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Comic Book / Bloodshot

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Bloodshot is a Valiant Comics character created in 1992 by Kevin VanHook and Yvel Guichet. He was since rebooted by Valiant in 2012, with a new series by Duane Swierczynski.

Raymond Garrison is a former soldier living happily with his wife when he receives troubling news: an old war buddy of his has been captured in Afghanistan, and he's the only one who can save him. Regretfully accepting, he's injected with powerful Nanomachines that increase his physical abilities and healing, and is sent for reconnaissance. However, a sudden ambush leaves him in the hands of an old scientist that does something unexpected: he downloads Bloodshot's current memories for him to see.

Yeah, most of that last paragraph was a lie. Truth is, Bloodshot is the secret weapon of arms manufacturer Project Rising Spirit. For years they have used him to complete special missions, implanting him with Fake Memories to motivate him and wiping him clean upon return. He is once again taken in by P.R.S., but he manages to escape. Now on the run, he's dedicated to his own mission: finding out who he truly is.

This series lasted for 25 issues, ending on November 2014, while also having brief team-ups with Unity, particularly during the Armor Hunters event. He would quickly transition into The Valiant, where he would play a central role. With Gilad and the rest of the Valiant universe facing off against The Immortal Enemy, Bloodshot was left as the last line of defense for then-current Geomancer Kay McHenry, allowing them time to bond. The Immortal Enemy unfortunately manages to kill Kay, but before she died she stripped away Bloodshot's nanites and left him with one name: "Ray".

Bloodshot's story would continue with Bloodshot Reborn, a series by Jeff Lemire (who co-wrote The Valiant). Once again going by Ray Garrison, he spends his days in a drunk self-imposed exile, tormented by Kay's ghost and by Bloodsquirt, an overly-cartoony representation of his alter-ego. However, when a series of shootings by gunmen looking like Bloodshot occur, he's forced to take action, once again on a path leading to what he once was. And this isn't including FBI profiler Diane Festival, who's hot on Ray's trail and, with that, close to P.R.S. itself. After running for 18 issues, Bloodshot: Reborn will be replaced in 2016 by Bloodshot U.S.A..

Vin Diesel portrayed the role in a film adaptation released in 2020.

The latest Bloodshot series have examples of the following:

  • '90s Anti-Hero: Bloodshot, even modernized, still evokes this.
  • Fake Memories: How Project Rising Spirit controls Bloodshot. After every mission, they wipe his mind and then awaken him with new memories of a family he'll do anything to protect and sometimes on a mission to save a friend. That personal touch drives Bloodshot, allowing him to justify killing anyone in his path, unaware he's often taking out innocents.
    Kuretich: Now which family would that be? Lisa and the twins? Ashley and young John? Or Rose and the toddler? Were you rescuing your old pal Calkins again? Or was it poor old Apanewicz this time?
  • Formula-Breaking Episode: The "The Analog Man" arc suddenly jumps 30 years in the future to Bloodshot being forced by Ninjak to invade a post-apocalyptic Los Angeles. It's All Just More Implanted Memories.