Rac Shade is a lovelorn poet sent to Earth to stop a growing tide of madness from consuming the planet, while his M-Vest was now a Madness-Vest that he could use to warp reality.

Version One

The Shade that Kathy originally met was a young, romantic poet ill-suited to the task of saving Earth from the American Scream. He fell in love with Kathy and she with him, although he often felt inadequate about himself and his ability to please her sexually and emotionally. Eventually, he plunged into his own psyche and dredged up his repressed passions and desires, forming an alter-ego: Hades. Hades wasn't quite an evil twin, merely prone to giving in to his own desires. Hades generally spent most of his time lodged at the back of Shade's mind, although he was given the use of their body when the time arose, and briefly had a madness-constructed one of his own.

Version Two

Shade was eventually killed, but his spirit wasn't able to pass on and he ended up inhabiting the body of a recently murdered red-headed woman. Shade attempted to force his old, male form on her body but what remained of the woman's personality resisted because her murder had gone unsolved. Shade, Kathy and Lenny investigated and found out the horrific circumstances of the woman's death, but not before Shade experienced sex as a female and endured the onset of his first period. Once at peace, the woman was able to pass on and Shade was able to shape the body to resemble his original form.

Version Three

After further strange adventures Shade was killed once again, but this time the angels themselves forced him to return to Earth and do their bidding. They provided him with a human host created for just such an occasion - a twenty something male born with no soul or mind; a mere hollow shell. However, the strain of death and the afterlife had caused Shade's mind to become both unhinged and combined with that of Hades. This new Shade had no permanent hold on sanity and would bounce from impulsive mania to thoughtful collection within the blink of an eye. He met up with Lenny and Kathy again and they opened the Hotel Shade, where they met John Constantine and Peter Milligan himself.

Version Four

After the death of someone close to him, Shade underwent another change, returning to his red-headed form, but with a short mod cut rather than flowing locks. Lost in mourning, he cut himself off from his old life and moved to the big city, where he found new and unusual friends including a deaf dancer and the reincarnation of Nikola Tesla. He also met his young son and attempted to bond with him only to find that the kid was suffering from an unusually fast aging disease and doomed to die soon. Eventually, the sadness got too much for Shade and he removed his heart and locked it in a metal box where it could no longer hurt him. But just because his heart was removed doesn't mean that made him apathetic. He only felt this way because he wanted to. That explained why he was still alive after he removed his heart. The Madness keeps him alive, not his organs, they're just a filled-in space.

Version Five

Shade eventually lost control of the Madness, which began feeding on his subconscious and started to maim and kill innocents. Desperate to put things right, he gathered up his remaining colleagues and developed a time machine. They rocketed off into the past to correct all of the things that had gone wrong, with limited success. By the end of the series, this Shade was accepted once more into the arms of love while his son found himself trapped in a girl's body.


Shade, restored to his male form, eventually returned to Meta but was recalled to Earth by John Constantine in order to assist him. This, Shade did, despite being jealous of Constantine's flirtation with Kathy George years before. He eventually returned to his home world, taking Constantine's girlfriend Epiphany with him (he eventually gets fed up with her and sends her back to Earth to the year 1979).[1]




DC Rebirth Logo.png
Vertigo Character
This character exists under the Vertigo Imprint which is intended for Mature Readers.
Vertigo Logo.png
Their continuity takes place within the context of Vertigo titles although they may cross over into regular DC continuity.

This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Vertigo Characters."

Wikipedia This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Rac Shade (Earth-85). The list of authors can be seen in the page history. The text of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Perry White 0008.jpg
DC Rebirth Logo.png

Copy Edit Needed
This article suffers from a lack of quality writing. You can help the DC Database by improving this article's grammar and sentence structure to bring it up to a higher standard of quality. Poor Perry's gonna have a heart attack if you don't!

Ambush Bug 07.jpg
DC Rebirth Logo.png

This is an in-universe article with out-of-universe material.
This article covers information about something that exists within the DC Universe, and should not contain out-of-universe material. Please remove all out-of-universe material, or include it in a separate section at the bottom of the article. And take off that silly costume.

DC Rebirth Logo.png

Replace Image

This article is using a sub-standard image. The image is too small, of poor quality, bears a watermark or violates copyright law. You can help the DC Database Project by replacing the offending image with a higher quality scan.
This template will categorize articles that include it into Category:Image Replacement Needed.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.