VENOM : Alien Costume Symbiote
"The more hidden the VENOM, the more dangerous it is."--Marguerite de Valois
Last seen in the big screen menacing SPIDER-MAN, let us now learn a little more about this CBM character - VENOM. What it is? And what are its powers?
What is VENOM?
VENOM is an alien symbiote, a life form that requires a host to bond around for its survival. The creature is a sentient alien with a gooey, almost liquid-like form. VENOM creature gives its host enhanced powers.
VENOM first appeared as an "alien costume" in The Amazing Spider-Man #252 (May 1984) it wascreated by Randy Schueller (original idea) and David Michelinie, with Mike Zeck designing the alien costume and Todd McFarlane drawing the first VENOM appearance.
What are its powers and abilities?
The VENOM symbiote empowers the natural abilities of a host to the point where they far exceed that of normal members of the hosts' species. These abilities include the following superhuman strength, speed and agility, Super enhanced durability, resistance to damage and healing ability, genetic memory, recalling information from previous hosts. Can expand to any size as long as they have something to grow on such as a host or an object. The VENOM Symbiote can get inside of small areas such as electric wires and the insides of cars and completely disable them. The Symbiote also reacts to the thoughts and will of the host. The Symbiote can sense the presence of other Symbiote within a certain distance and the ability to shape-shift, from mimicking clothing up to and including complete change of appearance and stature.
The VENOM Symbiote has adapted the spider powers of Spider-Man.
The Symbiote allows the user limited shape-shifting.
The symbiote is capable of healing injuries in the host at a faster rate than normal human healing allows. The symbiote is also capable of healing injuries and illnesses that current human medical care cannot such as cancer.
Who are the host of the VENOM Symbiote?
1. Peter Parker SPIDER-MAN
The Amazing Spider-Man #252 (May 1984)
In the Secret Wars storyline Spider-Man damages his regular costume in combat. He found a machine that was supposed to make a "new" costume, but in actuality was a sentient alien symbiote responding to Spider-Man's thoughts to form a new costume. Spider-Man later on learns the true nature of the costume and that it wishes to fuse permanently with him. With the aid of other heroes Spider-Man discovered that the symbiote is vulnerable to sound and flame. Spider-man uses this knowledge to permanently separate himself from the symbiote.
2. Eddie Brock
Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 #299 (April, 1988)
When Spider-man separated himself from the symbiote, the sentient alien costume needed another human host in order to survive. He found and bonded with Eddie Brock who became the first person to use the name VENOM. Eddie Brock has a grudge against SPIDER-MAN when he disgraced him as a reporter because of a bogus news report, that grudge is fueled more by the symbiote's hatred of his previous host. We would see many battles between Spider-man and Eddie Brock's VENOM. Though at times they would have a truce, and we see them fighting along side each other. Later on the VENOM symbiote will find new hosts and Eddie Brock is currently running around as Anti-VENOM (A creature with all of VENOM's powers, without its weaknesses.... hmmm... Blade called he wants to talk to you about something).
3. Angelo Fortunato
Marvel Knights: Spider-Man Vol 1 #6 (November, 2004)
Don Fortunato bought the symbiote for 100 million dollars from then cancer-stricken Eddie Brock (now he is cured because of Anti-VENOM - whoopee!). Fortunato gave it to his son, Angelo, to prove himself to the crime family. Angelo fought Spider-Man and clearly had the advantage in the fight. But when he killed a bystander, Spider-Man didn't hold back and started to beat Angelo into submission. Being a coward that he is, he tried to flee, and the symbiote, disgusted by his actions, left Angelo's body while in mid air (and splat!).
4. Mac Gargan
Marvel Knights: Spider-Man Vol 1 #9 (February, 2005)
After the incident with Angelo Fortunato, the VENOM symbiote approached MacDonald "Mac" Gargan, formerly known as Scorpion, and offered him new abilities. Gargan accepted the proposal and bonded with the creature. When in the VENOM persona, Gargan retained very little of his original personality and was controlled almost completely by the Symbiote, which drove him to cannibalism. When the Symbiote was dormant in his body, he expressed nausea and fear of the organism.
5. Flash Thompson
Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 #654
Flash Thompson is the "black ops" VENOM owned by the government, he is one of Peter Parker's high school classmate/bully and now a war veteran who lost the use of his leg. The previous VENOM Mac Gargan is back in being the scorpion again and the symbiote got locked up in a secret Government base. Giving drug suppressants to control the VENOM symbiote, the new host, Flash Thompson became one of the Government's covert men in the battle against evil. While having the abilities of Spider-Man plus 10.
6. Ann Weying
Amazing Spider-Man Vol 1 #375 (March, 1993)
Ann Weying is Eddie Brock's ex-wife, a successful lawyer. In an event where Ann got shot, the VENOM symbiote temporarily bonds with her to save her life and she briefly became She-VENOM.
7. Ms. Marvel
Siege Vol 1 #3
During the siege of Asgard, Spider-Man fought Mac Gargan in the streets of Broxton, Oklahoma. Ms. Marvel came to help Spidey and ripped Gargan out of the Symbiote. The Symbiote proceeded to take control of Carol Danvers until Spidey was able to feed her enough power to break free of the Symbiote.
Spider-Man and the Fantastic Four #2
New revelations indicates that after Spider-Man initially removed the VENOM symbiote, it escaped and attempted to bond with Franklin Richards. In that course, it bonded temporarily with Reed Richards, Susan Richards, and She-Hulk. It eventually bonded with Franklin, but with Spider-Man's help, the Fantastic Four was able to separate the Symbiote from Franklin.
Appearances of the VENOM Symbiote in Live Media
The Venom symbiote appeared currently in one movie, SPIDER-MAN 3. In which he first bonded with Peter Parker. Similar to the comics after Peter separated himself from the alien costume, it found a new host in Eddie Brock.
1. Tobey Maguire
2. Topher Grace
sources: http://www.comicvine.com/myvine/misterz173/hosts-of-venom/75-21333/ : http://www.comicvine.com/venom/29-1486/ : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venom_(comics) : http://marvel.wikia.com/Venom
Article requested by:
Keep up the great work! Please do VENOM!!!!!
Could you do VENOM?
I'd be up for a VENOM article as well.
This is the 19th article in my Know Your CBM Character series. Any requests and suggestions for an article for this series write it down in the comment section BELOW.
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Here's a few more hosts but they are not from mainstream continuity. Try to identify them: (And look for the odd duck that should not be included there).
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