Bloodshot #11 hit your local comic book store this past Wednesday with some scenes that are reminiscent of the post-election political climate. Thanks to Valiant Entertainment, Monkeys Fighting Robots spoke with the book’s editor Lysa Hawkins and artist Pedro Andreo about all the chaos in the issue. There will be spoilers, so turn back now if you have yet to read Bloodshot #11.
Enjoy the interview with Lysa Hawkins and Pedro Andreo below.
MFR: Pedro and Lysa, thank you for taking the time to speak with me.
HAWKINS: Thank you very much for taking the time to ask the questions!
ANDREO: Absolutely! Thank you for this interview!
MFR: Lysa, Bloodshot #11 was written before January 6th of this year. After the riot at the Capital, did the creative team think about changing the issue?
HAWKINS: Yes, I read the first draft of Bloodshot #11 nearly a year ago now! We actually did change a bit of the content following the election. As much as life imitates art and vice versa, I didn’t think it was too close for comfort. Our protesters in Bloodshot #11 weren’t there to storm the Capital, just to speak their minds, which is a very American thing to do.
MFR: Pedro, looking back at the issue and the events that happened in the United States, how do you feel about the pages in Bloodshot #11 depicting the political divide and Donald Trump?
ANDREO: The script and the issue were finished long before the events of January (heck, if not for the delay caused by the pandemic, this issue should have been the June 2020 issue, if I’m not mistaken). We kept the events and the likeness of the President on Bloodshot purposely vague for a reason because I don’t think it depicts these events specifically. I really believe that there’s been an escalation of conflict and division throughout the world, and the pandemic has only increased that and I think there’s a great cautionary tale in these pages and what Seeley’s trying to get across about totalitarianism, freedom of speech, and the state of the world we’re living in. In any case, I’m just a dude from Spain (and we have our fair share of sh*t to deal with, politically and otherwise), so my opinion on a political landscape I’m not familiar with nor part of shouldn’t be taken into account on this.
MFR: Pedro, my favorite part of the issue is the battle against Zealot. Can you talk about the artistic elements involved in creating a thrilling fight sequence?
ANDREO: Thanks a lot! There is lots going on in that scene, so I tried to make everything as clear as possible and not clutter the panels too much with information that was not needed. The design of Zealot was made almost on the spot, and I had lots of fun drawing him. There’s lots of artistic freedom when you have a killer cyborg that can split into several killer robots a-la-Voltron! I used diagonal lines between panels, tilted camera angles, and lots of kinetic lines to give more power and speed to the fight and the reading process. I think it came out really nice in the end!
MFR: Lysa, Bloodshot #11 had several plot points come together for a wicked cliffhanger. Was Tim Seeley’s script perfect out of the gate, or did you have to work with him to build the tension?
HAWKINS: Tim Seeley is a big Valiant fan. He loves Bloodshot and has been reading him for years as you can tell by how he writes the scripts, BUT, issue #11 needed a lot of revisions. NOT because it wasn’t terrific. It was, but Tim originally put characters into the script that we were off-limits, and I’d have to go back to him and say, “it’s great, but change it.” In the end, all that fine-tuning really paid off and, I think it made #11 even stronger. It became one of my favorite issues.
MFR: Pedro, Andrew Dalhouse always seems to have one color pop off every page. What’s the best part of Dalhouse coloring your work?
ANDREO: He’s great at using that one color to guide the eye and reinforce the storytelling, right? He’s great to work with. I always feel safe after finishing my go at a page because I know he’s gonna kick ass on the color process. Sometimes I use some lighting effects and such to tell Andrew how I imagine the scene to be, and he always makes it 10 times better.
MFR: Pedro, the page that stood out to me is the first time we see Zealot. The word balloons and empty space guide your eye in this nice rounded arc – and then your eyes hit this skull and a hard 90-degree angle of the gun that stops your gaze on Zealot. Can you talk about how you set up this page?
ANDREO: Glad you like it! I purposely did the thing with the gun, so you have to look at that menacing skull every time your eye wanders around the page! The construction beams, the antenna, and other elements are placed the same way, so you go back to Zealot’s weird holographic screen helmet. I wanted to give a lot of space on the first two panels for the dialog and a sense of calm on the third, so the shadow lurking there steals the spotlight, and then BLAM! the big reveal of the big villain of the issue! (Or so we want you to think!)
MFR: Pedro and Lysa, thank you for your time, and best of luck with the story arc!
HAWKINS: Thank you so much! Stay Valiant!
Bloodshot #11 is out now.
Written by TIM SEELEY
Art by PEDRO ANDREO
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Letters by DAVE SHARPE
Cover A by ADELSO CORONA, ANDREW DALHOUSE
Cover B by LEONARDO MANCO
Preorder Variant Cover by BRENT PEEPLES
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