Published by Graphix
Published on 5 October 2021
Genres: Science Fiction, United States, Young Adult
Source: my home library
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The wildly popular, bestselling sci-fi series by Katherine Applegate and Michael Grant returns in a new full-color graphic novel series, adapted by Chris Grine.
Rachel is still reeling from the news that Earth is secretly under attack by parasitic aliens, the Yeerks. Now she and her friends are the planet's only defense -- five kids who, purely by chance, stumbled onto a downed spacecraft and were given the power to morph into any animals they touch.
The team’s best lead is their assistant principal, Mr. Chapman, who is the human host to a high-ranking Yeerk official. It’s not much, but Rachel’s always been a daredevil, and she volunteers to infiltrate Chapman’s home.
Rachel is tough. She’s fearless. But what she finds inside may be more than even she can handle.
I could pretty much sum this review up in two words: READ NOW.
Also, apart from my general yelling about how incredible this adaptation is, I really can’t offer anything more than what I already did in my review for Book #1, The Invasion.
Because this adaptation really was perfect.
The use of onomatopoeia was particularly skilful. I’m not a huge comic reader, but I definitely heard everything in my head as intended.
The adaptation was again almost word-for-word – and I can tell without checking, because I’ve read the source material that many times – however there were small elements introduced here and there that added to the comedy, especially for Marco, who is still in a pretty bad place right now with the whole ‘My dad only has me, I can’t die fighting an alien invasion’. I found it particularly clever that the guy who harasses Rachel in the street is the same guy who shot at her when she was an eagle. It was a nice touch and I really liked it.
One of the things that really stood out for me this time was the body horror. Grine is getting better at drawing mid-morph, and although the Animorphs always described it as kind of gross in the course material, it hits differently in narrative verses in your face pictures of birds with teeth and onomatopoeia of CRACK CRACK CRACK as bones break and change direction. It’s more confronting.
I don’t really like the way Grine draws faces. All of the Animorphs have the same basic face shape. Rachel is supposed to be supermodel beautiful. I guess higher cheekbones, blue eyes, a pert nose instead of a bulbous one and a more feminine jaw were all too much to ask for.
Also I just need to add that Alloran, Visser Three’s host Andalite body, is totally buff. Andalites are supposed to be delicate prey animals, more deer than horse – although in the source material we do meet an Andalite who is more like a Clydesdale. I like Alloran/Visser Three’s representation though, because:
- It makes Visser Three more imposing and thus scarier as a villain.
- The Andalites, though a peaceful, artistic species, do have quite a strong military wing.
- Although every military Andalite is morph-capable, it is usually reserved for spies and certainly not battle – there is more honour in facing an opponent with your own tail blade than in another body. It’s the Animorphs who utilise the morphing for battle.
- Alloran was already a battle-hardened older warrior by the time he was enslaved. Ax, by comparison, is literally a child.
Overall I think this adaptation absolutely rocked and it’s made me even more excited to read Tobias’ book.