Every fan of Spider-Man has their favorite version of Venom. For some of us, it is the animated Venom from the original cartoon series. For others, it is the classic incarnation of Venom fused with Eddie Brock and, for those with a distinctive taste, it is the more unusual Venom hiding out there in the archives of Spider-Man comics (looking at you Pork Grind). Most people also think their favorite version of the sinister character is the most powerful of the bunch.
Venom has been a staple of Spider-Man's rogues gallery since his first appearance. Since that debut, fans have come to love the character both as a villain and an anti-hero. In trying to appeal to that love from fans, comic book writers created tons of versions of the character. Since Venom is an alien symbiote that attaches to its host, it can take a variety of different forms and that's what we're here to discuss.
Whatever version you prefer, every kind of Venom has its strengths and weaknesses. For each new iteration of the symbiote, Venom finds new powers and a new design that help make that version stand out. These rankings took into account the look of the Venom, intimidation factor, and potential for destruction.
All of these variables were considered and what that produced is 25 Versions Of Venom, Ranked From Scrubs To OP.
Spider-Cat is from Earth-999 and would often have dreams of facing a version of Venom that proves to be formidable, as it took some of the Spider-Car’s nine lives. However, it just so happens that this version of Venom is a pigeon. Yes, you read that right. Now this pigeon looks a little creepy, but to be honest, that pigeon is definitely a scrub compared to every other version of Venom in Marvel’s canon. Birds are a bit intimidating and the design of this version is cool (at least for a bird). However, if a cat can beat you every time you battle, clearly you are not that dangerous and strong. That is why this Venom is the biggest scrub.
Another bizarre version of Venom that somehow found its way onto the pages of a Marvel comic, Pork Grind was an unusual depiction of Venom. Pork Grind is connected with the Spider-Pig version of Spider-Man and the two do battle in the comics. However, this version of our favorite alien symbiote definitely lacks design appeal.
Pork Grind is literally the traditional body of Venom with a hog’s head on top. The design feels lacking and a hog is simply not that intimidating. However, Pork Grind definitely has more destructive capabilities than a pigeon, so he gets points there. Still, a pig version of Venom lacks any real power compared to most versions of the villain.
Edward Saks in Spider-Man: Reign is just one of the many unique reimagining of characters to come out of the series. Something about Saks, the assistant to the Mayor, actually being Venom just seems so dastardly. After all, there is nothing scarier than an unhinged politician. The destructive threat of this character is a lot higher than the previous entries, but the concept and intimidation level is not there. Just say “Venom the Politician” out loud. See, it does not sound like it's scary. Saks character works within the realm of the story, but lining him up against the other versions of Venom shows that he doesn't stack up.
Topher Grace gave this cinema-version of the creepy crawler his all in the third movie of the original Spider-Man trilogy. It was not the actors' fault the character fell flat. A big part of that was the lack of screen time that Venom actually got in the movie. Once audiences did see this version, he seemed to be unimposing and less intimidating than most would like. The outfit felt off and the amount of destruction this Venom seemed capable off was minimal compared to other versions. Overall, the design hit with a thud compared to many of the versions that came before it.
When even the sinister symbiote does not want you, you've got a problem. This version comes from Earth-2149 were Eddie became one of the many characters infected by a zombie plague. Zombified Venom only makes a short appearance and is easily destroyed. The symbiote has to survive off living beings and the fact Eddie Brock was technically not living made the character extremely weak. However, the idea of battling an undead Venom sounds good in theory and the Earth-2149 Venom certainly looked like he packed a punch. It is just a shame that he was not strong enough to actually pose a threat. Fans of Venom would have loved to see the villain put up more of a fight in this role if it were possible.
The most recent edition of Venom is off to a shaky start, but that does not mean the web-slinger can't turn it around. This version is still connected with Eddie Brock, but something in the character arc seems to be missing this far. Venom has always tilted between anti-hero and villain, but this version feels too much like a hero. That is controversial to say, but the third issue in the 2018 unlimited release of Venom showed the character as a reluctant bad guy. Right now, Unlimited Venom has too much of a soft spot to move up any higher on this list. The good news is there is plenty of invested interest in the character, so Marvel has time to improve on the foundation they have built.
Nothing says Venom like Anti-Venom. This version was developed out of a 2008 storyline and saw a now cancer free Eddie Brock create this new version out of his healthy body. What results is a creature with all of Venom’s destruction and a healing factor? So why is this Venom not further down the list? Well, it is hard to consider this character truly Venom. The design at times can look like an angry snowman and the inverse color scheme gives the character a less threatening stature. While Anti-Venom’s powers are formidable, those powers do not display any extra destructive capabilities. Anti-Venom is more likely to heal something rather than destroy something, and that's why this version is so low on the list.
The LEGO Marvel Video Game was quite a success and having Venom included in that mix as a tough villain shows his importance to the Marvel brand. The villain is known to be tough to conquer and even required a flamethrower to take him down. Any video game villain that takes that much work to bring down is deserving of a little recognition. With that being said, the LEGO version of anything always seems a little less intimidating than other versions. The symbiote tendrils that protrude from his back feel awkward and the fanged smile on his face feels more welcoming than menacing. This version has the power to destroy, but the LEGO look severely detracts from the overall ranking.
An unwilling Venom host is usually an exciting storyline, but in the case of Lee Price, the story was lacking a little. Fans of the character saw a symbiote that was actually resisted by Price. Price refused to mentally succumb to the symbiote and that was frustrating to some. The fact Price was able to control Venom dampened the entertainment that the symbiote plays at the beginning. Price’s role as the character consistently downplays the strength of Venom. He even claims the symbiote is sounding less intelligent as time goes on. That relationship is bland for a character you want to be intimidating later on in the arc. The role could’ve been excellent, but the plot of this version undermines the credibility too much.
The clone of Venom was created in a lab and bonded with Patricia Robertson, an army ranger stationed in Canada. Before the clone of the symbiote bonded with Robertson, it took out everyone in the lab it escaped from. That is what some might call a drastic display of power. Also, yes, that set up does sound like John Carpenter’s The Thing (1982). The clone of Venom does look like Venom, so there is not much extra to this Venom worth noting design wise. However, the clone was defeated by Eddie Brock when they battled, so clearly this version of Venom is not as powerful.
Yes, the version of Venom most fans were introduced to was not the first concept for Venom. Venom was supposed to be a woman who lost her child and husband in a matter of moments due to a tragic accident caused by Spider-Man. The symbiote would attach itself to an emotionally fragile woman bent on getting revenge on everyone’s favorite friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. If this concept had actually come to light, then this version would be much higher on the list. The thirst for revenge and psychological damage caused by Spider-Man to this woman would have made for one compelling villain. Sadly, all fans have of this the story of what could have been, so it is hard to compare this version to some of the versions that actually came into existence.
This one may be controversial. For those who saw Venom, they may believe this ranking is way too forgiving. However, this is about the character itself and not the quality of the media it is presented in (though better stories usually have better Venoms). The dynamic between Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) and Venom possesses range and boost the overall stature of this version. In the movie, Venom plays more of a hero role than most would like him to and that turn to hero feels somewhat forced. That being said, the design of this Venom is menacing and the sinister symbiote gets to display more powers than he did in his previous cinematic appearance.
This Venom makes a short appearance in the 2015 miniseries Contest of Champions. This Venom is a Grandmaster Champion in this version. Plus, he has finally taken out Spider-Man. Not to mention, he even wears Spider-Man’s costume on him like a cape, which everyone can agree is spectacular. Still, this version of Venom is not without his weaknesses. He actually hears Peter Parker’s voice in his head and that mental distraction gets him eliminated. Now, technically, the symbiote survives (so, Venom survives). However, Eddie Brock is technically Venom in this version as the symbiote does not attach to a host and become Venom again necessarily.
Ultimate Venom is not an extraterrestrial, which is definitely notable. Somehow the symbiote being a cure for cancer gone wrong makes the character even more scary. The idea that Peter Parker can accidentally create one of his greatest enemies is also a compelling idea. With that context, analyzing the look of the Venom makes more sense. Ultimate Venom looks more hulk-ish and the exaggerated purple highlights accent the character excellently. All of this in mind makes this Venom a strong contender, but overall the intimidation factor just lacks a little bit.
Most alternative versions of Venom are not the most intimidating. However, the mangaverse Venom is too potent and amazing to ignore. Venom is a freaking samurai in this story, so the character design definitely gets some significant points. The entire origin story makes mangaverse Venom stand out because he sacrifices himself to save Peter Parker’s life and in turn gives his body over to the symbiote that gives him power. This results in a more traditional looking Venom with some of his traditional strength, but Venom is a hero by this point. The fans did not get to see all the damage this Venom could do and, for that, this version was hurt a little in the rankings.
A Venom created out of love, what a concept. She-Venom was created when Eddie Brock goes to save his wife, Anne Weying, after she is hurt. The symbiote attaches to her and saves her. However, the power and influence of the symbiote corrupt Anne, and she wreaks havoc. Now, when Eddie Brock is worried about the damage you do as Venom, then you know that this version of Venom is definitely one of the strongest. She-Venom went on a rampage before Weying takes herself out after she cannot deal with the power of the symbiote. That does not disqualify this powerful version of Venom. The only knock on She-Venom is that other versions are just stronger.
Kron Stone is not the first name that comes to mind when you consider the best versions of Venom. However, the Earth-928 edition of Venom from Spider-Man 2099 definitely has his appeal when you look at his character. Especially, considering this version comes to fans from the future and includes some upgrades. Stone becomes Venom when the symbiote, in the form of a black ball, attaches to him while he lies injured in an alley. This Venom has acidic blood and salvia (sound familiar?). Those upgrades make this version more dangerous than most would think, however, Venom 2099 is defeated pretty quickly and the design lacked intimidation.
Another Venom from the future and the final animal version of Venom in the rankings has made its appearance! This Venom comes from the Old Man Logan comic series and chases Wolverine and Hawkeye. Yes, this is a dinosaur version of Venom. Be afraid. Be very afraid. Now it is a mystery how the symbiote attached itself to a T-Rex, but let’s not ask questions. This is a behemoth of a Venom and is definitely capable of massive amounts of destruction. However, Hawkeye was able to take it out. Also, the design kind of makes it look like someone painted a dinosaur to look like a zebra. Pure destructive capabilities can only get you so far, but T-Rex Venom definitely had a shot to be the number one version of Venom.
Mac Gargan was crazy as Venom. Gargan was unsatisfied with the Scorpion abilities he already had and craved more power to defeat Spider-Man. Scorpion went unstable and trying to figure out how to destroy Spider-Man. So, when the symbiote finally found its way to Scorpion, the fans were in for a show. So when someone mixes crazy, revengeful supervillain with the powerful symbiote, they get a wild cannibalistic Venom. Now, Venom eats people. It is what the character does. But it feels like Gargan ate a lot more people as Venom than most versions. Gargan’s Venom is nearly unstoppable and left a path of destruction in his wake. Sadly, many humans were devoured so that Scorpion Venom could take this spot in the rankings.
Deadpool is already a hard character to destroy. Adding in the symbiote makes that even more robust. Plus, according to Deadpool Secret Wars, Wade Wilson may have connected with the symbiote before Spider-Man. Some fans claim this is what gave the alien the mania it transfers onto its host. Now, this version of Venom also showed some destructive capabilities or, to put it more plainly, the symbiote uses Deadpool to eat Spider-Man. Not many versions of Venom defeat Spider-Man and none of them mistake eating Spider-Man with a pie eating contest. With this in mind, the version has a unique style and major destructive powers. All of this and that does not even take into account Deadpool’s ability to heal. Deadpool Venom is definitely not one you want to meet on the street anytime soon.
Now there are some ugly versions of Venom. That is just an honest fact. None are as gross as the Horseman of Apocalypse Venom from the Extraordinary X-Men 2016 series though. Apocalypse Venom is just the symbiote. There is no host. What results is a blob of blackness with teeth that terrorizes the X-Men. This version even absorbs Old Man Logan at one point, which is a fantastic feat. Given that Venom is just a symbiote in this version, he still packs quite the punch in his own way. Ugly does not mean intimidating, and though this Venom definitely is all powerful, it's not as bone-chilling as some of the best versions of Venom.
Great stories can give way to even more significant characters, as is the case with the animated series version of Venom. The writers of the show gave Eddie Brock time to develop as a villain and the space given to Venom made him feel special. The large logo spread across his monstrous chest is a classic look that stuck in the mind of fans. It takes real patience to create a formidable foe during this era of animation in cartoons. Somehow, this version of Venom never felt, well...cartoonish. Instead, fans were treated to a villain worth standing up to Spider-Man. Venom seemed like an unstoppable force that had momentum from weeks of development. The writers did not rely on Venom but instead used him when the situation called for it. The animated Venom was a classic example of making a monster that the superhero cannot quickly stop.
The best versions of Venom don't usually use the symbiote as a weapo, but Agent Venom is an exception. Flash Thompson, Peter Parker’s old high school classmate and bully, is recruited for a project by the military. As it turns out, that project is using Venom to go on high-risk military missions. The scenario gives this version plenty of chances to show off its power.
Agent Venom is Flash Thompson given legs by the symbiote and utilizing his military talent in cooperation with the symbiote. What results is a weapon of mass destruction capable of taking out anyone. Agent Venom is dangerous because he has all the powers of other Venoms with the military tact to go with it. However, the 48-hour restriction put on Thompson for bonding with the symbiote means fans do not get to see just how wild this version can get.
Of all the hosts that have bonded with the symbiote, Peter Parker is one of the most powerful and most compelling. The symbiote costume is most-beloved among fan and the look of this version of Venom is chilling. The sleek jet black suit with the white spider symbol is intimidating, and the best part is this version has the power to back it up. This version of Venom boost all of Spider-Man’s abilities and with that comes even greater power (which means greater responsibility, we suppose). The symbiote made Peter Parker more aggressive and even stronger. Keep in mind all the damage Spider-Man is able to due to villains without the symbiote. Now multiply that. That result is how strong Black Suit Spider-Man is.
Creators can keep creating every version of Venom under the sun that they would like. None will hit it off quite like the classic Eddie Brock version of Venom. Sometimes you just cannot beat the original. Brock was the first version of Venom that was villainous, but in later editions of the character, he has been more of an anti-hero. Either way, every aspect of this character trumps the other versions.
The look of Brock’s Venom is so impactful that it has become a classic in comic book lore. Unlike Black Suit Spider-Man, Venom is more bulky and the addition of the long tongue adds some extra terror. Brock is driven by an irrational plan to seek revenge on Spider-Man that is compounded by the symbiote. The power of that hatred makes this Venom nearly unstoppable and the amount of damage he has caused over the years is second to none. That is why Eddie Brock’s classic Venom trumps all other versions.
Which is your favorite Venom? Let us know in the comments.