Posts Tagged With: Bloodshot

Thought Balloon/Review: Valiant Entertainment’s 4001 A.D Summer “Event”

4001-ad-summer-event

A few weeks ago saw the conclusion to Valiant Entertainment’s summer event, 4001 A.D.

First off, let me tell you that I loved this story! I enjoyed everything that Valiant published for the 4001 A.D series, but I just don’t feel that this really qualifies as an “event”, at least in the way that most comic fans are used to.

To start off, let me give you a rundown of how this “event” was organized. The main story, told in 4001 A.D, involves a conflict between Father, the AI the space station that is New Japan, and Rai, Father’s protector over New Japan and his weapon against any who oppose him. You can learn everything leading up to this event in the first 12 issues of Rai, which has been collected in an exquisite hardcover deluxe collection. Without getting into too many specifics, Rai joins forces with the future Gilad, the Eternal Warrior and together they battle their way back onto New Japan and defeat Father, who has succumb to a virus and is separating sections of New Japan and sending them crashing to Earth. If you just want to know about the 4001 A.D storyline, proper, all you really need to read are these 4 issues.

The second story is told within the pages of Rai. Spanning issue 13 through issue 16, we actually get a glimpse into the past and learn about the first Rai, a female Rai and the Rai before our current hero. Overall, these issues have nothing to do with the main “event”, but do help flesh out the setting and show us what some of the other Rai’s were like. Issue 16 is important, because it takes place directly before issue 1 and sets up the entire series.

The last, and mostly fringe, stories are told within the various one-shots that involve the other heroes of the Valiant Universe. In the X-O Manowar issue, we learn about the origin of the X-O Mecha that Rai and Gilad use to get back to New Japan. In the Bloodshot issue, you discover that Bloodshot’s nanites have evolved past their original intent and are being on their own. In the Shadowman issue, we learn about an Earth city with a connection to the Deadside, and the formation of a new Shadow person. Lastly, in War Mother, we’re introduced to a new character, a hunter and scavenger of New Japan tech with a sentient rifle. With the exception of the X-O Manowar and Bloodshot issues, I believe that the stories told in Shadowman and War Mother will become a bigger part of Rai’s world come 4002 A.D.

So, with a third of the “events” issues taking place in the past, and the other third taking place on Earth, in separate communities, I feel that this is not a normal comic “event”. While this doesn’t change my opinion of the overall story or my love affair with Valiant, I feel that comic companies need “events” to sell titles and get comic shops interested in buying odd, random one-shots and new mini-series. I wish comics were in a different place right now, but they aren’t. Marvel is constantly doing massive, for over-reaching “events”, many of which are never completed on time, dragging on for months, while DC keeps reinventing itself in hope of catching up to Marvel’s numbers and sales. With these two big juggernauts out there, I can see why Valiant calls this little story, which takes place in the future of their universe, an “event”, because they need that boost, just to get shelf space.

I’m really, really tired of “events”! I remember when they used to be fun and exciting and rare. I can get behind what Valiant’s doing here, making the “event” accessible, by breaking the story up into groups, so that you don’t have to go broke reading everything, I just wish they would save the word, “event” for something bigger!

 

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Monday Art Attack: Bloodshot Reborn #6 Variant Cover by BENJAMIN MARRA

Bloodshot Reborn #6 Variant Cover by BENJAMIN MARRA

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Review: Bloodshot: Reborn #5

Bloodshot Reborn #5Title: Bloodshot: Reborn #5

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Jeff Lemire (writer) with Raul Allen (artist)

A wild ride through the mind of Bloodshot, as we see Bloodshot interact with both Bloodsquirt and Kay within the surreal mind of a killer. Bloodshot realizes that Bloodsquirt must be a manifestation of the nanites, driving him to collect them, so that can be whole again. He also realizes that Kay is also a figment of his imagination, but it’s still unsure if she’s a creation of the nanites or his own subconscious. After being taken to a crazy world inside his own head, both Bloodsquirt and Kay both try to convince Bloodshot that the girl, Magic is a hindrance, one that needs to be eliminated. Bloodshot makes his choice and takes out Bloodsquirt and Kay and decides to keep what’s left of his humanity and save the girl. In the end, he gives Magic the file on himself, the one that’s he refused to read, and lets her read it, so that she can find out all about the man that he is…was!?

A wonderful issue of Bloodshot Reborn, where we get a very interesting look inside Bloodshot’s head! Batman references and other Valiant Squirts abound in this issue, but ultimately it’s about the hard choice that Bloodshot needs to make in order to survive. Without Bloodsquirt and Kay in his ear, will he continue to hunt down the remaining nanites and restore his old self…it’s unclear, but I love being along for the ride. This issue features a great story and some incredible art, which jumps around depending on the situation and location within Bloodshot’s mind!

Recommended

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Monday Art Attack: Bloodshot Reborn #6 Variant Cover by GARRY BROWN

Bloodshot Reborn #6 Variant Cover by GARRY BROWN

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Review: Book of Death: The Fall of Bloodshot #1

BoD- Fall of Bloodshot #1Title: Book of Death: The Fall of Bloodshot #1

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Jeff Lemire (writer) with Doug Braithwaite (artist)

We learn several pieces of Bloodshot’s future, including a time as a pirate after the “Brother’s War”, his time with some Arctic natives, his adventures in space during the Robot Wars, is exile in the Faraway battling dinosaurs and as an old man in a future metropolis, where he dies a peaceful death, but not alone.

OK, I really enjoyed this issue, but because it’s a book which skips ahead from time to time, it’s one that makes writing a synopsis hard. I really liked getting some hints into Bloodshot’s future, and how his life parallels that of the original Valiant Universe’s Gold Key heroes, Magnus and Turok. I was hoping for more of a connection to Rai, but that may be something that Valiant is saving for another day. Still if you love Valiant and/or Bloodshot, you should definitely pick this one up, it’s a great read.

Recommended

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Review: Book of Death #1

Book of Death #1Title: Book of Death #1

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Robert Venditti (writer) with Robert Gill (artist)

This issue starts off, in the past, with a child, named David, who can communicate or control insects, snakes and other assorted vermin. In the present, we find out that MI-6 and G.A.T.E have been on the trail of Gilad and Tama, the Geomancer from the future, whom escaped from custody. It appears that everywhere that Gilad takes the girl, death follows, leaving several small towns filled with the dead. Something dark is following the young Geomancer and Gilad is trying to protect her, but the different government agencies believe that the girl is causing the devastation, having never learned to control her powers. Capshaw send Aric to try and talk some sense into Gilad, but the immortal warrior declines any help and won’t bring the girl in. Most of the Unity team don’t believe that the girl is from the future, because time travel isn’t exactly something that the everyday public knows about. Tama made the trip from the future with the book of the Geomancer, a journal that chronicles the next 2000 years, and contains all the info on the deaths of several of Valiant’s elite heroes. As Tama reads from the book, we get a glimpse into the future, where we learn that the Unity team will grow in size and contain new members, both familiar and brand new. We learn that Aric will have a child in the near future, but will come to a grizzly end. We also learn that after Kay’s death, a new Geomancer comes forth, one that brings death and destruction with him, one that will change the world forever. As the Unity team prepares to take on Gilad and the girl, an unseen foe has the boy David, older now, and is using the boy to “battle” Gilad and Tama, causing the insects and vermin to attack them in their safe house. All seems lost, but Unity arrives and is able to save their wayward teammate and his companion. Livewire still wants the girl to be turned over, but Gilad trusts no one and refuses. Ninjak attacks the immortal and the battle begins!

OK, for a single issue, there is a hell of a lot of stuff going on in this book! We finally get more from Tama, the young Geomancer introduced at the end of The Valiant, and start to see hints of the person/being after her. While is didn’t go into too much detail about the flash forward presented by the Geomancer journal, we do get a lot of sneak peaks into the future of Valiant, much like we got with Rai #0 from the original Valiant Universe. This issue is great, setting up this mini-series event and features both a great story and gorgeous art…and tons of cameos! If you are a Valiant fan, you definitely need to pick this one up, as it may be the crux of all stories for the foreseeable future.

Recommended

BoD- Legend of Geomancer #1 On the topic of Book of Death, I must admit that I did not get a copy of the sister title, Book of Death: Legends of the Geomancer! While I want to read this series, it’s implementation, has left a very sour taste in my mouth. Right now, even if someone gave me a free copy, I would not read this issue! For those that don’t know, this companion series is a retailer exclusive. It’s not available digitally and never going to be collected (which I find ridiculous). Retailers only got 1 copy for every 25 issues of Book of Death they ordered, making this the lowest print run Valiant comic. Some comic shows and online retailers are selling this issue for upwards of $40, and it’s barely a week old (as of this writing). I understand that this ‘event’ is giving Valiant a lot of coverage in the entertainment media space, but I don’t understand why they would create a comic that supports the secondary market and alienates most of their fans. I really don’t care to ever own a copy of the single issues of this series, but some digital releases or a collector’s edition hardcover collection would be nice.

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Review: Bloodshot Reborn #4

Bloodshot Reborn #4Title: Bloodshot Reborn #4

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Jeff Lemire (writer) with Mico Suayan (artist)

With a stronger dose of nanites, Bloodshot is able to track down the remainder, which reside in a few more people. Tracking to the nearest host, “Team” Bloodshot attempts to stop more killing. The FBI and Agent Festival  try to make sense of the death in police holding, and for the first time we start to discover that there’s more to Festival than we know. Her partner attempts to do research on her past, while Bloodshot battles the next “Red Dot Killer”. Bloodshot is over powered, and it’s the new host’s wife that does him in, saving our hero. Bloodshot takes in the nanites and the girl and flees. She reveals her name, which is Magic, and we get the impression that she’ll play a bigger role in the future.

Another great issue of Bloodshot Reborn! This series is currently following a standard format, so Bloodshot once again finds another nanite host and is able to take him out and reclaim more of his missing powers. What sets this issue apart, is that we get introduced to his new character, Magic, and learn a bit more of Agent Festival’s past and possible powers. All-in-all, another solid issue with a good story and great art!

Recommended

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Review: Bloodshot Reborn #3

Bloodshot Reborn #3Title: Bloodshot Reborn #3

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Jeff Lemire (writer) with Mico Suayan (artist)

Ray, er…Bloodshot once again has some of his nanites, but is still not well, seeing both Bloodsquirt and Kay. Together, they make their way to the next individual with the nanites, who happens to be in police custody. While the cops and the feds can’t get anything out of the “Red Dot” killer, they do receive several tips, one cluing them onto Ray and the other, which mentions Project Rising Spirit. Using the little nanite powers he has, Bloodshot is able to sneak into the police station and take out the “Red Dot Killer” and claim more nanites, which allows him to figure out that there are 5 more people infected with them. The feds make it to Ray’s old room at the hotel and find his closet, which has a bunch of red dots painted all over it!

Another great issue of Bloodshot Reborn! I like getting to see a powered down Bloodshot for once, but man, I do miss the powerful Bloodshot. I don’t know how long it will take for Bloodshot to regain all of his nanites, and even if he does, will he be the same afterwards. Is Kay in his head, or is her presence a manifestation of her Geomancer powers? Time will tell and I can’t wait to get there!

Recommended

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Review: Bloodshot Reborn #2

Bloodshot Reborn #2Title: Bloodshot Reborn #2

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Jeff Lemire (writer) with Mico Suayan (artist)

While on the trail of the “Red Dot” murder, Bloodshot makes a stop to buy some guns, all the while still seeing visions of Kay and Bloodsquirt. As another murder occurs, the FBI put a new Special Agent on the case, and they discover that Bloodshot is out there, and that he has a lot of firepower. Bloodshot is able to track the killer down, but is surprised by him. The two struggle, but Bloodshot is able to kill him, but doing so re-infects Bloodshot with the nanites, however they are at a very low dosage, as he learns about the other killer with his powers and abilities.

Another great issue of Bloodshot Reborn! It’s pretty cool to see this powerful character taken down to Punisher levels and force to battle people with his old nanites. Bloodshot feels responsible for these murders and see it as a sort of redemption. Bloodsquirt is definitely a hallucination, but I’m not so sure about Kay. Her presence may be part of her Geomancer powers and could be tied to “Bloodshot Rebirth”. This issue features a great story with equally great art, as it’s definitely…

Recommended

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Review: Bloodshot Reborn #1

Bloodshot Reborn #1Title: Bloodshot Reborn #1

Publisher: Valiant Entertainment

Cost: $3.99

Storytellers: Jeff Lemire (writer) with Mico Suayan (artist)

After getting a well needed recap of Bloodshot’s past, all the way up to the recent The Valiant mini-series, where Kay, the Earth’s Geomancer was killed, but not before giving Bloodshot his life back by removing his nanites and making him “human” once again. This issue starts with Bloodshot living at a motel in Colorado, working as the maintenance man. Bloodshot tries to numb the pain and memories of the past with alcohol and drugs, living a shell of the life he once had or that of any “normal” human. He constantly has visions of his past and Kay herself. When a mass shooting occurs nearby, and the shooter has the unique Bloodshot Red Dot logo and white skin, Bloodshot has a breakdown, and decides to stop this killer and do what he does best, killing!

A great issue of this new Bloodshot series! While this issue if mostly a set up for what;s to come, it’s great seeing this powerful hero reduced to nothing and living a wasted life as a normal human, when he’s used to so much more. I’m not sure if Kay is a hallucination, a spirit that can reappear as part of her Geomancer connection, or part of nay nanites that may be left in Bloodshot’s bloodstream. A great jumping on point for any new Valiant readers who want to start with this classic Valiant hero.

Recommended

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