There’s nothing quite as special as the bond between a teenage girl and her…shadow? Writer Joe Henderson and artist Lee Garbett deliver another cleverly creative usage of shadow play in Shadecraft #2. The first book introduced us to Zadie Chu, a high schooler we meet a year after a tragic accident leaves her brother Ricky comatose. We also learned kissing your friends can be awkward, shadows are trying to kill Zadie, and her brother Ricky has become a shadow himself. Shadecraft #2 presents readers with a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it origin as to how Ricky became a shadow, but offers up some new dilemmas like Ricky somehow becoming attached to Zadie as her shadow.
The second issue of Shadecraft keeps the hype and momentum of the first one going. Issue #2 is a lot of fun to read and continues to build upon the mystery as to why the terrifying shadows keep coming after Zadie Chu. But also it’s good because of the character development that Zadie’s brother Ricky adds to the story.
For starters, Ricky has to walk in the shadow of his sister for once instead of the other way around. Second, imagine if you got a chance to spend time with a loved one you thought was in a coma or deceased? It gives readers a chance to see how Zadie and Ricky used to interact, and how life has changed for both of them since Ricky’s been in a coma. It’s a great issue that touches on grief, the shoe on the other foot, sibling rivalry, and living in the moment.
As a whole the comic is great. The dialogue is concise, funny, and focused. The panel counts are arranged in terrific sequence and allowed plenty of room for captions and word bubbles that didn’t disturb the art. This is a story that knows where it’s headed and I’m here for the long haul.
Whether Zadie is falling out of bed, talking to Ricky, or running from killer shadows, artist Lee Garbett does an excellent job of making each panel sequence make sense. Characters like Zadie and Ricky are fleshed out well so far and supporting characters like Zadie’s classmates are easy to distinguish between. Aside from that, Garbett allows enough time for a good amount of pacing from one page to the next and keeps your undivided attention the entire time. Colorist Antonio Fabela adds a nice blend of subtle but bright color choices that contrast perfectly with the characters and the shadow monsters that appear in the book.
Shadecraft #2 is worth being added to your comic list. At times the story gets emotional, but also humorous but is always entertaining. Shadecraft is shaping up to be one of my favorites of the year.
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