Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Shade the Changing Girl #5 Review and **SPOILERS**

Shade the Changing Girl #5
"girl Furious"
Written By: Cecil Castellucci
Illustrated by: Marley Zarcone
Inks By: Ryan Kelly
Colors By: Kelly Fitzpatrick
Letters By: Saida Temofonte
Cover By: Becky Cloonan
Variant Cover By: Jenny Frisson
Cover Price: $3.99
On Sale Date: February 1, 2017

You ever try and attribute human qualities to things that shouldn't have any?  Over the past couple of months I've really enjoyed Shade the Changing Girl... and kind of saw it as trying to actively "be better" in light of Doom Patrol's apparent disinterest in actually hitting store shelves.  Like as though the book itself was taking advantage of the line's star book being behind schedule.  Silly?  Perhaps... Ridiculous?  Maybe... but then again, these are the Young Animal books we're talking about... anything's possible here!

After the set-up last issue, I was really expecting some big time bombshells to drop here.  It appeared as though Shade/Loma had remembered everything, and it would all be addressed during this chapter.  That's not what we got.  However, what we did get may just be a bit better.

We follow Shade and her "friends" River and Teacup during a class trip to the zoo.  Last issue was a bit light on the psychedelic imagery, which is something this one seems to be making up for.  Shade views her classmates as... well, Young Animals (whooooa)... one might have a warthog head, another the head of a rat.  It's neat imagery, especially as they are not depicted as being threatening.  This is just how Shade is seeing things at the moment, and it changes from panel to panel, perhaps an indication that the madness is fleeting, or just that it's not always there.

Shade is also getting to check out some Earthen fauna... one of which was of particular interest... a Panda.  This provides a neat segue into a scene featuring her Panda-esque Metan ex-boyfriend LePuck as he is interrogated by someone who I assumed was Rac Shade's boyfriend.  Here, that person is referred to as a "she"... and She is still really stuck on retrieving the M-Vest.  Speaking of the vest, we actually learn why "the Madness" is so important to Meta.

Much of the time spent at the zoo is Shade acting like Shade, while River tries to convince Teacup that she (Shade) really is a an alien.  These bits are great, as Teacup is (rightfully) skeptical.  She knows Shade/Megan to be one of the worst people ever, and it certainly wouldn't be past her to try and screw with her new neighbor.  River, however, is completely convinced... so convinced, that he's decided to help Shade leave Earth.

Now the big "happening" for this issue is the reappearance of the REAL Megan.  We catch up with her as her essence is floating through space.  It is stopped by an aged astronaut, who she recognizes as her Terran ex-boyfriend Wes.  He tries in vain to inform her that she is deceased, which only emboldens her to head home...

... at the same time as her current body inhabitant is trying to leave home.  We, along with River and Teacup, watch as Loma attempts to leave our Earthen coil.  She is unsuccessful.  It would appear that something is keeping Loma tethered to humanity.  If the final panel is any indication, issue #6 will be a can't miss.

Although I enjoyed this greatly, I will concede that it felt a slight step back from earlier installments.  I definitely appreciate the "day in the life" aspects of this issue, and the heavy focus on Shade rather than the Metans.  I often say that these (assumed) six-issue arcs usually slow down a bit around "part four".  Shade sidestepped that deftly last month with perhaps its strongest showing to date, however, might just be paying for that just a bit here.

Bits and Pieces:

Shade the Changing Girl wraps up with another killer cliffhanger.  Just when we think we're going to get some answers, we get more questions instead.  Thankfully these are questions I want to stick around to see answered!  Another strong offering.



  1. Where is Rac what has happened to him? Is Manhattan responsible for his absence?

    1. With all the talk, I kind of think he is lost in the madness.

  2. I really love this comic. For me personally I liked this issue better than #4. The art is fantastic and absolutely loved almost every panel. If you are not picking up these issues you are missing out!

  3. I love this book, but this issue is the first time where I cannot explain really why I liked it so much. By the end of the issue all I could say was "Oh shit!".

  4. Yeah this book is one of my favorites Young Animal has been fantastic