Raina's Reviews > Shadoweyes, Volume One

Shadoweyes, Volume One by Sophie  Campbell
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Jun 07, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: dystopia, feminist, gltbq, graphicnovel, high-school, ya, urban, zombies
Read on June 05, 2012

Wow, this is intense.

Cool.

Intense.

You can read the summary for yourself. And honestly, the plot feels a little thin.

But what Campbell's doing here is way too smokin' for that to matter.

First of all, the drawing is super crazed. His figures are slightly heightened realistic with a twinge of manga influence and a generally accessible (extra cute and/or hot) look.
His backdrops are freaking insane. Of course, that's partly a mechanism of the world this is set in - trashfilled, industrialized, with pipes and passages and tubes sticking out of everything so that you can't see the sky. You get the sense that the characters are not walking on the ground but on some kind of only-partially organic superfloor and that both above and below them, other characters are living out other lives. You feel like they're living in a landfill that's pretending to be a city.
But even if you separate out the setting design (which can also be credited to Campbell, btw) from the the illustration of such itself, Campbell pulls none of his punches and forgets no scrap of forgotten fabric in his backgrounds. Everything looks dirty, crowded, and every inch of outside air is filled with... stuff.
I'm torn about whether this would be better in color, which is notable in itself (I almost always crave color in comics). But in panels as crowded as these, I think color would distract and muddle. There is probably a way a skilled colorist could mute the backdrops and make the figures and important elements pop, but it would be a job for a master in imagery this dense. Also, keeping it grayscale has an interesting effect on character skin color...

Which brings me to the fact that I LOVE how diverse the cast is here. All the major characters would be called "Persons of Color" in current amerikan society. And there's sexual diversity too, which I suspect will only become more prominent as the series continues.

So so fun.
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