Review: Shade the Changing Girl #7

by Matthew Lloyd
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[Editor’s note: This review may contain spoilers.]

Written by: Cecil Castellucci
Illustrated by: Marguerite Sauvage
Choreographed by Head Dancer: Gerard Way

This issue, as it starts the second story arc, heads in a new direction. Instead of pushing forward, we take a step back and learn about Loma’s life in Meta. Surprisingly, she was adopted. Her adoptive parents were humans, not Avians like her. Things didn’t go smoothly. Loma narrates all of this to Teacup and River.  Loma, as an Avian raised by humans, faces particular challenges.  This includes opinions, including those of Lepuck.  She finds solace and identification in the poetry of Rac Shade.

As with the previous issues of this title, the creative team uses the science fiction trappings to tell a story about the human condition.  While it may sound like an old record to some, seeing the life of a teenage girl played out in a different manner doesn’t become tiresome, but rather insightful.  There have been plenty of classic novels that have told a coming of age story or character-centric tale and Shade the Changing Girl is exactly in that tradition.  This issue dives deeper into Loma’s story and gives reasons why she would want to escape Meta and go to the world she’s seen on television as “Life with Honey.”

Sauvage’s art pairs well with series regular Marley Zarcone’s while being stylistically unique to clearly delineate a different aspect of Loma’s life.  This issue’s back up by Castellucci, Dan Parent and Kelly Fitzpatrick is a perfect addendum to the main tale.  Finally, the back up story is more than thematically related and actually expands on the main story.

For those enjoying this book, this issue is a continued step in the right direction. If you haven’t enjoyed Shade, nothing has changed.  It’s insightful, metaphorical and challenging – in a good way.

Ever wondered why Loma wanted to come to Earth?  What drove her to the poetry of Rac Shade?  Then this is the issue for you!  Don’t worry, everything that’s been good about this title is still good.  We know why this book is important even if the rest of the world doesn’t….

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