Cloak's light energy to temporarily satisfy her cravings. It was also foretold that Dagger would be the one to eventually kill Mr. Negative.
Although Martin Li was arrested at some point, Cloak and Dagger had been using Shade patches, which dosed them with a drug that stimulated the effects of Negative's touch, ensuring that their criminal personas would 'remain' loyal to him. Breaking him out of the prison ship where Li was being kept they restored him to Mister Negative to lead an assault on Parker Industries in Japan. Although Peter was able to escape being corrupted by Negative thanks to Negative's prior corruption of Spider-Man, Cloak and Dagger managed to help Negative escape when Peter tracked them to his Hong Kong headquarters by secretly placing a Spider-Tracer on Cloak. Using this tracer, Peter was able to inject Cloak with a cure for Shade that he later used to cure Dagger, apparently restoring their original powers. Although Mister Negative had escaped, Cloak and Dagger decided to remain in Hong Kong to guard it from any future attacks.
Lightforce Generation: As a result of her exposure to experimental drugs, Dagger generates a form of 'living light' which is actually Lightforce. She produces much more than normal humans do, but is usually conservative in the use of her powers. Overuse of her powers could be fatal. Dagger generates and stores this lifeforce energy automatically. If she goes for more than a week or so without using her powers she will become fevered and delirious, and eventually discharge her energy involuntarily. When inverted by Mister Negative, Dagger draws her powers from the Darkforce, but they are otherwise identical, save for her daggers causing additional pain.
- Lightforce Daggers: Tandy can form 6-inch 'light daggers' which she can throw from her fingertips. Her daggers may automatically form under certain conditions, such as another person in danger. The maximum effective range is unknown, but the daggers seem to weaken with further distance. Tandy has a limited ability to control their flight and reinforce them by compelling them to seek targets. They can track a being, but it is most effective when searching for Cloak. Those hit by these knives have their own lifeforce disrupted. Dagger can then drain a portion of their lifeforce; enough to kill if she wishes. Normally she chooses to leave them in a state of shock where they will see a vision of how their life might be different. The experience is powerful enough to make most individuals rethink their choices, although a hardened criminal or evil being is unlikely to change their ways.
- Lightforce Detoxification: Tandy's energy can also 'purge' a person, removing toxins, drugs, and other malignant substances from their system. It also has the capacity to cure certain persons of drug addictions.
- Lightforce Manipulation: Sometimes Tandy can redirect the daggers after they ricochet, other times the daggers are dispersed if they hit a non-living thing. She can project her lifeforce energy in a diffused manner, allowing her to illuminate dark areas as if by natural light. Tandy can also projects her 'light' into Cloak's dimension to feed his 'hunger.' She is unharmed when traveling through his dimension and can pass this protection to others.
Dagger is an experienced dancer. She was also blind for a time, so she knows how to move unhindered without being able to see.
Nonliving objects are unaffected by her daggers.
Teleports herself when needed (Via her partner, Cloak).
- The mutant status of Cloak and Dagger are very controversial, and has moved over the years:
- Cloak and Dagger Vol 3 stated them to be mutants, and was full-titled "The Mutant Misadventures of Cloak and Dagger".
- The Civil War: Battle Damage Report stated that the drug giving them powers in fact triggered latent mutant powers, but that they were science- and magic-based mutates.
- When Norman Osborn came to recruit them for his X-Men, they stated they weren't mutants (to which Osborn replied they may as well be).
- Dagger was 'confirmed' by Doctor Nemesis as NOT being mutant, with no X-Gene and no readings on Cerebro, but also no altered DNA helix or hereditary markers, her powers being solely based on the drug she and Cloak had been injected with.
- Cloak and Dagger were stated to be mutants in Marvel Fact Files #19.
- It was stated by Steve Rogers that it was now confirmed that both of them weren't mutants but altered humans.
- Not a proof for itself, it must be noted that Tandy's father Nathan Tyler (Lord of Light) is himself a mutant.
- The white circle around Dagger's right eye is a manifestation of her abilities. It will spontaneously manifest when she uses her abilities at times, then vanish when she stops. Professor Xavier and Wolfsbane also manifested the circle when they temporarily hosted Dagger's displaced power.
- Dagger's first love, Rob Daltry, is a reference to Roger Daltry of "The Who" fame. There are several "Who" references in their first stories.
- 229 appearance(s) of Tandy Bowen (Earth-616)
- 29 minor appearance(s) of Tandy Bowen (Earth-616)
- 13 mention(s) of Tandy Bowen (Earth-616)
- 189 image(s) of Tandy Bowen (Earth-616)
- 16 quotation(s) by or about Tandy Bowen (Earth-616)