Bloodshot Unleashed #1 hits your local comic book shop on September 21 from Valiant Entertainment. Bloodshot was created in 1992 by Kevin VanHook, Don Perlin, and Bob Layton when Valiant comics burst onto the scene. He was instantly one of Valiant’s most popular characters and, to date, the only one to get a live-action movie. However, after several successful runs with various writers, Bloodshot needed a fresh start. Enter Bloodshot Unleashed. With writer Deniz Camp taking over, we get another installment to the Bloodshot mythos. Jon Davis-Hunt is the artist. Jordie Bellaire lays down the colors, and Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou does the lettering.
Deniz Camp brings his take on Bloodshot with this new series. This version works because it deals with Bloodshot overcoming his PTSD. Camp tells this story through two different points in Bloodshot’s life; the past and the present. In the past, Bloodshot is suicidal with no purpose. As we move to the present, Camp gives us the Bloodshot we’ve all come to know. He’s back to being the killing machine taking down villains. Camp almost makes it seem like we’re dealing with two different characters. Past Bloodshot is destroyed by his guilt over the loss of his family. He can’t move past this, understandably, and it consumes him. Present Bloodshot is a man with a mission again. He’s deadly and ready to fight. Camp gives us a good story that feels fresh for the character. It will be interesting to see where things go from here.
Jon Davis-Hunt handles the pencils in this issue. What stands out with the pencils in this issue is the number of panels used per page. Davis-Hunt gives us several pages with multiple little panels. These are effective for conveying the surroundings of a character. For example, in one section, we see bodies and blood as Bloodshot scans an area. As a reader, it feels like we’re seeing what Bloodshot sees; quick glances at the destruction that has been happening. Davis-Hunt also has many graphic panels in this issue. Seeing someone get shot in half and then re-congeal is always cool. Davis-Hunt gets the opportunity to draw a ton of gruesome panels, and he knocks it out of the park.
The colors by Jordie Bellaire are amazing, as always. Bellaire used a darker color palette for the panels in the past. This could signify a darker time in Bloodshot’s life. The walls are dark red; the sky is also darker. When we move into the present, Bellaire colors the sky lighter. The present is definitely a better time in Bloodshot’s life, and the colors reflect that. Bellaire colors him with more energy in his face as Bellaire lights up the page as bright yellow explosions rip across an abandoned city. This shouldn’t be a shock, but Bellaire is one of the best colorists in the comics industry. She consistently brings her A game to every book she touches. Bloodshot Unleashed #1 is another example of this.
The letters by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou are integral to the story. Otsmane-Elhaou uses big clear letters to signify the past and present. These are also transparent, so we can see the panel. Otsmane-Elhaou makes great use of sound effects. As Bloodshot battles a foe in the streets of an abandoned city, we get a “THKK” as Bloodshot throws a grenade. A masterfully lettered panel has an establishing panel of a house split in two. As a gunshot goes off, Otsmane-Elhaou uses the “BANG” to bridge the gap between the broken house.
Bloodshot Unleashed packs enough action and emotion to make Michael Bay jealous. Deniz Camp writes a compelling first issue that gives readers a relatable and compassionate hero. The art delivers and makes looking at this issue an absolute delight. Again, Bloodshot Unleashed #1 hits your local comic book shop on September 21.