Yes, the blood boy on Silicon Valley is actually a thing


Matt Ross.

photo: John P. Johnson

Believe it or not, the depiction of Gavin Belson’s blood boy on Silicon Valley isn’t too far from reality.

Throughout the run of HBO’s Silicon Valley, tech billionaire Gavin Belson (Matt Ross) has done some wacky stuff. He’s purchased homoerotic garage art out of spite, made his assistant fly to and from Malaysia ten times in a row, and inadvertently killed an elephant. But all of that pales in comparison to the odd, vampiric display he put on in this week’s episode.

In the aptly named installment, “The Blood Boy”, Gavin multitasks while meeting with Richard (Thomas Middleditch), Gilfoyle (Martin Starr), and Jared (Zach Woods). As they chat about the future of a decentralized internet, a young, buff blonde rolls some cushy looking medical equipment into the room. The dude wordlessly hooks himself up to Gavin like a pro, and then sits in (relative) silence until Richard can’t help but ask….

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What the f*ck is going on here?

Well, turns out that Gavin is literally buying life from this kid. As Gavin tells it, a transfusion of young blood helps keep him young, and that’s why he’s going to live forever. Gotta have time to spend all that Hooli cheddar, I guess.

But the wildest part of all of this scenario is that it’s real. In the recent past, Silicon Valley eccentric Peter Thiel publicly stated his intent to live forever, possibly using the blood of young people as an elixir for prolonged life. Not only that, but back in January, the MIT Technology Review reported on a start up company called Ambrosia (named after the nectar of the gods) that will provide the same exact service to willing participants. For a small fee of $8,000, customers receive 1.5 L of blood over two days. And while it may sound like a legit deal, the practice of a paid trial allows Ambrosia to skip over the pesky FDA regulations and run their business however they see fit.

Sketchy. Way sketchy.

Oh, and also, the article states that the process is usually more harmful to the younger individual than it is helpful to the older party, so there’s that, too. Poor blood boys.

The burst of energy that Gavin experienced following his blood boy consult could very likely be attributed to the excess of red blood cells rushing into his body. You might remember the practice of blood doping as something that cyclist Lance Armstrong admitted to before he got totally busted for doping of the pharmacological kind.

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This all just leaves us wondering one thing: Is Gavin Belson some sort of tech vampire? Signs point to nah but, honestly, we wouldn’t put it past him.

‘Silicon Valley’ airs Sundays at 10/9c on HBO.