Review: Shade, The Changing Girl #2
School is Hell. School is madness, even for the displaced avian Lomo currently inhabiting Earth girl Megan as she returns to Amelia Bloomer High School, much to the confusion of her fellow students. Insisting on being called shade in her new amalgamation of body and personality. Her peers are obviously wary of her, assuming her strange and oddly calm behavior is a result of her accident and resulting coma as she struggles to make sense of her place in the social strata of the school, her relationships with other students and even lunchtime.
Series writer Cecil Castellucci is crafting a strangely off-kilter look at this world through the eyes of her uniquely alien, avian creation Loma. Far more advanced and intelligent then the primitive world around her she none the less has to work to make sense of her strange new home and the people around her already questioning her act of rebellion in stealing the M-vest. Thrown into school Loma has a lot more interactions this issue as we start to learn more and more about Megan’s life. Faced with the tense and confused reactions of Megan’s former friends, unaware the majority wanted her dead. While initially indifferent to those around Loma is still left with the creeping uneasy sense that she’s logged herself firmly into a human with a very complicated and prickly past than she might have first thought. So far there is no sign of the previous occupant, Megan, beyond her memories but it’s such a tantalizing layer to add to an already out there story, I have a hard time believing that Castellucci won’t bring some of this into the mix during her run.
“I have to study up. Do my homework to really live this life” Shade promises herself setting out her plan for the future as this issue itself does, expanding on the last issue this one treats us to just a little more of Megan’s life, a world that Castellucci makes you eager to explore and learn more about as Loma sets about discovering too. Gorgeous art and sharp writing sets this as a perfect allegory for being an uneasy teen and a story of identity put through a psychedelic, kaleidoscope filter.