Venom is ready to conquer the box office in October, but the grotesque supervillain will have to do so without the signature powers of Spider-Man. With the amazing wall-crawler played by Tom Holland now an integral part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Venom is Sony's attempt to launch its own movie universe based around Spider-Man characters but without the web-head himself. Whether or not Peter Parker will cameo in Venom is a rumor yet to be substantiated but, regardless, by never bonding with Spider-Man the symbiote won't have the web-slinger's many abilities.
In the comics, the alien symbiote that would eventually become Venom was introduced in 1984's Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #8. The shapeshifting substance was found by Spider-Man on the Beyonder's Battleworld and it became his new black costume in The Amazing Spider-Man #252. Spider-Man wore the symbiote for months, unaware it was a sentient alien that bonded with him and took control over the web-slinger nocturnally. Spider-Man eventually took his black costume to the Fantastic Four to be analyzed, where Mr. Fantastic determined the costume was a living symbiote out to control its host. When the wall-crawler rejected the symbiote, it became his enemy and, in 1988's The Amazing Spider-Man #300, the alien bonded with Eddie Brock, a rival photographer who hated Spider-Man and became Venom. The rest is comic book history.
From what fans have already seen in Venom's trailer, it's clear his movie origin will be completely different and Spider-Man doesn't factor in at all. The film is set in San Francisco with reporter Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) bonding with the symbiote to become the prehensile-tongued, razor-toothed monster. Since, unlike in the comics or in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 3, Spidey won't be the symbiote's original human host in Venom, Eddie Brock likely won't acquire the web-head's many superpowers. However, the alien being does have an array of powers all its own that will more than make up for it.
The Venom in the movie probably won't have Spider-Man's super strength and reflexes. This isn't to say the symbiote isn't incredibly strong in its own right, and its shapeshifting ability grants it a different kind of inhuman speed, but it won't be similar to Spider-Man's. Venom also won't be able to wall-crawl exactly like Spidey, though, again, it's a malleable, liquid-like alien substance, therefore it should still be able to replicate this spider-power in a different way. The creature also won't have Peter Parker's Spider-Sense that warns him of danger, but then again, it doesn't really need this ability anyhow. And, of course, since it never pretended to be Spider-Man, the symbiote also won't be shooting webbing; instead, it will project inky tendrils of itself. This also means no web-swinging across the city.
The differences seem to go beyond powers, too. Since he never met Spider-Man, it makes sense Venom won't have the white spider-symbol on his chest like the comic book version does. But the most important deviation of all will be that Venom won't directly benefit from the core principle that Spider-Man lives by, that "with great power comes great responsibility". Indeed, while Eddie Brock will attempt to control the beast's bloodlust, the symbiote is a villain through and through; Sony is proudly boasting in its advertising for Venom that "The World Has Enough Superheroes".
While this may surprise some, there's always been more to Venom and his powers than just what was cribbed from Peter Parker. This can be best seen by the movie's other symbiotes, including Riot, who likewise has no Spidey connection so instead favors gigantic bladed weapons. Venom may still resemble a grotesque version of Spider-Man, but he'll truly be nothing like the web-slinger. Ultimately, fans may find these differences to be the best thing about Venom.
- Venom (2018) release date: Oct 05, 2018
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