Prepare to take notes for this spiraling, non-linear narrative that snakes along through the lives of various characters like a rapper named W-2, a screenwriter named Sonia, and an astronaut getting closer to Earth — Los Angeles in particular. Kot’s story requires a few reads to tie together the various narratives that converge like strands twisting into each other.
Issue 1 felt a bit easier (but not by much) to step into, whereas issue 2 works a bit easier if you read each aspect of storytelling in a linear fashion at first before re-reading it. A plot connected to the Astronaut’s return converges on W-2 and Sonia in a way that works like a fever dream may be the best way of describing the story at this point.
W-2 and Sonia both came close to being attacked, killed, or both at the end of the first issue. However, the second issue doesn’t ride the wave of that climax to intensify the pace. Instead, it takes on a mind bending narrative that introduces another character reminiscent of Philip K. Dick’s A Scanner Darkly. Unfortunately, the character has no name at this point in the reading.
Going back, Kot’s first release Wild Children made a lot of sense despite using a similar structure in narrative because it was self-contained. Change, limited to four issues, doesn’t have that sort of accessibility at the moment. Frankly, it’s a chore describing the story because so many pieces have yet to be revealed.
The best recommendation that can be made for this title is to simply take a leap of faith if you like Wild Children and evaluate the series as a whole when it finishes. Usually, writing reviews is a straight-forward process, but not in the case of Ales Kot. If anything, it’s as challenging as his stories.
Morgan Jeske and the coloring/lettering folk in the name of Sloane Leong and Ed Brisson work a mighty magic on each visual element of the story, whether it be interesting art that fits the strangeness of the narrative or the way the colors and letters come together to thread the story elements.
On the artistic merits alone, Change is worth picking up simply for the interesting eye candy and sequential storytelling within it. Each character has a vibe that Jeske captures while Leong puts some interesting color theory to use.
Ultimately, I think Ales Kot offers something for more than the mentally tough; he offers a story requiring patience too. At the end of the day, I’d spend another six bucks to see what he can do with Change and its head trip of a story.