Bloodshot 17 and 18 Review: Plenty of Social Commentary

There’s something to admire about Bloodshot. Like the other characters in the Valiant universe, whether hero or villain he has learned from the life he’s lived. Ray Garrison has gone from a man trying to find out who he was to being stranded on a raft with other Bloodshots from previous times in history. But his predicament like his memories are temporary. He will learn from this moment too, the same way he learned about Kay on the island. More importantly he has hope. And with both those characteristics he’ll be able to survive.

The corporation Project Rising Spirit has ruined countless lives, but what they’re able to do to a dead geomancer, to the bloodshots and the secret plot that will unfold in ‘Bloodshot USA,’ must raise the question – just who is behind all this? Still issues 17 and 18 are the calm before the storm as each bloodshot tells their origin stories. Trapped on a raft in the middle of nowhere, with the nanites within their bodies barely keeping them alive, the reader sees why these men were chosen to be experimented on. The World War II and Vietnam bloodshot have been at odds since this story arc began. Their backstories reflect the history of the way men have been treated. For WWII, to be turned into a bloodshot was a privilege. After all, this was the greatest generation.

More importantly they knew who and why they were fighting. They were defending the world against evil, things were simple for him. But for Vietnam Bloodshot life was not so black and white. His experience in his war in a way is a reflection of his generation. At a certain point soldiers may have been seen as disposable, particularly those of color. Thrust into a situation and not having any control of his existence Vietnam Bloodshot relays the hopelessness of his situation then and the impossible position everyone is in now. If Ray Garrison represents hope, then WWII Bloodshot is the romanticized past, while Vietnam Bloodshot is the jaded present who sees humanity as people who are not worth saving.

Social commentary notwithstanding if the bloodshots can get off the island, then somehow they will be able to reach land. The thing is what catastrophe will await them? More so, you’ll want to know why and how a dog became a bloodshot.

About Donna-Lyn Washington 636 Articles
Donna-lyn Washington has a M.A. in English from Brooklyn College. She is currently teaching at Kingsborough Community College where her love of comics and pop culture play key parts in helping her students move forward in their academic careers. As a senior writer for ReviewFix she has been able to explore a variety of worlds through comics, film and television and has met some interesting writers and artists along the way. Donna-lyn does a weekly podcast reviewing indie comics and has also contributed entries to the 'Encyclopedia of Black Comics,’ the academic anthology ‘Critical Insights: Frank Yerby’ and is the editor for the upcoming book, ‘Conversations With: John Jennings.’

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