July 23rd, 2009


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Discussion (91)¬

  1. Kevinbunny says:

    Hm. And here I was just thinking that Shadowchild also wasn’t too good with mornings…

  2. ayline says:

    What does Shadowchild mean by “WAS your friend”? And is this a what demons look like when they grow up?

  3. jassius says:

    “WAS” I your friend!?

    Talks quite like something died in “it”.

    *spine chill*

  4. Otookee says:

    I notice that Shadowchild’s way of speaking is much more formal and “grown up” – as are its body proportions. Seems to me Shadow is no longer a child…

  5. Venhax says:

    Oh no!

    Well, I guess Shadow couldn’t stay a child forever. :(

  6. Jennifer says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who prickled a bit at the word “was” in there….


  7. Sil says:

    Aw. Answer carefully, Digger… But really, I think that um…. Shadow is wondering where he/she/it stands now, with Digger. After all, not knowing where it came from, and only following around Digger, then suddenly growing up it probably doesn’t understand things.

    Digger will probably have to think on that, but I can’t imagine that she would have let it tag along for so long if she didn’t care about it. She’s a nice person. Errr, wombat.

  8. CE Murphy says:

    AWWWW POOR SHADOW *sniffle*

  9. Roose Hurro says:

    A very important question, I would say. Needs an honest answer, which I’m sure Digger will give…

  10. diTaykan says:

    “No. You ARE my friend.”

  11. Ketira says:

    diTaykan – I hope that Digger does respond that way. My first reaction: Whoa –what a question!

  12. Azzandra says:

    Aww, there’s just something heartbreaking about this scene. *sniff*

  13. DCL says:

    Wow, just wow, an amazing question that you can just hear with such sorrow.

  14. RafWTomtohh says:

    I’unno, but it seems t’me like the shadows in that last panel are… leaking a bit. Toward Digger.

    Uh oh?

  15. Joel says:

    Uh oh…past-tense…

  16. Elizabeth says:

    I was thinking that perhaps Shadowchild thinks it has done something too unforgivable to still be Digger’s friend. After all, it does seem to have eaten something that talked.

  17. LunarMusic says:

    I can’t quite put my finger on who/what Shadow sounds like now. I almost want to say that her new, more formal way of speaking sounds a bit like Murai. Maybe it’s just the “a little bit unsure, and a little overly formal” tone.

  18. Sarah says:

    Poor Shadowchild :-(

    I’m using Digger for a lesson plan I have to make for library school. The next few episodes should be verrrry interesting for that.

  19. Oh dear. Please don’t drop this one, Digger. I think Shadowchild is feeling pretty fragile.

  20. Barry says:

    I have been, and always shall be, your friend.

  21. vvicked says:

    Aww… Shadowteen is suffering from adolescence! <:(

  22. Kelci says:

    That “was” doesn’t bode well :( Poor SC. I hope Digger can answer this to his satisfaction.

  23. fatuncle says:

    Uh … “was”?

    Has ShadowChild consumed SGV? Rather than merely defeating it? And if one demon eats another, does it become an amalgamation of the two?

  24. Wayne says:

    What struck me was the imperative tone: “Come outside”, “Tell me”. Shadowchild never spoke this way before. It was always asking questions and talking about what it was doing and what it had done. It *never* told Digger (or anyone else) what to do.

    Admittedly, these two statements aren’t particularly problematic, but neither are they phrased with any of the usual polite social deference (such as “please” or “would you” or “i would like”) that I would have expected from Shadowchild. As I said, they are imperative.

    I agree with diTaykan. Digger *is* it’s friend!

  25. Kelly says:

    I agree with the “heart breaking” – so tender, so sad. ;_; Shadowchild is my favorite character, my heart goes out to him/her/it.

  26. Amanda says:

    @Barry — The right answer that just *adds* to a sniffly morning.

  27. Dan says:

    Sigh. I have to wait until Tuesday for the answer? :-( Poor shadow…

  28. Mani says:

    Wayne hit what I was going to say: This is the first time we’re seeing Shadowchild take initiative on anything over anyone; even something as simple as “come outside” immediately feels different.

    There’s some good character-building, yes. Kudos Ursula.

  29. Tindi says:

    Once again, I feel for Digger. Too early for this… :P

  30. TekServer says:

    All very good points.

    I STILL don’t believe there was any consuming, and won’t believe it until the comic proves me wrong …

    It is possible, though, that Shadowteen ;) THINKS that it killed SGV (and is mistaken, of course), and is actually feeling a lot of guilt because of that …

    Or in Ed’s words: “Is was bad fight. All hurt.”


  31. pelican says:

    Seconding Mani … excellent character-building! And, yes, Shadowchild is different now … I don’t think he/she/it has absorbed any of SGV’s personality or evil, but some knowledge? Intelligence? Or perhaps, when Shadowchild made the decision to fight, it gained access to a new aspect of his/her/its awareness and it now can see more of the big picture? Anyway … great, great story arc in the last several pages!

  32. bluehydrangea says:

    Oh, this is heartbreaking.

    There seems (maybe) to be some sort of parallel between the turmoil Shadowchild is experiencing right now and the story of Ed–kill something to protect a loved one, then deal with the overwhelming, unavoidable guilt…Interesting theme, Ursula!

  33. Marie says:

    My stomach hit the floor with that “was…”

    @Wayne – dead on. The change in tone is obvious–and ominous–from the first panel.

    @Barry – exactly my thought.

  34. Kef says:

    I can’t remember, did Shadowchild ever call Digger by her name before?
    If not, that seems almost as foretelling as the ‘was’ in the statement.

  35. bluehydrangea says:

    I noticed that, too–I can’t remember SC ever calling Digger by name, either.

  36. poppiesnroses says:

    I can’t help but notice how simply Digger is drawn in the last panel, while SC is detailed and very distinct. Not just the tone of the dialogue but also the style of art itself is influencing the way we see Digger and SC’s relationship. Before, SC was drawn quite simply, and now it’s reversed. Also the fact that SC is now much taller than Digger.. the dynamics of their relationship have changed dramatically, and they need to find a new equilibrium.

    Good job, Ursula!

  37. motub says:

    Oh, no.

    What I read from this (my impression from the comic itself, and not having read any of the posts) is that ST (gotta go with the ShadowTeen, until we find something better, given what seems to have happened) 1) did indeed ingest part or all of SGV; 2) has changed in a very substantive way due to said ingestion (geez, ST is quite big now, which is surprising enough without what it actually says); and 3) said ingestion itself was much more far-reaching in effect than a ‘normal’ shadow-eating session.

    I think…. the entity we called Shadowchild is no more, as a result of ingesting some portion of, or possibly all of, the entity formerly known as Sweetgrass-voice, and that the being that Digger is now talking to is a merged entity that remembers having once been Shadowchild, at least.

    After all, there’s not too many ways you can take “Was I your friend?” other than that the “I” that was your friend (in the past, i.e., before you went to sleep 6 hours ago) no longer exists (i.e., is dead).

    Of course, this could also mean that SGV swallowed SC whole, and is running a whole new bag of tricks.

    Oh, no. And what does that mean for the whole deicide plan? If Shadowchild still exists, and is now “intermingled” in some way with Sweetgrass-voice (whether because SC ate part of SGV, or because SGV ate SC is irrelevant), won’t killing He-is (and thereby killing SGV) kill SC as well?

    Which could be the whole point, if SGV is dominant in the merged entity, or even if he is just trying to play Digger by making her [i]think[/i] that he’s some kind of merged entity of which SC is a part (but if course if that was the game plan, SGV could have just eaten everybody already. So clearly SC is still somehow present, as some kind of restraining force).

    Oh, no….

    …. by the love of all that is good, Digger, please answer “Yes.” It is true, after all, even if you didn’t realize it at the time….

  38. Tim Tylor says:

    Poor kid. Shadowlescence is a rough time…

  39. Andrew says:

    Aw, that’s one dejected looking shadow… But I have some thoughts that don’t seem to be addressed in other comments. In the last panel of the previous page, and the last panel of this page, it looks as though SC’s arms are crossed: body language with a slightly ominous tone… But maybe it’s just fidgeting with insecurity. Still, it looked like SC had been staring at her / them all night, maybe protectively, but maybe kinda creepy in a way. And why tell Digger to come outside? Why not just ask the question? Maybe to avoid waking the others, or for privacy… But “Let’s take this outside” could be interpreted as slightly threatening. And then there’s the “was” … So maybe I’m reading too much into the little details (I hope), but I sense more than just sadness, regret, uncertainty — it seems to be tinged with a hint of anger, or at least tension. My guess is that SGV told some manipulative lies about Digger to turn SC against her. But SC clearly gave her the benefit of the doubt. Can’t wait to see how she responds…

    Anyway, there’s a real mastery to inspiring such rampant speculation, page after page. Ursula, your storytelling skills are as excellent as your visual artistry, and it’s all woven together beautifully.

  40. Amethyst42 says:

    Don’t go Shadowchild! We need you to eat the soul of the god!

  41. Werrf says:

    I’m thinking that what we’re seeing now is a hatched or metamorphosed demon – the Shadowchild form was only a hint of its potential. After growing up, it’s now looking back at its ‘childhood’ with the benefit of increased wisdom, and doubting itself – as everyone does when they look at their childhood.

  42. Laurel says:

    “Was” is a key word here, but I think it could be as simple as this: Shadowchild saw immediate and deadly danger to Digger and for the love of it’s friend, did the only thing it had time and knowledge to do – it committed the reprehensible (from what it had be taught) act of eating something that could talk. What Shadowchild wants now is reassurance from Digger that this Evil thing that it committed was truly worth the cost. Was Digger truly it’s friend or did Shadowchild do this unforgivable “sin” for naught. “Please tell me, Digger, did I become evil and deserving of death in my own right for the just cause of true friendship?”… Please say, “Yes!”, Digger and save Shadowchild’s “soul”… I do love this tale, Ursula! Thank you!!!

  43. TekServer says:

    Shadowlescence … :D

    Damn, Tim, give a poor soul a warning before dropping a bomb like that. I’m going to be smelling the coffee that just went through my nose for the rest of the day … ;)

    @motub: I’m still not willing to concede that SC – er, ST now, – ate any part of SGV. But you do bring up a REALLY interesting notion – the idea of a merged ST/SGV entity, and the tragedy down the road that would result from that. Can you imagine the impact on Digger if she was forced to sacrifice ST in order to end the threat from He-Is/SGV?

    @Andrew: I picture ST’s gesture as “hands clasped in front”, kind of a nervous/wistful gesture that has been a common SC pose in the past. Just my humble opinion, but I don’t see any anger there. I think it would be out of character, regardless of the nature of the SC to ST change. Just my two pennies, though … ;)

    (@everyone else: some really inciteful observations out there; too many to respond to individually. I’m enjoying sharing this experience with you all!)


  44. Fenomena says:

    @motub: I like your theory because it explains why Sweetgrassvoice didn’t show more finesse when it aparently tried to talk Shadowchild into eating the others. Maybe SGV just needed to provoke Shadowchild as an act of self defense.

    Which is confusing, but we are talking demons here. And Ursula.

  45. Gramina says:

    Oh, poor Shadow — !!! Looks so *sad.*

    Something has changed profoundly; I think Shadow has access to entirely new depths and layers of knowledge, and maybe is *whole* in a way it hasn’t been up to now… but “whole” — while important — can hurt a *lot.*

    I don’t read any presence of SGV here; whatever happened in that fight, I believe that Shadow is still Shadow, maybe more so than before but not less. But if it knows, now, who and what it is, and where it came from — that’s a huge load of information and of *grief* to pick up all at once. And it may be that while Shadowchild could explore and interact with the world as basically a peer, Shadow can’t. And not being able to be a peer does place certain limits on friendship, though not necessarily on care.

    *Rueful* I want to pray for fictional characters; this is a hard time.

  46. Chip Uni says:

    Spectacular character change, Ursula.

    If Shadowteen weren’t, well, a shadow, I would hug him tightly!

  47. motub says:

    Well, if nothing else, it certainly makes it explicitly and deeply understandable why parents aren’t precisely “happy” when their kids start to grow up, and why in many ways, no matter how old you get, your parents always seem to see you as a child….

    … I don’t know about the rest of you, but I sure “get” that now…. if this is “just” Shadow, “just” growing up, it’s kind of a shock, and a bit of a bitter pill. If I could, I might well be willing to “turn back time” and “bring back” the “old” Shadowchild who charmed us so.

    But of course, I can’t…. and everyone can’t always manage to swallow “bitter pills”, y’know?

  48. Gramina says:

    Interesting note: Shadow may be feeling conflicted in all sorts of ways, but back here (https://diggercomic.com/?p=291) at least, Digger was specific that it’s ok to kill in self-defense or in defense of others.

    Shadow is such a *hero* — and I suspect it’s not so rare as one would wish that heros end up grieving.

  49. Werrf says:

    Sweetgrass Voice was right – answers don’t come free in this world. They come with a cost in pain and uncertainty.

  50. alondro says:

    My answer: Well yeah, you were my friend. But now that you’re a giant monstrosity, I hate you and you suck!

    *has his shadow eaten* Ack… ok, clearly that’s the wrong answer. X_x