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The Venom Symbiote
The Venom Symbiote
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 1 #252
A member of a species of interstellar parasites, the symbiote that later became known as Venom was imprisoned by the other members of its species due to its desire to aid its hosts instead of dominating them. An unknown amount of time later, the symbiote's prison was later incorporated into the make up of Battleworld by an entity called the Beyonder. Spider-Man, one of the heroes chosen by the Beyonder to fight in an epic battle of good versus evil, accidentally freed the symbiote while looking for a machine repair his damaged costume. Taking on the appearance of a jet-black costume with stylized white spider emblems on its chest and back, the "black suit" proved an invaluable asset to Peter, so he brought it with him when he returned to Earth, reveling in the fact that it could change its shape to imitate civilian clothing and produce a seemingly unlimited supply of organic webbing. Desiring to deepen its bond with him, the symbiote began taking over his body as he slept, leaving him more exhausted when he woke up and he had been when he went to bed. Already wary of his new costume's autonomy, Peter took it to the Fantastic Four
, where Reed Richards revealed its true identity as an alien life-form. Horrified and disgusted, Peter had the Fantastic Four remove the creature, discovering it was vulnerable to sonics and intense heat
, and returned to his classic red-and-blue outfit. The symbiote did not take Peter's rejection well
and eventually escaped captivity, disguising itself as Peter's original costume and attempting to force itself on him during a fight with the Vulturions. In his struggle to remove it, Peter retreated to the bell-tower of an abandoned church and rung the bell, weakening the symbiote, which seemingly sacrificed itself to save him.
Some time afterwards, a disgraced reporter named Eddie Brock entered the same church intent on committing suicide, having been fired after Spider-Man inadvertently revealed the serial killer he had been interviewing was a compulsive confessor, divorced by his wife, disowned by his father, and diagnosed with terminal cancer. Sensing Eddie's obsession with Spider-Man, the symbiote bonded to him - revealing Spder-Man's identity as Peter Parker in the process - but Eddie's overwhelming hatred twisted the already bitter
alien's love into a malevolent obsession
. Calling themselves themselves Venom, Eddie and the symbiote set out on a campaign of revenge against Spider-Man. During a confrontation with the supervillain Styx, the symbiote was seemingly killed and Eddie was imprisoned alongside serial killer Cletus Kasady. The symbiote staged a jailbreak, freeing Eddie but leaving behind a spawn that bonded to Kasady, turning him into the monstrous Carnage. After Eddie declared a tenuous truce with Spider-Man and relocated to San Francisco, he was captured by the Life Foundation, which forced the symbiote to give birth to five offspring: Scream, Lasher, Agony, Riot, and Phage. Eddie's relationship with the symbiote turned sour as Brock's cancer started acting up and the symbiote began to develop an appetite for human flesh, made worse when the symbiote assimilated a clone that had been programmed to want to destroy all of humanity. Motivated by a religious reawakening, Eddie sold the symbiote to Maggia don Vincente Fortunato, who gave it to his wimpy son Angelo. The symbiote, disgusted by Angelo's cowardice, left him to fall to his death and sought out Mac Gargan, offering him its power in exchange for killing Spider-Man. Mac accepted, becoming the third incarnation of Venom, but the symbiote's bloodlust overwhelmed him to the point where he willingly committed cannibalism to satiate it. The symbiote attempted to abandon Gargan and return to Eddie after realizing his cancer had been cured, but was repelled by the Anti-Venom symbiote. Anti-Venom nearly killed the symbiote, but Mac escaped and went on use it to impersonate Spider-Man as a member of the Dark Avengers
After the Dark Avengers were arrested, the symbiote was appropriated by the US Military, which intended to use it as a living suit of combat armor. Bonded to Colonel Flash Thompson, the symbiote was kept suppressed by chemicals that prevented it from bonding to him for a period of 48 hours, although it could still take control of him should he become angry. After going AWOL to protect Betty Brant from the Crime Master, Flash opted to let the symbiote bond with him, though he still kept it suppressed in a semi-successful
attempt to prevent it from rampaging and eating people. During a confrontation with Anti-Venom, the symbiote again attempted to rebond with Eddie and nearly succeeded, but returned to Flash after he reminded it that Eddie would constantly resist its control. During the Circle of Four, the symbiote secretly arranged with Mephisto to receive demonic powers via the Hell Mark, but was later forced to relinquish them to its clone after Daimon Hellstrom implanted a demon inside it. Hank McCoy developed a perfected version of the drug, enabling Flash to keep the symbiote completely docile. When separated from Flash by the Superior Spider-Man, the symbiote jumped at the opportunity to rebond with its original host, but was disgusted by Otto's psyche and tried to return to Flash. Otto dominated it with its will and forced it to remain bonded to him, but the symbiote seized control of him, lashing out at Flash for suppressing it with chemicals. After being repelled by Peter's psyche, the symbiote returned to Flash, accompanying him into space as a member of the Guardians of the Galaxy
. It has since been revealed that the "Klyntar" were actually supposed to be an intergalactic group of creatures who seek out worthy hosts to bond to and make them into heroes. Something with wrong somewhere down the line, leading to the symbiotes becoming a Horde of Alien Locusts, with the Venom symbiote apparently being the first returned to factory setting in its lineage. It's experiences on Earth drove it insane, but after returning to its home world it is reset and chooses Flash as its one true host
- Acquired Poison Immunity: According to Eddie, and later Flash, the symbiote has become Stronger with Age and has become increasingly resilient to flames and sonics. Just how resilient it's become depends on the writer.
- Adaptive Armor: What the symbiote often acts as for the host. The 1996 The Hunger miniseries showed it is capable of forming an exoskeleton resembling that of a Xenomorph. Bonus points for it resembling body armor when bonded to Flash, and Agent Venom's "Mark III" concept art even has "H.R. Giger-y bioarmor" as a design note and Call Back to The Hunger.
- Aliens Speaking English: Justified in that all its hosts were English-speaking humans and it picked up the language over time. How eloquent it is depends on the writer.
- All Webbed Up: The symbiote produces organic webbing from its biomass, and Peter has exploited this to weaken it.
- Animal-Themed Superbeing: Venom is a spider-based villain, justified in that the symbiote's first and favorite host was Spider-Man. Considering its third host was called The Scorpion, this trope was doubled, in a way.
- Angrish/Foreign Cuss Word: After being tricked into returning to Eddie at the end of The Hunger, the symbiote yells something that is transcribed with what looks like a Y, a period, and four backwards Ls.
- Arch-Enemy: The symbiote, regardless of its host, is one of Spider-Man's most infamous and dangerous enemies.
- Badass Grandpa: The symbiote is dangerous even without its hosts, has lived a very long time, and it is also a "grandfather", having grandchildren called Toxin and Scorn.
- Belated Backstory: Why the symbiote was in that container on Battleworld was revealed in the 1995 Planet of the Symbiotes, released a decade after Secret Wars. The whole story behind its imprisonment is set to be revealed in the upcoming "Planet Venom" arc of Guardians of the Galaxy, a full 30 years after its debut.
- Blank White Eyes: The symbiote has large white eyes originally in the shape of Spider-Man's lenses, though after bonding to Eddie Brock they became distorted. When bonded to Mac Gargan, his own eyes were visible within the symbiote's, although tinted green, yellow, or red with Hellish Pupils. When under control Venom IV's eyes are black lenses rimmed with white, although after his Guardians of the Galaxy makeover he now has small white eyes.
- Blatant Lies: Reassures Flash Thompson it prefers him to Eddie Brock... immediately before abandoning him to rebond with Eddie, proclaiming "Home, sweet symbiosis!" Flash had to plead with it and remind it that Eddie would constantly fight its control to get it to return to him.
- Blob Monster: What the symbiote amounts to sans-host, although it can manifest a head, eyes, mouth, and occasionally very rudimentary arms.
- Body Surf: It makes its way back to Eddie by doing this in Separation Anxiety, and also jumps from Groot to Rocket to Drax when stuck with the Guardians of the Galaxy.
- Brown Note/Psychic-Assisted Suicide: Killed the invading symbiotes in Planet of the Symbiotes with a psychic scream.
- Brutal Honesty: The symbiote cares nothing for tact when it criticizes someone.
- Category Traitor: The Venom symbiote was deemed this by the symbiote that took over Rune in Venom vs. Rune.
Rune's Symbiote: (to Ann Weying) How we gorged on the life-blood of your puny civilization... accepting our birthright as the most perfect predators in the universe... and even your vaunted champions were helpless against our race. Your world was ours by right of conquest... until the traitor calling themself [sic] Venom... betrayed his people... and murdered our entire race... save for us. This host body protected us from Venom's attack. Isn't that lucky? Now Venom will suffer for his betrayal... writhing in agonizing pain, the memory of your painful death still burning in his brain.
- Characterization Marches On: The symbiote was exiled from its planet for refusing to kill its hosts, which deemed it a freak amongst its species. That's right, Venom was the one exception to an Always Chaotic Evil race. Of course, this characterization doesn't make a good villain, and was promptly forgotten by every writer on the planet, as nowadays it's usually presented as a man-eating parasitic monstrosity.
- The Chosen One: A dark example. Mephisto selected the symbiote as one of his potential replacements for the Descent and bestowed a Hell Mark on it.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Its favorite hosts are Spider-Man and Eddie Brock in that order, and if the opportunity to rebond with either of them presents itself the symbiote will happily screw over its current host to do so.
- Clingy Costume: It does not like letting go of a host, and in fact the reason it hates Spider-Man so much is because of how close they came to being permanently bonded before he rejected it and forced them apart.
- Clothes Make the Superman: The symbiote can bestow superpowers on mundane hosts, mainly patterned after Spider-Man's due to its absorption of his DNA, and can also drastically boost the powers of superpowered hosts. A deconstruction, as it shows exactly what happens when your clothes have that kind of power...
- Combat Tentacles: The symbiote can project pseudopodia and tendrils to attack and restrain prey, although Venom usually uses them in the guise of webbing. Superior Venom takes this to a new level by having the symbiote turn Otto's robotic spider legs into segmented tentacles resembling the ones he'd worn as Dr. Octopus.
- The Comically Serious: In its attempts at coaching/cheerleading Angelo in Marvel Knights.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: During one of its "nighttime patrols" with Peter, it came across the Sandman posing as a dock worker. Baker tried to smother Spider-Man, but the symbiote
- Create Your Own Villain: All the symbiote originally wanted was to help Spider-Man. It was only when Peter rejected it on the grounds that it was alive and trying to permanently bond with him that it became embittered and angry.
- A Darker Me: The symbiote has this effect on its hosts whenever it's not outright controlling them.
- Deal with the Devil: The symbiote made a deal with Mephisto to obtain demonic powers via the Hell Mark, though it later admitted this was a mistake.
- Declaration of Protection: When it is berating Flash for his poor treatment of it, it mentions all it wants is to protect him.
- Dem Bones: In a What If? story that showed what could have happened if everyone had remained on Battleworld, Spider-Man and the symbiote's minds eventually became one, and Spidey's body has been reduced to nothing more than a skeleton they use as a base for their humanoid form.
- Demonic Possession: After Zarathos was separated from Alejandra and captured by Blackheart, the symbiote seized control of Flash intending to absorb the Spirit of Vengeance and gain demonic powers. Later, Daimon Hellstrom possessed the symbiote with a powerful demon to turn it into one of his Monsters of Evil, but Venom used the Hell Mark to suppress it. While the symbiote and the demon initially got along, the symbiote realized the demon was slowly pulling a Grand Theft Me on it and shunted the Hell Mark and demon onto its long-devoured clone, which it pukes up and bonded to Andi, turning her into Mania.
- Depending on the Artist: In the early 2000s, the symbiote's spider symbol was drawn to look like a bony protrusion◊, or something similar. It was the same with its clone from the Patricia Robertson/She-Venom II series.
- The Dreaded: Despite its weaknesses being more-or-less common knowledge, SHIELD considers the Venom symbiote to be a top-level threat to humanity. Even a drunk Kree who'd never been to Earth before recognizes it and wets himself before being eaten.
- Emotion Eater: In some story lines the symbiote feeds off its host's negative emotions, and amplifies them as well.
- Enlightenment Superpowers: By letting go - or rather, being forcibly purged - of its bloodlust, the symbiote becomes exponentially more powerful.
- Even Evil Has Standards: After finally getting its wish to rebond to its first host granted in Superior Spider-Man #24, the symbiote is the one disgusted by "Spider-Man" and tries to leave him to return to Flash, only for Otto to force it to stay bonded to him.
- Everyone Calls Him Barkeep: Technically has no name, so it is variously referred to as the "Black Suit", "The Symbiote", or simply "Venom". Thus far, the only confirmed member of its species (discounting possible symbiotes like Krobaa and Dreadface) to have been given a real name, and not just a nickname, is Gabriel Summers's minion Zzxz.
- Evil Costume Switch: Has been used as one for Spider-Man in most media following the 1994 Animated Series.
- Evil Evolves: The symbiote changes appearance with each host, and sometimes while bonded to the same host. It's also stated to have become more powerful with each successive host it bonds to.
- The Exile: The 1995 "Planet of the Symbiotes" arc revealed that the symbiote was the sole member of its species to refuse to kill its hosts, and as a result was imprisoned until Spider-Man accidentally released it.
- Expressive Mask: Due to said "mask" being the symbiote's face.
- False Soulmate: The symbiote believes it's meant to be with Peter, who wants nothing to do with it.
Spider-Man: He doesn't have to be dead. You could save him if you wanted to. It's not too late, even now.
Symbiote: Do not want Brock. Never did. Only you.
- Fangs Are Evil: Even with no host, the symbiote often manifests a huge maw full of fangs.
- Fantastic Drug: The effect the symbiote has on its host has been compared to a highly addictive drug, one that just happens to be sentient and carnivorous.
- Fate Worse Than Death: How it regarded the prospect of returning to Eddie in The Spectacular Spider-Man: The Hunger. Shortly afterwards, it and Eddie parted ways, although it's tried to rebond with him twice after his cancer was cured.
Symbiote: To combine with the flesh of Eddie Brock is to accept his cancer; an eternity of disease and suffering.
- Fight Off the Kryptonite: While the symbiote is always weak to fire and sonics, how weak it is to them varies, as it once cowered at the sight of a lighter, but tanked an explosion while bonded to Mac Gargan, and likewise tanked being blasted by Jack O'Lantern's broomstick glider's Weaponized Exhaust when bonded to Flash.
- Food Chain of Evil: The symbiotes are the preferred prey of the Xenophages, who find ones that have been bonded to their host for a long time (like Venom) to be particularly delectable. Them aside, symbiotes seem to be feared as one of the galaxy's alpha predators, if Zzxz is any indication.
- One of the worlds they conquered was eaten by Galactus. Due to their Genetic Memory, the entire species is now innately terrified of him, to the point that the mere sight of the Silver Surfer caused the Carnage symbiote to experience a Freak Out!, one that was severe enough to briefly traumatize Cletus, who the symbiote left out of fright.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: A meta example, seeing as how the symbiote started out as a new costume for Spider-Man and was initially unpopular with fans, so it was retconned into an alien parasite that later became one of Spider-Man's most dangerous and popular enemies.
- Genetic Memory: Possesses genetic memories of its prior hosts and the symbiote species' prior conquests.
- Glasgow Grin: Its mouth is disturbingly wide and lacks cheeks.
- Good Counterpart: The Venom symbiote has one in the form of the Anti-Venom symbiote, which was formed when Martin Li accidentally fused the remnants of the Venom symbiote in Eddie's blood to his white blood cells. Unlike the Venom symbiote, the Anti-Venom symbiote had no will of its own, and was even immune to the symbiotes' traditional weaknesses.
- Handicapped Badass: The US Army used a drug - possibly the same one Norman Osborn gave Mac Gargan - to suppress the symbiote, greatly limiting its ability to influence Flash. However, the drug's effects only lasts for 48 hours and the symbiote is still able to take over Flash when he gets angry. When Flash joins the Avengers, Hank McCoy creates a perfected version that chemically lobotomizes it, although its effects are still temporary.
- Heel-Face Revolving Door: It was initially benevolent, but Peter's rejection and Eddie's hatred sent it down a dark path. Having been forcefully purged of its bloodlust, it's now been restored to its original benevolent state.
- Heroic Sacrifice: During their falling out, Peter succumbed to the bells before the symbiote did. He would have died had it not used the last of its strength to drag him to safety before seemingly dying from its own injuries.
- Hungry Menace: After bonding with Mac, the symbiote became a ravenous blob of teeth and tentacles with a taste for human flesh.
Mini-Marvels Symbiote: Sure, you're fine with my super-strength, but everyone gets all bent out of shape when I get the munchies!
- Iconic Logo: The stylized white spider emblem on its chest and back, though each host other than Peter, Eddie, and Mania - who share the same design - has a unique variation.
- If I Can't Have You: Its relationship to Peter and Eddie can be boiled down to this, as whenever it's not trying to kill them it jumps at the first opportunity to rebond with them.
- Killer Gorilla: After being accidently separated from Flash by Scorn in Carnage U.S.A., the symbiote makes its way back to him by possessing a gorilla, which it even gives the Chest Insignia.
- Killer Rabbit: One of the memories it shows Eddie Brock in Dark Origin portrays the symbiote bonding to a group of dying baby rodent-like aliens on a Death World.
- Kill It with Fire: Its second biggest weakness is fire, although it appears to have built up something of a resistance.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: Dr. Strange's memory wipe purged the symbiote's knowledge of Spider-Man's secret identity, but not its desire to be re-bonded to him.
- Living Weapon: When the army confiscated the symbiote from Mac Gargan, they had the bright idea of using it as a combat suit by keeping it chemically lobotomized. The first few subjects succumbed to its bloodlust and were terminated, with Flash being the first to successfully control it.
- Loud of War: Its biggest weakness is high-frequency sounds.
- Lovecraftian Superpower: While the symbiote has consistently been capable of forming Combat Tentacles, some of the more visceral portrayals of it make it resemble something straight out of the Cthulhu Mythos: an amorphous, ravenous mass of writhing tendrils, spikes, and fanged mouths.
- Magic Enhancement: The Grim Hunt and Venom Volume 2 arcs imply that the symbiote's bonding to Spider-Man connected it to the Web of Life, the supernatural force that empowers all spider-themed superheroes and villains. However, an FAQ in Spider-Verse officially jossed this, stating that the symbiotes' DNA is incompatible with the Web of Life. The symbiote also bargained with Mephisto to receive demonic powers via the Hell Mark and attempted to absorb Zarathos, but neither panned out as well as it would have liked.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: After bonding with Eddie the symbiote consistently manifests a wide mouth of fangs even when not bonded to a host. Spider-Man practically said this word-for-word in one story. A few appearances show that it can look just◊ as◊ creepy◊ without them.
- My Suit Is Also Super: The reason Peter kept it and brought it to Earth. One of the Spider-Man novels describes it as feeling light as silk but as durable as armor.
- No Biological Sex: Has no sexual characteristics or gender identity. The default third-person pronoun for the symbiote is "it", though Flash occasionally refers to the symbiote using male pronouns. In addition Spider-Man has joked that Venom's obsession and jealously makes it come off as a psychotic ex-girlfriend, much to the entity's annoyance.
- No Sell: When Johnny Blaze tries to take it out with the Penance Stare, the symbiote not only proves immune but is so saturated in evil that it causes him to burn out.
- Due to their unique heritages, Lyra and Senator Ward are apparently completely immune to the symbiote, and everything it can throw at them. The latter was able to handle it like it was nothing more than a blob of silly putty.
- A group of Skrulls who attempt to take the symbiote from Flash and have it bond to one of them discover, just a little too late, that it prefers Flash.
- Not Good with Rejection: The symbiote's reaction to Peter rejecting it was to break free of the Fantastic Four's containment and impersonate his original costume in order to rebond with him. Subsequently it alternates between trying to kill past hosts who spurned it and forcing itself on them if the opportunity presents itself.
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Venom #41 reveals it's not nearly as brain-dead as Flash likes to think it is.
- Offing the Offspring: Instinctually hates Carnage, its spawn, and Toxin, its... grand-spawn. The Venom/Carnage miniseries states this is the norm, and that a symbiote having anything other than an antagonistic relationship with its offspring would be weird.
- Overly Long Tongue: Beginning with Erik Larsen's run, the symbiote is often portrayed with a prehensile serpentine tongue.
- Panacea: With the exception of a few drugs and poisons tailored to suppress it, the symbiote renders its hosts immune to any terrestrial disease and can even keep terminal illnesses like cancer in remission for prolonged periods of time. The Anti-Venom symbiote takes this Up to Eleven by producing antibodies for every malady the human body can be afflicted with and then some.
- Picky People Eater: When bonded to Eddie, the symbiote had a thing for brains, which was explained as it needing chemicals found in brains to survive. After abandoning Eddie, it's become much less picky about who and what it eats.
- Power Copying: The Venom symbiote bestows its hosts with powers similar to those of Spider-Man, but amplified. With Mac, it once manifested a scorpion tail, and with the Superior Spider-Man it turned his waldo spider legs into biomechanical Combat Tentacles.
- Power Nullifier: The symbiote set off Peter's Spider-Sense when it first bonded to him, but it spent so long bonded to him that once it bonded to Eddie it no longer registered as a threat. Though there have been one or two instances of Spider-Man sensing Venom, either due to continuity errors, or to imply that Venom can "turn off" the nullification ability.
- Prodigal Villain: The symbiote was cast into exile by its brethren, but is set to return home in the "Planet Venom" arc, beginning in Guardians of the Galaxy #21.
- Puppeteer Parasite: While bonded to Peter, the symbiote would take his body out for crime-fighting joy-rides while he was sleeping. After bonding to Eddie the symbiote developed a habit of usurping control of its subsequent hosts Mac Gargan and Flash and going on feeding frenzies.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: If given the opportunity to speak for itself, the symbiote is fond of dishing out scathing remarks and criticisms to both its opponents and unsatisfactory hosts.
- Red and Black and Evil All Over: During Flash's tenure as a member of Red Hulk's Thunderbolts, the white parts of the symbiote became red, making it look similar to the original concept for the symbiote◊ created by Randy Schueller.
- Reformed, but Not Tamed: The symbiote actually prefers Flash Thompson as a host, or so it said just before ditching him for Eddie - it did return to him, though - but that doesn't stop it from taking him over and eating people when it gets mad.
- Revenge Before Reason: The symbiote is very spiteful, especially towards old hosts who've spurned it, and is obsessed with either killing or rebonding to Spider-Man and Eddie. It also tries to hijack the Guardians' ship to return to its home world for some unfinished business.
- Royal "We": The symbiote likes to be acknowledged by its host and often takes offence if they don't use second person pronouns.
- Serial-Killer Killer: When it goes off on its own in Venom: The Hunger, the symbiote initially sustains itself by feeding only on "deserving" victims like a Domestic Abuser and gang members. The rift that had grown between it and Eddie causes it to be a lot less choosy in the similar Spectacular Spider-Man storyline also titled The Hunger.
- Shapeshifter Weapon: While the Venom symbiote didn't initially possess this power, during a battle with Carnage in the Microverse it developed the ability to form weapons like blade-arms and a tentacle-flail.
- Shooting Superman: The symbiote can absorb gunfire and even send it right back, but according to Flash high-caliber weapons can still penetrate it.
- Starfish Alien: As a symbiotic shapeshifting blob from outer space, definitely qualifies. This is especially the case in Venom: The Hunger, where the forms the symbiote takes while running around on its own ran the gamut from "serpentine monster" to "thing with a bunch of faces" to "WTF?◊"
- Stronger with Age: According to Flash, the symbiote is magnitudes more powerful than it was when it first bonded to Peter, and Klaw deduces that the more hosts a symbiote bonds to the stronger it becomes.note
- Super-Powered Evil Side: The symbiote functions as one for Flash, taking over him if he gets angry and being more than happy to chow down on whoever had the misfortune of pissing him off. Retcons have it functioning as one for Peter too, making him more aggressive and callous the more it bonds with him.
- Sweet Tooth: It didn't mind eating chocolate in place of brains... for a while.
Eddie (dumping out a sack of candy bars): I feel the Other salivate with anticipation.
- The Symbiote: Arguably the Trope Namer, and certainly the Trope Codifier.
- There's No Place Like Home: Stories like Hunger and one from Spider-Man Family posit that the only thing the symbiote may want more than Peter is to return to its pre-pariah life on its planet of origin. It gets that wish in Guardians of the Galaxy #23.
- Took a Level in Badass: In conjunction with Took a Level in Jerkass: the symbiote was once the least violent member of its species, and was content with playing the part of a shape shifting costume. Three hosts later, the symbiote is considered a top-tier threat by SHIELD, will seize total control of its host's body unless chemically suppressed, can tank explosions and fire-blasts, and has shown that it is not afraid of abandoning unsatisfactory hosts and surviving prolonged periods on its own.note
- Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth: While it was being held in the Baxter Building, the symbiote tried to coerce Franklin Richards into releasing it. When Franklin got close, the symbiote sensed how powerful he was, immediately backed off, and started cowering.
- Dirt Nap is a mutant who can copy a person's appearance and powers by swallowing them whole, and storing them in his body. Venom and Scream's symbiotes didn't agree with him, and... well...
- When the symbiote first met Ben Reilly, it tried to leave the unconscious Eddie for him, sensing his similarities to Peter. It found the state of mind Ben was in at the time distasteful, and quickly returned to Eddie.
- The symbiote tried to eat Eddie in Venom: The Hunger, but spat him out because Eddie had slathered himself in things like bug spray and cleaning chemicals in anticipation of this happening.
- To Serve Man: The symbiote has acquired quite the taste for human flesh. The 1996 The Hunger miniseries explained that the symbiote needs phenethylamine for its own health - which can be found most abundantly in two sources: human brains and chocolate. The 2003 Spectacular Spider-Man arc - also titled The Hunger - and other story lines going back to the "Planet of the Symbiotes" arc state that the symbiote drains its host of adrenaline, but these seem to have been forgotten following the symbiote's separation from Eddie.
- Truly Single Parent: Symbiotes reproduce asexually, and Venom "gave birth" to Carnage, Agony, Phage, Riot, Lasher, and Scream, and technically Anti-Venom and Mania.
Toxin: If you're my father, Carnage—who's my mother?
Carnage: That ain't quite how the biology pans out, buster.
- Underestimating Badassery: A lot of people, including Spider-Man, have assumed that the symbiote is borderline harmless on its own. They usually learn the hard way that it is capable of putting up a fight even without a host.
- Unexplained Recovery:
- It seemingly died after coming into contact with Styx, but then reappeared to break Eddie (and, inadvertently, Cletus Kasady) out of prison.
- The symbiote disintegrates after being given a fatal overdose in Venom: Finale, but resurfaces without explanation some time later. After a failed attempt at returning to Peter◊, it finds and forces itself on Eddie.
- Upgrade vs. Prototype Fight: The Carnage symbiote is more resistant to attacks that affect Venom, is even stronger than him and Spider-Man combined, and has abilities the Venom symbiote doesn't. However, since Kasady is a Complete Monster next to Brock's Anti-Hero (and pretty often there's other heroes like Spider-Man there to help 'soften up' Carnage), Venom most often comes out on top. This is played with during the Minimum Carnage arc, where Flash is forced to emulate Carnage in order to defeat him.
- Used To Be A Sweet Alien: All it initially wanted was to be bonded with Peter. Unfortunately, Peter's rejection and Eddie's hatred taught it anger and it hasn't really looked back since.
- Vampiric Draining: The symbiote leaves Eddie in Venom: The Hunger and The Spectacular Spider-Man: The Hunger, and survives on its own by sucking phenethylamine (in the former) and a specific type of adrenaline (in the latter) out of people. A detective investigating the attacks in the latter even assumed they were the work of some kind of weird vampire.
- The Voiceless: In its debut, it was mute. Beginning in the 2000's, however, it developed the ability to speak without using a host. It had an all lowercase internal monologue in 1994's Separation Anxiety, however.
must find eddie. others pursue us. men with fire to hurt me. eddie will help. with eddie we are venom. we are strong. these
stand in my way. they are nothing. they can die.
- Voice of the Legion: Beginning in the 2000's, the symbiote talks using distorted black speech bubbles with white print.
- Volumetric Mouth: Depending on the Artist, the symbiote is often drawn with a far larger mouth than any human could possess.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Can transform into clothing and turn invisible by blending in with the background.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Sonics and intense heat, the former more so than the latter. Its weakness towards fire was greatly Flanderized in the nineties; in one instance, Spider-Man was able to fend Venom off with a lighter. Yes, the villain who once bested the Human Torch was frightened off by a tiny little flame. However, in the Siege arc, tossing Mac Gargan into an explosion does nothing more than piss him off.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: The symbiote claims to be pregnant with a child it actually cares for in The Spectacular Spider-Man: The Hunger. The baby has not been brought up since, presumably due to either being miscarried, being intended as foreshadowing for what later became Toxin, or because the symbiote was just lying about it in an attempt to engender sympathy from Spider-Man. That said, when fighting Venom, both symbiotes proclaim they intend to be the only one alive for an event they refer to as "the Spawning".
- What the Hell, Hero?: The symbiote has occasionally berated Spider-Man for rejecting it when it only wanted to help him and make him stronger. Villain Has a Point, Parker. It also accuses Flash of this when he confronts it in Venom #41, and outright attacks him for keeping it chemically suppressed in Superior Spider-Man #25.
- Whole Costume Reference: In-universe, the symbiote's design was based on the black-and-white Spider-Woman costume worn by Julia Carpenter.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: The sight of a cheap lighter and a campfire once caused the symbiote to quiver in terror, much to the derision of the Sinister Six during Eddie Brock's brief tenure as a member.
Sandman: Will you look at the big, bad supervillain... afraid of a little fire! Whatta sissy! Let me give you a hand, tough guy! And to think... I useta have nightmares about you!
Venom: DO NOT MOCK OUR PAIN!
Electro: I've got to admit it is a pretty silly weakness for an alleged super-criminal to have.note
- Yandere: The symbiote really can't stand the idea of any of its favorite hosts not wanting to be with it, and jumps at almost any opportunity to rebond with them when it isn't trying to kill them.
- You Can Talk?: The symbiote developed the ability to speak even without a host, starting with Sssssnake Talk-laden You No Take Candle and becoming more articulate over time, although when doped up by Flash it reverts back to its early manner of speaking.
- You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: The symbiote pulls this on Eddie (to try to return to Peter), Angelo (leaving him to die), Mac (to try to return to Eddie, and possess Carol Danvers), and Flash (to try to return to Eddie again). Finally, the symbiote jumps at the chance to bond with SpOck after being separated from Flash, becoming the Superior Venom◊. It's Double Subverted in the last case, as the symbiote realizes that Spider-Man isn't the same as he used to be and tries to return to Flash only to have SpOck force it to stay bonded to him.
Venom's Main Hosts
AKA: Peter Benjamin Parker
Debut: Amazing Fantasy #15; The Amazing Spider-Man Vol. 1, #252 (with symbiote)
The symbiote's original host, and the one it longs for the most
. Peter Parker was among the superheroes chosen by an entity called the Beyonder to participate in a battle between good and evil on an artificial planet called Battleworld. His costume was damaged in the course of a fight, and after learning Thor had found a machine that could repair costumes, Peter sought it out himself. He found a device that deposited a small black ball into his hand, which spread to cover his body in a jet-black and white costume inspired by his admiration of the one worn by the second Spider-Woman.
Peter quickly discovered the "Black Suit" could respond to his thoughts and whims: shapeshifting to resemble any clothing he imagined, creating its own webbing, and sliding away from his mouth so he could eat and drink without taking off his mask. Impressed, Peter took the Black Suit with him when he was returned to Earth. Despite its advantages, the Black Suit's autonomy began to unnerve Peter, who was becoming increasingly exhausted: the Black Suit was taking over his body while he slept and using it to fight crime
. Wanting answers, Peter visited the Fantastic Four
and asked Reed Richards to analyze it. Richards revealed to Peter that the Black Suit was not a costume, but a sentient extraterrestrial symbiote
that was attempting to permanently merge with him. Horrified and disgusted, Peter had the Fantastic Four remove the creature, discovering it was vulnerable to intense sonics and heat
, and returned to his classic red-and-blue outfit. The symbiote did not take Peter's rejection well
and eventually escaped captivity, disguising itself as Peter's original costume and attempting to force itself on him during a fight with the Vulturions. In his struggle to remove it, Peter retreated to the bell-tower of an abandoned church and rung the bell, weakening the symbiote, which seemingly sacrificed itself to save him. Peter was given a synthetic copy of the Black Suit by his then-girlfriend Felicia Hardy, who thought it was sexier than his red-and-blue costume, and wore it until the symbiote returned in the form of Venom. He still wears it from time to time, usually when a villain pushes his Berserk Button
Peter's second victory over the original Venom, Eddie Brock, ended with him exploiting the symbiote's lingering desire for him, though Brock and the symbiote quickly returned to serve as one of his most prominent arch-enemies. Peter's enmity with Eddie Brock ranged from being sworn enemies to reluctant allies, and they were frequently forced to co-operate to combat the symbiote's insane spawn, Carnage. When Eddie attempted suicide after giving up the symbiote, Peter saved him and convinced him to keep on living and redeem himself
. He expressed outright contempt of Mac Gargan during the latter's stint as the third incarnation of Venom, and Flash Thompson being the fourth Venom put strain on their friendship in spite of each being oblivious to the other's secret identity. During the period in which Otto Octavius switched minds with Peter
, the symbiote attempted to rebond to its original host after being separated from Flash, but was disgusted by the "new-and-improved
" Spider-Man and tried to return to Thompson. Otto subjugated the symbiote with his will until it decided to completely take him over, at which point he fought to expel it
. When Otto failed and gave up, the remnants of Peter's psyche intervened and the symbiote returned to Flash.
Tropes pertaining to Peter Parker
- Alternate Self: Given how iconic the symbiote is, it's rare to find a retelling or adaptation that hasn't featured Symbiote Spider-Man, and a few What If?s have asked the question of what would happen if the symbiote returned to Peter, or what would happen if they never separated to begin with.
- In What If the Alien Costume Had Possessed Spider-Man?, Peter is accidentally killed by the symbiote, which tries to atone for this by curing Bruce Banner of his Hulk problem but is killed by a vengeful Felicia Hardy.
- In What If? Brave New World, Peter is trapped on Battleworld with the other combatants. Over time, the symbiote assimilates his body until all that's left of him is a skeleton and his psyche, with the symbiote's biomass forming their body.
- In Marvel Comics 2, the symbiote rebonds to Peter, taking him over to create Spider-Venom (a black and grey Spider-Man with Venom's face). After bonding to Normie Osborn to become the heroic Dusk, it later bonds to his daughter Mayday and sacrifices itself to save her life.
- In the Ultimate Spider-Man comic, the Black Suit is a cancer cure-turned-bioweapon created by Richard Parker that Peter accidentally exposes himself to. While he initially has the time of his life, he almost eats a burglar who reminds him of his Uncle's killer and realizes too late that the Suit is too dangerous to use. While he manages to rid himself of it and destroy the sample, Eddie Brock exposes himself to a second sample to become Venom. Said second sample later leaves Eddie to take over Peter until it's suppressed by the Ultimates.
- In Marvel Mangaverse, Peter finds a cursed amulet belonging to the evil Shadow Clan, which turns his costume black-and-white, amplifying his powers, but starts corrupting him at the same time. The cursed amulet is removed by Venom, who mysteriously returns in a more monstrous form.
- In the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, the symbiote was created from a sample of Peter's blood and seeks to return to him. While it briefly bonds with him, it's notable that Harry Osborn is the one who becomes Symbiote Spider-Man, at least until he loses control of the symbiote.
- Characterization Marches On: Originally, the symbiote did not boost Spidey's powers or make him more aggressive, and he simply tried to kill the symbiote when he found out that it was alive and trying to bond with him. When later writers decided to use it as a new villain, they gave the previous story a quick Retcon based on the symbiote's portrayal in the 1994 animated series, and gave Peter a better excuse.
- Cheap Costume: Black Cat, who thought the Black Suit was sexier than Spidey's classic red-and-blues, made him a synthetic version that he wore until Venom attacked Mary-Jane. He still wears it from time to time, usually as an indicator of how pissed off he is.
- Costume Copycat:
- The Black Suit's appearance was based off of the second Spider-Woman's costume, which Peter had been admiring at the time.
- Eddie Brock, Mac Gargan, and Peter himself have invoked this, the former two by impersonating Symbiote Spider-Man to discredit Peter, and Peter to impersonate Mac Gargan and infiltrate the Dark Avengers.
- Darker and Edgier: Black Cat thought Peter's black costume was sexy and made him a copy out of regular fabric after he got rid of the symbiote. He wore it for a while, until Mary-Jane was traumatized by Venom and begged Peter to stop wearing it. Peter started wearing it again during his Darkest Hour in Back in Black.
- A Darker Me: Following the retcon, Peter became increasingly aggressive under the symbiote's influence, especially when it was in complete control of his body. Spider-Man himself invokes this, as when he's pushed too far he puts on the synthetic black suit Black Cat gave him, stops cracking jokes, and stops pulling his punches. Just ask Wilson Fisk.
- Evil Costume Switch: On special occasions, like when Wilson Fisk hired a sniper who almost shot Aunt May and Kraven the Hunter's family killed Kaine, Peter puts the Black Suit on and invokes this by not joking around and not holding back.
- Legacy Character: When Mac Gargan agrees to join Norman Osborn's Dark Avengers, he's given a drug that reverts the symbiote back to the way it looked when it was bonded to Peter. Also doubles as Evil Counterpart since Mac was still more-than happy to eat people.
- Iconic Outfit: The Black Suit is hands-down Spider-Man's most famous and iconic costume aside from his red-and-blues, to the point of being featured in _every_ adaptation since its inception.
- Retcon: Initially the Black Suit was just a snazzy new shapeshifting costume, but its lack of popularity quickly led it to be turned into an alien parasite. The idea that the Black Suit was making Peter evil stems from Spider-Man: The Animated Series, as prior to that Peter rejected the symbiote out of disgust and terror at learning it was alive and wanting to bond to him.
- Super-Powered Evil Side: Subverted initially, as all the Black Suit did was take his body out for joyrides while he slept.
- Symbiotic Possession: Played with: All the symbiote wanted to do was help Peter, something it has repeatedly berated him for, but Peter was becoming increasingly unnerved by its autonomy and that it was joy-riding his body while he was asleep to fight crime.
Venom I / Anti-Venom I / Toxin II
AKA: Edward "Eddie" Charles Allan Brock
Debut: Web of Spider-Man #18; The Amazing Spider-Man #299 (as Venom); The Amazing Spider-Man #569 (as Anti-Venom); Venom Vol. 2, #17 (as Toxin II)
Probably the most famous incarnation of Venom. Eddie's mother died during childbirth, and as a result his father became cold and distant
, instilling a thirst in Eddie to impress him
. As an adult, he becomes a successful journalist for the Daily Globe. Eddie's luck changes for the worst when he is contacted by a a man claiming to be the serial killer called the Sin-Eater. Eddie's interviews with the Sin-Eater initially bring him great success until the police force him to out his source, Emil Gregg, who unbeknownst to him is a compulsive confessor. The very next day Spider-Man debunks Brock's article by capturing the real killer, and Brock is fired from the Daily Globe, diagnosed with terminal cancer, divorced by his wife, and disowned by his father
. Reputation destroyed, he is only able to find employment as a two-bit writer for a disreputable tabloid. Blaming Spider-Man for his troubles
, he begins to work out obsessively in an attempt to assuage his rage.
Eventually, Eddie cannot take it anymore
. Raised a devout Catholic, he goes to his local church to pray for forgiveness for the suicide he is contemplating
- unaware that Spider-Man had used the bells in the selfsame church to drive away the symbiote. The symbiote, lying in wait in the rafters for an appropriate host, bonds to Brock, drawn by his obsession with Spider-Man. In the process, Brock learns Spider-Man's true identity, and Brock's overwhelming hatred for Spider-Man turns the already bitter
symbiote's love into a twisted obsession
Calling himself Venom, Eddie becomes one of Spider-Man's most formidable foes: stronger, faster, and immune to his Spider-Sense
. He wages a campaign of torment against Peter Parker, invading his private life and threatening his loved ones. He is not altogether evil, though: he exhibits moments of compassion
, like rescuing a little girl during a pitched battle with Spider-Man. A turning point in Eddie's life occurred when he was separated from the symbiote by the villain Styx's cancerous touch and imprisoned in Ravencroft alongside nihilistic serial killer Cletus Kasady. The symbiote eventually returned and broke him free, and Venom seemingly succeeded in killing Spider-Man and took to living a peaceful existence. Unbekowst to him, the symbiote had asexually reproduced and left its spawn in the prison cell, where it bonded with Kasady to become Comic Book
/Carnage. Spider-Man is forced to reveal his continued survival to Eddie and they declare a reluctant truce
to defeat Carnage, after which Eddie moves to San Francisco for a time and becomes the "Lethal Protector
" of a subterranean community of homeless people formed by the 1906 earthquake. Eddie is eventually abducted by the Life Foundation Organization
, which forces the Venom symbiote to give birth to five more offspring, Lasher, Phage, Riot, Agony, and Scream
, who beg Eddie for help controlling their symbiotes, though he wants nothing to do with them, believing they will turn out to be as bad as Carnage.note
Ultimately, Eddie returns to New York and to villainy following his ex-wife's suicide, temporarily joining the Sinister Six before a falling out with Sandman.
Eventually, it is revealed that the symbiote chose Brock as a host not only for his mutual hatred of Spider-Man, but also for the fact that it could leech off the excess adrenaline his cancerous body produces, keeping the disease in remission. However, the symbiote no longer wishes to remain bonded to a dying host
, especially one that refuses to feed it
. Undergoing a religious reawakening
, Brock, disgusted by the symbiote's growing bloodlust
, decides to sell it to the highest bidder and donate the proceeds to charity, knowing it will mean the death of him
. Unfortunately, the highest bidder turns out to be crime boss Don Fortunato, who gives the symbiote to his son Angelo. Proving an "unworthy" host in the symbiote's eyes, it abandons Angelo mid-jump, and the man falls to his death. Feeling responsible, Brock spirals into depression and attempts suicide numerous times, but is ultimately freed from his obsession with Venom by Spider-Man, who advises him to use the time he has left to atone. Eddie is acquitted of his crimes by Matt Murdock
and his cancer is cured courtesy of the healing abilities of philanthropist Martin Li, who offers him a job at his soup kitchen, which Eddie eagerly accepts.
The remains of the symbiote in his bloodstream, altered by Li's mystical powers
, merge with his white blood cells and transform Brock into the slightly
more heroic "Anti-Venom" when the Venom symbiote, having sensed Eddie no longer has cancer, attempts to leave its then-current host, Mac Gargan, and rebond with him. In this guise, he battles Gargan several times - having come to consider the symbiote to be his greatest failure
- and calls off his vendetta against Spider-Man for good. He attempts to become a true hero, setting out to cure drug addicts and hustlers with the help of an ex-junkie named Jenna Cole
, but struggles to suppress his murderous impulses
after he learns his savior Martin Li is the supervillain Mr. Negative. As Anti-Venom, Eddie clashes with the Punisher
and plays a key role in exposing Mr. Negative's true identity to the public, but ultimately he is forced to depower
so the Anti-Venom suit can be used to make an antidote to cure the infected millions of New York. Eddie sets out to slay the remaining symbiotes
, starting with Hybrid and Scream
, but after he is knocked out trying to kill the fourth incarnation of Venom, Flash Thompson, he is captured by the Crime Master, who bonds the Toxin symbiote to him. As Toxin, Eddie attacks Venom again, but is seemingly killed
when Venom attempts to burn the Toxin symbiote and it drags him into the flames. It is later revealed Eddie survived, still bonded to the Toxin symbiote and still obsessed with killing Venom, having reverted back to his "Lethal Protector" mindset. Eddie pursues Venom to Philadelphia for a rematch, but their fight is interrupted by the Symbiote Slayers, cybernetic parasites similar to the symbiotes themselves. Toxin and Venom reluctantly team up
to defeat the Symbiote Slayers, and Eddie begrudgingly concedes that he will leave Flash alone as long he uses the symbiote to do good.
- '80s Hair: Eddie's had hairstyles ranging from a flattop to a mullet during the 80's and 90's, even switching to flat out Barbarian Longhair, and now has a crew cut.
- Abusive Parents: His wife's death left Carl Brock a shell of a man who barely acknowledged his children.
- Anti-Hero: As Venom, Eddie starts off as a Nominal Hero before mellowing into an Unscrupulous Hero, killing almost anyone who got in his way provided he didn't consider them "innocent". As Anti-Venom, he made an effort to stop killing people, but occasionally slipped back into his Lethal Protector mindset. As Toxin, however, he's fully reverted back to his Lethal Protector mindset and has no problem killing and eating bad guys.
- Anti-Hero Substitute: In an alternate universe where he remained bonded to the Enigma Force, Spider-Man settled his rivalry with Venom before deciding to join the big-league superheroes and left Eddie to become the new wall crawler.
- The Atoner: What he tried to become as Anti-Venom.
- Badass Normal: After his career went down the dumper, Eddie spent all his time working out to vent his fury and developed a powerful physique, and even after becoming Venom kept working out to increase his base strength level. Long before he ever even crossed paths with Spider-Man, Eddie also single-handedly stopped the rampage of the crazed alien Krobaa (see below) with nothing but his flash camera.
- Big Brother Instinct: Had a beloved step or half-sister named Mary. When she fell into a coma due to an incident involving Nova, Eddie blamed the hero for it, and went after him. She was retconned into being his older sister in Dark Origin, and is presumably still in that Convenient Coma.
- Black Eyes of Evil: Anti-Venom's and Toxin's eye patches are jet-black, though as Anti-Venom he's not evil (and he's still not that evil as Toxin).
- Blade Below the Shoulder: While not a power he possessed as Venom, as Anti-Venom and Toxin he developed the ability to morph his limbs into bladed weapons.
- Blond Guys Are Evil: Eddie's hair color ranges from light to strawberry blond, and has occasionally been drawn as brown.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Eddie's definitions of guilt and innocence are inconsistent at best.
- Body Horror: When the Juggernaut knocked him into a vat containing a sentient insanity-inducing virus in The Madness, the results were... disturbing◊.
- Brain Food: Even before Mac Gargan took this Up to Eleven, Eddie was known to threaten to devour various body parts - especially brains. A later retcon gave the symbiote an addiction to phenethylamine and adrenaline and caused it to force Eddie to commit cannibalism, but this was seemingly discarded after it bonded to Angelo.
- Breakout Villain: Eddie-as-Venom is one of Spider-Man's most popular antagonists, and has been featured in almost every adaptation since his debut.
- Broken Ace: Growing up, Eddie was a straight-A student with multiple sports medals, became a successful journalist, and married a successful lawyer. All to please his aloof father.
- Butt Monkey: In the Return of the Sinister Six he's treated like dirt by the other villains, his weaknesses are brought Up to Eleven (just the sight of a campfire and a lighter are enough to freak him out) and his stint as an anti-hero is the subject of repeated mockery. He gets his revenge when he nearly kills Electro, Kraven II, and the Sandman.
- Can't Stay Normal: Eddie goes from being Venom to Anti-Venom to Toxin with brief periods of humanity in between.
- Catch Phrase: As Anti-Venom up until he became Toxin, Eddie's was "I AM THE CURE!" Doubles as a Badass Boast.
- Character Development: Zigzagged, as while Eddie slowly became more heroic as Venom and even tried to make the leap to true heroism as Anti-Venom, he lapsed back into Lethal Protector mode as Toxin. Even so, he was more willing to give Flash a chance to prove himself a hero than he was with Spider-Man.
- Characterization Marches On: Eddie started off as a standard supervillain but soon developed Moral Myopia in regards to those he considered innocent (see Anti-Hero above). Eventually, he had a Heel-Faith Turn and gave up being Venom. As Anti-Venom he tried to become a hero, but as Toxin he's back to being a Sociopathic Hero. His religious devotion, which was ignored while he was Venom, was turned Up to Eleven as Anti-Venom.
- Even Spider-Man went through this. Originally, the symbiote did not boost Spidey's powers or make him more aggressive, and he simply tried to kill the symbiote when he found out that it was alive and trying to bond with him. When later writers decided to use it as a new villain, they gave the previous story a quick Retcon based on the symbiote's portrayal in the 1994 animated series, and gave Peter a better excuse.
- Cheap Costume: While dying of cancer, Eddie was drilled into almost killing the hospitalized Aunt May by hallucinations of Venom, and donned a store-bought black Spider-Man costume for the occasion.
Eddie: It's cheap nylon. It hangs loosely on my body. It's nothing like the symbiote. But it's everything... the only thing... I need now.
- Cheshire Cat Grin: Venom, as originally drawn by Todd McFarlane, simply had an abnormally wide smile. It wasn't until Erik Larsen took over that he got his trademark fangs and Overly Long Tongue.
- Christianity Is Catholic: Eddie's religion was downplayed during his stint as Venom, only to get brought back as the driving force behind his Heel Face Door Slam and rejection of the Venom symbiote. As Anti-Venom, he even comes to consider himself the one anointed by God to kill the demon that is Venom.
- Church Militant: As mentioned above, Eddie is a devout Catholic who sees himself on a mission from God to destroy the symbiotes, and even turned the Our Lady of Saints church into his base of operations.
- Consummate Liar: Dark Origins reveals Eddie was a chronic liar, stemming from his desire for acknowledgement, and even lied his way into getting a job at The Globe.
- Costume Copycat: Aside from his tongue, fangs, claws, and eyes, Eddie-as-Venom was almost identical to Peter's black suit, a fact he exploited on occasion.
- Courtroom Episode: Eddie was captured and put on trial in... On Trial. Daredevil was his attorney, and Carnage was brought in as a witness for the prosecution.
- Create Your Own Villain: Venom murdered a Vault Guardsman during one of his escapes. The man's wealthy father assembled a group of his son's grieving friends, gave them Powered Armor, and dubbed them "The Jury".
- Creepy Long Fingers: When drawn by John Romita, Jr. his fingers are unnaturally long, sometimes looking more like tentacles than digits. He also had these as Anti-Venom.
- Criminal Doppelgänger: Eddie initially tried to exploit his resemblance to Black Suit Spider-Man in order to defame and torment Peter and Mary-Jane.
- Deadpan Snarker: Part of being Peter's Evil Counterpart, he's known to be the villain that actually makes Spidey scream "Shut up!"
- Depending on the Artist: Eddie has been drawn with hair colour ranging from brown to blond, and his appearance as Venom has changed drastically depending on who's drawing him.
- Depending on the Writer: Eddie's characterization and backstory vary wildly depending on who's writing him.
- Driven to Suicide: He's tried to kill himself numerous times, including in his origin story.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Eddie is annoyed when one of Mr. Negative's goons continuously interrupts his "The Reason You Suck" Speech and completely incredulous when he learns that the thug is more afraid of the Wraith than he is of him.
Anti-Venom: "The Wraith"?
Mook: She— She's everywhere, man!
Anti-Venom: And you're more scared of her... than me?! *tosses the Mook in the river* Idiot!
- After Spider-Island, Eddie was hailed as a hero for giving up the Anti-Venom symbiote, but a few months later was homeless and penniless with only an arsenal of advanced weaponry and his anti-symbiote crusade for comfort.
- Easy Amnesia: Numerous blows to the head once made him forget various details about Spider-Man, including that he was Peter Parker.
- Enemy Mine: Would reluctantly arrange temporary alliances with Spider-Man to fight a common enemy neither could beat on their own, usually Carnage. He also forms a temporary alliance with Flash Thompson to fight the Symbiote Slayers.
- Evil Counterpart: To Peter Parker, and later Flash Thompson.
- Evil Me Scares Me: The reason he hates the symbiote so much is because of the things he did under its influence.
- Extreme Melee Revenge: When Jorge Valdez rubbed the fact that Jenna Cole is back on drugs and "[his] girl" in Eddie's face, the first thing he did was grab the nearest thug and rip him in half while screaming in rage.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Eddie went from being a disgraced, terminally ill journalist to a monster simply by virtue of being in the right place at the right time.
- The Fundamentalist: After his Heel-Faith Turn he takes his religion a little too seriously, especially in the middle of his Sanity Slippage when it becomes the rock that he clings to. As Venom and Toxin, however, his zealotry is downplayed in favor of him eating people.
- Gasshole: When he ate (not absorbed, ate◊) the Carnage symbiote, he at first had trouble keeping it down, sprouting red tendrils, and burping almost non-stop.
- Generic Doomsday Villain: His initial characterization when he first debuted.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: As Anti-Venom his eyes were glowing red - and occasionally yellow.
- Good Angel, Bad Angel: Eddie referred to Jenna Cole as his "angel" in that she gave him motivation to not give in to his fraying sanity and resist the murderous impulses left over from the symbiote, which he referred to as his "devil".
- Good Costume Switch: As Anti-Venom he is a colour-inverted version of Mac Gargan's Venom form.
- Good Is Not Nice: As Anti-Venom and Toxin he was a good guy, but not adverse to using lethal force.
- Good Old Fisticuffs: Despite possessing the ability to generate Combat Tentacles and spikes to dispose of pests, Eddie generally relies on his fists and claws in a fight.
- Healing Hands: The Anti-Venom symbiote generated antibodies that could purge just about anything from drugs to symbiotes to radiation, though overusing this ability weakens him. Anti-Venom's cameo as Pestilence in an alternate universe version of Apocalypse's Four Horseman suggests that he can use this power to harm.
- Heel-Face Revolving Door: His status swayed from story to story throughout the late 90s and into the 2000s until Mac Gargan took over.
Marvel Adventures Venom:
*drapes his arm around Spider-Man's shoulder* We're sick of being hounded by the law! We want to use our powers to help people, just like you! Show us the ropes, Spider-Man! Let us apprentice ourselves to you... as your sidekick! They'll call us "Venom... Lethal Protector!
- Hellish Pupils: In the 1995 Christmas Special The Venom Claus, Venom's eyes are drawn so that they had a black pupil-like slit, which was adapted into his appearance in the 1990's animated series.
- Horrifying Anti-Hero: Eddie prides himself for being one as the "Lethal Protector" and Anti-Venom. Flash even describes him as "pretty frightening — but kind of nice, too" following their Enemy Mine against the Symbiote Slayers.
- Hulking Out: When Eddie or it gets angry, the symbiote can bulk up to massive proportions. Special mention goes to Eddie's first appearance as Toxin, where he was at least twenty feet tall.
- Hunter of His Own Kind: As Anti-Venom and Toxin, Eddie has devoted himself to taking out Venom and Carnage.
- I Am A Humanitarian: Eddie's aversion to satiating the Venom symbiote's appetite varies Depending on the Writer, but aside from The Hunger - where, in spite of his disgust, the symbiote forced him to follow through on his Brain Food threats - he was never shown actually eating people as Venom. As Toxin, he devours one of the symbiote slayers during his fight with Venom to prove a point to Flash. In the novels featuring him, particularly The Venom Factor, he's a lot less picky about munching on those he deems guilty.
- I'm Cold... So Cold...: His not so last words in The Spectacular Spider-Man: The Hunger, after the symbiote abandons him to hunt on its own.
- Interspecies Romance: There are a few... suggestive moments in Venom: The Hunger.
Eddie: (as the symbiote leaves him) We share everything. Thoughts. Feelings. A purpose. It's not human, but it's given me things no girlfriend ever could. I used to live for words. But the Other's shown me how small and useless they really are. We talk to each other with moods and pictures, memories and heartbeats. Some things are the same in any language. Like the one thing I thought I'd never hear.
- Intrepid Reporter: In order to impress his father, Eddie became a successful journalist until the Sin Eater fiasco ruined his career. He still puts his investigative skills to use as Venom and Toxin.
- It's All About Me: Eddie's attitude pre-Heel-Face Turn, to the point where he has to remind himself that his therapist repeatedly reminds him that he is not the only important person in the world.
- Jagged Mouth: As Anti-Venom, Eddie was often drawn with black fangs similar to Carnage's.
- King of the Homeless: During his time in San Francisco he lived in an Under City with the indigent.
- Knight Templar: As Venom he was obsessed with killing Spider-Man. As Anti-Venom and as Toxin, he was obsessed with killing Venom and the rest of the symbiotes as well.
- Large Ham: Very prone to chewing the scenery, especially as Anti-Venom.
- Legacy Character:
- Let's You and Him Fight: Venom spent most of the 1990's fighting and teaming up with other vigilantes.
- Make Way For The New Villains: Venom's threat level was diminished by the appearance of Carnage and villains with powers revolving around the symbiote's weaknesses.
- Man Bites Man: Both as Venom and Toxin, Eddie didn't hesitate to put his teeth to use.
- Memento Macguffin: An old photo he carried around convinced Eddie, burnt out over the whole superhero/villain thing, to try and reconnect with his ex-wife. This ended tragically.
- The Mirror Shows Your True Self: After divesting himself of the symbiote, Eddie keeps seeing Venom's face in place of his reflection and wonders if this is the case for him.
- Morality Chain/Living Emotional Crutch: Jenna Cole was one for Anti-Venom, as without her he started slipping back into his "Lethal Protector" persona.
Anti-Venom: *while massacring Mexican gangsters* I try to be good, I really do. But... my angel. He's got my angel. He's making her do things. Things she's not supposed to do anymore. I think about it and it makes me wanna force men's bodies to do things they're not supposed to do. Men like these... they bring out the evil in people. That's how they make their money. They don't want you to change for the good... So I show them the old me.
- Multiple-Choice Past: Eddie is either the son of a millionaire who became a successful journalist until tragedy struck, or the son of a working-class suburbanite who lied his way into success before getting his comeuppance.
- My Girl Is Not A Junkie: As Anti-Venom, calling Jenna Cole a junkie was a really bad idea. We're looking at you, Frank Castle.
- Necessarily Evil: Eddie lamented killng Hybrid since Scott was a good person and using the symbiote to do good, but justified doing so with the statement that it was either Scott die along with the rest of the symbiote hosts or the whole world would be overtaken later.
- Never My Fault: Eddie blamed Spider-Man for the series of unfortunate events that ruined his professional and personal life. To be fair, he genuinely didn't know that Emil Greg was a compulsive confessor and was forced into outting him by the police and his boss. Spider-Man catching the real Sin Eater the following day was just a bad coincidence.
- No Sell: As Anti-Venom he not only laughed off the traditional weaknesses of symbiotes - fire and sonics - the only things effective against him were an anti-antivenom Norman Osborn created specifically to kill him and Mr. Negative's Darkforce magic. Small wonder he only appeared a handful of times before being depowered.
- Offing the Offspring: Carnage, Toxin, and the Life Foundation symbiotes were all on Eddie's hit list.
- Off Model: Purposely done by artist John Romita, Jr., who depicted Venom as being perpetually warped and distorted.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: During Eddie's tenure as Venom if he teamed up with Peter, it was for this reason. As Toxin, Eddie promises Flash that he will let him be so long as he uses the Venom symbiote for good, but when he looses control of it, Toxin will Mercy Kill him.
- Papa Wolf: Killed a clown when he thought it was threatening a child. As Anti-Venom he was violently protective of Jenna Cole.
- Perma Stubble: Eddie usually has five o'clock shadow.
- Pet the Dog: Eddie's had several moments of compassion, but his most recent is putting his vendetta on Flash on hold, which he did a lot more readily than his grudge against Peter.
- Phlegmings: Venom is frequently drawn with copious amounts of green slobber. Angel Medina and especially Greg Luzniak really went overboard in this department, sketching spit being spewed all over the place.
- Poisonous Person: As Venom, Eddie develops a poisonous bite that almost kills Sandman, and he retains this ability as Toxin, using it to off Megatak.
- Rage Against the Reflection: After being separated from the symbiote, Edddie continues to see Venom's face whenever he looks in the mirror, and begins to undergo Sanity Slippage until he meets Martin Li.
- Rage Breaking Point: When Jenna Cole was abducted by the Quintas Cartel and relapsed into drug use, Eddie - who had resolved to redeem himself and reign in his fraying sanity for her sake - massacred a building full of armed thugs in a fit of rage, tearing several of them apart.
- Red and Black and Evil All Over: As Toxin, Eddie is mostly red but has black lower arms and lower body with red Tainted Veins. A reporter even mistakes him for Carnage due to this.
- Redemption Quest: As Anti-Venom, Eddie swore he would destroy Venom once and for all. He continued this after being depowered, expanding his crusade to include all symbiotes, killing Scream and Hybrid, but was turned into Toxin by the Crime Master. He maintains that the relationship between him and Toxin is a temporary truce to kill Venom, but Flash accuses him of enjoying being bonded to a symbiote.
- Reformed, but Not Tamed: As Anti-Venom, Eddie tried his hand at being a hero but his less-than-stable psyche caused him to slip up a few times, and as Toxin he reverts to his Lethal Protector persona.
- Reformed, but Rejected: When Eddie tries to expose Martin Li as Mr. Negative, Spider-Man attacks him and refuses to listen to Eddie's explanations, believing he's reverted back to his brain-eating phase. Eddie loses patience and almost does perform a Face-Heel Turn, but stops himself and storms off after webbing Spider-Man up.
- Religious Bruiser: Eddie returns to Catholicism with a vengeance after divesting himself of the Venom symbiote, and he's more than capable of kicking ass.
- Retcon: Dark Origin retconned his backstory to bring him more in line with his Spider-Man 3 self, but has largely been ignored.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Eddie's and the symbiote's vendetta against Spider-Man is a classic case of this: Eddie for losing his job and reputation; the symbiote for being rejected. As Anti-Venom, when Eddie learns his Living Emotional Crutch Jenna Cole is back on drugs again... the result isn't pretty.
- Royal "We": Refers to himself as "we" due to the presence of the symbiote. Gargan averts this, as does Flash mostly.
- Sanity Slippage: The Venom symbiote's growing influence over Eddie is one of the reasons he parts ways with it, and as Anti-Venom he suffers relapses into his Lethal Protector mindset following the revelation that Martin Li is Mr. Negative or if Jenna Cole is in danger.
- The Madness miniseries had Eddie dealing with the symbiote, a sapient insanity-inducing virus they had accidentally merged with, and extra dimensional demons that had taken to tormenting them. He ends up exploding (figuratively) and nearly rapes and kills his Love Interest while screaming incoherently and shapeshifting uncontrollably.
- The Scourge of God: As Anti-Venom and as a human before being bonded to Toxin, Eddie's fundamentalist Catholic worldview coupled with his tenuous hold on sanity to convince him that God had chosen him as a holy warrior to purge the world of sinners, starting with anyone bonded to a symbiote.
- Self-Destruct Mechanism: During his tenure as a government operative he had a thermite bomb equipped with communications gear implanted in his chest. He eventually removed it (a failsafe prevented the symbiote from expelling it or tampering with it) via painful Self-Surgery.
- Serial-Killer Killer: Eddie's most frequent targets were street-level criminals, thugs, and killers - people deserving of being turned into symbiote chow.
- Shaggy Dog Story: Turns out he was right about Emil Greg being the original Sin Eater, and Stan Carter was the copycat all along.
- Smarter Than You Look: Despite looking like a heavyweight professional wrestler when not in monster-mode, Eddie is smarter than he looks and often puts the investigative skills he developed as a reporter to good use.
- Sociopathic Hero: Eddie thinks nothing of killing those he deems guilty, although he has been persuaded to call truces with Spider-Man and Agent Venom.
- Stranger Behind the Mask: During Venom's first appearance his identity was treated as a mystery, only for the enigmatic supervillain to be revealed as... a completely original, never before seen character.
- Strong as They Need to Be: Marvel's official handbook has variously ranked Eddie, both as Venom and Anti-Venom, as being able to lift either 11 tons, putting him just over Peter's 10 tons; or 25 tons, making him a little more than twice as strong as Spidey but weaker than Carnage. However, there have been occasions where he duked it out with the Juggernautnote - whose strength is technically limitless - and Mac Gargan - who was able to lift 15 tons even without the Venom symbiote, which boosted his strength to 60 tons - and came out on top.note
- Possibly the best/worst instance of this occurred in All-Access #1, which had him almost effortlessly smack around Spidey and Superman... at the same time◊.
- Spikes of Villainy: As Anti-Venom, Eddie had spikes protruding from his shoulders.
- Start of Darkness: Chronicled in Uncanny Origins #7, Seed of Darkness, and Dark Origin, the latter of which contradicts the first two on a lot of points.
- Straw Hypocrite: During their second rematch, Flash accuses Eddie of being one for claiming that all symbiotes are demons that need to be exterminated and then getting "chummy" with the Toxin symbiote.
- Super Window Jump: Invoked in The Enemy Within.
I still don't understand — why not the front door, Venom?
Venom: Something about dramatic entrances, Morbie — we'll explain later.
- Symbiotic Possession: Eddie and the Venom symbiote got along perfectly until its growing bloodlust clashed with his growing conscience. He tells Agent Venom that he and the Toxin symbiote have reached an understanding that they'll try to kill each other after killing Venom, but Flash believes he's in denial about enjoying being bonded to a symbiote.
- Take Me Instead: Horrifically inverted when Eddie and his future wife Ann are attacked by a gang in the prequel series Dark Origin.
Eddie: P-please... just leave me alone. Take the girl... I won't say anything...
- Tears of Fear: During the Spider-Island series, Eddie is reduced to sobbing in terror when the Venom symbiote takes advantage of him overusing his healing powers to ditch Flash Thompson and rebond with him.
Eddie: Not again! No! Please, God!
Venom: Home, sweet symbiosis!
- Ten Little Murder Victims: The premise of Separation Anxiety: A depowered Eddie and a reporter are held captive in an Abandoned Warehouse by the Life Foundation symbiotes, and someone starts killing them off one by one...
- That Man Is Dead: He seems to do this whenever he develops a new identity.
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill: His to-do list in Spider-Man Vol. 2, #10.
- Unscrupulous Hero: While Eddie considered himself to be a hero, when bonded to Venom and later Toxin he had no qualms about brutally murdering and even eating those he considered guilty.
- The Unsmile: In Dark Origin, Eddie is shown with an unnaturally wide, creepy grin.
- Villain Team-Up: He briefly allies with Carnage to kill the original Toxin in Venom/Carnage, and was a member of one incarnation of the Sinister Six, but only temporarily since the other bad guys (especially the Sandman) didn't like him very much. The only reason he was allowed to join in the first place is because Daniel Berkhart (the second Mysterio) weakly vouched for him.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: The Lethal Protector series revealed that Eddie's father was a wealthy millionaire who hated his son due to his wife's death in childbirth. Out of a desire for acknowledgement, Eddie got straight A's in school, won numerous sports trophies, and became a successful journalist with a famous lawyer as a wife. The Sin Eater incident gave Eddie's father the excuse he needed to disown him, and Eddie's life went downhill from there. Dark Origin makes it more explicit, while Retconing most of the above to make Eddie less sympathetic.
Eddie: Shut up, Mary!
Mary: You shut up! We used to have a mom, before you came along!
Carl: Mary. I've told you, you're mother died from complications during childbirth. It wasn't Eddie's fault. We can't blame him for everything.
Mary: Oh, what are you pouting about now?!
Eddie: I can tell... he's lying.
- What Do You Mean, It's Phlebotinum?: Eddie satiated the symbiote's appetite for a chemical found primarily within brains by feeding it chocolate, which contains trace amounts of what it needed. This became ineffective as the symbiote's hunger grew out of control and its tastes expanded to include human flesh in general.
- The Worf Effect: Suffered this at the hands of Carnage, Shriek and Senator Ward (who curbstomped him entirely off-panel).
- Yandere: For a while, Eddie was this towards his ex-wife Anne Weying, and when she committed suicide he blamed Spider-Man, called off their truce and devolved back into a villain. During the New Ways To Live miniseries, Eddie displays yandere tendencies towards Jenna Cole, inwardly admitting she's all that's keeping him from reverting back to his Lethal Protector persona and going utterly berserk when he learns she has been forced back into drug use.
- You Wouldn't Shoot Me: After they rescue Jenna Cole from the Quintas, Punisher takes aim at Eddie with a sniper rifle. Eddie looks right at him through the scope, smiles, and says "Can't do it, can you? I'm a good guy like you." Castle puts the rifle away and tells his assistant he's bleeding out and ran out of bullets.
- Your Head A Splode: When the Punisher realizes Anti-Venom is Eddie Brock, he promptly shoots him point-blank in the head with a shotgun. When Castle is about to shoot through Jenna Cole to kill a random thug, the Anti-Venom symbiote gathers up the scattered pieces of Eddie's head, puts them back together, and reforms, leaving him none the worse for wear and severely pissed off.
AKA: Ann Weying
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #375; Venom: Sinner Takes All #2 (as She-Venom)
A lawyer and Eddie's ex-wife, Ann was given the Venom symbiote by her ex-husband after being fatally shot by the new Sin-Eater, briefly turning her into the murderously psychotic She-Venom. In a later story, Ann merged with the symbiote again, Eddie having sent it to her through a telephone line to break her out of the prison she was being held in under false charges, leading to a misadventure involving the Scarlet Spider
and a criminal gang. Traumatized by being forced to transform into She-Venom again, and by Eddie becoming Venom directly in front of her after the symbiote returned to him, Ann became agoraphobic, and convinced the symbiote was out to get her. She subsequently committed suicide by jumping from her high rise apartment after seeing Spider-Man wearing his black suit, and the visiting Eddie turn into Venom to get rid of him. Eddie placed the blame for this squarely on Peter, and called off the shaky truce they had established.
- Ax-Crazy: Clearly had very little control as She-Venom, though Eddie (who nearly threw up at the sight of what she did to two men) tells her the symbiote can't make a person do something they don't already want to.
- Blondes Are Evil: As She-Venom, not that you can tell.
- Boobs-and-Butt Pose: Is frequently drawn in this position as She-Venom, emphasizing her Impossible Hourglass Figure.
- Borrowed Catchphrase: "—before I eat your brains!!!"
- Butter Face:
Junior: Huh? Wuzzat, Big Brown?
Big Brown: I dunno, Junior - but it sure as heck is female!!
Junior: Hoo-ha!! We can put a sack over her ugly head after we stomp her into submission!
: Yes. Yes, exactly. Because the first thing that comes to mind when I see a female Venom is, "Shit, I wish I could rape
- Combat Tentacles: And unlike most other Venoms, Ann's weren't just for show.
- Complaining About Rescues They Don't Like: Ann and Joe Robertson are kidnapped in the novel Venom's Wrath. When the day is saved, she dismisses Venom's involvement in her rescue.
Ann: The New York Police Department and Spider-Man rescued me. As far as I'm concerned, my ex-husband had nothing to do with it.
- Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon: "I'm going to rip your own guts out and stuff them down your own throats!!
- Dark Action Girl: When bonded to the symbiote she thought nothing of ripping apart those tho threatened her.
- Damsel in Distress: Kidnapped or otherwise put in danger a lot.
- Destination Defenestration: Her method of suicide.
- Distaff Counterpart: To Eddie Brock, her ex-husband.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Ann receiving the symbiote through the telephone is depicted very suggestively◊. The symbiote making a "once you go black"-ish comment beforehand ("She'll want us back because she's had a taste?") doesn't help.
- Driven to Suicide: The trauma of being repeatedly confronted with her ex-husband and his monstrous alter-ego drove her to take her own life.
- Embarrassing Nickname: "Mrs. Venom" and "The Bride of Venom".
- Evil Me Scares Me: Ann hated She-Venom mostly due to being afraid of what she could end up doing as her. Part of the reason why she killed herself was because she believed the symbiote (which she claimed to be able to hear) might one day come back and attempt a permanent bonding. She might have been on to something, as the three times it bonded to Ann, the symbiote only left her because it was forced to.
- Femme Fatalons: The symbiote gives her long, thin talons.
- Grave Marking Scene: While visiting her grave Eddie was attacked and temporarily separated from the symbiote by Senator Ward.
- Happier Home Movie: A wedding photo◊ is used for the cover of Along Came a Spider #4.
- Hello, Attorney!: Ann was a lawyer, and a very successful and attractive one.
- Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: The tiny girl to Eddie's huge guy, except when She-Venom.
- I Know You Are In There Somewhere Fight: Eddie tries this, but it fails.
- I'm a Humanitarian: Might have eaten her two victims. It's left unclear.
- Interrupted Cooldown Hug: Ann breaks up a fight between Spider-Man and Venom. As things settle, the latter is attacked by Silver Sable and the Wildpack.
- Meganekko: Except in Dark Origin.
- Most Common Superpower: The symbiote definitely emphasized her figure.
- Mr. Exposition: Introduced to provide details on Eddie's early life.
- Mythology Gag: Is the defense attorney of Curt Connors, according to the viral marketing for The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
- My God, What Have I Done?: While She-Venom, she ripped apart a pair of thugs, and was left distraught by the incident.
- Nightmare Sequence: Has one where she bites off and eats Eddie's entire head in Rune vs. Venom.
- Pipe Pain: On Quintana, Rune, Ben Reilly... to quote The Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe:
Minor Irritant: Man, Ann sure hits people with pipes a lot.
- Progressively Prettier: Was rather "mousy" in her first appearance, but like most "Plain Jane" comic characters she got hotter over time.
- Stuffed In The Fridge: Killed off just to reignite Venom's hatred of Spider-Man.
- Race Lift: Was black in early editions of Dark Origin. They realized the Series Continuity Error in time for later printings.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Was fond of dishing them out while disemboweling people.
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill: At the time Eddie killed rather bloodlessly. Ann, on the other hand, painted the room with her victims.
- Touch of the Monster: On the cover of Sinner Takes All #5
- Shapeshifter Guilt Trip: Rune's symbiote messes with Eddie by pretending to be her in Rune vs. Venom.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Switched between Anne and Ann, though the latter was the most frequently used.
- Volumetric Mouth: She-Venom's mouth could stretch to a ludicrous degree. While this is true for almost every symbiote character, in Ann's case it was really◊ apparent.
AKA: Patricia Robertson
Debut: Venom: Shiver
#1; Venom: Run
#5 (as She-Venom II)
Venom: Aw, c'mon cutie... is that any way to greet the love of your life?
She-Venom II: I don't have a life... not anymore. And neither should... you...
The main character of the Shiver
, and Twist
arcs. After Venom's tongue was accidentally severed during a fight with the Fantastic Four
and Spider-Man, it was stolen by a nanorobotic alien named Bob and used to create a copy of the Venom symbiote that was transported to a military laboratory in the Canadian Arctic. The copy broke containment and slaughtered everyone in the lab, and in response to the disturbance a team of US Army soldiers stationed at the Christmastown outpost in Northern Canada were dispatched. The symbiote-copy followed them back to base, where it proceeded to kill the soldiers and scientists one-by-one
until only Patricia Robertson, a communications specialist, was left. The copy was pursued by a second nanorobotic alien known only as the Suit, who tried to stop it. The symbiote-copy escaped to a town called Voici, pursued by the Suit and Patricia, and attempted to take over Wolverine
, who it viewed as an ideal host due to his Healing Factor
. The copy was eventually tricked into bonding to Patricia, who was outfitted with a cybernetic collar enabling her to control it. The Suit revealed that if the copy united with the original Venom symbiote, the latter would become consumed with the desire to destroy all life on Earth
. Naturally, Patricia was tricked into traveling to New York, where she engaged in a brawl with Spider-Man, who mistook her for Eddie Brock. The original Venom showed up, and he, Spider-Man, and Patricia engaged in a three-way brawl, during which the collar was deactivated and the symbiote clone took control. Patricia was restrained by the Fantastic Four
and the collar reactivated, but Bob, posing as the Suit, released her and deactivated the collar, sending her on a rampage. Venom eventually overpowered her and absorbed the symbiote-copy, deciding to fulfill the clone's programming
, but nothing came of it before Eddie and the symbiote went their separate ways and it hasn't been mentioned since. In 2013, Flash Thompson sent a portion of the symbiote to save the life of his neighbour, Andrea Benton. It was later revealed that this portion was in fact the symbiote clone, which the original symbiote regurgitated and passed its Hell Mark and inner demon on to.
AKA: Angelo Fortunato
Debut: Marvel Knights: Spider-Man
"Man, I'm 5'9, a hundred and ten pounds and the only girls that even talk to me are the ones my dad rents every birthday and Christmas. Exactly what am I throwing away here?"
The "second" Venom: mostly ignored
by both readers and canon. Angelo was the timid son of Don Fortunato, a Mob Boss who purchased the Venom symbiote from Eddie Brock thinking it would get his son to man up. Despite quickly mastering
the symbiote's powers, Fortunato's fight with Spider-Man turned into a Curb-Stomp Battle
not in his favour when he murdered an otherwise innocent impostor dressed as Spider-Man. Angelo fled despite the symbiote urging him to keep fighting, causing it to deem him an unworthy host and abandon him in mid-leap to fall to his death.
- Abusive Parents: It wasn't just his peers who bullied him.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys: One of his reasons for wanting to become Venom was his belief in this.
- And Show It to You: How he killed the Spidey impersonator.
- Auction of Evil: Where he and his father acquired the symbiote.
- Big Bad Wannabe: When Eddie took him aside and tried to warn him about the dangers of the symbiote, Angelo blew him off and gave him this little gem as his reason for desiring its power:
- Dirty Coward: When Spider-Man got serious in their fight, Angelo fled.
- Disney Villain Death: The symbiote ditches him in mid-jump and he falls to his death.
- Ironic Name: His name means "fortunate angel".
- The Maggia: Is the son of Maggia don Vincente Fortunato.
- Milking the Giant Cow: "I killed him for you, dad. You hear me? Angelo Fortunado just killed Spider-Man!"
- No Sell: Surprisingly, a fiery explosion didn't even faze him.
- Overly Long Tongue: Averted, making him the first host since Peter Parker to not have one in his monstrous form.
- Possession Implies Mastery: Learns to use the symbiote's powers in record time.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
Spider-Man: You weren't bullied any more than I was, Angelo. You weren't punched or kicked or spat upon any more than me. You were given great powers and you used them to kill people, you little freak. So like I said, no more chances.
Symbiote: Sigh. You know your problem, Angelo...? You just don't have enough Venom!
Angelo: Jeezus! Where are you going!
Symbiote: To find someone else, what does it look like? You're even more pathetic than Eddie Brock ended up.
- Royal "We": Averted, like Gargan and Flash.
- Sinister Schnoz: It was rather bulbous.
- Super Loser: As Spider-Man said of Mac Gargan, a loser with a symbiote is a still a loser.
- Unskilled, but Strong: Had all of Venom's power, but was nowhere near as competent a fighter as Eddie had been.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Appeared and died in the space of two issues.
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Wanted his father's approval and thought he could earn it by becoming Venom. It worked. Too bad Angelo wasn't alive to hear the praise.
- You Have Failed Me/You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: The symbiote scornfully ditches him for not having "enough venom".
Venom III / "Sinister" Spider-Man III
AKA: MacDonald "Mac" Gargan
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #19; Marvel Knights: Spider-Man #10 (as Venom III); Dark Avengers #1 (as Spider-Man III)
After ditching Angelo, the symbiote directly approaches
Gargan, already an established Super Villain
called the Scorpion
, offering him new abilities in exchange for murdering Spider-Man. Gargan eagerly agrees, and becomes the third incarnation of Venom just in time to join Norman Osborn
's Sinister Twelve
. He was imprisoned and became a member of the government-sponsored
vigilantes the Thunderbolts
, taking part in the Civil War
and helping hold off the Skrull Invasion
. During an altercation with the Steel Spider, Gargan, under the influence of the symbiote, bit off and ate his arm. This incident caused his teammates - and Gargan himself - to become increasingly distrustful of the symbiote's growing control over him. This came to a head when a group of prisoners with psychic powers were imprisoned in Thunderbolt Mountain and began psychically torturing
the team. Gargan willingly surrendered to the symbiote's bloodlust and rampaged until being cut down by the Swordsman. Following Osborn being made the head of SHIELD, Gargan was given a drug that reverted the symbiote to the appearance it had when Peter Parker wore it and joined the Dark Avengers
, where he gleefully impersonated Spider-Man. In this guise, Mac frequently went AWOL to take a bite out of crime
and started a gang war to ruin Mayor Jameson's reputation. When Mac refused to stop and pictures of him eating criminals threatened to go public, Osborn sent Daken and Bullseye to kill Gargan, and when that
failed threatened to dispose of Venom himself. After Osborn's botched invasion of Asgard, Gargan was arrested and forcefully separated from the symbiote by the government, who begin researching ways to weaponize it for the American army. Without his armour or the symbiote to stabilize the genetic degeneration caused by the process that gave him his powers, Gargan's health began to deteriorate until he was broken free by Alistair Smythe and outfitted with a new Scorpion suit.
Gargan's stint as Venom was characterized by an increasing dependence on the symbiote and its powers, despite the limitations that resulted - almost like a drug addict
. He became increasingly erratic
and unstable, driven by the symbiote's bloodlust to commit cannibalism
, even to the point of attacking his teammates and disobeying orders to chow down on street thugs.
- A Day in the Limelight: The Sinister Spider-Man miniseries is all about Mac's misadventures impersonating Spider-Man.
- Affectionate Nickname: Gargan calls the symbiote "Symby" in his diary.
- An Arm and a Leg: It all started when Gargan ate Steel Spider's arm under the influence of the symbiote. As the Sinister Spider-Man, he took to eating the limbs of criminals he apprehended. When several of these criminals and supervilllains banded together under the Redeemer and tried to kill him, Mac ate the rest of them as well.
- Ass Kicks You: When Doctor Everything replaces his mouth with a metal plate and Dementoid grabs him from behind, Mac turns his butt into a massive pair of jaws and tries to eat him that way.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: During the early issues of Dark Reign, Gargan's Venom form was T. rex-sized.
- Ax-Crazy: Not surprising, since the character was written by most writers in a way to top every extreme Venom was associated with.
- Bald of Evil: Mac has brown hair but keeps his head shaved, but it became more noticeable after he became Venom due to him being shown bareheaded a lot more.
- Beware My Stinger Tail: Mac once sprouted a stinger-tipped tail, the first hint that the symbiote was beginning to develop the ability to form weapons like its descendants can. After the symbiote was nearly killed by Anti-Venom, Norman modified the Scorpion armor he'd built to turn Mac into "Venorpion", equipping the tail with a poison tailored specifically to kill Anti-Venom.
- Big Bad Wannabe: Why Mac so willingly partnered with the symbiote. When it abandons him in What If? The Other he's left on the verge of tears.
Mac: Wait! Stop! Where are you—?! Get back here! Don't leave me! Don't make me be nothing again!
- Big Eater: Was fond of biting off people's limbs, and during the Secret Invasion Skrulls became one of the symbiote's favorite hors d'oeuvre.
Gargan: I eat most anything. Strippers, school buses, grapes. If it's something that can be eaten, I'll down it.
- Bizarre Taste in Food: After Osborn is overthrown, Spider-Man complains that half of New York thinks he eats squirrels due to Mac viewing them as fuzzy popcorn.
- Black Comedy Cannibalism: Gargan devouring people willy-nilly due to the symbiote's influence was, for the most part, played for laughs.
- Can't Live Without You: The procedure that gave Mac his powers destabilized his DNA, and without his Scorpion Powered Armor or the symbiote his health rapidly deteriorates.
- Comically Missing the Point: When Norman Osborn threatens to personally kill him the next time he goes AWOL, Gargan walks out, stating the valuable lesson he learned was that "if you start eating someone, finish the job".
- Costume Copycat: As the Sinister Spider-Man, the symbiote takes on the appearance it had when Peter wore it. Peter later exploits this by infiltrating the Dark Avengers while wearing his synthetic Black Suit.
- Create Your Own Villain: Mac's habit of biting off the limbs of criminals leads to Hippo, General Wolfram, Eleven, Dementoid, and Doctor Everything being outfitted with cybernetic limbs by the Redeemer and setting out to rehabilitate or kill him (whichever came first).
- Criminal Doppelgänger: As the Sinister Spider-Man, Mac was identical in appearance to Black Suit Spider-Man, enabling him to gleefully impersonate his longtime foe and run Spider-Man's reputation into the ground.
- Curbstomp Battle: Mac tried to attack Ms. Marvel, who responded by pulling him out the symbiote through Venom's mouth ("The Hell, lady?"). Unfortunately, this lead to the symbiote possessing Carol◊.
Symbiote: Ha! We can fly! Ms. Marvel is now my favorite superhero!
- Deadpan Snarker: While impersonating Spider-Man, Mac took up a wry form of Black Comedy.
- The Dragon: Before he fully succumbed to the symbiote's bloodlust, Gargan was more-or-less Norman's number two on the Thunderbolts.
- Dressed in Layers: Some story lines had him somehow wearing his Scorpion armor under the symbiote, although this was quickly discarded.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: While he was initially afraid of the symbiote's growing influence over him, he came to thoroughly relish being Venom.
- Evil Counterpart: As Venom, Mac was the symbiote's puppet. As the Sinister Spider-Man, he was all power, no responsibility.
- Evil Is Petty: Started a gang war just to mess with J. Jonah Jameson's reputation, vomited a half-digested squirrel onto Dexter Bennet's desk to get back at him for an unflattering article in the DB, and tried to kill Carmilla Black for having the audacity to use his old nom de guerre.
- Evil Me Scares Me: Mac grew increasingly terrified of the symbiote's bloodlust and the growing amount of control it had over him, especially after he ate the Steel Spider's arm. After the symbiote gave him a Breaking Speech, however, he embraced its bloodlust wholeheartedly.
- Eye Scream: Had a poodle thrown at him by Bullseye on Daken's behest.
Mac: AAAAAAH! Dog in the eye! Dog! Dammit!
- Fight Off the Kryptonite: Mac was blasted by Eleven's sonic scream... and ate her. During the Siege, he was thrown into an explosion by Colossus, and came out none the worse for wear but extremely pissed off.
- Fully-Embraced Fiend: While he was initially afraid of the symbiote when it was dormant, after its Breaking Speech Gargan came to fully embrace the power it gave him and relished it.
- Functional Addict: Despite initially fearing the symbiote, Gargan eventually gleefully embraces its bloodlust while impersonating Spider-Man.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: Gargan initially had a Spawn-like vibe, with glowing green or yellow eyes being visible within the symbiote's white eye-patches. Later on, Mac's Venom form resembled a much more monstrous version of Eddie Brock's, without the inner eyes at all.
- Gonk: They seemed intent on making Mac's Venom form look as repulsive as possible in Beyond!
- Healing Factor: The Swordsman almost cut Mac completely in half with his Makluan Sword, but he recovered.
- Hulking Out: One of Mac's hallmark traits as Venom was that most often he was just a really bulky guy with sharp teeth, but whenever he got angry or the symbiote came down with a case of the munchies he'd bulk up to the point where he made the Hulk himself look vertically challenged. Also played straight with his ability to shift between his "Spider-Man" and "Venom" forms during the Dark Avengers arc.
- Human Pincushion: Bullseye turns him into one using a poodle and corn dogs.
- I Am A Humanitarian: During his tenure with Thunderbolts and Dark Avengers, Gargan was overwhelmed by the symbiote's bloodlust to the point where he would more-than willingly commit cannibalism to satiate it. At one point, Norman Osborn threatened to personally dispose of him when pictures of Gargan going AWOL and chowing down on various criminals almost went public.
- Impersonation Gambit: Does this to the original Spider-Man as a member of the Dark Avengers, and has it done to him by Peter in return.
- Insanity Immunity: He was unaffected by Dementoid's madness-inducing touch, either due to the symbiote or because he's already too far off the deep end to go any further.
- Jumped at the Call: When the symbiote offered its services, Mac gleefully accepted.
- Medium Awareness: Writes the summaries for and answers the Fourth Wall Mail Slot of his own Dark Reign tie-in.
- Męlée ā Trois: In the Sinister Spider-Man miniseries, Mac wound up caught between the surviving Redeemers - a group of vengeful supervillains he'd mutilated, Daken and Bullseye - who'd been sent by Osborn to assassinate him, and the Rolling Sevens & Park Avenue gangs - who he had started a gang war between For the Evulz. Mac promptly Curb Stomp Battles everyone until J. Jonah Jameson breaks the fight up, accidentally making Gargan look like a hero in the process.
- Never Found the Body: Gargan was used to invoke this as a member of the Thunderbolts and Dark Avengers: anyone Norman wanted disappeared was thrown into Venom's cell.
- Never Live It Down: After Gargan eats the Steel Spider's arm, the team becomes increasingly afraid of him, citing this incident and his growing inclination towards satiating the symbiote's hunger.
- No Sell: Getting tossed into an explosion during the "Dark Avengers vs. Utopia" arc just made him angry.
- Not Me This Time: During an altercation with the Jury, Mac exclaims, "Listen... I'm not... the same Venom... you guys had a beef with!"
- Only in It for the Money ...and the strippers, and the take-out villain limbs...
- Powered Armor: Norman made him a new Scorpion suit, but Mac turned it down to wear the symbiote. Osborn later modified the armor◊ so that Mac could wear it over the symbiote after it was almost killed by Anti-Venom. It's destroyed when Mac and the symbiote begin bickering over what they should do with Eddie.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: His eyes were drawn as being red in some comics.
- Reliable Traitor: Mac deliberately disobeys Norman's orders multiple times, beginning from when he became Venom instead of using the new Scorpion suit Gobby had made for him. This comes to a head when he is photographed eating people, putting Norman's power in jeopardy and causing Osborn to try to pull a You Have Outlived Your Usefulness on him.
- Royal "We": Sometimes averted, sometimes played straight, depending on the writer. In his Dark Reign tie-in, he sneers that Eddie was a "sissy elitist" for insisting on referring to himself as "we".
Anti-Venom: You said "me", Gargan.
- Sanity Slippage: Mac became increasingly feral under the symbiote's influence, to the point where even his own teammates were afraid he'd try to eat them.
- Scary Teeth: His fangs were yellow and just plain rotten looking in Beyond!.
- Slasher Smile: As Spider-Man, Mac had a habit of manifesting a serrated grin without fully shifting into his Venom form, using it to frighten people.
- Sociopathic Hero: As the Sinister Spider-Man he deliberately abused Spider-Man's reputation, and even as a member of the Thunderbolts he threatened to eat innocent civilians, though he later claimed it was to scare Skrulls out of hiding.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Mac is given one by the symbiote, or maybe one of the new psychic prisoners, in Thunderbolts. Either way, it worked since he became a lot less reluctant about feeding it afterwards.
Symbiote/Bluestreak III: Stop complaining. Always complaining. It's too cold. Stuff hurts. I didn't mean to eat that guy's arm. Whining little maggot. You don't deserve me. You never did. Did I actually hear you say you didn't want to be the scary guy? You used to be the Scorpion. You used to be a hard man. Why did you turn into a schoolgirl as soon as you tasted some fresh meat?
Gargan: What's... What's going on...
Symbiote/Bluestreak III: I can't sit back and wait for you to become a man. I get hungry. Look at me, you little girl! It's time I took control of things. No more of you pretending you can't hear me, up there in the driver's seat. I'm hungry. We need to take care of that. Today. Now.
Symbiote/Bluestreak III: Yes. Yes yes yes yes yes. We are going to get us an honest-to-God meal today. Or I'm just going to have to eat you from the inside out.
- Take That: Gargan calls Eddie a "sissy elitest" for referring to himself as "we" all the time.
- Token Evil Teammate: Julia Carpenter convinced Mac to join her, Spider-Woman and Anti-Venom in their crusade against the corrupted Peter in What If Spider-Man Killed Kraven the Hunter?.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Other than other humans, he has a taste for squirrels and Skrulls.
- Villain with Good Publicity: As a member of the Thunderbolts and the Dark Avengers.
- We Used to Be Friends: Back when Norman Osborn and Gargan both wore green, they worked together and Gargan came to consider Osborn a friend of sorts. With Osborn in red-white-and-blue and Gargan in black-and-white, they're less amicable towards one another.
- Wild Card: Osborn refers to him as such during their search for Spider-Man, where Mac was disregarding orders to follow the symbiote's psychic link to its past hosts.
- Your Approval Fills Me with Shame: Gargan begrudgingly admires J. Jonah Jameson for having "the cahones to grow a Hitler 'stache."
"Agent" Venom IV
Click here to see his appearance after joining the Guardians of the Galaxy.
AKA: Colonel Eugene "Flash" Thompson
Debut: Amazing Fantasy #15; The Amazing Spider-Man #654 (as Venom IV); Secret Avengers #23 (as Agent Venom)
Peter Parker's former Jerk Jock bully
of a friend. Flash enlists in the army during the Iraq War
and is grievously wounded in action, losing his legs while saving his comrades. Lauded as a hero for his sacrifice, he is given an offer by the military: he can "rent" the Venom symbiote, which was subdued by drugs, for 48-hour periods (never long enough for the symbiote to establish control) for use in important missions, regaining the use of his legs in the process. Thompson agrees and subsequently becomes the new Venom, marking the character's transition to fully-fledged hero
. In addition to the usual plethora of abilities, Thompson is a trained marksman, and uses a variety of firearms in his capacity as a government-sponsored Super Soldier
. However, should Flash become angry while wearing the symbiote or surpass his 48 hour time limit, it will attempt to take control of his body
. During this time, Flash came into conflict with a criminal mastermind called the Crime Master, and acquired an archenemy in the form of Jack O'Lantern, the Crime Master's right hand
After the events of Spider-Island, Flash went AWOL to retain the symbiote and hopefully protect his friends and family from the Crime Master. This led Captain America to send Red Hulk
after him. Flash teamed up with Rulk, X-23
and the newest Ghost Rider
against Blackheart while they were in Las Vegas and saved the world from Hell on Earth
. With those actions in mind, Captain America placed Flash, under the belief that he hadn't bonded with the symbiote, within the Secret Avengers
, the black-ops wing of The Avengers
, and had Hank McCoy perfect the drug keeping the symbiote docile. Flash was called in to stop Carnage from conquering the town of Doverton, Colorado, and defeated Cletus Kasady sans symbiote
. Following that, he infiltrated the Crime Master's Savage Six and seemingly killed Eddie Brock, the original Venom, who had been forced to become the new Toxin by the Crime Master. After killing or capturing the remaining members of the Savage Six, who had kidnapped Betty Brant
, he teamed up with Kaine, the second Scarlet Spider, to stop Carnage, who had again escaped from prison and was being used to manufacture an army of symbiote super soldiers to conquer the Microverse.
As a member of the Secret Avengers
, Flash began dating his teammate Valkyrie and struck up a friendship with Eric O'Grady, the then-current Ant-Man
. After the team's reshuffling
, Flash left the Secret Avengers roster, moved to Philadelphia, and became a member of Red Hulk's Thunderbolts
. During an encounter with Daimon Hellstrom
, Flash was possessed by an ancient demon, which seemed to be getting along nicely with the Venom symbiote to the point where Flash was no longer sure which, if either
, took control of his body during his occasional blackouts. Flash set up a new life for himself as a vigilante and assistant high-school gym coach, but came into conflict with Eddie Brock, who had survived and tracked him down to Philadelphia. Their grudge match was interrupted by the Symbiote Slayers, parasitic biomechanical organisms similar to the symbiotes themselves, and Eddie and Flash arranged a truce
to defeat them. Eddie agreed to leave Flash in peace so long as he continued to use the Venom symbiote for good, but Flash's vigilanteism brought him into conflict with Lord Ogre, a crime lord who put a price on his head. The bounty alerted Jack O'Lantern to Venom's whereabouts, and Flash was forced to bond a piece of the Venom symbiote to his teenaged neighbour/student Andrea Benton to save her life when her family was targeted, turning her into Mania
. Flash confronted Daimon Hellstrom, who revealed Mephisto's hell mark and the demon had been excised, and Flash returned to save Mania from Crossbones
, who was hunting those who bore the hell marks. Wanting answers, Flash confronted the Venom symbiote and it revealed it passed both the hell mark and demon on to Mania in order to protect him and itself from being taken over. Flash and Andi summoned Mephisto, who revealed the portion of the symbiote bonded to her was in fact the clone of the symbiote that had once been bonded to Patricia Robertson, and assisted them in defeating Crossbones. However, he refused to remove the hell mark from Andi, revealing that the deal that bestowed Venom with the hell mark had not been made with Flash, but with the supposedly lobotomized
Flash returned to New York after hearing rumors of the Crime Master resurfacing, and while he engaged with the Crime Master's minions, the Superior Spider-Man
arrived on the scene and assisted in exposing the Crime Master as an impostor. Flash thanked him for the help, but Spider-Man remarked that he didn't show up to take down the Crime Master, but rather Venom, blasting Flash with a wrist-mounted flamethrower. Flash faked a surrender
, took out Spider-Man's Spiderlings, and escaped, the symbiote badly injured. He showed up at Peter's house later in the day, interrupting a luncheon with Aunt May, Jay Jameson, and "Peter's" girlfriend Anna. "Peter" convinced Flash to undergo surgery to give him cybernetic legs and used the operation to remove the symbiote, which promptly escaped containment and reunited with its original host, transforming the Superior Spider-Man into the Superior Venom. Flash tried to coerce the symbiote to return to him - which it attempted to do, having been turned off by "Peter's" new attitude
- but SpOck quickly became enamoured with the power it gives him and dominated it with his will, forcing it to remain bonded to him
. The Superior Venom set off to test his newfound power, and shortly afterwards Flash was informed that the drugs he had been taking to suppress the symbiote had altered his body chemistry to be dependant on it and without it he only has a few hours left to live. With help from the Avengers, Flash succeeded in reclaiming the symbiote from SpOck, becoming Agent Venom once again, and returned to Philadelphia.
" leaving the Thunderbolts, Flash was confronted by Tony Stark
, who told him of the Guardians of the Galaxy
and that he felt that there needed to be an Avenger with the team after having spent some time with them himself. Flash was completely dumbfounded by the descriptions Tony gave him of these heroes, especially Groot and Rocket Raccoon, but decided to accept the offer. Though the Guardians were quick to be dismissive of Flash after seeing his handicapped form, they reconsidered their opinions once they saw him as Agent Venom. Before leaving, Tony gave Peter "Star Lord" Quill a device in case the symbiote got out of control and there was no way to stop it normally. Flash quickly adapted to life in space and befriended Drax the Destroyer, although he was loathe to give up his trademark Multigun in exchange for alien weaponry. However, he was abducted by Skrulls, who tried to take the symbiote from him. Although he reclaimed the symbiote and escaped, he chose not to reunite with the rest of the team, instead searching for a way to return to Earth. However, Flash found his way to the symbiotes' homeworld, where he learned the truth of the creatures and, in the process, has his symbiote powered up.
AKA: Andrea "Andi" Benton
Vol. 2, #31; Venom
Vol. 2, #38 (as Mania)
"You vermin couldn't be so lucky. The Devil herself has come for you. You only wish I was Venom. But me... you can call me — MANIA!"
A teenage girl who lives in the apartment above Flash's and goes to the high school where Flash teaches as an assistant gym coach, Andi noticed something was unusual about her teacher and came to the conclusion Thompson was Agent Venom. Shortly afterwards, her family was attacked by Jack O'Lantern, a supervillain who knew Venom's secret identity and had come in response to a bounty placed on Venom's head by the crime boss Lord Ogre. Andi watched Jack O'Lantern murder her father and was nearly killed herself, but Flash sent a portion of the Venom symbiote to protect her. The symbiote bonded with her, and she nearly beat Jack O'Lantern to death before being stopped by Flash. Andi, calling herself Mania, swore revenge on Lord Ogre and while Flash was otherwise occupied started a brutal crusade against Philadelphia's mob. When Mania finally located Lord Ogre, Flash stopped her from killing him and informed her that the portion of the symbiote she possessed contained the hell mark bestowed upon Venom by Mephisto and possibly the demon Daimon Hellstrom had possessed him with. Crossbones shows up hunting the possessor of the hell mark and unleashes an army of demons, but she seizes control of them and she and Venom retreat. Flash summons Mephisto to remove the Hell Mark from Andi, but the demon reveals that the mark belongs to the symbiote, and that the portion of the symbiote bonded to her was actually the symbiote clone once bonded to Patricia Robertson.
- Anti-Heroine: Andi is more than willing to mow down any crook who gets between her and Lord Ogre. Flash tries to restrain her, but isn't very successful.
- Anime Hair: As Mania, Andi gains a spiky hairdo resembling Sonic the Hedgehog.
- Badass Boast: Mania threatened to stomp a mud-hole through Mephisto, and when she made her debut gave a group of Lord Ogre's henchmen a chilling little introduction.
- Blade Below the Shoulder: Can transform her arms into scythe or sword-like blades.
- Call Back: Andi is bonded to the clone of the Venom symbiote created way back in 2003's Shiver mini-story.
- Dark Action Girl: A female Kid Anti-Hero who kicks ass and takes names.
- Demonic Possession: Bears Mephisto's hell mark and possibly Daimon Hellstrom's demon.
- Kid Sidekick: Reluctantly plays this role to Agent Venom.
- Little Miss Badass: Is only a high-school student, but threatens to "stomp a mud-hole" through Mephisto.
- Leeroy Jenkins: Despite promising Flash that she'll wait for him to get back from checking up Daimon Hellstrom, she goes on a rampage the moment he boards the plane.
- Mind Manipulation: Can take control of demons using the hell mark.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: When pissed off she manifests a mouth full of fangs. When she's rampaging against the fake Jack O'Lantern, her whole face becomes a massive Lamprey Mouth out of sheer hatred and bloodlust.
- Nineties Anti-Hero: Leaving aside her choice of alias, Andi sports a loose belt, knee-pads, vambrace, bangles, and army boots, all studded with spikes. She's also more vicious and unrestrained than Flash is.
- Oh, Crap: When she realizes Lord Ogre wasn't bluffing about the dead man's switch-rigged bio-bomb.
- Possession Implies Mastery: One of the things that tipped Flash off to the fact that something was off about Mania was how fast she mastered the symbiote's abilities.
- Rebellious Spirit: She has numerous facial piercings, dyes her hair purple, and routinely cuts class.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: When the fake Jack O'Lantern kills her father, Andi tried to tear him apart and smother him with the symbiote, even though she knew he'd been hypnotized by the real Jack O'Lantern, until Flash called her off. She also swore revenge against Lord Ogre and was even willing to detonate the dead man's switch he had connected to a bioweapon powerful enough to take out half of Philly, reasoning that the symbiote would make her immune to the fallout.
- Rubber Woman: Can stretch her limbs.
- The Slacker: Was this before Jack O'Lantern paid her and her father a visit.
- Speak In Unison: Does this with Venom to annoy him while they're threatening Crossbones and Master Mayhem.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Andi hasn't been seen since the conclusion of Venom Vol. 2, where Flash promised to help remove the Hell Mark and demon from her.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Has been on the receiving end of several from Flash regarding her less-than heroic behaviour. She responds with You're Not My Father, but in the end they share a heartfelt hug.
- You're Not My Father: When Flash starts getting overly protective of her and disrupting her Roaring Rampage of Revenge, Mania yells at him that he is not her father. This is enough to shock Flash out of his Venom form, though they later reconcile with a hug.
- You Killed My Father: The reason she wanted Lord Ogre dead was that the bounty he put on Flash got her father killed.
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man
#697; Superior Spider-Man
#23 (as Superior Venom)
"We... are... the SUPERIOR VENOM!"
When Agent Venom returned to New York City to hunt down the supposedly resurrected Crime Master and his minions, the Superior Spider-Man intervened and helped him. When Agent Venom thanked him for the assist, Otto remarked that he hadn't done so intentionally before blasting him with a flamethrower, injuring the symbiote. When Flash showed up at Peter's house later on in the day, Otto convinced him to undergo surgery at Parker Industries to equip him with cybernetic legs, using the operation as an excuse to extract the symbiote from his body. Flash's warnings that the symbiote was more powerful than when it had been bonded to Peter were ignored, and the alien escaped containment and took advantage of the opportunity to rebond to its beloved original host. However, the symbiote soon realized that something was very wrong
with "Peter" and attempted to return to Flash. Otto, enamoured with the symbiote's power, subjugated it and forced it to remain bonded to him
before setting out to test his newfound power. As the "Superior" Venom, Otto targeted anyone committing any
crime, no matter how minor, using even more brutal force than usual.
When his girlfriend Anna Maria Marconi informed him that Aunt May had made discriminatory comments regarding her stature, Otto lashed out at "his" aunt. When Mary Jane attempted to scold him, Otto received a message about an ongoing heist conducted by Hobgoblin's minions and transformed into Venom in front of her. Fearing the symbiote had finally succeeded in taking Peter over, Mary Jane contacted the Avengers, who interrupted Otto's attempted murder of Blaze and instructed him to stand down and surrender the symbiote. Otto refused and summoned his Spiderlings for backup, leading to an all-out brawl between him and his former teammates. As Superior Venom gained the upper hand, Captain America sent Iron Man to find Flash Thompson, who was dying without the symbiote. When Flash attempted to coax the symbiote to return to him a second time, the livid alien fully seized control of Otto's body and attacked him in retribution for being controlled with chemicals. Otto attempted to expel the symbiote, but nearly lost his internal struggle before it was driven out by Peter's restored psyche. The symbiote returned to Flash, leaving Otto to face the wrath of the furious Avengers and
a mob of civilians revolting against his brutal, authoritarian methods. Realizing he could use the incident to his advantage, Otto told them that traces of the symbiote in his body had been influencing his behaviour for months before finally taking him over. With Mary Jane and the Avengers seemingly accepting this explanation at face value, Otto rejoiced that he had fooled everyone, but Captain America later asked Flash if the symbiote could provide an explanation for Peter's bizarre behavior.
- Angel Face, Demon Face: When Otto was in control of the symbiote his eye lenses and webbing motif were smooth. However, he could assume a monstrous form with a fanged maw, jagged eyes, a distorted webbing motif.
- Badass: Superior Venom was powerful enough to take on the majority of the Avengers and nearly won. He tanked a direct blow from Mjolnir while staggering Thor with a punch of his own, and badly damaged Iron Man's Model 42 armor with a single blow.
- Bad Liar: Otto tells everyone that he was being controlled by traces of the symbiote that infected him when Spider-Man first fought Agent Venom in Venom #4. Mary Jane buys the excuse, but the Avengers do not.
- Black Eyes of Evil: Like Flash, Superior Venom has white-rimmed black lenses for eyes. Unlike Flash, Otto plays this trope straight.
- Combat Tentacles: The symbiote turns Otto's robotic spider legs into biomechanical tentacles resembling the ones he had as Doctor Octopus.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Otto easily defeated Bruin, Devil-Spider, Steeplejack, Tumbler, Ringer, and Blaze - a troop of the Hobgoblin's minions. When the Avengers stopped him from killing Blaze, Otto proceeded to take them all on at once and hand them their asses.
- Fighting from the Inside: In a striking inversion, the symbiote was the one fighting against Otto's control. When it succeeded in taking him over, Otto unsuccessfully tried to fight it off and gave up until Ghost Peter intervened.
- Hijacking Cthulhu: Otto dominated the symbiote with his will, preventing it from returning to Flash. The symbiote later returned the favor.
Symbiote: Old host... bad. Tastes... wrong. Want to go home.
Flash: That's it. Come to Flash. Back where you belong.
Otto: I think not!
- Hulking Out: Superior Venom bulks up massively when the symbiote takes over.
- In Love with Your Carnage: The reason Otto decided to keep the symbiote instead of killing it or putting it back into containment.
- Mythology Gag: The symbiote turned Otto's robotic spider legs into biomechanical tentacles similar to the ones he had as Doctor Octopus.
- Oh, Crap: When Otto realizes the symbiote has been undermining his will and that he can't control it anymore, let alone force it to leave him, he starts to panic and gives up. Fortunately for him, Peter's psyche intervenes.
- Sssssnake Talk: As Otto's control over the symbiote wavered his speech became increasingly sibilant.
- Tainted Veins: Superior Venom possesses a white webbing motif on his head and shoulders, as a Mythology Gag to Venom in Spider-Man 3. When he goes berserk, it becomes distorted and even more vein-like.
- Voice of the Legion: As Otto's control of the symbiote slips, he speaks in distorted red speech bubbles with jagged white text, though he often catches himself and goes back to speaking normally. When the symbiote fully takes over, the speech bubbles become black.
- What the Hell, Hero?: When Flash asks the symbiote to come back to him a second time, it fully seizes control of Otto and lays into him verbally and physically for keeping it chemically suppressed.
Venom: You... used chemicals, controlled me. Now I am in control. Better, faster, stronger... Sssuperior!
Notable Alternate Universe versions of Venom
AKA: Kron Stone
Debut: The Punisher 2099
#1; Spider-Man 2099
#35 (as Venom 2099)
"As I live and breathe... or whatever it is... I do... Miguel O'Hara... and Tyler Stone... together again. We... I get to kill you... at the same time... how awfully... awfully... considerate. To show my appreciation... I'll kill you slowly."
Kron Stone, the son of Alchemax CEO Tyler Stone and unknowingly the older half-brother
of Miguel O'Hara, aka Spider-Man 2099. As a child, Stone was a bully
and thug who took delight in tormenting his half-sibling
, and as an adult he became a Serial Killer
and murdered the family of Jake Gallows. In retaliation to Kron walking with only a minor fine, Gallows took up the mantle of The Punisher
and fatally stabbed him before dumping him in the sewers. Dying, Kron brushed against the Venom symbiote, which had laid dormant for nearly a century, and it bonded to and took over him. As Venom, Kron was bestowed with powers beyond those Eddie Brock had possessed, and used them to torment Miguel, even going so far as to murder his Love Interest
Dana, but was ultimately defeated when Miguel used the city's speakers to amplify a sonic blast. Venom was taken in for study and the symbiote was separated from its host, but escaped and bonded to Roman the Sub-Mariner, escaping into the ocean. In the Timestorm 2009-2099
crossover event, an alternate version of Kron Stone is transformed into the 2099 equivalent
of the Scorpion
by a time flux
caused by Jake Gallows and his own father.
- '80s Hair: Kron had an... interesting haircut.
- Abusive Parents: Tyler Stone had nothing but disdain for Kron. Upon noticing him in captivity, Tyler promised to have him executed once he regained control of Alchemax.
- Alternate Self: The Kron Stone in Timestorm became a monstrous version of the Scorpion. Shattered Dimensions lampshades this by positing that they're either the same person or Kron Stone is a really common name in 2099.
- Ashes to Crashes: Upon being given what were assumed to be Kron's ashes, Tyler flushed them down the toilet.
- Ax-Crazy: The symbiote bonding to him actually seemed to make Kron slightly less of a homicidal maniac.
- Badass Abnormal: When last seen, the symbiote had bonded to Roman the Sub-Mariner, an already extremely powerful New Atlantean, and one who happens to hate all surface life. Oh crap.
- Barbaric Bully/Bully Brutality: And he only got worse with each passing year.
- Big Brother Bully: Though he and Miguel didn't know they shared DNA.
- Blob Monster: Can become amorphous at will, and travel through plumbing.
- Bloody Murder: He has Hollywood Acid for body fluids.
- Cain and Abel: The Cain to Miguel O'Hara's Abel.
- The Cameo: Venom 2099 is included in the Continuity Cavalcade shown in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, #23
- Chest Insignia: Notably, it's not attached to the rest of the suit, instead dangling from white strands.
- Deflector Shields: When confronted by the new Punisher, he employed a personal force field that rendered all firearms and fast-moving projectiles useless. The Punisher knifed him.
- Depower: Kron was separated from the symbiote, which would go on to run off with Roman.
- Evil Evolves: The symbiote mutated over the course of a century, giving Kron enhanced abilities.
- Extreme Melee Revenge: After the depowered Kron was captured, Miguel made him a deal; beat me in a fight, and I'll let you go, but if I win, you tell me all about how you became Venom. Miguel mopped the floor with Kron, and continued to do so even after Kron had cried uncle.
- Faking the Dead: Kron melted a vagrant down to a skeleton, and left his I.D. on the body.
- Freudian Excuse: Kron claimed his family never loved him, leaving a robot to care for him but never bothering to program it, causing it to default to veterinarian mode.
Kron: Do you know what it's like to be fitted with a collar, live in a kennel, and be fed on dog meat?!
Jake: No, but I know what it's like to have your family butchered by a crazy with a sob story.
- Guns Akimbo: With machine guns, no less.
- Hilariously Abusive Childhood: The caretaker robot thought he was a dog.
- Hostile Show Takeover: The premise of the variant covers of his arc.
- Human All Along: Miguel is shocked to discover a human underneath the goo, considering all of the powers Venom 2099 had previously displayed, like reshaping after being reduced to a puddle.
- Insane Troll Logic: Kron wiped out Jake Gallows's relatives, but left Jake alive, reasoning that since Jake was no longer a member of a family, he didn't have a beef with him anymore.
- Kick the Dog: Does everything in his power to torment Miguel, and there's also how he acts while being tried for the murder of the Gallows family.
Kron: Jake! Good to see you... glad you could make it...
Judge: Kron Stone, you are sentenced to a fine of 2.2 mega dollars and micro brain surgery to cure your anti-social behavior.
Kron: Human life—cheap, isn't it? I paid more for this suit.
- Nigh Invulnerable: Being a humanoid blob of acidic gunk, most attacks were either harmlessly absorbed, or passed right through him.
- Non-Standard Character Design: Venom 2099 is blue instead of black, has glowing red eyes, a bone-white face, a claw protruding from his ankle, and detached webbing in place of legs on his spider emblems.
- Obviously Evil: While almost all of the Venoms look menacing, this one is further augmented by glowing red eyes, and a face that looks like a skull.
- Patricide: The first thing on Kron's to-do list after resurfacing as Venom was killing his father, Tyler.
- Purple Is The New Black: As Venom he is dark blue rather than black.
- Raised by Robots: His parents left him in the care of one that thought he was a dog.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: He has glowing red eyes.
- Rogues-Gallery Transplant: The Punisher's first villain became one of Spider-Man's deadliest foes.
- Sadist/The Sociopath: A textbook example, as he was murderous even as a child.
- Sadistic Choice: Tried to make Miguel choose between Dana and Xina.
- Schoolyard Bully All Grown Up: As Miguel discovered when the wounded symbiote retracted.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: If you're rich and/or well-connected in the 2099 Verse, you can get away with anything, regardless of how heinous.
- Serial Killer: Predates Mac Gargan in this respect.
- Smug Snake: First due to his essentially limitless wealth, and then due to acquiring superpowers.
- Spikes of Villainy: His tongue had spines on it.
- Teens Are Monsters: While still in school, Kron (among other things) attempted to drown Miguel, and tried to rape a girl at knifepoint.
- Token Motivational Nemesis: Kron was this for The Punisher 2099, who in turn caused his transformation into Venom. Ironically, the two never encountered each other again after becoming supers.
- We Will Meet Again: The parting words of "Venom the Sub-Mariner":
Roman: Rue this day, Alchemax! Dread the future, O'Hara! We return to our ocean home! But someday, we shall finish what we have begun! Enjoy the rest of 2099, O'Hara, for you will not see 2100.
- White Mask of Doom: Unlike most incarnations of Venom, the Venom 2099's face is white.
- White Hair, Black Heart: As Kron he is a serial killer with white hair.
- Would Hurt a Child: He was about to massacre an amusement park when the Punisher caught up with him.
Venom (Earth X)
AKA: Mayday Parker
Debut: Earth X
"You don't have me, dad. Maybe mom thought you shouldn't be a hero, but I don't."
In a world where Everyone Is a Super
due to the release of a mutagen called the Terrigan Mist
, May Parker has taken over for her cynical, retired father as New York's resident web-slinger. At some point in her past, May became bonded to the Venom symbiote, which sought to use her to take revenge on Peter Parker, but ended up subjugating it and becoming Venom, which further alienated her and her father. May attempted to stop the psychic supervillain the Skull from taking over New York City, but was subdued by his bodyguard/lover Iron Maiden and subjugated to the Skull's mind control, becoming his "lady". May was freed from the Skull's mind control by her father, who came out of retirement, and Captain America, who killed the Skull, and joined the NYPD alongside her father at Luke Cage's request.
When her father was sent to capture a being known as "Spiders Man", who was capable of spinning illusion-enducing energy webs and was working for the Church of Immortus
, Venom went looking for him and found him ensnared in Spiders Man's illusions. Tapping into Peter's dream world, she was outraged to find he'd constructed a fantasy world where he had married Gwen Stacy and had a son named Ben. Forcing her father to face reality and come to terms with his life, Venom helped take Spiders Man into custody, and subsequently helped stop the Church of Immortus from dousing the Human Torch, a reactor created to purify the air of the Terrigan Mist, in New York. Venom eventually encountered an alternate version of herself from Earth-1122, who had come to warn Peter Parker about the threat of entities called the Celestials
. Venom and Spider-Girl initially fought, but after learning they were Alternate Selves
they came to regard each other as sisters. Later, Venom accompanied her father to quell a disturbance at the Baxter Building caused by denizens of the Negative Zone, and it was discovered that Captain Marvel had created an afterlife called Paradise in the depths of the Zone and was seeking to kill Death, to which end he had reincarnated several deceased heroes and villains as the Avenging Host
. Venom was forced to retreat from the Negative Zone as her world was consumed by the expansion of Paradise. Krang the Conquerer rescues her from being sucked into the expanding vortex and recruits her into the Chronos Corps, his team of heroes and villains from doomed universes, in order to stop the Apocalypse Twins. May helps the team in their attack on Eimin Worthington, and takes down the resurrected Banshee herself.
AKA: Eddie Brock
Debut: Spider-Man Unlimited Episode 1 ("Worlds Apart, Part One")
Eddie Brock was an unscrupulous reporter working for the Daily Bugle, covering the story of John Jameson's trip into space. When Spider-Man rid himself of the symbiote, Eddie, who had been webbed up nearby, became its next host, clashing with Spider-Man repeatedly before being taken into SHIELD custody. While escaping prison, Venom bonded a portion of his symbiote to the serial killer Cletus Kasady, turning him into Carnage, and the two became a monstrous team. Over the years, the symbiote took complete control of Eddie's body, and together with Carnage attacked John Jameson's shuttle to Counter-Earth, guided by an entity they called the Synoptic. On Counter-Earth, Venom and Carnage began working to further the Synoptic's goal of conquering Counter-Earth with symbiotes, at times working with the High Evolutionary, but most often against both him and Spider-Man.
Eddie was separated from the symbiote by the High Evolutionary's forces, who wanted to study and dissect the alien. Spider-Man reluctantly took Eddie to Dr. Yamada-Jones, who revealed that without the symbiote he would die. Eddie demanded Spider-Man retrieve the alien, threatening to reveal his secret identity, and Spider-Man tracked it down to a laboratory. Discovering it was dying without a host, he reluctantly allowed it to bond to him. In the clinic, Eddie slowly reconnected with his humanity and befriended Dr. Yamada-Jones' son, Shane, deciding to die as a human rather than become a monster again. Carnage, having sensed something was wrong, attacked just as Spider-Man arrived, and Brock re-bonded to the symbiote to protect his new friends. He remained in control just long enough to get Carnage out of the clinic before the symbiote reasserted control.
- The Bad Guy Wins: Venom and Carnage succeed with their plan to unleash the Synoptic across Counter Earth.
- Big Bad Ensemble: He and Carnage had this dynamic with the High Evolutionary.
- Blob Monster: He can become completely amorphous, a power implied to have been conferred on him by the Synoptic.
- Can't Live Without You: He's spent so long bonded to the symbiote that he can't live without it.
- Evil Redhead: Unlike the mainstream Eddie, this version is a redhead.
- Fusion Dance: He and Carnage merge together to fight Spider-Man.
- Heel-Face Turn: As he's dying, Eddie apologizes for all the harm he's caused. Unfortunately, the symbiote's brief reunion with Spider-Man didn't make it any more sympathetic towards humanity and it goes right back to serving the Synoptic after retaking Eddie.
- Puppeteer Parasite: The symbiote is in complete control of Eddie's body.
- Religion of Evil: He and Carnage worship the Synoptic, an Eldritch Abomination formed from the fused corpses of millions of ancient symbiotes.
- Royal "We": Like most incarnations of Venom, he speaks in the first-person plural.
- Rubber Man: Venom could stretch and freely elongate his limbs.
- Sibling Team: Carnage and Venom refer to each other as brothers and are almost always found together.
- Spikes of Villainy: His back has two rows of spikes on his back in place of a spider emblem
- Tiny-Headed Behemoth: He possesses an almost comically small head atop a Hulk-sized body.
- Voice of the Legion: Venom's voice is deep and distorted.
AKA: Edward "Eddie" Brock, Jr.
Debut: Ultimate Spider-Man
#33; Ultimate Spider-Man
#37 (as Venom)
"It needs you — it needs you to survive. It needs you more than me!! I can't do it alone. It needs you... this is all your fault."
Hoping to create a cure for cancer and other diseases, Edward Brock Sr. and Richard Parker began work on the Venom Project, developing a viscous black fluid designed to encase and enhance the wearer's body. Having run out of funding, they turned to Trask Industries, who financed their research into the project's second stage. However, when military applications for the Suit became apparent, Trask seized their research, intending to weaponize it. During the ensuing legal battle, Richard and Edward and their wives were killed in a plane crash, orphaning their sons Peter and Eddie Jr. While Peter was sent to live with his Aunt May and Uncle Ben, Eddie was put into foster care. As a college student, Eddie uncovered their notes and a sample of the Venom Suit, and continued their work hoping to finish it. When Peter contacted him, Eddie showed him the sample, proclaiming it to be their inheritance. While Eddie went out on a date with Gwen Stacy, Peter, furious over how Trask Industries had stolen his father's research, snuck into the lab to take some of the sample for his own research. Peter accidentally spilled a drop on his hand, which enveloped his body in a jet-black bio-suit that amplified all of his powers. Overjoyed with his new invulnerability and augmented powers, Peter stopped a kidnapping and took down the Shocker. After witnessing a robbery gone wrong that reminded him of his Uncle's murder, Peter was overwhelmed by rage, transforming into a monstrous creature and nearly devouring the robber before coming to his senses. Unable to control the Venom Suit even with his powers and genetic link to Richard, whose DNA the sample had been synchronized to, Peter accidentally leapt into telephone wires and the resulting surge of electricity destroyed the Suit.
After being turned down by Gwen, Eddie saw a televised broadcast of Spider-Man wearing a black costume. Thinking Peter had betrayed him and that Spider-Man had stolen their parents' legacy, Eddie returned to the lab to find a battered and injured Peter attempting to dispose of the sample. Peter revealed to Eddie that he was Spider-Man, and warned him that in its incomplete state the Venom Suit inflicted its wearer with uncontrollable bloodlust. Unable to stop Peter from destroying the sample, Eddie waited until he had left before taking a second specimen and deliberately exposing himself to it. Eddie immediately lost control and transformed into a horrifying monster called Venom, discovering the hard way that the Venom Suit consumed incompatible hosts from the inside out, forcing them to continually consume other living organisms to stay alive.
Eddie, compelled by the suit's genetic memories of Peter and his own hatred, attacking him at school, but their brawl was interrupted when Venom stepped on a broken power line. Eddie vanished for some time, later revealed to have been hiding in Central Park and feeding off the homeless population. Trace remnants of the Venom Suit remained in Peter's blood and were unwittingly used to create Carnage, a vampiric monster that killed Gwen Stacy. During a brawl with Spider-Man and the Beetle, the Venom Suit left Eddie and bonded to Peter, briefly taking over him before being removed and seized by the Ultimates. Having grown addicted to the Suit's power, Eddie attempted to threaten Peter into retrieving it, but the reborn Carnage intervened and in the ensuing fight the particles of the Venom Suit within Eddie reformed. Venom eventually gained the upper hand against Carnage and devoured it, transforming into an even more monstrous form and regurgitating Carnage's host, a clone of Gwen Stacy. Venom retreated, but was captured by the Beetle and taken to Latveria.
A sample of the Venom Suit was acquired at some point by Roxxon, and used by Dr. Conrad Marcus to become the third incarnation of Venom. Marcus, a former Oscorp employee, sought to cover up the connection between Oscorp's OZ-enhanced spiders and Spider-Man by killing reporter Betty Brant and attacking the Morales family, believing Jefferson Davis to be Spider-Man II. He followed the injured Davis to the hospital, but was defeated by the real Spider-Man II - who stripped Marcus of the Venom Suit by using his Venom Blasts from the inside - and shot dead by police, but not before he managed to fatally injure Rio Morales.
- Alternate Self: To the mainstream Eddie Brock.
- Big Eater: He has to constantly eat other living beings to prevent the Venom Suit from consuming him.
- Body Horror: The Black Suit slowly consumes its host if they aren't compatible with it, and is in general more amorphous and asymmetrical than the mainstream Venom.
- Chest Insignia: Worth noting that in the comics Venom lacks the iconic white spider symbol, but has it on some of the covers and by the end of the video game.
- Childhood Friend: To Ultimate Peter Parker, also fulfilling the Evil Former Friend and Rival Turned Evil tropes.
- Covert Pervert: Eddie goes on one date with Gwen Stacy and expects her to sleep with him when she is only 15, assuming a "girl like [her]" wouldn't care about the age difference or the fact they'd just met earlier that day.
- Evil Is Deathly Cold: As the Black Suit engulfs Eddie, all he can think about is how much he hates Peter, how he can't breathe, and how cold it is.
- I Am A Humanitarian: A janitor had the misfortune of walking in on Eddie immediately after he'd bonded to the Black Suit, and he promptly ate her. When he briefly gained control of the suit, he was horrified, but when two security guards walked in he lost control and ate them too. Following that, he realized the Venom Suit was eating him from the inside out and the only way to stop it from killing him was succumbing to its bloodlust and satiating its hunger.
- Heroic Build: When Eddie had the symbiote under control for a few seconds, he resembled a taller, more muscular version of Spider-Man with no chest insignia.
- Horror Hunger: Taken above and beyond any other incarnation of Venom, as the Suit consumes its wearer from the inside out unless they satiate it.
- Hulking Out: When Peter succumbed to the Suit's bloodlust he seriously bulked up.
- I Ate WHAT?: Eddie instinctively ate a janitor and two security guards after bonding to the Venom Suit, and was initially horrified.
- It Can Think: The Suit has a genetic memory and a will of its own, desiring not only to feed on everything around it but to be bonded to Peter Parker, its only compatible host. The sample of the Suit worn by Conrad Marcus was likewise drawn to Miles Morales.
- Legacy Character: The Venom Suit, or at least part of it, somehow winds up at Roxxon, where Dr. Conrad Marcus uses it to become the second Venom to hunt down the second Spider-Man.
- Living Weapon: Bolivar Trask intended to use the Venom Suit as one.
- Lovecraftian Superpower: As Venom, Eddie constantly sprouts and retracts Combat Tentacles and Spikes of Villainy.
- Mythology Gag: The Ultimate version of the symbiote was an unfinished cure for cancer that was converted into a bioweapon, a reference to the mainstream symbiote keeping Eddie's cancer in remission while it was bonded to him. When Peter briefly succumbed to the Black Suit's bloodlust his appearance was identical to that of the mainstream Eddie Brock Venom, whereas Ultimate Eddie Brock's Venom form was more amorphous and lacks the iconic spider emblems.
- No Sell: When Peter was shot, the Venom Suit blocked the bullet, and he was completely unaffected by Shocker's gauntlet blasts.
- Not Good with Rejection: When Gwen spurns his advances, a furious Eddie sneers that she's no different from any of the other girls he's dated. His roommate later remarks to Peter that Eddie was not a nice person even in the best of moods.
- Off Model: In Issue 38, Venom is drawn with the white spider emblems in a small panel when on all the prior and subsequent ones he didn't have one, except on the covers.
- One-Winged Angel: When Peter succumbs to the suit's bloodlust he transforms into the bulky, claws-and-fangs classic Venom with white chest and back insignia. When Eddie initially bonded to the symbiote, he resembled a taller, bulkier version of Spider-Man with no chest insignia. Then came the teeth, talons, tentacles, and spikes. After absorbing the Carnage symbiote during the War of the Symbiotes arc, he underwent an even more monstrous transformation.◊
- Puppeteer Parasite: The Venom Suit really wants to be bonded to Spider-Man due to sensing its genetic link to him.
- Psycho Prototype: The Venom Suit is the second stage of a protoplasmic cure for cancer-turned-bioweapon.
- Psycho Serum: The Venom Suit functions as one due to its incomplete nature and because the suit is tailored to a specific person's - Richard Parker's - DNA. Because of this, Peter - Richard's son - is able to resist the suit's negative effects better than Eddie, but only for so long.
- Robot Me: Ultron created a robotic doppelgänger of Venom.
- Upgrade vs. Prototype Fight: The War of the Symbiotes arc had Eddie fight Gwen, who had become the Ultimate version of Carnage. Eddie won and stripped Gwen of the Carnage symbiote.
- Weaksauce Weakness: The Ultimate symbiote is vulnerable to electricity rather than fire or sonics.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Not counting a robotic duplicate created by Ultron, Eddie hasn't been seen since 2008's War of the Symbiotes.
AKA: Norman "Normie" Harold Osborn
Debut: What If?
Vol. 2, #105; Spider-Girl
#82 (as Venom); Spider-Girl
#90 (as Dusk)
"We are not Venom. They were the result of a union between the symbiote and man called Brock. We are unique. You need to get over past prejudices, May... and learn to trust us."
The son of Liz Allan and Harry Osborn, Normie Osborn held Peter Parker responsible for the deaths of his father and grandfather
and took up the mantle of the Green Goblin to settle the score, prompting Peter's daughter Mayday to do the same and become Spider-Girl. As the third incarnation of the Green Goblin, Normie proved ineffective, losing not only to Mayday but to Peter
, Phil Urich, and even to Mary Jane
. When he finally caught his big break and captured May, she talked him into forsaking his ancestors' legacy and he reformed, becoming one of her allies. Oblivious to May's crush on him, he began dating Brenda "Raptor" Drago, the daughter of Blackie Drago, the second Vulture, but his repressed feelings for May and the arrival of a fiancée named Élan DeJunae strained that. Élan interrupted Normie's wedding to Brenda, forcibly bonding him to the Venom symbiote as a "wedding present", and the Venom-controlled Normie went berserk until being subdued by Mayday. Despite being urged to kill it, Normie opted to keep the symbiote, stating that if he could be redeemed then so could it.
With the symbiote, Normie set out to become a superhero, though he secretly instructed his secretary to have Spider-Girl kill him if he ever lost control. He was arrested for harbouring the alien by The Avengers
, who assigned him to Kaine's squad for reformed supervillains after he stopped a rampaging War Machine
. When Spider-Girl was mortally wounded by the Hobgoblin's Scriers, both Normie and the symbiote rampaged until they had killed or driven back their enemies. The symbiote then transferred itself to Spider-Girl in order to save her life and empower her, removing Normie's tattoos and scars - mementos of his time as the Green Goblin - as a parting gift, and sacrificed itself to protect her and Peter from the Hobgoblin.
The symbiote would briefly live on (in a way) through April "Mayhem" Parker, a clone created by Norman Osborn using DNA samples taken from it and Mayday.
- Arranged Marriage: Was put into one with Élan DeJunae by Norman.
- Badass in a Nice Suit: He typically had the symbiote disguise itself as business attire◊.
- Benevolent Boss: Normie treated Kristy Watson, his secretary, with a degree of respect that contrasted sharply with his grandfather.
- Death Seeker: During his time as the Green Goblin, Normie hoped May would kill him.
- Do Not Call Me Paul: Objects to being called "Venom", as that was the moniker the symbiote went by when bonded to Eddie Brock.
- Heel-Face Turn: Normie undergoes one, and his caring nature convinces the Venom symbiote to undergo one as well.
- Heroic Sacrifice: The symbiote sacrifices itself to save May and Peter from the Hobgoblin.
- Legacy Character: Normie manages to be one to both his father and grandfather, and to Eddie Brock as well.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: As Dusk he was capable of manifesting extra arms, once trying to punch Kaine during a sparring match by sprouting one from his upper back.
- Non-Standard Character Design: When he first bonded with the symbiote, Normie looked identical to the Eddie Brock version of Venom. As Dusk, he has normal teeth in lieu of fangs, and a very prominent Lantern Jaw of Justice.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: When May is mortally wounded by the Scriers, both Normie and the symbiote go utterly berserk.
AKA: Peter Benjamin Parker
Debut: What If?: Spider-Man The Other
"Venom? Venom was a hopeless loser. Venom didn't realize his full potential. Venom was a sad, lonely creature. I'm so much more now, but if you can't find it in your heart to call me Peter... then how about... Poison?"
In The Other
, Spider-Man died saving his wife from Morlun
, but was resurrected with enhanced powers
by the Great Weaver
. In What If? The Other
, Peter vehemently rejects
the Great Weaver's offer and kills it
, leaving him in a coma. The Venom symbiote, languishing in prison with its then-current host Mac Gargan, senses Peter's predicament and abandons Gargan, taking over a prison guard and rushing to the bridge where Peter had cocooned himself. The symbiote ditches the guard and enters the cocoon, giving it a Darker and Edgier
makeover and taking over Peter's body
, crushing what little remained of his psyche in the process. The resulting being heads to Tony Stark's
apartment, where Mary Jane and Aunt May are living, and introduces himself as Poison, offering to share his "love" with Mary Jane by bonding her to a symbiote. When she vehemently turns him down. Poison threatens to transform her by force and Wolverine
and Luke Cage
intervene, but Poison easily defeats them. To stop Poison from killing them, Mary Jane offers her body to him, but not her soul, promising to make their eternity together miserable. Poison then leaves and exhumes Gwen Stacy's body, resurrecting it with a red-and-black symbiote.
Venom (Sam Raimi's Spider-Man Trilogy)
AKA: Edward "Eddie" Brock, Jr.
Eddie Brock Jr. was a freelance photographer hired by the Bugle to take pictures of Spider-Man. and was looking to get the next big scoop so he could earn the cash to propose to his girlfriend, Gwen Stacy. Eddie proved more than a nuisance to both the Bugle staff and Spider-Man, distracting the latter during a bank-robbery conducted by Sandman and accidentally enabling the villain to escape. Spider-Man, made more aggressive by a symbiote bonded to him, smashed Eddie's camera in retribution, but Eddie got his revenge by digitally editing one of Peter Parker's pictures to make it look like Spider-Man
was robbing the bank instead. A livid Peter, under the influence of the symbiote, exposed him as a fraud and coldly rebuked Eddie's pleas for leniency with "You want forgiveness? Get religion." Eddie was unceremoniously fired, and later that evening came across Gwen on a date with Peter, not realizing Peter was using her to make his ex-girlfriend Mary Jane jealous. Consumed by despair, Eddie followed Peter's advice and went to a nearby church to pray for God to kill Peter Parker, not aware that Spider-Man had gone to the same church to purge himself of the symbiote. Hearing Spider-Man struggling to remove the parasite, Eddie came to investigate just in time to discover that Spider-Man was Peter and for the symbiote to land on him. Taken over by the symbiote, Eddie sought out Sandman and after a brief scuffle proposed a deal to take down Spider-Man once and for all. Eddie and Sandman worked together to lure Spider-Man into a trap by kidnapping Mary Jane, and easily gained the upper hand until Harry Osborn arrived to back Peter up. Eddie impaled Harry with his own glider, and a furious Peter weakened the symbiote using a set of pipes and ripped Eddie out, throwing one of Harry's pumpkin bombs into it as it tried to escape. Eddie, addicted to the symbiote's power, flung himself back into it and both he and the symbiote were killed in the resulting explosion.
- Adaptation Expansion: Mark Bagley himself drew a bonus tie-in comic, Spider-Man 3: The Black, portraying the events of the last third of the movie from Eddie's perspective.
- Asshole Victim: Sure, he was a jerk, but he didn't really deserve to be blown up.
- Call Back: In one to both the animated series and Venom's original appearance in the comics, in a deleted scene Peter has a vision of himself as Venom when looking in a mirror, although his Venom form didn't have fangs.
- Comic Book Movies Don't Use Codenames: Even after bonding to the symbiote, Eddie isn't called Venom except in the end credits.
- Composite Character: This version of Eddie is a mixture of the mainstream and Ultimate Venoms, with a touch of the animated series thrown in for good measure.
- Dead Alternate Counterpart/Dropped a Bridge on Him: Spider-Man separates Eddie from the symbiote using metal pipes and throws a pumpkin bomb at it as it tries to escape. Eddie throws himself back into it and both are incinerated in the explosion.
- Early-Bird Cameo: Jameson mentions a photographer named in Eddie in the first film. The novelization confirms it was Brock.
- Evil Counterpart: This version of Eddie was specifically created to be one to Peter Parker, being a struggling photographer wanting enough cash to propose to his girlfriend.
- Evil Is Deathly Cold: In Spider-Man 3: The Black, Eddie states that the symbiote feels cold, lifted directly from the Ultimate comic.
- Fangs Are Evil: After bonding to the symbiote he has fangs even with his mask retracted.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Goes from being a disgraced jerk of a photographer to a legitimate threat to Spider-Man simply by virtue of being in the right place at the right time.
- Humiliation Conga: He's one-upped by Peter, turned down by Spider-Man (who smashes his camera to boot), slammed into a wall by a pissed off Peter, exposed as a fraud, and dumped by his girlfriend. The symbiote takes all that resentment and anger and cranks it Up to Eleven... and then they get blown up.
- Iconic Outfit: Not this version of Eddie/Venom, but the symbiote's appearance when bonded to Peter has been a reoccurring element in recent Spider-Man media, including The Spectacular Spider Man and The Amazing Spider-Man.
- It's All About Me: Eddie's personality is described as being similar to what Peter would have been like had he not lost Uncle Ben.
- Let's You and Him Fight: Sandman thinks he's Spider-Man and attacks him, but quickly realizes his mistake.
- Lightning Bruiser: He's faster and stronger than Spider-Man thanks to the symbiote.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Eddie has the classic gaping maw full of fangs, but unlike most other versions the symbiote's mask acts as lips so they're not visible when his mouth is closed.
- Paparazzi: Harasses Spider-Man trying to take pictures of him to win the Bugle's contest, and when Spider-Man smashes his camera out of frustration Eddie photoshops a fake image to incriminate him in a bank robbery.
- Pipe Pain: Peter separates Eddie from the symbiote by trapping them in a ring of metal pipes and hitting them.
- Puppeteer Parasite: In Spider-Man 3: The Black, Eddie realizes "the Black" is influencing his thoughts... and decides that being able to do anything Spider-Man can is worth it.
- Sanity Slippage: He realizes the symbiote is feeding him Peter's memories◊ and goes insane...er with the power.
- Slasher Smile: As the symbiote covers him, Eddie goes from screaming in terror to grinning maniacally before eating the camera.
- Take That, Audience!: Sam Raimi was once quoted saying he disliked Venom and that the character would not appear in his films. Sony evidently disagreed, and fans of Venom were severely disappointed with how the character was handled in the movie, criticizing everything from the actor portraying him, to the fact he spent most of his screen-time as Venom - the last 10-15 minutes of the movie - with his mask retracted, to the fact he was unceremoniously killed at the end of the movie.
- Tainted Veins: When he retracts his mask, tendrils of the symbiote remain stuck to his face and neck and give him this appearance. In addition, the silvery webbing motif the symbiote manifested when bonded to Spider-Man becomes distorted and vein-like when bonded to Eddie.
- Then Let Me Be Evil: Eddie proclaims "I like being bad. It makes me happy!" after Peter tells him about the symbiote's corrupting influence.
- This Is Your Brain on Evil: This version of the symbiote enhances negative emotions.
- Villain Team-Up: Blackmails Sandman into helping him kill Spider-Man by threatening his daughter.
- Voice of the Legion: Eddie's voice becomes distorted after bonding to the symbiote in the game adaptation.
- You Don't Look Like You: In the first teaser trailers revealing his presence in the film, Venom looked a lot closer to his classic comic book appearance before his design was revamped to include the webbing motif present in Peter's black suit.
AKA: April Parker
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Girl
"This is my chance to forget about May. It's the only time I don't care which of us is the original. (Even though I'm still convinced she's my clone!) This is when April Parker truly comes into her own as—the merciless Mayhem!"
A clone of Spider-Girl bonded at a genetic level to a sample of the Venom symbiote, created by the Green Goblin. The clone was kept in stasis until it was found by Normie Osborn, who alerted Peter to its existence. During their analysis of the status fluid, the clone awakened and escaped, hunting down May and attacking her. May and her clone fought, demonstrating that while they were mostly identical there was one key difference: the clone was willing to kill people and May wasn't
. Following Norman Osborn's final defeat, the clone was adopted by the Parker family at May's behest - despite Peter's protests - giving herself the name "April Parker". April enrolled in school as May's "cousin", helping her in her superhero duties and occasionally impersonating her as Spider-Girl while aiding in investigating Gwen Reilly's death. Not wanting to live under May's shadow, April let her darker impulses take over and fully embraced her symbiote side, taking on the alias "Mayhem". As Mayhem, April came into conflict with Spider-Girl, killing Tombstone and the Hobgoblin to stop a gang war. Their rivalry escalated until Mayhem, intent on proving herself to be the genuine daughter of the Parker family, attacked Spider-Girl. The resulting fight sparked a fire, and May sacrificed herself to launch Mayhem out of the exploding building. Horrified and repentant, April attempted to redeem herself by living May's life for her
, but Mary Jane immediately realized what had happened and furiously expelled her from the Parker household. Realizing that she had been the clone all along, Mayhem embarked on a massacre of the remaining superheroes out of a belief that it would make the world a better place. In response, the government created clones of Carnage to stop her, but the Carnage Biopreds went on a rampage instead. Determined to make things right, Mayhem stole Doctor Doom's time machine and traveled back to the past. Trapped in a wall
, Future Mayham transferred her memories into her past self before dying, who then sacrificed herself to save May.
- Angel Face, Demon Face: April's costumed form looks similar to a black-and-blue version of Spider-Girl's, but when she becomes Mayhem her eyes become distorted, she frequently forms a wide mouth full of black teeth, and the black markings on her suit become chaotic.
- Annoying Younger Sibling: During her time with the Parkers, she was this to May.
- Anti-Hero Substitute: What she was intended to be. May has to keep April on track to prevent her from injuring or killing people. As "the merciless Mayhem" she breaks with May to become a full-on antiheroine, but after realizing the damage she's caused she returns to the good side and turns back time to sacrifice herself to save her sister.
- Bad Future: Causes one when she decides that the only way the world can be fixed is if she kills every other superpowered individual she comes across.
- Bad Powers, Good People: Has powers similar to Carnage, but deep down is a good person.
- Berserk Button: Hates being compared to May, one of the reasons she went rogue as Mayhem.
- Blade Below the Shoulder: Can transform her limbs into simple bladed objects.
- Born as an Adult: Came out of the tank a teenager.
- Cloning Blues: April was convinced that it was May who was the clone and that she was the original Parker baby, much like Ben Reilly was.
- Combat Tentacles: Due to being part symbiote she can create tentacles at will and often uses them to complete chores faster.
- Complaining About Rescues They Don't Like: During the climactic fight that resulted in May's death, April makes declarations like, "You only saved me to make me look bad!"
- Darker and Edgier: Compared to Spider-Girl, April can come across as malicious, especially as Mayhem.
- Dead Person Impersonation: Tries to invoke My Sibling Will Live Through Me after accidentally killing May, but it fails when Mary Jane sees through her right away.
- Distaff Counterpart: To Ben Reilly, Kaine Parker, and Venom.
- Emo Teen: Due to the whole Cloning Blues thing.
Mary Jane: What on—April! What's wrong, sweetheart? Why are you in the dark? Oh, my! Where did you get that outfit—and why are you crying?
April: E-everyone hates me. The kids at school... May... even you and Uncle Pete!
- Evil Costume Switch: April normally looked similar to a black-and-blue version of Spider-Girl, but as Mayhem she takes a leaf out of Carnage's costuming department◊.
- Evil-Detecting Baby: Benjy is the first to realize there is something off about "May".
- Evil Twin: Starts out as one of May.
- Freak Out!: Has one when she accidentally causes May's death.
- Half-Human Hybrid: She was a clone of May Parker fused at a genetic level to the Venom symbiote.
- Heel-Face Turn: Decides to embrace her dark side and becomes the antiheroine Mayhem, but ultimately sacrifices herself to save May.
- Heroic Sacrifice: April, having been given memories of a Bad Future where May died because of her by her own future self, sacrificed herself to save May.
- Fallen Hero: After May's death, April tried to become a hero. "Tried" here meaning "killed every other super powered individual she could find".
- Femme Fatalons: Due to being half symbiote she could transform her fingers into claws.
- Generation Xerox: To Kaine, being an angsty homicidal clone of a member of the Parker family.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: The combined grief of accidentally killing May, being kicked out of the Parker family, and realizing that she was the real clone causes April to snap and go on a rampage, killing any superhero being she comes across in an effort to make the world a better place.
- Kill and Replace: After causing May's death, April tries to impersonate her as a form of repentance. Mary Jane saw through it right away, figured out what happened, and furiously expelled April from the Parker household. The combined trauma drove April insane.
- Knight Templar: Decides the only way the world can be fixed is if all other superpowered individuals kick the bucket.
- Jagged Mouth: As Mayhem she manifests a mouth full of black teeth that blend into the rest of her mask.
- Mirror Match: Any time she and May fought, due to her being a clone.
- Murder Is the Best Solution: Espouses this viewpoint when it comes to crime fighting, killing Tombstone and Hobgoblin, and even threatening to kill May herself if she gets in her way. When she decides to become a hero and make the world a better place, it's by killing all the other superpowered people she can find.
- My God, What Have I Done?: The look of horror on Mayhem's face when the warehouse she and Spider-Girl were fighting in exploded is visible even through the symbiote's Blank White Eyes and More Teeth than the Osmond Family, showing that she never truly intended to kill May and was genuinely remorseful that she'd succeeded.
- My Sibling Will Live Through Me: April tries to invoke this via Dead Person Impersonation after accidentally causing May's death. Unfortunately for her, Mary Jane sees through it right away, and when she figures out what happened furiously kicks April out of the Parker family.
- Nightmare Face: Was capable of manifesting Venom's fanged maw and absurdly long tongue while in human form.
- Nineties Anti-Hero: April is brooding and sarcastic at the best of times. At the worst, she's downright bloodthirsty, and while she lacks some common attributes, as Mayhem she can tick off scary "costume" and scary name as well.
- One-Letter Name: Goes by "Auntie A◊" in the Bad Future.
- Prehensile Hair: When her symbiote side manifests, her hair looks like it's suspended underwater.
- Punny Name: As April herself put it, "After all, April comes before May".
- Set Right What Once Went Wrong: When her actions lead to the government mass-producing copies of Carnage that subsequently go out of control, Mayhem decides to travel back in time and stop herself from killing May.
- Serial-Killer Killer: Adopts this approach to fighting crime, even taking out bigwigs like Tombstone and the Hobgoblin.
- Tele-Frag: When she travels back in time, Future Mayhem appears inside a wall, but lives long enough to transfer her memories to her past self.
- Twin Switch: Impersonated May to make out with Wes, and later tried to take her place in life after accidentally killing her.
- Utopia Justifies the Means: In her grief after May's death and her expulsion from the Parker family, Mayhem kills almost every other superhero out of a belief that it would make the world a better place. This only makes things worse when the government mass-produces clones of Carnage to stop her and they go on a rampage.
- Whole Costume Reference: April's superhero persona looks almost identical to Spider-Girl, and when she lets her symbiote side surface she occasionally appears similar to Spider-Carnage◊. As Mayhem she looks similar to a black-and-blue Carnage.
See his character page here
Life Foundation Symbiotes / Mercury Team
Spider-Man: Oh, man! Five enemies with the power of Venom and Carnage? Maybe I should've stayed in New York...
The Life Foundation believed that the conclusion of the Cold War would bring about a nuclear holocaust that would result in the mutually assured destruction of modern civilization. To that end, they constructed a large fall-out shelter and provide a place for their wealthy clients to live comfortably. In order to protect their future Utopian society, they created five symbiotes (Scream, Agony, Lasher, Phage, and Riot) forcibly spawned from the Venom symbiote.
- Abandoned Warehouse: Their hideout in Seperation Anxiety.
- Back from the Dead: The symbiotes were seemingly aged to dust and the hosts killed in an explosion, but they returned through unknown means.
- Fusion Dance: After their hosts were killed by Scream, the Agony, Lasher, Phage, and Riot symbiotes merged into Hybrid.
- Hired Guns: The hosts were mercenaries before being bonded to their symbiotes.
- Jagged Mouth: The exceptions being Lasher, who had No Mouth, and Riot, who had normal teeth instead ones that looked like an extension of his face.
- Lovecraftian Superpower: They're symbiotes, so this is a given.
- More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Four of the five, though two of those had Jagged Mouths.
After the semi-successful implementation of Agent Venom, the Unites States Army formed PROJECT: LIQUID, an initiative intended to use Venom, Toxin, Hybrid, Scorn, and Anti-Venom as weapons to combat symbiote-related threats like Carnage. With Flash Thompson AWOL, Eddie Brock depowered, Scott Washington "unwilling to cooperate
", and Patrick Mulligan "missing
", the army formed Mercury Team as a subdivision of PROJECT: LIQUID, bonding four special ops soldiers from different military branches to the catatonic Lasher, Phage, Riot, and Agony symbiotes, which had separated after Hybrid was murdered by Eddie. Each member uses their respective symbiote for a specific purpose, and are used as a deterrent in black ops missions and symbiote-related scenarios. The team was sent to fight Carnage when the villain tried to take over Doverton, Colorado. Some time later, Carnage took his revenge by hunting down the Mercury Team and butchering them. The symbiotes were taken by Deadpool, who used them to gain an upper hand against Cletus.
- Back for the Dead: The team is wiped out by Carnage in Deadpool vs. Carnage #3, with the dog being the Sole Survivor.
- Expy: Might have been inspired by the Gamma Corps, soldiers turned into Gamma Mutants to combat Gamma Mutants.
- Military Superhero: They're soldiers equipped with nerfed symbiotes.
- Wrecked Weapon: The symbiotes were put in a catatonic state by Scott's murder and were incapable of correctly bonding to a host, granting only one superpower each. Agony gives Super Strength, Riot Super Speed, Phage telescopic vision, and Lasher control of the dog it is grafted to.
- The World's Expert on Getting Killed: An army unit created for the express purpose of dealing with symbiote-related threats. They are all killed in their second storyline by a symbiote-related threat.
AKA: Donna Diego
Debut: Venom: Lethal Protector
"I can hear it! I've always been able to hear mine. Even before I was united with it. The voices! The voices told me they were coming. Told me to be quiet about them. Told me what I had to do!"
A security guard working for the Life Foundation, Donna Diego was selected to be bonded to one of the five symbiotes forcibly spawned from the Venom symbiote. The de-facto leader of the group, Donna, alongside Agony, Lasher, Phage, and Riot, attacked Eddie Brock, but were defeated and seemingly killed by Venom and Spider-Man. Donna and the other Life Foundation symbiotes returned, having somehow survived, and begged Eddie for training to control their symbiotes. Venom refused, believing them to be lost causes like Carnage, and his prediction eventually came true: Donna had been diagnosed with schizophrenia, which was made worse by her symbiote's bloodlust, and ultimately suffered a psychotic breakdown, killing the other symbiotes' hosts before going into hiding. When the Xenophage attacked, Donna resurfaced, having regained her sanity and control over her symbiote, and helped Venom defeat it. Afterward, she discovered the creature's ship, the tracker of which brought her an alternate dimension where Venom and Wolverine
were in the middle of battling supervillains Chimera and Dirtnap. Scream aided the two in defeating the villains, freeing those Dirtnap had previously absorbed in the process, and she and Venom left on amiable enough terms. Some time later, however, Eddie, on a crusade against the symbiotes, lured her into a trap that disabled her symbiote, allowing him to stab her in the head with a heated dagger, killing both her and her symbiote.
- Adaptational Villainy: Tries to attack a daycare in Marvel Avengers Alliance, which also gave her a Make Me Wanna Shout attack.
- Adaptational Wimp: In the video game Venom/Spider-Man: Separation Anxiety, her attack pattern is quite predictable compared to other Symbiotes, and thus she is arguably the easiest Symbiote boss to defeat.
- Alliterative Name: Turned out to be the case when her surname was revealed.
- All There in the Manual: The name Scream came from an action figure and the tie-in comic to The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, while Diego is from Civil War: Battle Damage Report. Both became 100% canon when she came Back for the Dead.
- The Atoner: Tried to make up for murdering her teammates by helping those still bonded to symbiotes in the aftermath of Planet of the Symbiotes.
- Ax-Crazy: Her schizophrenia led her to murder the other Life Foundation symbiotes' hosts.
- Back for the Dead: After a hiatus of 15 years she was brought back solely to be killed by Eddie Brock.
- Big Good: Decided to be this for any symbiote-bonded people still around after Planet of the Symbiotes. The only two she found (Zeena and George) were eaten by the Xenophage.
- Big "OMG!": When the china cabinet in her apartment turned out to be the Xenophage.
- Breakout Villain: The only one of the Life Foundation symbiotes to appear in a main Spider-Man title, she was also included in the Universal Studios ride, and a game based on the 1990s animated series (despite never appearing in it).
- Dark Action Girl: The most proactive of the Life Foundation team.
- Enemy Mine: Teamed up with Venom against the Xenophage, Chimera, and Dirtnap.
- Evil Redhead: More as Donna than Scream, who is mostly yellow.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: Got shorter hair to go with her newfound sanity post-Seperation Anxiety.
- Hearing Voices: Even before acquiring a symbiote. When her madness is revealed, Lasher outright wonders how she managed to pass the Life Foundation's psychological evaluations.
- Heel Face Door Slam: Turned kind of good, vanished, and was brought back to be killed by Eddie.
- Heel-Face Turn: By The Hunger and Tooth & Claw, though she disappeared at the end of those miniseries, so any heroics she went on to perform are left to the imagination.
- Hunter of His Own Kind: During a psychotic break, she became convinced symbiotes and all those who associated with them were evil, and it was her duty to slay them, resulting in her killing her "siblings" and very nearly Venom.
- Ironic Nickname: Referenced in Marvel Avengers Alliance:
Spider-Man: You know what's weird? She calls herself Scream even though symbiotes don't like sonic weapons.
- Karmic Death: Eddie killed her for the same reason she killed her teammates, and in almost the exact same way.
- Knife Nut: She created a knife specifically designed to exterminate symbiotes. Ironically, it only succeeded in killing the hosts.
- Meanwhile, Back at the...: Didn't really become involved in the plot of the Tooth & Claw until the third and final issue. Until then, she spent the story stuck in the Xenophage's abandoned ship with a pair of teenage skateboarders. It was uncomfortable◊.
- Most Common Superpower: Was quite busty, and the symbiote accentuated her figure.
- Multicolored Hair: Donna's red hair shows through her yellow symbiote, creating this effect.
- Ms. Fanservice: Yeah◊, appears to have been designed with this in mind.
- Not So Different:
Scream: (while killing Riot and Lasher) It had to be. We were corrupted by them! I had to kill Leslie... Carl... before their others took over. They want to spawn... to multiply... I can't let that happen.
Eddie: (while killing Hybrid) Scott's been using Hybrid to suppress crime in his neighborhood. Done a fair job. But the demon will turn. Will become another spore. When the time comes it will spawn. I helped spread this alien plague. But I know now. And I know the cure.
- Power Born of Madness: Donna's psychosis enabled her to create a "Sonic Knife" that she used to kill the other Life Foundation symbiotes.
- Prehensile Hair: As Scream her hair was a mass of tendrils.
- Rapunzel Hair: In human (at first) and symbiote form.
- The Smurfette Principle: The only female member of the Sinister Syndicate in Universal's The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man.
- Sole Survivor: Of the original Life Foundation hosts, until Eddie killed her.
- Swallowed Whole: By Dirtnap, but she turned out to be...
- Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth: Like Venom she couldn't be properly digested by Dirtnap, so he eventually puked her back up.
- Two Girls to a Team: Scream had this dynamic with Agony.
- Vibro Weapon: The Sonic Knife, presumably.
AKA: Leslie Gesneria; James Murphy
Debut: Venom: Lethal Protector #4
A mercenary selected by the Life Foundation to be bonded to one of the five symbiotes forcibly spawned from the Venom symbiote, Leslie developed the ability to spit a powerful acid and absorb chemical compounds such as Spider-Man's webbing. Alongside Scream, Lasher, Phage, and Riot, she attacked Eddie Brock, but was defeated and seemingly killed by Venom with help from Spider-Man. Leslie and the other Life Foundation symbiotes returned, having somehow survived, and begged Eddie for training to control their symbiotes. Venom refused, believing them to be lost causes like Carnage, and his prediction eventually came true: Scream, driven insane by her schizophrenia, murdered Donna and the other hosts. The Agony symbiote was transported to the Vault and experimented on, eventually merging with its brethren to become the Hybrid symbiote. After Eddie Brock killed Scott Washington, Hybrid's host, the fused symbiote separated back into its components, which were collected by the US army. Agony was bonded to Lieutenant James Murphy, a Navy Seal and heavy munitions expert missing his left arm, as part of the Mercury Team, and was used to help apprehend its "brother" Carnage after he took over Doverton, Colorado.
AKA: Ramon Hernandez; Marcus Simms and a War Dog
Debut: Venom: Lethal Protector #4
A mercenary selected by the Life Foundation to be bonded to one of the five symbiotes forcibly spawned from the Venom symbiote, Ramon chose to employ his symbiote's Combat Tentacles
as his Weapon of Choice
. Alongside Scream, Agony, Phage, and Riot, he attacked Eddie Brock, but was defeated and seemingly killed by Venom with help from Spider-Man. Ramon and the other Life Foundation symbiotes returned, having somehow survived, and begged Eddie for training to control their symbiotes. Venom refused, believing them to be lost causes like Carnage, and his prediction eventually came true: Scream, driven insane by her schizophrenia, murdered Ramon and the other hosts. The Lasher symbiote was transported to the Vault and experimented on, eventually merging with its brethren to become the Hybrid symbiote. After Eddie Brock killed Scott Washington, Hybrid's host, the fused symbiote separated back into its components, which were collected by the US army. The Lasher symbiote was bonded to a war dog, attached to and controlled by Chief Petty Officer Marcus Simms, as part of the Mercury Team and was used to help apprehend its "brother" Carnage after he took over Doverton, Colorado.
- Ambiguous Gender: The dog has been referred to as male and female.
- Angry Guard Dog: The symbiote's second host was a catatonic military German Shepherd.
- Combat Tentacles: Ramon usually had a half-dozen of these sprouting from his back.
- Covered in Gunge: Ramon's tentacles could secrete a heavy slime.
- Dashing Hispanic: Ramon was a villainous example.
- Heroic Dog: The German Shepherd, especially now that she's become the new Hybrid.
- Handicapped Badass: The German Shepherd that serves as the symbiote's second host is in a coma, but that doesn't stop her from putting the run on the Doppelgänger. As of Deadpool vs. Carnage, she's fully awake and active◊.
- Jagged Mouth: In her first appearance, the Lasher Hound's mouth was lined by green fangs that blend into her snout.
- The Leader: Marcus was the leader of the Mercury Team.
- Legacy Character: Was bonded to Ramon Hernandez initially, and later to a military dog.
- No Mouth: Unlike the others Ramon didn't manifest a mouth when bonded to the symbiote.
- The Smart Guy: Ramon was the most levelheaded of the quintet, and tried to act as the voice of reason.
- Sole Survivor: The dog was the sole survivor of Carnage's massacre of Mercury Team.
- Stock Animal Diet: After taking a chunk out of the Doppelgänger, Lasher settled down to finish off a half-eaten cow and was seen chomping down a huge bone.
- Super Senses: The symbiote-augmented German Shepherd could scent any target in a five-hundred mile radius.
- Team Pet: The Lasher hound, even though it's the actual host of the symbiote.
- Tentacle Rope: If he didn't whip his enemies with his tentacles, Ramon would ensnare them.
- Third Eye: The Lasher hound has an eye in the middle of her forehead.
- Too Many Mouths: Marcus issues commands to the Lasher hound through a mouth on his forearm, created by the tendril "leash" that connects him to the dog.
- Whip It Good: As his name suggests, his main means of attack were whip-like Combat Tentacles.
AKA: Carl Mach; Rico Axelson
Debut: Venom: Lethal Protector #4
A mercenary selected by the Life Foundation to be bonded to one of the five symbiotes forcibly spawned by the Venom symbiote, Carl chose to employ his symbiote's Shapeshifter Weapon
ability as his Weapon of Choice
, focusing on blades. The nominal leader of the group, Carl, alongside Scream, Agony, Lasher, and Riot, attacked Eddie Brock, but was defeated and seemingly killed by Venom with help from Spider-Man. Carl and the other Life Foundation symbiotes returned, having somehow survived, and begged Eddie for training to control their symbiotes. Venom refused, believing them to be lost causes like Carnage, and his prediction eventually came true: Scream, driven insane by her schizophrenia, murdered Carl and the other hosts. The Phage symbiote was transported to the Vault and experimented on, eventually merging with its brethren to become the Hybrid symbiote. After Eddie Brock killed Scott Washington, Hybrid's host, the fused symbiote separated back into its components, which were collected by the US army. The Phage symbiote was bonded to a Lieutenant Rico Axelson, a Navy Seal sniper, as part of the Mercury Team, and was used to help apprehend its "brother" Carnage after he took over Doverton, Colorado.
AKA: Trevor Cole; Howard Ogden
Debut: Venom: Lethal Protector #4
A mercenary selected by the Life Foundation to be bonded to one of the five symbiotes forcibly spawned by the Venom symbiote, Trevor Cole chose to employ his symbiote's Shapeshifter Weapon
ability as his Weapon of Choice
, focusing on hammers and maces. The most savage member of the group, Trevor, alongside Scream, Agony, Lasher, and Phage, attacked Eddie Brock, but was defeated and seemingly killed by Venom with help from Spider-Man. Carl and the other Life Foundation symbiotes returned, having somehow survived, and begged Eddie for training to control their symbiotes. Venom refused, believing them to be lost causes like Carnage, and his prediction eventually came true: Scream, driven insane by her schizophrenia, murdered Carl and the other hosts. The Riot symbiote was transported to the Vault and experimented on, eventually merging with its brethren to become the Hybrid symbiote. After Eddie Brock killed Scott Washington, Hybrid's host, the fused symbiote separated back into its components, which were collected by the US army. The Riot symbiote was bonded to Petty Officer Howard Ogden, a Marine Corps. reconnaissance expert, as part of the Mercury Team, and was used to help apprehend its "brother" Carnage after he took over Doverton, Colorado.
AKA: Scott Washington
Debut: New Warriors
#6; Venom: Along Came A Spider
#2 (as Hybrid)
"He was there. Dreads, he calls himself. He was there, that day two months ago, when Eazy X gangsters forced me, my brother Derek, and our friend Dwight Simms off a basketball court... and I'll bet he was there that same night, when Eazy X bang-boys kicked our door in and shot me and Derek down in cold blood... killing my little brother... paralyzing me from the waist down... and getting away with it! Yeah, he was there all right... and now he's here. Well, so am I Dreads... and you're not getting away from Hybrid this time!"
Scott Washington became Guardsman Number 6 at the Vault, a high-tech prison for supervillains, in order to earn enough money to move his family out of the gang-ruled ghetto they called home. Scott trained with the superhero Justice, in prison for murdering his abusive father, developing a sense of empathy for the prisoners in the process. When the symbiote invasion occurred, Scott was asked to oversee experiments on four of the five Life Foundation symbiotes, Agony, Lasher, Riot, and Phage. He agreed due to the pay bonus he would receive, but when the Venom symbiote unleashed a psychic scream that killed off almost every other member of its species, the four tortured aliens merged together, escaped containment and briefly latched onto Scott. Touched by their suffering, Scott helped the "Hybrid" symbiote escape captivity at the cost of his job, and returned to the ghetto. Having been blacklisted by the government, he was only able to find work as a security guard, and worked to keep his younger brother Derek out of the Eazy X Gang. This backfired when one of the gang members broke into their house, killed Derek, and crippled Scott. Sensing his suffering, the Hybrid symbiote bonded to him, but Scott was no longer the sympathetic individual he had once been and sought to use them to attain revenge. The Hybrid symbiote eventually managed to persuade Scott to let go of his anger, and he devoted himself to becoming a more positive hero. However, some time later Scott was confronted by Eddie Brock, who was on a crusade against the symbiotes. Despite protesting that he wasn't evil, Scott was killed and the Hybrid symbiote separated back into Agony, Lasher, Riot, and Phage.
After the Mercury Team is wiped out by Carnage, their surviving symbiotes bond to the dismembered Deadpool
, turning him into a new Frankenstein-ian
version of Hybrid. After using the symbiotes to defeat Carnage and Shriek, Deadpool gives them to the war dog that is bonded to the Lasher symbiote, and instructs it to take the aliens back to "the governmental bigwigs who know how to take care of 'em".
These are characters who, while they may not host a symbiote, play prominent supporting roles in Venom's series.
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man
"What ever relationship between Edward Brock and myself is no longer applicable."
- Abusive Parents: Carl blamed Eddie for his wife's death in childbirth, neglected him growing up, and was just waiting for an excuse to disown him.
- Benevolent Boss: Despite being callous and stoic, there were no indications he was cruel to his employees at Treece International. The same maid has also been working for him since at least Eddie's early childhood.
- Death Glare: The look Carl gave Peter when he brought up Eddie scared even him.
- Honest Corporate Executive: He's implied to be the CEO of Treece Internationals, or at least a high-ranking official, but there's no indications he's corrupt.
- I Have No Son: When Eddie's career was ended in disgrace, Carl used that as an excuse to disown his son.
- Maternal Death? Blame the Child: His beloved wife died giving birth to Eddie, who Carl reviled as a result.
- Retcon: Dark Origin changed him from a wealthy businessman to a middle-class suburbanite.
- The Stoic: He was pretty much emotionless until he met his wife Jamie, who he adored.
- Workaholic: In his first appearance, Carl is shown ignoring his son to focus on office work.
Debut: Venom: The Madness
"He has a reputation for extreme violence. But he seems so... earnest. Sigh, why is it the bigger their problems the more I want to save them?"
A young lawyer, and ally and love interest for Eddie Brock during his time in San Francisco.
Vol. 1, #2
Venom Clone: Why have you come for me?
The Suit: I have come to destroy you. I know what you are.
Venom Clone: Yeah... and we know all about you. You're no better than we are.
The Suit: That is arguable.
Vernom Clone: Heh-heh... wanna argue?
The Suit: No.
Untold millennia ago, an alien entity informed a race of mechanical, self-replicating spider-like beings that humans were a violent and chaotic species that needed to be destroyed, lest they eventually spread throughout the cosmos. As they prepared to wipe out humanity, the spiders were delayed by horrific weather conditions, and during that time they realized that they had been duped, and that their benefactor had merely wanted the humans gone so that it could claim the Earth as its own. Most of the spiders left Earth, but a small cluster, still believing in their mission, stayed behind. Weakened, this group started slowly gathering physical and political power so that it could one day commit the genocide it was hired to.
In the present day, Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four
discovered a swarm of the spiders during a space expedition. The spiders eventually created a humanoid form dubbed "The Suit". Making contact with Nick Fury
, the Suit explained that the Venom symbiote, which he was briefly exposed to while it and Eddie Brock were in the custody of the Fantastic Four, was going to be used in a plot to cause chaos on a global scale. Learning that a clone of the Venom symbiote, made by the genocidal spiders to further their goals, was in the arctic, the Suit headed there to eliminate it.
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man: Extra! #2
A teenaged heroin addict Eddie Brock befriended as Anti-Venom. Supposedly cured of her addiction, she helped him infiltrate and take down drug cartels, but was secretly getting high. She was captured by the Quintas cartel when the Punisher interrupted Eddie's shakedown, leading to them setting aside their differences to rescue her. She hasn't been seen since.
- Bare Your Midriff: She wears a tank top, a miniskirt or short shorts, and tattered stockings, with her midriff exposed.
- Dark Secret: Even after Eddie purged her, she kept shooting up.
- Drugs Are Bad: Jenna was a heroin addict, and despite Anti-Venom's best efforts kept relapsing.
- Embarrassing Nickname: She's known on the streets as Jenna the Junkie. Anti-Venom nearly eats a thug who insists on calling her that.
- Facial Markings: She has a pair of horizontal black bars under her eyes.
- Freak Out!: When she saw a berserk Anti-Venom she had a panic attack. Granted, she was high on drugs at the time.
- Hookers and Blow: When Jenna was abducted by the Quintas gang, she's next seen splayed next to drug lord Jorge Valdez alongside other scantily-clad women, "high out of her mind".
- The Informant!: Eddie used her to track down and bust drug dens.
- The Ingenue: Eddie thinks of her as being this. She's not nearly as innocent as he thinks, as she's secretly doing drugs behind his back and didn't say to not eat the gangster who insulted her, just not to do it in front of her.
- "It" Is Dehumanizing: Frank Castle refers to her as an "it" when he's about to shoot through her to get to a Quintas thug.
Quintas Thug: Hold up, cabron! You shoot me with that thing you gonna kill the girl too!
The Punisher: That's not a girl... it's a junkie.
- Living Emotional Crutch: She was the only thing keeping Eddie Brock from reverting back to his Lethal Protector persona. When she was kidnapped, he snapped.
Jorge Valdez: Hear that, gringo? She's my girl now. Wanted you to know before my men smoke your ass.
Jorge Valdez: Adios, $%$#%$!
- My Girl Is Not a Slut: Call her a junkie at your own risk.
- Shameful Strip: Is forced to take her top off by some Quitas hoods, possibly for titillation or to prove she wasn't wearing a wire.
- You Can See That, Right?: She thought Eddie's Anti-Venom form was a drug-induced hallucination when she first sees him.
- Vague Age: Jenna's age is never addressed, just that she's a teenager.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Hasn't been seen since the Anti-Venom/The Punisher crossover New Ways to Live.
Debut: Venom Vol. 2, #23
A reporter working for the Daily Inquisitor, who serves as Agent Venom's eyes and ears in the criminal underworld of Philadelphia.
- Dark Secret: She has ties to J. Jonah Jameson... and The Kingpin.
- Going for the Big Scoop: Agent Venom worries her involvement with him will cause her to be targeted.
- Hot Scoop: Is a highly attractive female reporter, and occasionally flirts with Agent Venom.
- The Informant!: Agent Venom used her to get intel on the Department of Occult Armaments and later to track down Lord Ogre.
- Intrepid Reporter: She actively helps Agent Venom in his investigations in order to get a better story out of it, though she takes offence when he accuses her of this being her sole motive for helping him.
- Paparazzi: Agent Venom accuses her of being one, to which she takes offence.
Debut: Venom Vol. 2, #23
An unnamed demon implanted in Flash Thompson by Daimon Hellstrom in order to turn the symbiote into one of his Monsters of Evil, though this attempt backfired when the Hell Mark activated and suppressed it. The presence of the Hell Mark prevented it from being exorcised despite begging to be removed, stating that possessing one who was marked was forbidden. It struck up a rapport with the symbiote, taking over Flash during his battle with the U-Foes and later on while he slept, terrorizing his friends and enemies alike until Flash moved to Philadelphia. The symbiote, realizing the demon was slowly taking over Flash, expelled the Hell Mark into its long-devoured clone and regurgitated it, freeing Flash from any infernal obligations but at the same time marking Andi Benton, who bonded with the possessed clone to become Mania.
- Alternate Self: Flash has a dream of what would come to pass if the demon took him over and/or he was chosen for the Descent, with Demon-Venom perched on a headless statue overlooking a Planet Heck version of Philly.
- Call Back: The demon took Flash's body out for joyrides while he was asleep, just like the symbiote used to do to Peter.
- Chest Insignia: One sign that the demon was possessing Venom was the white spider emblems morphing into the Hell Mark pentagram.
- Demon Lords and Archdevils: It seems to be a fairly high-ranking demon, though nowhere near as powerful as Mephisto.
- Demonic Possession: After being suppressed by the Hell Mark, the demon starts corroding Flash's sanity and taking him over while he sleeps.
- Enemy Within: He proves to be one to both Flash and the symbiote, who doesn't take kindly to the competition and kicks him out.
- Expy: A What If? story from 2008 featured a version of Venom◊ who was given demonic powers by Mephisto.
- Horned Humanoid: When taking over Flash, it manifested a pair of long, backwards-curved horns.
- Horror Hunger: After being summoned and possessing Flash, the demon was hungry.
- I Cannot Self-Terminate: The demon wants nothing more than to be removed from Flash, but can't due to the Hell Mark.
- Mind Rape: The demon has the ability to look into enemies' minds and remotely control several individuals at the same time. He only demonstrated it during his battle with the U-Foes and hasn't used it again since.
- Oh, Crap: When the demon realized Venom bore the Hell Mark, it panicked and begged to be exorcized.
- Our Demons Are Different: This one's actual appearance is unknown, as it only manifests through the symbiote's shapeshifting.
- Sealed Inside a Person-Shaped Can: The demon was stuffed into Venom by Daimon Hellstrom, partly to turn the symbiote into one of his Monsters of Evil, partly to make Venom a more legitimate candidate for the Descent, and partly just to see what would happen. The first part backfired due to Flash possessing the Hell Mark.
- Red and Black and Evil All Over: The Demon Lord Venom seemingly had a red spider-emblem, although it could have just been the sky.
- Restraining Bolt: The Hell Mark prevents the demon from taking over Flash while he's conscious, but also prevents it from being exorcized.
- Spanner in the Works: Unwittingly fouled up both the symbiote's attempt to get demonic powers and Mephisto's nomination of Venom as a potential successor for the Descent. Both have been passed on to its clone, Mania.
- Split Personality Takeover: The symbiote reveals the demon was working towards this, and Flash's visions, backed up by his confrontation with Hellstrom, imply this would have happened if he'd been picked for the Descent.
- To Serve Man: The first thing the demon did was eat one of the Department of Occult Armaments' acolytes, but his feast was interrupted when the Hell Mark activated and suppressed him.
- Transformation Of The Possessed: When the demon takes over, Flash sprouts a pair of horns and occasionally wings in addition to the symbiote's trademark set of fanged jaws.
- Villain Team-Up: Following his black-out fighting the U-Foes, Flash wonders whether the symbiote and demon are teaming up to circumvent their respective handicaps and take him over.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Whether or not the demon was passed onto Mania alongside the Hell Mark and what the consequences of that would be were going to be dealt with in the "Descent" arc of Venom Vol. 3, which was cancelled before it even began.
- Winged Humanoid: When it first possessed Flash, it manifested a pair of wings from the symbiote's biomass.
The variety of non-symbiote opponents faced by the various Venoms.
AKA: Emil Gregg
Debut: Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man
"I am the held breath awakened, reborn again unto the city. Lust, Gluttony, and Greed abound in this seething cesspool of lies and sin. The lies have many voices. The sins, many faces. I take form, and will. I know what must be done. I am the dark at the end of the light."
A man who contacted Eddie Brock claiming to be the Sin-Eater serial killer, but was seemingly exposed as a compulsive confessor. In the wake of Carnage's morality (or lack thereof) being altered by the events of Axis
, he was found to have died, but returns as a sin-eating demon and he places the symbiote serial killer in his crosshairs after Cletus interferes with his mission to wipe out the press.
- Anatomy of the Soul: After killing his victims, he sucks what he claims is all of the sin out of their souls, it taking the form of monstrous green apparitions.
- Back from the Dead: His corpse is discovered in a homeless camp, but he comes back as a sin-eating demon.
- Big Bad Ensemble: He and his neighbor Stan Carter independently acted as the Sin-Eater during The Death of Jean DeWolff. Since Stan was a detective working the case and had actual superhuman (or very nearly so) abilities he was seen as the primary threat and the true Sin-Eater, with Emil being regarded as just some lunatic driven to copy him by the sound of Stan's arguments with himself emanating from the adjoining apartment.
Emil: It was the voices. I had to do it. Couldn't resist voices in the night. It was the voices... they said when and where. I didn't want to at first. I didn't think I had. But the people died. So it must have been me, right?
- Blond Guys Are Evil: He had blond hair when he was alive.
- Curtain Camouflage: He hides behind the curtains of Alice Gleason's apartment, but his shoes give him away. Not that it matters.
- Detect Evil: Apparently how he finds his victims. He states that Alice Gleason reeks of "sin, vainglory, selfishness and hubris".
- Dramatic Unmask: When the mask comes off, it's revealed that all that's underneath it is a skull.
Chris Rollins: Oh, God... what are you?
- Evil Overlooker: On the cover◊ of Axis: Carnage #3
- Face Framed in Shadow: Was almost always shown only in the shadows in Dark Origin.
- Healing Factor: He regrows his skeletal head within seconds of Carnage destroying it.
- Jack the Ripoff: When Carter is brought up, this guy claims to be the true Sin-Eater, asserting that "the imposter" is still dead. Alice later realizes that Emil Greg was the original after all and Eddie Brock was right all along.
- Malevolent Masked Men: Follows the Sin-Eater tradition of wearing a ski mask.
- Nightmare Face: The last thing◊ Chris Rollins sees before he dies.
- Only a Flesh Wound: Appeared to have been shot to death by the mother of one Engelschwert's victims in Sinner Takes All, but years later was revealed to have survived... only to die alone in a shantytown.
- Our Demons Are Different: Cletus starts seeing him as the◊ Devil◊.
- Phlebotinum Overload: Absorbing all of Carnage's repressed evil gave him a power and size boost... and quickly overwhelmed him, causing him to explode and be reduced to a withered corpse.
- Room Full of Crazy: The walls of his lair are covered in religious graffiti and stuff pertaining to the original Sin-Eater case.
- Serial Killer: He was a religious psychopath who targets those with "sin".
- Shotguns Are Just Better: Sin-Eaters love shotguns.
- Skull for a Head: As a demon he's very Ghost Rider-esque, though instead of being Wreathed in Flames he has a Sickly Green Glow. When he's wearing his mask, however, he appears to have skin and eyes.
- Token Motivational Nemesis: He contacted Eddie Brock and confessed to being the Sin-Eater. Spider-Man catching Stan Carter wearing the trademark green balaclava seemingly discredited Eddie and led to his humiliation, but it turns out he was right all along.
- The Unfought: He was the one who started Eddie's descent into villainy, but ironically it was Cletus Kasady who took him out.
- Unknown Rival:
Carnage: I'm coming for you, Alice! And you too, Green Ski Mask Guy!
- Your Head A Splode: Carnage makes the Sin-Eater shoot himself in the head, and leaves before he notices it reassembling.
AKA: Orwell Taylor, Edwin Cord, Bomblast (Kenneth Parmenter), Firearm, Ramshot (Samuel Caulkin), Sentry (Curtis Elkins), Wysper (Jennifer Stewart), Screech (Maxwell Taylor)
Debut: Venom: Lethal Protector
Orwell Taylor: I had a son—Hugh. Fresh out of the army, he became a guard at the federal prison called the Vault. He was the first man you killed when you escaped from that institution.
Venom: We... we didn't want to hurt anyone...!
Orwell Taylor: And that makes it all right?! You murdered my son! That's why I put together the Jury! These warriors—including the ex-Guardsman who holds you helpless—we're Hugh's friends in the military. But now they're sole purpose, like my own—is killing you!
A group of VAULT Guardsmen organized by General Orwell Taylor to take revenge for Hugh Taylor, Ryan Stewart, and other Guardsmen killed during a jailbreak by Venom.
- A Day in the Limelight: The Trial Run backup story from Sinner Takes All.
- Amoral Attorney: Maxwell Taylor became the group's defence attorney.
- Anti Hero Team: They're a squad of over-glorified prison guards aiming to kill Eddie Brock and the Venom symbiote.
- Demoted to Extra: Despite all of their set-up, they only appeared thrice in Eddie's series, and two of those appearances were just in backup stories that did not involve Venom at all.
- Hanging Judge/Kangaroo Court: After apprehending their target they try, sentence, and execute them without any real intention of finding them innocent.
- Knight Templar: They aimed to "judge" Venom, Tarantula II, Spider-Man,note and Abe Jenkins using lethal force, and while they've reformatted to be more representative of an American court of law they still use lethal force.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Firearm's real name is unknown.
- Powered Armor: They all wear modified Guardsman armor, which itself was based on blueprints for Tony Stark's Iron Man armour.
- Quirky Miniboss Squad: They were demoted to this status while working for the Life Foundation in The Arachnis Project.
- Revenge: Their goal is to avenge the comrades who were killed during one of Eddie Brock's escapes.
- The Smurfette Principle: Jennifer Stewart is the only female member.
AKA: Gray Russell
Debut: Venom: Funeral Pyre
"Turn me into a monster! Cripple me! It can't get much worse... Come on! Let's finish it!"
A Californian reporter, Gray Russell learns that his dying father was once a scientist employed by Hydra
, and that the laboratory he worked in is still standing, albeit now abandoned. Gray goes to the warehouse containing the lab in search of answers, and discovers that it is now being used as the headquarters of the Jadoo street gang, which Gray bluffs his way into becoming a prospective member of. Unfortunately, Gray learns afterward that joining the Jadoos is a lifetime commitment, and that he will soon have to kill a rival gang member to prove himself, or be killed in turn. Desperate, Gray gives a note requesting aid to a young boy, who in turn gives it to Venom. Unfortunately, run-ins with the Punisher
leave Venom unable to reach Gray before the journalist is forced into committing mass murder by the Jadoos. When the Punisher storms the gang's warehouse, he mistakes Gray for just another Jadoo, which prompts the terrified Gray to seek shelter in a pod in the Hydra lab, which mutates him into a being capable of wielding microwave radiation. Unhinged by the combination of his mutation and status as a killer, Gray (now going by "Pyre") blames Venom and the Punisher for his woes, and attacks them, sparking a battle that brings the entire building down on him.
AKA: Michael G. Engelschwert
Debut: Venom: Sinner Takes All
A Gulf War veteran, the mentally fractured Michael G. Engelschwert was left homeless after the conflict and came to reside in a shelter, where he frequently bunked with Emil Gregg, the unstable man who had confessed to being the serial killer known as the Sin-Eater to Eddie Brock. Emil's nonstop religious rants wormed their way into Mike's mind, and he took up the mantle of the Sin-Eater, being even deadlier than his predecessor Stan Carter.
- Ax-Crazy: More so than Stan Carter, who had a Mask of Sanity.
- Badass Bandolier: Lots.
- Badass Longcoat: Allowing for easy firearm concealment.
- Badass Normal: Has no special powers or gear, just lots and lots of guns.
- Big Bad Ensemble: With Kirsten's mother in Sinner Takes All.
- Church Militant: He's even a former soldier.
- Crazy Homeless People: With exposure to other mentally ill vagrants making him worse.
- Disney Villain Death: Is tackled out a window after activating his explosive vest.
- Evil Overlooker: On the cover◊ of Sinner Takes All #1.
- Evil Versus Evil: Exterminates a group of militants, and gets into a fight with and is fatally shot by a crazy woman who has a grudge against Venom.
- Faking the Dead: He switches clothes with a hostage, and tricks Venom into killing the captive.
- Felony Misdemeanor: Makes it clear he's targeting Ann simply because she's a lawyer◊.
- Frame-Up: Leaves Sin-Eater gear under Emil's cot, which leads to him being arrested, and later killed by the mother an officer Mike had earlier murdered.
- Goggles Do Nothing: He sometimes wears red ones.
- The Heavy: While he and Kristen's mother share the villain role in Sinner Takes All, the latter only becomes involved halfway through the series, whereas Mike is the main threat, and there from start to finish.
- Irony: Crazy old Emil Gregg was driven to try and become the Sin Eater by Stan Carter's conversations with himself, which he could hear through the walls of the apartment building they both lived in. Later, crazy old Michael Engelschwert was driven to become the Sin-Eater by Emil Gregg's conversations with himself, which he could hear in the homeless shelter they both lived in.
- It's Personal: Nearly kills Eddie's ex-wife, Ann. Venom is also just plain happy to take on the Sin-Eater, even if it isn't Stan Carter or Emil Gregg.
Venom: Here's one for you—'Exclusive! Sin-Eater Revealed!' Eddie Brock, aka—Venom!"
- Jack the Ripoff: Of Stan Carter, the original Sin-Eater.
- Mad Bomber: Wears an explosive vest, and attempts to blow up the New York Stock Exchange.
- Make Way For The New Villains: Is introduced blowing away the man responsible for the Carnage Unleashed! game from the storyline of the same name.
- Malevolent Masked Men: A reddish-pink balaclava, as opposed to the green one (which he does have on the covers) worn by Stan Carter.
- Mysterious Middle Initial: What could it stand for?
- One-Man Army: In the Gulf War, and against the authorities, up to and including SWAT teams.
- Real Men Wear Pink: His mask is kind of... pinkish.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Why he became indigent.
- Shotguns Are Just Better: His main weapon is a shotgun.
- Sole Survivor: He was the only survivor of a Black Hawk crash in the Gulf War. After the airplane went down, he managed to slaughter an entire troop of enemy soldiers by himself before being found.
- Talkative Loon: Speaks almost entirely in Bible quotes.
- Taking You with Me: Dying from being shot, Mike decides to blow himself and everyone else present up. Mixed with a bizarre instance of Pet the Dog:
Mike: ... But I can save you all! I am about to enter the kingdom, and I can take you all with me!
- Throw Down the Bomblet: Nearly kills Venom with tons of thermite and white phosphorus grenades.
- Walking Arsenal: Including anti-tank weaponry.
Debut: Venom: The Hunted
"I must say that my sojourn on your little blue planet has been a quite a little gastronomic adventure-and comparatively trouble free! Why, up until now, the local authorities didn't even know I existed!"
A monstrous yet highly intelligent race of extraterrestrials, the Xenophages prey on symbiotes, and presumably originate from the same galaxy as them. In the aftermath of Planet of the Symbiotes
, an unnamed member of the species travels to Earth to devour the surviving invaders, bringing him into conflict with Scream (who he captures) and Venom (who is blamed for his killing spree). After a city-wide chase, the creature is brought down when Venom tricks him into eating a grenade, blowing his head off. Afterward, the Xenophage's spaceship is uncovered by Scream and a pair of teenaged skateboarders, who use it to help Venom and Wolverine defeat mutant supervillains Chimera and Dirtnap. The ship presumably remained in Scream's possession until her death at the hands of Eddie Brock.
- Always a Bigger Fish: He's assumed to have eaten all of the surviving invaders (and their hosts) leftover from Planet of the Symbiotes.
- Aliens Speaking English: No explanation is given for his Surprisingly Good English.
- Brain Food: Goes for the brain first, which is why Venom is blamed for all the deaths.
- Combat Tentacles: His entire lower half is composed of these.
- Cool Starship: It's Bigger on the Inside, can shrink down to the size of a football without harming the occupants, travel to other dimensions, and track symbiotes anywhere.
- The Dreaded: Instinctively feared by symbiotes.
- Fangs Are Evil/More Teeth than the Osmond Family: Just like his snacks.
- Faux Affably Evil: Very eloquent.
- Feed It a Bomb: Venom creates a fake head containing a grenade, and tricks the Xenophage into biting it.
- Feel No Pain: "My exoskeleton is not equipped with pain receptors... unlike your face!"
- Food Chain of Evil: A symbiote predator.
- Hungry Menace: While obviously sentient, he doesn't care about anything but his next meal.
- Hammerspace: Where he tucked away Scream.
- Lean and Mean: His bottom half is nothing but tentacles, while his abdomen is skeletal with Creepily Long Arms.
- Lightning Bruiser: Very agile, despite his size.
- The Merch: Surprisingly, he got an action figure, though the packaging referred to him as "Phage◊".
- Monster of the Week: The villain of Venom: The Hunted.
- Meaningful Name: Roughly translated, it means "alien devourer".
- Nigh Invulnerable: Nothing could lay a scratch on his exoskeleton.
- No Name Given: His actual name (if he had one) is unrevealed, so he's just called "the Xenophage" or simply "the Phage".
- The Paralyzer: He can temporarily disable symbiotes with his spit, turning them into dead weight for their hosts. Eddie compares getting doused to being put in a straitjacket.
- Super Spit: It's an incendiary neurotoxin that paralyzes symbiotes, and enhances their taste.
- Starfish Aliens: A gangly monster with an ornate golden face and mandibles, a body made up mostly of fur and tentacles, and the ability to perfectly emulate inanimate objects down to the finest detail.
- Tentacle Rope: Scream is entangled in them for most of the story.
- To Serve Man: While he feeds on symbiotes, he is able to sustain himself on humans, and presumably other beings.
- Traintop Battle: The final battle takes place on top of a subway train.
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Able to flawlessly mimic a cabinet, complete with fine China.
- Would Hurt a Child: Attempts to eat some kids who try to help Venom and Scream.
Scream: What do you want with those kids? I thought you only ate symbiote brains!
Xenophage: It's what I prefer, but any cerebral cortex will do in a pinch! In fact, I could do with a snack just about now...
- Your Head A Splode: His death.
Debut: Venom: Seed of Darkness
"Such... great... horror. A terrible abundance of sorrow. What monstrous Gods would create a race with so much buried greatness—yet curse them with souls born wounded?"
While experimenting with dimensional and intergalactic travel, quack scientist Nigel Donlevy brought the symbiote-like alien Krobaa to Earth. A member of a benevolent empire, Krobaa merged with Donlevy (intending to do so only temporarily) to learn about the new planet he had been brought to, and its people. Unfortunately, the darkness within Donlevy (aka the human ID) drove Krobaa insane, and he went on rampage through a nearby town and industrial park. Daily Globe
reporter Eddie Brock, alerted to Krobaa's existence by someone looking for burnt-out paranormal investigator Cal Carlchok
, travelled to the area Krobaa was laying waste to, and after evading the monster's attacks, realized it had an aversion to light. With the flashes produced by his camera, Eddie restored Krobaa to his senses; unfortunately, the extraterrestrial was so traumatized by what he had done and experienced that he committed suicide by reducing himself to dust and gas, expelling the hysterical Donlevy. Eddie submitted the story to his editor, only to have it dismissed (as Carlchok hinted it would be) as a "turn-off" for the average reader and advertiser. The disheartened Eddie was left to brood—"I'll make the big time eventually. I can feel it in my gut. Sooner or later—I'm going to strike oil".
- A Villain Named Zrg: The story was a throwback to the Marvel Monsters era, so of course this naming convention was used.
- Blob Monster: Krobaa was an amorphous blob of black goo, though he became slightly humanoid after taking over Donlevy.
- Foreshadowing: An initially benevolent black blob from another world which was corrupted by exposure to humans, who it could bond to physically and mentally. Subtle.
- Episode 0: The Beginning: His issue was designated "Venom #-1".
- Humanity Is Insane: Merging with a human causes Krobaa to lose it, and after returning to normal, he kills himself.
Nigel Donlevy: But he knew nothing of the primal beast that lurks within the human subconscious, the inner demon that Freud called the ID. He was overwhelmed, nearly driven mad—until your strobe light shocked him out of it. And then... I could feel his revulsion... his pity. Considering himself infected, he committed suicide rather than risk unleashing a plague of madness on the universe... our madness.
- Weakened by the Light: To the point that a camera could disorient him.
AKA: Doctor Shep Gunderson (Redeemer); Claude Cramer (General Wolfram); Jenni Pate (Eleven); Jonathan N. York (Doctor Everything); Mrs. Fluffy Lumpkins (Hippo); Richard Earle Amtower IV (Dementoid)
Debut: Dark Reign: Sinister Spider-Man
"All right, people! Let's go save Spider-Man!"
A ragtag bunch of criminals and supervillains with one thing in common: a grudge against Mac Gargan for "amputating
" one or more of their limbs
Gathered together by the Redeemer, they swore to bring the Sinister Spider-Man to justice... and failed miserably
- An Arm and a Leg: With the exception of Doctor Everything, they all had a limb or two eaten by Venom.
- Affectionate Nickname: In his summary of the previous issue in Dark Reign: Sinister Spider-Man #3, Mac has heart-shaped cutouts with photos of the Redeemers on them and little captions◊, referring to Redeemer as "Nerd", Hippo as "Lunch", Eleven as "Dessert", Wolfram as "Midnight Snack", Dementoid as "Gassy", and Doctor Everything as "Naked. It's weird."
- Back from the Dead: Despite being eaten by Venom, Hippo later reappears to fight Spider-Man and Luke Cage.
- Breakout Villain: Hippo is apparently popular with someone, as he somehow recovered from being devoured by Mac, and went on to become a minor recurring villain for the real Spider-Man.
- Captain Ersatz: Doctor Everything is a blatant parody of Doctor Manhattan.
- Catch Phrase: Hippo's is "Pachyderm Power!" ... which doesn't make any sense given that he's not an elephant.
- Censor Box: Doctor Everything's junk is obscured by a small black censor bar.
- Eaten Alive: Hippo and Eleven are eaten by Venom during their first showdown.
- Evil Old Folks: General Wolfram is a World War II veteran.
- Five-Bad Band:
- Big Bad: The Redeemer, the team's founder.
- Co-Dragons: Dementoid and General Wolfram, mostly by virtue of being the only ones besides the Redeemer to make it out of the group's first assault against Venom.
- Evil Genius: Doctor Everything, the self-proclaimed omniscient.
- The Brute: Hippo, because he is a big bulky hippopotamus.
- Dark Chick: Eleven, who is also the sole female member of the team.
- Full-Frontal Assault: Doctor Everything remarks he has no need for clothes to Eleven when she complains about his nudity.
- Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Hippo is an anthropomorphic hippo created by the High Evolutionary, and wears a pair of Hulk-sized green pants.
- Make Me Wanna Shout: Eleven's power. Unfortunately for her, Mac is able to Fight Off the Kryptonite.
- Nemean Skinning: Wolfram wears the skin of a wolf... with glowing red eyes.
- No Sell: Venom is immune to Dementoid's insanity-inducing touch, and when Doctor Everything covers his mouth with a metal plate he tries to use his ass to eat people.
- Reality Warper: Doctor Everything can warp reality, although his use of this power is limited to comedic effect, such as conjuring a metal plate over Venom's mouth. He's even arrested.
- Save the Villain: The Redeemer's professed goal is to save "Spider-Man"... by killing him.
- Skull for a Head: The Redeemer's mask is intended to invoke this.
- Smurfette Principle: Eleven is the only girl on the team.
- Those Wacky Nazis: General Wolfram was a Nazi scientist during World War II.
- Time for Plan B: In the aftermath of their failed attempt to redeem or kill Mac, Dementoid and Wolfram visit the now quadriplegic Redeemer, who has them enact the backup plan - sending pictures of "Spider-Man's" innumerable crimes to J. Jonah Jameson.
- Unreliable Narrator: Wolfram claims to have been a wolf humanized by the Nazis, though the Redeemer points out that there are a lot of holes in that story. A much more competent and science-oriented General Wolfram later appeared in a Wolverine story set during WW2, and it's entirely possible this one based his persona off of the original or even that they are the same person since the original was subjected to Weapon X.
- Uplifted Animal: Hippo is one of the High Evolutionary's New Men, or Beastials.
- Villain Team-Up: They're a self-help group for supervillains who lost limbs to Mac Gargan.
- We Hardly Knew Ye: Eleven is introduced and killed within two issues, and none of the other members - except Hippo - have reappeared.
AKA: Bennett Brant
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man
Vol. 2, #1 (as the Crime Master)
"An ode to Bennett Brand and his little sis, Betty Brant. To the family. A family that was stripped away from me. But don't feel too badly—crime is my family now."
Introduced as a shadowy crime lord and Jack O'Lantern's boss, the Crime Master seeks to usurp control of the criminal underworld from the Kingpin, only to be opposed by Agent Venom. Blackmailing Flash into helping him acquire the Toxin symbiote, the Crime Master set up a team of super villains called the Savage Six and kidnapped Betty Brant. He revealed himself as Bennett Brant, her older brother who had been assumed dead for years. Bennett offered Betty a chance to join him before Agent Venom arrived, but just as he was about to kill Flash he was shot in the back by his own sister and died unmourned by anyone except Jack O'Lantern
- Abduction Is Love: He kidnapped the boy who became Jack O'Lantern and raised him as an assassin.
- Badass in a Nice Suit: He wore a pinstriped suit underneath his trench coat.
- Big Bad: He was the main antagonist of Rick Remender's half of Venom Vol. 2, before being killed by his own sister.
- Brother-Sister Incest/Villainous Incest: His feelings for Betty weren't very brotherly, that's for sure.
- Coat, Hat, Mask: His outfit included a fedora, a black mask with white eyes and stripes, and a dark brown trench coat.
- Cool Mask: A black mask with white eyes, a V-shaped strip over his nose, and two diagonal stripes parallel to the V going over his cheeks.
- The Dog Was the Mastermind: Prior to his return as the new Crime Master, Bennett's last appearance was in a 1964 story that ended with his apparent death.
- Faking the Dead: For years Bennett was assumed to have been killed by loan-shark Blackie Gaxton.
- Genre Savvy: He knew Betty was lying when she said she'd join him.
- Grave Marking Scene: Betty visits his presumably empty grave in 1990's Web of Spider-Man #63
- From Nobody to Nightmare: He went from a successful lawyer with gambling problems to a criminal mastermind. Also counts as Face-Heel Turn and Took a Level in Jerkass.
- In the Back: He was shot from behind by his own sister.
- Legacy Character: He succeeded the Lewis family as the Crime Master, and was succeeded himself by an unknown individual who purchased the moniker from Hobgoblin. Additionally, Remender's run retconned things by revealing that the Crime Master identity was not created by Nick Lewis, but instead has existed for centuries, and has been used by people all over the globe.
- The Master: Of crime.
- My Sister Is Off-Limits!: He was opposed to Flash dating Betty out of a twisted form of brotherly affection.
- Villain Team-Up: He created his own rip-off of the Sinister Six - the Savage Six - by recruiting Richard Deacon (the Human Fly), Roland Burroughs (Death Adder), Gregory Nettles (Megatak), and turning Eddie Brock into Toxin.
Jack O'Lantern V
Vol. 2, #1
"Still, I wondered how long it would take, right? To earn a true arch-enemy you gotta hold a awfully personal grudge. And, guess what? I've got one. With you."
The fifth person to assume the mantle of the Jack O'Lantern after supposedly killing the other surviving ones, this Jack served as The Dragon
to the Crime Master and has established himself as Agent Venom's arch-enemy.
- Abduction Is Love: Was abducted by the Crime Master as a child on Halloween and became his loyal accomplice.
- Adorable Evil Minions/Mecha-Mooks: Has a number of creepy puppet and doll-like robots who "wuv" to commit atrocities.
- Arch-Enemy: Agent Venom's self-proclaimed one, and Mania's as well.
- Ax-Crazy: While it's unknown whether he's doped up on Goblin formula, but he's certainly just as crazy as any of the Goblins.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Even after being arrested he continues to plague Venom by remotely hypnotizing a security guard into taking on his identity.
- Calling Card: Jack has a habit of removing his victims' brains and leaving a lit candle in their hollowed out heads.
- The Dragon: Served as this to the Crime Master before his death.
- Enemy Mine:
- When forced to team up with Agent Venom, Jack happily spent the duration of the trip repeatedly sledgehammering Flash's Berserk Buttons.
Jack: I'd never poke fun about your drunk, dead, pig-cop dad. That would be very un-bro-like of me.
- Magneto somehow convinced him to help in the fight against Red Onslaught.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: He viewed the Crime Master as his father.
- Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: Jack is just as bad as any of the Goblins, if not worse.
- Expy: A criminal with a sadistic sense of humor who gets a kick out of trolling his archenemy, who has a disfigured face, and who survived a fall into a vat of toxic chemicals. Sounds pretty similar to the The Joker, doesn't it?
- Facial Horror: He's missing his nose and most of his teeth, and his head is covered in burns. Eating a live grenade will do that to you.
- Faux Affably Evil: He's generally cheerful and even downright friendly towards Flash at times, but that just serves to underline how much of a sadistic psychopath he is.
- Fire-Breathing Weapon/Playing with Fire: He has flamethrowers installed into his suit, his helmet is wreathed in flames, and he's not adverse to using the exhaust from his broomstick glider as a makeshift flamethrower.
- Flying Broomstick: Has taken up the Green Goblin's old broomstick glider, even using it to Goomba Stomp Venom in their first fight.
- Heel-Face Turn: He's caught up in Doctor Doom's and the Scarlet Witch's Inversion Spell, which leads to him being deputized as an "Astounding Avenger" by Steve Rogers.
Fan Edit!Jack O'Lantern: Wait
, what'd you just say?
- Hypno Fool: Jack's robots remotely hypnotize a security guard into taking up his identity and persona. After being subdued by Venom and Mania, the guard lapses into a coma.
- Grave Robbing: In revenge for Agent Venom killing the Crime Master, Jack waits until Father's Day, exhumes Flash's father's corpse, replaces his brain with a candle, and hides him in the sewers. He then lures Flash there and mocks him over a PA system before blowing up the room.
- It's Personal: After the Crime Master is killed, Jack's rivalry with Venom became even more intense.
- Jagged Mouth: The mouth of his brainwashed replacement's helmet was intended to invoke the classic serrated-mouth jack o'lantern look.
- Kill and Replace: Did this to the others who had born the moniker "Jack O'Lantern".
- Legacy Character: Is the fifth and current Jack O'Lantern.
- Let's Duet: Joins in on Flash singing Lynyrd Skynyrd's Free Bird while attacking him at the same time.
Agent Venom: I'm free as a bird now.
Jack O'Lantern: And this bird you'll never change. *attacks him* And this bird you can not change.
- Living Prop: He's inverted at the beginning of AXIS, but spends the rest of the event quietly filling out crowd scenes, presumably in-between performing acts of heroism so selfless they would leave Flash's mouth agape were he not busy being in outer space.
- Make Way For The New Villains: He boasts about murdering all of his surviving predecessors, which would be Daniel Berkhart, Maguire Beck, Steven Levins's brother, and the resurrected or imposter Jason Macendale from Secret War. Steven Levins, the second Jack O'Lantern, had previously been killed by The Punisher, then Ghost Rider.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: His real name is unknown and everyone calls him by his supervillain moniker.
- Serial Killer: Jack was trained as an assassin by the Crime Master, and turned to this in his spare time.
- Sinister Scythe: His weapon of choice is a razor-sharp sickle. His brainwashed temporary replacement also used a miniature scythe.
- The Sociopath: Even as a child he mutilated animals.
- Things That Go Bump in the Night: Refers to himself as a bogeyman in conduction with his Halloween-themed getup.
- Troll: Jack happily antagonizes Flash for the sake of making him angry. This backfires when Venom tries to eat him, and it's only Jack reminding Flash that the Crime Master will kill his friends and family that gets the symbiote back under control.
- Weaponized Exhaust: Uses his glider as a makeshift flamethrower when fighting Venom.
- Whole Costume Reference: His outfit is based off the Headless Horseman, to a greater degree than any Jack O'Lantern prior.
- Wreathed in Flames: His pumpkin-shaped helmet is wreathed in flames, but that doesn't seem to bother him.
Vol. 2, #13
"We've done this dance before. I know all your weak spots, son. And there's a truckload. Can't beat me if you beat yourself. I know what you are."
A demon created by H'elian's Mirror Cauldron to embody Flash's fears and flaws, the Evangelist took the form of a tall, skinny preacher in a black suit, carrying a demonic Bible full of razor-sharp pages. After he killed Red Hulk, Agent Venom strangled him to death.
- Badass Long Coat: Wears one as part of his preacher getup.
- Breaking Speech: Gives Flash a stern, mocking lecture, leaving him in a Heroic BSOD.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: He easily takes out Venom with a few words during their first match, and later gave Red Hulk a Torso with a View with a sheet of paper, killing him.
- Evil Counterpart: He's the manifestation of Flash's fears and insecurities.
- More Than Mind Control: Seized control of the symbiote and used it to taunt Flash during his Breaking Speech.
- Our Demons Are Different: He's the manifestation of Flash Thompson's inner demons and takes the form of a stereotypical 19th-century Bible-thumping preacher.
- Quirky Mini Boss Squad: Made up one with Ichor, Encephalon, and X-666.
- Paper Master: His demonic Bible can shoot razor-sharp pages like a Gatling gun fires bullets.
- Sinister Minister: His entire shtick is "creepy, evil priest".
- Translator Buddy: Able to understand Encephalon.
- Underestimating Badassery: Flash doesn't have a good first impression of his opponent, declaring, "I ain't big on church, pops. And you look so... weak".
- We Hardly Knew Ye: After he kills Red Hulk, Agent Venom strangles the Evangelist to death.
- White Hair, Black Heart: He has snow-white hair and is a demonic preacher.
Vol. 2, #32
"C-can't stop us. The adaptation matrix is in our bloodstream. The lethality equation... changing us!"
Four biomechanical alien parasites, the Symbiote Slayers were discovered by Vector, who tried to market them to the Crime Master, who in turn had them implanted in an unnamed man who later escaped. Driven to cannibalism by them, their host came into conflict with Agent Venom, who attempted to get the man to surrender in order for a cure to be found. Toxin interrupted just as the man was acquiescing and ate him, causing the four symbiote slayers to escape and and take over a group of homeless people. The symbiote slayers traced Venom and Toxin to the high school where Flash worked as a teacher, and Eddie and Flash were forced to work together to destroy them. One Symbiote Slayer was shown to have survived, but nothing's come of it since.
Vol. 2, #36
"You come looking for Lord Ogre... and you'll find him. But this is a careful-what-you-wish for scenario, see?"
Philadelphia's resident crime lord, who takes an exception to Agent Venom taking a bite out of his profits and places a bounty on his head. This sets off a chain reaction that leads to Andrea Benton becoming Mania and swearing revenge for the death of her father. He's killed by Crossbones and Master Mayhem.
- Ambiguously Brown: He has brown skin but his ethnicity isn't disclosed before he is killed.
- Badass Boast: When Mania cuts down his personal bodyguards, Ogre sneers at her and calls her a child wearing a mask.
- Bald of Evil: He's bald and a really nasty piece of work.
- Bullying a Dragon: When he meets Mania for the first time, he sneers at her and calls her a little girl hiding behind a mask, knowing full well she could eat him. He also does the same to Agent Venom, although with the added precaution of a buttload of high-calibre firepower.
- Create Your Own Villain: The bounty he places on Agent Venom attracts Jack O'Lantern, who kills Andi's father and tries to kill her. Flash accidentally turns her into Mania trying to protect her, and Andi swears revenge on Lord Ogre.
- Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: He mocks Venom and Mania, both of whom are more than capable of eating him alive, to their faces.
- The Don: He's Philadelphia's number one crime lord, involved in everything from prostitution to drug running to human trafficking.
- Eaten Alive: He's partially-devoured by demons summoned by Master Mayhem.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: The guy calls himself "Lord Ogre" and while he's not an actual ogre, he can be just as brutal.
- Oh, Crap: When Mania is one claws-bredth away from killing him, he reveals he's rigged a biological weapon to go off if he dies. To his horror, she decides to call his bluff, reasoning her symbiote would protect her from the fallout.
- Scary Shiny Glasses: He's never seen without them, to the point where they appear to be fused to his face.
- Self-Destruct Mechanism: Installed a biological weapon powerful enough to devastate most of Philadelphia into his chest and rigged it to a dead man's switch, thinking it'd be enough to scare off assassins.
- Starter Villain: Served as one for Mania, as while he was a ruthless and cunning crime lord, he was only human and grossly outclassed by the likes of Crossbones and Master Mayhem.
- Taking You with Me: He installed a dead man's switch and a biological bomb so powerful he claims it would wipe out half of Philly into his chest, thinking it would prevent Mania from killing him.
- Tattooed Crook: He has a number of tattoos on his face.