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Literature / Carnage in New York

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Carnage In New York

Carnage In New York is a 1995 Spider-Man novel written by David Michelinie and Dean Wesley Smith. Spider-Man rescues Dr. Eric Catrall, a scientist, from government agents. Simultaneously, serial killer Cletus Kasady is brought to New York to undergo an experiment that would purge him of the Carnage symbiote, which is bonded to his bloodstream. Catrall infiltrates the experiment and in the confusion Carnage escapes, taking Catrall with him. When Catrall turns up in jail, Spider-Man learns he had invented a chemical that drives people insane with bloodlust, and the government wants it back in order to weaponize it. Even worse, the serum is now in Carnage's possession. Spider-Man is forced to go toe-to-talon with one of his most dangerous foes to retrieve the serum, which could make all of New York just as bloodthirsty as Carnage himself.

Goblin's Revenge

Goblin's Revenge is the sequel to Carnage in New York, written by Dean Wesley Smith in 1996. In the immediate aftermath of the preceding novel, the Green Goblin steals Catrall's serum from Mr. Fantastic, intending to use it on Spider-Man, and breaks Cletus Kasady free from the Vault. Simultaneously, a covert black-ops team working for Lifestream Technologies has been hired to retrieve the serum and is targeting Spider-Man. Peter must now retrieve the serum again, defeat the Green Goblin and Carnage, and avoid the hit men gunning for him if he wants to survive.


These novels contain examples of the following tropes:

  • Antagonist Title: Carnage in New York; Goblin's Revenge.
  • Ax-Crazy: Carnage lives up to his name, butchering just about everyone he comes across and plotting to use Catrall's Psycho Serum to make as many people as bloodthirsty as he is. Spider-Man even notes he has to be careful not to expose Cletus to it, since a berserk Carnage is a nightmare situation.
  • Arc Villain: Carnage is the main antagonist of both novels.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate: The Green Goblin and Carnage team up in Goblin's Revenge... at least until Carnage throws off the Goblin's plans.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: The descriptions of what Carnage does to his victims are notably much more graphic in Goblin's Revenge than in Carnage in New York. There's also the constant nightmares Spider-Man has after discovering the serum has been stolen, which eventually becomes a reality when the black ops team winds up getting infected with the serum and proceeds to slaughter each other.
  • Card Board Prison: Averted: in both books Cletus starts out imprisoned in cells tailor-made to keep him contained, but once he does escape...
  • Continuity Nod: Goblin's Revenge references the events of Diane Duane's Spider-Man: The Venom Factor, making the CCRC Trilogy canon to its setting.
  • Dead Person Impersonation: The Chameleon impersonates Norman Osborn in Goblin's Revenge in order to avenge Kraven the Hunter's suicide.
  • Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: Both Carnage and the Goblin love cracking sadistic jokes.
  • Evil Laugh: Both Carnage and the Goblin, although the former finds the latter's grating.
  • Gambit Pileup: Carnage screws up the Chameleon's revenge gambit on Spider-Man, which in turn screws up Borgol's efforts to capture Spider-Man and retrieve Catrall's serum.
  • Happy Ending Override: The ending of Carnage In New York saw Spidey defeat Carnage and successfully recover the serum, giving it to Reed Richards for safekeeping. Goblin's Revenge begins immediately after Spidey leaves Reed's lab and has the Goblin steal the serum
  • Hate Plague: The Psycho Serum is this, as it increases people's anger so much they go berserk with bloodlust.
  • I'll Kill You!: Carnage threatens to tear off Spider-Man's arms and eat them during their first fight in Carnage In New York.
  • It's All My Fault: Spider-Man personally blames himself for each death caused by Venom and Carnage, due to having been the one who brought the Venom symbiote to earth in the first place.
  • The Men in Black: The federal agents hunting Catrall in Carnage In New York.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Catrall's reaction to the government using his incomplete serum as a weapon of mass destruction was to steal his research and flee.
  • Psycho Serum: Eric Catrall, a scientist working for Lifestream Technologies, accidentally creates a chemical that amplifies aggression. The government immediately tries to steal his research and weaponize it.
  • Reed Richards Is Useless: He failed to stop the Green Goblin - or rather, the Chameleon disguised as the Green Goblin - from stealing the serum.
  • Revenge: The Chameleon's goal in impersonating the Green Goblin was to avenge his half-brother Kraven.
  • Sanity Slippage: Catrall's paranoia and guilt, worsened by being abducted by Carnage, gradually consume him until he commits Suicide by Cop.
  • Spotting the Thread: The Chameleon's impersonation of Norman Osborn - both as himself and the Green Goblin - was perfect save for one inadvertent flaw: Norman knew Spider-Man was Peter Parker and the Chameleon didn't. The latter makes the mistake of saying he intends to take Peter hostage before going to wait for Spider-Man to arrive, though none of the characters pick up on this.
  • Torso with a View: In Carnage In New York, when Carnage attacks the "Feed 'Em All" fundraiser party, an artist throws a metal statue of a nude woman at him. Cletus throws it back, punching a hole clean through the artist's stomach.

Alternative Title(s): Goblins Revenge


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