Bloodshot Reborn has been brought out with a whole lot of hype and some real strong firepower in the use of writer Jeff Lemire and artist Mico Suayan. The release came out and we have reached the third issue. So what has happened? The answer so far is not too much. At least for those looking to see our hero all white up, red spotted, and killing away. That part has been mostly missing. What we have been seeing is a much kinder, gentler, and more mentally unstable Bloodshot to date. But that is all a part of the build-up I now believe. When Bloodshot Reborn began, we were introduced to Ray Garrison, aka, the former murderous machine known as Bloodshot. He has not handled the events of his recent life all too well. He was able to get the deadly and powerful nanites (tiny controlling machines) removed from his body making him simply a mortal man. But during that one glorious process, he lost the one and only love of his life. A geomancer by the name of Kay McHenry. This loss has been too much for him as he spends his days working as a mundane handyman at a hotel. And his nights are blasted in a haze of heavy drug use trying to forget his past.
Unfortunately for Ray, the past has come back to him and right on television in a brutal shooting completed at the hand of a person who bears a real resemblance to Ray’s old whitey red spotted self. Ray also has had to deal with his past in the form of visual hallucinations of his lost love Kay McHenry and in the cartoon Bloodsquirt. They have become a certain part of his psyche offering him advice and helping him as he now must figure out what is happening and take down those very nanites that he has been trying to forget. But when he finally met and confronted the killer, he noticed the nanites were not near as strong as he remembered. The reason would become more clear very quickly as another killer began his own rampage. And the law is hot on the trail of killer #1, already taken care of by Ray.
Issue #3 begins with the law intervention led (kind of) by FBI Agent Diane Festival who is not really receiving the respect by her local police peers in spite of her incredible perceptive abilities. Even so, she and they are headed into the pathway of Ray. This meeting is inevitable and Issue #3 hits that beginning trailhead.
As for Ray himself. He is back to his drugging and forgetting self. But in between coke hits, he gets some serious tough love from his lost love that begins to push him back in knowing what he must do. The rest as they would say is history.
This is the issue where Bloodshot Reborn earns its title. Within these pages, Ray Garrison begins to become at least a part of what he once was. He also has more work to do. But he is ready to face it by the end of this issue. The time for drugs, depression, and psychosis is over. It is time for Ray to become Bloodshot and take care of business.
After two issues of limited action and heavy “story”, Jeff Lemire begins the writing pathway to a more whiteknuckle speed. This is the most action packed issue to date, even if the action is still pretty limited. Look at it kind of like it is in first gear shifting to second. There are still a ways to go. But Lemire is beginning to put some pieces into place that have potential to blow this story open and put a strong mark into the Bloodshot mythos.
As for Mico Suayan, his art has been strong. And it is nice to see him get to open up the Bloodshot box of tricks a little here showing some of those more interesting nanite powers in action. Ray’s encounter with second killer Donald Chester is a perfect tandum of writing and art as Lemire lays some heavy wording to the brutal encounter and pleasing aftermath.
And it is in those last few pages, that I am beginning to believe that Bloodshot Reborn might just rise up to be some really good comic entertainment. Issue #3 has put the elements into action. And I believe that we are about to go on a ride from here.
Initially, things felt a little bit flat. Perhaps Lemire and Suayan were trying to find their footing early with the series. I think that footing has finally been found. After events portrayed in this issue, Ray can no longer go back. I suppose Lemire and Suayan can’t either. It’s all in from here.