The title begins its second story arc, The Rise, and the Fall this month. It is meant as a jumping on point for new readers. It includes a recap of the first four issues in the inside front cover. It was a little surprising that the issue started with a flashback. Even more surprising that it wasn’t a flashback involving Bloodshot. In fact he is surprisingly missing for the first third of the issue, and when he does finally turn up, he’s in a meditative state, not charging into the fray. It’s not that there is “nothing” going on. All the information is certainly going to be important, and soon. Nothing is wasted, each page is lays down the foundation for what is to come. If you’re here to see Bloodshot kick ass, you’ve come to the right place. This is not just mindless violence. There is a method to the mayhem.
Speaking of mayhem, this issue introduces Chainsaw, a frighteningly efficient mercenary team. Frightening in appearance too. Monsters, machines or a little bit of both, I am not sure yet. They will certainly give Bloodshot more trouble than he’s ever had before.
The most curious relationship to see develop is the one between Bloodshot and the nanites. These microscopic miracle machines have decided to relate to Bloodshot in the form of a young boy. They tell him this because he “responds best to women and children”. Why this is hasn’t been explained yet. You can bet this is something PRS knows, and Bloodshot will find out soon.
Now that all four original titles have finished their first arcs, I expect we can see Valiant begin to thread their universe together. It does start a bit here. Pulse, Project Rising Spirit’s living EMP is revealed to be a psiot. If you haven’t been reading Harbinger, (Shame on you if you haven’t) then maybe you don’t know what psiots are. They are what Toyo Harada calls those people blessed with incredible powers. Chainsaw clearly has a history with psiots. Or at least one of their members does.
Valiant writers have all been given the time they need to develop their stories and characters. Swiercynski plants seeds for future stories by revealing bits and pieces from the past. He does this all while moving his story forward. He keeps the action and the body count high. Garcia and Lozzi join forces here to bring us all the carnage, and when the bullets (and knives) start flying, they really bring it home.
Bloodshot#5 is another fine chapter in the every growing success story that is Valiant.
A $3.99 comic, 32 pgs Rated T+ Written by Duane Swiercynski Art by Manuel Garcia & Arturo Lozzi Cover by Arturo Lozzi Variant Cover by Manuel Garcia