By Jeff Lemire, Lewis LaRosa, and Brian Reber
“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”
― Albert Einstein
From the beginning of Bloodshot Reborn, this is the Bloodshot story that fans have waited for! It is 120-proof pure dystopian fiction and apocalyptic literature at its finest. Writer Jeff Lemire has created a story that you need to go and tell your friends (and enemies) to read. If you miss out on this book, well, you fail at life (fact).
This is a book that is so well done, that it is a pleasure to read and to experience. You can flip each page and literally see motion, and feel heat. “The Analog Man” story arc which begins with this issue is The Book of Eli, Hunger Games, Judge Dredd, Fallout, and Mad Max all rolled-up into one pure 1980’s “shoot-em up” action movie. Actually, you could legitimately make a movie of this book today as it stands, slap an “R” rating on it, and people would line up around the block to watch it. No joke!
Lemire has created a world where survival is slipping through the thin fingers of the common man, and the class divide between the “haves” and “have-nots” is clearly defined. This is the story that Bloodshot fans deserve AND the one they need right now! The story is full of tiny Easter Eggs that long-time readers and fans will appreciate.
It needs to be said publicly and vocally: there have been several versions of Bloodshot that have appeared in the Valiant Universe; some get it, others not so much. However, let it be known that artist Lewis LaRosa’s version is the definitive Bloodshot. LaRosa refuses to draw him as a 175 pound shooter with a trench coat, but rather has created the 250 pound bruiser that Bloodshot was meant to be. He is fast and powerful, always on the edge of an uncontrollable rage and ready to crush skulls with his leather-skinned grip of death. LaRosa has clearly done his homework, and a close inspection will show small details that sort of matter when creating a sense of believable fiction. Vehicles, weapons, gear; all are based on real-world equipment that are actually used in combat operations around the globe today. No pretending, LaRosa “knows” what a proper Bloodshot story should look like and makes it work with the talent and finesse that have made him a fan-favorite artist.
Each page has basically been painted by LaRosa with his now signature use of Copic markers and layered grey-tones to create rich textures and depth. This is quality art, and among the finest that you will see in comics today. The quality is so good, that Valiant Entertainment is releasing it in “Prestige Format” with a heavy cardstock cover (ad-free) as well as releasing a “stripped down” raw uncolored Bloodshot: Reborn Director’s Cut #1 which will showcase LaRosa’s art exclusively. That speaks volumes about the talent that exists here.
It has been said that colorist Brian Reber is the best in the business; a bold statement that honestly might be a fact. While LaRosa’s art is a sight to be seen in its raw form, Reber’s colors (as they have many times before) add a spark of life to LaRosa’s artwork. He takes nothing away, and has a 100% success rate with complete enhancement of anything he touches. As Reber and LaRosa live near each other, and often work together on projects such as this, they have a proven solid and professional working relationship that is a match made in heaven. The artistic pairing of LaRosa and Reber is quite possibly the best any fan can hope for in this business, which says a lot. If you get the chance, stop by Facebook or Twitter and let these creators know how much you enjoyed their work. They clearly put a lot of effort into this book (and ALSO the next few issues), which is worth not only your time, but also a good word from readers and fans alike.
It warrants mention again: read this book! This isn’t the latest reboot or a mini-series, it’s issue #10 of what is arguably Valiant Entertainment’s flagship and/or premier comic book. Hands down, the best place for new readers to enter the world of Bloodshot!