Bloodshot: Reborn #14
Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Mico Suayan
Publisher: Valiant Entertainment
Release Date: June 29th, 2016
Bloodshot: Reborn #14 begins a new story arc coming out of the smash hit Analog Man story by Jeff Lemire, and Bloodshot Island delivers. At the end of Analog Man we seen Bloodshot waking up from a sleep chamber where he finds himself on a mysterious island with other people (and a dog) similar to him that are seemingly part of Project Rising Spirit. Bloodshot Island gives us a deeper idea of what might be going on as readers were sort of left on an anti-climactic note when we all discovered that Analog Man was a dream/fabricated existence, however it is worth noting that with Bloodshot: Reborn #14 the readers will be happy to see the return of the ongoing series’ 2015/2016 Ray Garrison.
We follow Ray who discovers that he is trapped on an enclosed island where he meets a dog with a similar red circle marking & red eyes, as well as a man with red eyes, pale skin and an afro. The similarities are uncanny for Ray Garrison so much so that all of this is breaking his mind a little, especially after he woke up realizing that Analog Man was not real and his emotions were being toyed with. Soon they are all running to a secret bunker to escape an “Angel”‘s bombings that are happening all around the island. When they reach the secret bunker Ray discovers that there are a few more bloodshot’s of Rising Spirit from different eras which has Ray trying to figure out how everything and everyone fits together in a timeline, discovering that these other people have been stuck on this island for many years already. Not long after they are discovered and massacred by the “Angel” which we discover is Deathmate! Ray and the other people try to escape but they are all being savagely murdered by this ultra powerful being that tracks them down and either blasts them with lasers or rips them apart limb from limb. Deathmate picks Ray up and Ray seems to notice that Deathmate’s features are familiar to him as if he knows Deathmate somehow. Deathmate also makes a curious comment that Ray is a new addition to the island. The story then peels back even further and tells us that this may all be some test or experiment by an even higher power in control of both Deathmate and the Bloodshot doppelgangers.
This might not be the greatest jumping on point for new readers however it has solid Bloodshot action and adventure that you can expect from any good Bloodshot book. For the 90s Valiant fans the return of Deathmate is a very interesting villain to bring back, and this issue seems to suggest that Deathmate has a vastly deeper background & origin in this book and it will be exciting to see how Project Rising Spirit ties all of these threads together. I love what they are doing with this story and Jeff Lemire writes Bloodshot perfectly creating a visceral mystery story that readers new and old can get into. Mico Suayan has done great work with Valiant and his work on this issue is stellar as he provides high quality art & colours making every page exciting to look at. I for one will continue reading as I’d love to see where this book goes. Read more Valiant!
~ T.J Head