Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artists: Lewis LaRosa & Mico Suayan
Colors: Brian Reber
After the fall of Project Rising Spirit, the killing machine Bloodshot is able to settle down and have a new start with his family as Ray Garrison. But forces are conspiring against him and his family that will cause him to take up the mantle of Blooshoot again.
I think my biggest problem with Valiant comics in general has to do with the set-up. It seems every new comic spins out of another, which in turn is part of a long and convoluted history that makes it hard for outsiders to be drawn in. That’s always going to be a problem with the overarching story and continuity, but there’s better ways to deal with that than starting each comic with a brief “previously on” style summary and give the reader nothing else to ease into the story. All of these comics, while maybe not outright hostile to new readers, certainly aren’t welcoming. However, if I might given Bloodshot Salvation a bit of a backhanded compliment, it’s actually easy to get into given how closely the story adheres to cliche.
A former hero trying to settle down, but he can’t because of forces conspiring against him but also it’s in his nature and he just can’t let things go. That’s the cliche at the heart of this all, but, to give credit to Jeff Lemire, it’s presented in a fairly compelling way. The dialogue and physical interactions between Ray and his wife Magic make it easy to get somewhat invested in this family.
Cliche number two is that the villains plan to use fear to get the government to hand control over to them. At times it seems the comic is reaching for something of a political point, but never really goes for it. So lacking that, this pretty much is just the same plan you’ve seen in any number of other superhero comics or spy movies or whatever else.
Then there’s the promise of cliche number three, an evil cult. This is hinted at, but given so little time that perhaps in future Lemire will do something interesting with it. My guess is that, like the rest of the comic, it will adhere strictly to the cliches, but still be well executed.
And that’s the main takeaway from Bloodshot Salvation #1 really, cliche, but well executed. The dialogue is well written, the overall story is paced well, giving time to get invested in the characters while also setting up the villains plans and laying seeds for future plot developments, and it’s a generally enjoyable read. In keeping with this, the artwork by LaRosa and Suayan is good, but doesn’t necessarily have a distinctive style or give a specific look or feeling to the comic. Perhaps this will change in future, but for now, the artwork is good, nothing more nothing less.
If you’re invested in Valiant or Bloodshot as a character, then this will be an enjoyable read. For everyone else, it’d still be enjoyable if you decided to read it, but there’s no real draw if you don’t already have an interest in this world or this character.
Geek-o-Rama received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, comments and opinions are those of the individual reviewer.