Magicians, whether street level or Vegas highlight, always come off as flashy, entertaining but swarmy and cowardly. With the exception of David Tennant as Peter Vincent in Fright Night. Tennant can play any swarmy role into an endearing, sexy character.
Cloaks brings you Adam D’Aquino, a teenage magician who goes on social media as the NYkid to perform magic tricks.’He even takes the money to the orphanage for the children.On the side, he takes in jobs to rob from really shady Wall street people.No, wait. I call bullsh*t. He’s pawning off items that he stole from the crowd during his magic show in front of Wallstreet. That crowd was innocent. The “Robin Hood” angle falls away. While he’s doing that, some mysterious voice is giving him Wall Street targets to rob.
Who was that voice? No idea, since the second issue of Cloaks begins after he was caught by a massive police force. They’re not police though, it’s a secret operative group known as the Cloaks (why are they named Cloaks? Is it because they cover up everything?). They recruit Adam and through five days they train (or test) him in martial arts, reading people,using weapons, and all other manner of stuff you see in spy montage sequences. Turns out that four previous Cloaks agent went rogue. Guess who they want going after them?
This is all reading like a sitcom. Everything is rushed (most likely because it’s just four issues) but the biggest pain is believing that this massive powerful force that was able to initially apprehend Adam needs this teenager to take down four experienced and most likely dangerous figures. Does he special powers? Is he a genius? No. He’s picked because his magician abilities are a 94% (not 100%) match for one of the rogue agents. Adam appears to be a very talented and egotistical magician but HE’S JUST A TEENAGER.
One of the lines that really got me was that Adam was better than the rogue agent he was matched up of one difference. The rogue agent is “liar” and Adam is a “natural showman”.
Insert all the eye roll gifs you can in this space. Ahem: they are BOTH liars.
Both issues are showy and lack in substance, just like a magician. The story is written by Caleb Monroe but the idea spawned by David Henrie (How I Met Your Mother). The series might be better received by a younger audience so they can relate to Adam. I just don’t trust a teenage street magician with stopping four rogue agents who are set out to unleash psychopaths into the world. Some sub-plots were teased but I am too annoyed by the main premise. If your main hero is the only person who can stop whatever evil force there is, then he better have super powers. Or be so damn good that he wasn’t caught by your massive police force that is apparently useless.
The stunning cover art by W.Scott Forbes is a definite trap. It’s so beautiful and teases you with expectations that were never meant. Credit goes to Cloaks for introducing me to such a talented artist.
The tagline was a magician who is like Robin Hood scheming against Wall Street. Initial impressions from the covers and synopsis leads to believe that this is a social commentary type of comic. Instead it’s a spy versus spy plot.
Adam has not stolen anything from Wall Street, just innocent bystanders. It’s sweet he gives his money to the orphanage. Is he living on his own? How can he afford to live? Why bring so much attention to himself…no I can answer that he’s a teenager and a magician so double the ego. The next two issues are going to have to deliver some dollop of a story.
Was I just duped by a magician?
Cloaks #2 is out from Boom! studios from your local comic book retailer.