How much Venom can the Marvel Universe take? They’re going to find out later this year this September, as the Venomverse will introduce a new villain to the Marvel multiverse that will put the most popular host of the deadly symbiote back on center stage.
In Venomverse, Venom is transported to a distant world where a deadly new alien species called the Poisons are ravaging their way through space. Next on their menu are Venoms. You read that correctly, Venoms, plural. This universe features a group of Venom-ized heroes, and Eddie Brock rallies the troops so that he can come home. Cullen Bunn will write the five-issue series, while Iban Coello will handle the art chores, along with covers by Nick Bradshaw and interlocking variants by Clayton Crain (see below).
So what happens when a Poison alien tries to eat a symbiote? Nothing good I can imagine, but the fun of the series will be to see how the alien symbiote reacts to a new threat and bonds with other unlikely hosts, like Ghost Rider, Rocket Raccoon, Black Panther or Mary Jane. But remember, this is the multiverse, so look for Old Man Logan’s Venomsaurus Rex, or Laura Kinney’s All-New Wolverine. And yes, fans of Bunn’s wide and prolific work at Marvel should expect Deadpool to be venomized too. Does that get the gears turning in your head about how wild this series could be? What about Spider-Ham? Yes, Bunn is going there too.
Bunn told Nerdist that “Something that I’ve always found important– is how the Venom symbiote interacts with other hosts.” The more unlikely the host, the more unpredictable the results, and that’s what Bunn is aiming for, while utilizing one of his strong suits, exploring horror on multiple levels, as in his two creator-owned titles, Harrow County and Regression. Since a large portion of the story takes place in space, there will be nods to science fiction roots, too. Just know this, expect pure Venom bedlam.
Since this is a big event, one might be wondering how many books this will infiltrate. The bulk of the story will occur in the Venomverse mini-series, but there will also be a six-issue series titled Edge of Venomverse, where there is more Venomized mayhem with a wide roster of comic creators, who include James Stokoe, Tigh Walker, Si Spurrier, Clay McLeod Chapman and Ryan Key. This supplemental series will be released earlier, on June 28. Finally, an anthology comic, Venomverse: War Stories, will hit stands alongside Venomverse and will feature the Venomized-Punisher, written and drawn by Declan Shalvey (Injection, Moon Knight).
One can’t help but think this is the start of building out Venom in preparation for the upcoming film, which is scheduled for an October 2018 release starring Tom Hardy, with Ruben Fleischer at the helm. Not that we’re going to see Venomized heroes in the MCU anytime (thankfully), but for those wondering if Eddie Brock and Venom can carry a film franchise, Marvel may be trying to beef up Brock’s catalog of stories to mine as well as his character complexities.
After his long run as a Spider-Man foe, Venom became a protector of the innocent. He was later diagnosed with terminal cancer, which he had prior to bonding with the symbiote in the 2003 “The Hunger” storyline. The bond was strong between Brock and the symbiote, not only because of the hatred toward Spider-Man, but because the cancer caused the release of adrenaline, which fed the symbiotic. Brock’s story has been a tumultuous one after he sells the symbiote to crime boss Don Fortunato and the “Anti-Venom” saga that results in his cancer being cured. In 2012, Brock was bonded to Toxin, a second symbiote created by Carnage. The symbiote has tried to bond with many other hosts of questionable character, including Angelo Fortunato, Flash Thompson and Lee Price. Venomverse looks to prove that once and for all, Eddie Brock is the one and best host the Marvel Universe needs.