No one at Marvel Comics could've predicted how massive Venom would be. When he first appeared, many thought he'd be just another rogue for Spider-Man to battle and defeat. What ended up happening was he became larger than life, even eclipsing Spidey in popularity in the '90s and becoming his own multi-million-dollar franchise.
The antihero with a lust for brains is now one of Marvel's premium characters, and his first solo movie will be released later this month. Speaking about the project to ScreenGeek, Venom's co-creator Todd McFarlane said: "Venom's a monster to me, and to me – are they going to make him a monster or are they going to make him a man? Are they going to humanize him? That's what we gotta find out."
It's interesting to read about McFarlane's interpretation of the character, since there are a lot of misconceptions about what makes him tick. Of course, after so many years and numerous stories, there are canonical inconsistencies – as there are with any comic book property – but people still get too many things wrong about Venom.
In the lead-up to Ruben Fleischer's Venom, which stars Tom Hardy, it's time to set the record straight about the character. When you go into that movie, you need to go armed with the facts and truths. Otherwise, any old internet troll could bamboozle you with their nonsense.
So, keep your brain safe because the symbiote could be around and catch up on these 20 Things That Everyone Gets Wrong About Venom.
20 The Symbiote Lies
There are a lot of people who view the symbiote in the same way as the Joker. They think it's conniving and a great deceiver, leading you down whichever path it desires. Well, that's not really the truth.
The symbiote only amplifies its host's qualities – but it doesn't change them.
In Thunderbolts #23, the symbiote, bonded to Flash Thompson then, revealed that it's incapable of lying. There's no trickery from it as it'll tell you exactly what it's going to do and how it feels. Look, you have to appreciate the sincerity and open communication. When Venom says he wants to eat your brains, he's being honest with you and his word is his bond.
19 Eddie Brock Is The Only Venom
Anyone who has followed Marvel Comics for a while knows there are multiple versions of legacy characters running around. There are a few Spider-Men, Wolverines, Hulks, Captain Americas, and even Venoms.
Of course, the first one we were introduced to was Eddie Brock. Since then we've seen the likes of Mac Gargan (aka Scorpion) and Flash Thompson in the suit. More recently, the criminal Lee Price bonded with the symbiote. While it's fun to see the different interpretations of Venom, it must be said that Brock still remains the number one choice. His arc is the most compelling and recognized. It's like with Batman – you don't mind seeing Dick Grayson wearing the cape and cowl, just as long as it isn't permanent.
18 The Symbiote Is Evil
This misconception is probably because of the depiction of the symbiote in Spider-Man 3. It led many to believe that the alien is evil and should be exterminated at all costs.
However, the symbiote is only as good – or bad – as its host.
When Flash Thompson bonded with the alien and became Agent Venom, he used his powers for good and even joined up with the Guardians of the Galaxy. More recently, the symbiote struggled with Lee Price as its host, since its time with Thompson left it with a desire to be more heroic and follow a path of righteousness. There was a noticeable struggle every time that Price wanted to utilize it for dastardly deeds.
17 Tom Hardy Is The Second Actor To Portray Venom
Gosh. Who could ever forget Topher Grace as Eddie Brock/Venom in Spider-Man 3? It was arguably one of the worst comic book movie castings of all time. Thus, when Tom Hardy was announced as the lead for Venom, fans thought that the second time around things would be much better. The truth is, he's the third live-action Venom.
While not an official studio release, filmmaker Adi Shankar added Truth in Journalism to his Bootleg Universe, which also consists of the Punisher fan film Dirty Laundry. Filmed as a documentary, it follows Ryan Kwanten (True Blood) as Eddie Brock and things quickly turn violent for the camera crew. Many fans praised Shankar's release as it was R-rated and captured the brutal nature of the character better than Sam Raimi did.
16 Sound Is The Symbiote's Worst Nightmare
We've heard the Wilhelm scream every time that a sonic boom hits Venom. He's definitely not a fan of loudness and would probably meet his demise at a Skrillex concert in Ibiza. Numerous times, Spidey has taken down his sometimes nemesis by bringing out the big speakers and reverberation, but Venom's greatest fear isn't sound – it's fire.
In fact, pit him against the Human Torch if you want to see an unfair fight for the ages. The symbiote doesn't need to touch the fire, as the fear of it alone incapacitates and drives the alien mad. So, the next time you're stuck in a war with Venom, pull out your lighter and strike the fear of Chuck Norris into him.
15 The Suit Is Alien
If you look at the origin of the symbiote in the first comic book run, yes, it's alien and from another planet. Just read Secret Wars to find out how it came to Earth. In the Ultimate Universe, though, Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley reimagined Spider-Man and his foes for a new generation. Naturally, Venom received a fresh origin as well.
In this storyline, Richard Parker and Eddie Brock Sr. designed the suit as a means to cure cancer.
It ended up being an experiment gone wrong and it decided to bond with Peter and then Eddie Jr. It isn't hard to see how the Ultimate origin might serve as the main influence for the upcoming Venom film, as it allows for the suit to exist without the recognized origin.
14 The Symbiote Cured Eddie Brock's Cancer
In one Marvel storyline, Eddie Brock developed cancer. As heartbreaking as it was, one of the most misreported facts is that the symbiote helped cure him. While the symbiote helped keep him alive for some time, he parted with it in an auction (crazy, right?) and was ready to embrace the end of his days.
Brock went to work in a soup kitchen owned by Martin Li, who was the criminal known as Mister Negative. Li's powers helped cure Brock of his cancer – not the symbiote. Due to Li's powers, Brock also developed super-charged white blood cells. When he came into contact with the symbiote again, Brock created a new symbiote known as Anti-Venom.
13 Spider Sense Can Detect Venom
Spider-Man's spider sense is one of the coolest superpowers around. It alerts him to nearby danger and is often never wrong. If only we could utilize it to help us avoid those inevitable bills in the post… You'd think that this superpower would help Spidey in his battles with Venom, but it really doesn't. The symbiote is a smooth criminal, since it isn't picked up by his spider sense.
The reason for this is simple. When the symbiote was bonded to Peter Parker, it learned all about him and his powers. As a result, it developed immunity to the Web-Head's unique ability. This is why Venom is one of Spider-Man's most dangerous foes. If Parker can't sense him, he's left totally vulnerable.
12 Spider-Man Is The First Major Hero To Bond With The Symbiote
If we're talking about the first appearance of the symbiote in comic books and who it bonded to, then it's certainly Spider-Man. Since then, however, several comic books have retconned this by showing flashbacks where it's implied the symbiote attached itself to numerous other heroes first.
In Deadpool's Secret Secret Wars, we witness the Merc with the Mouth's involvement in the "Secret Wars" storyline.
The third issue demonstrates how he utilized the machine, which Spider-Man used to get the black suit, and bonded with the symbiote for a brief moment. Upon seeing how dangerous it is, Wade Wilson walked away and left it to Spider-Man. The suggestion here is that Deadpool actually corrupted Venom, with his own violent tendencies.
11 Venom Has Never Joined The Avengers
In all fairness, who hasn't been an Avenger? In Marvel Comics, those application processes are so relaxed that everyone has joined the team at least once. But what about Venom? Well, when Mac Gargan was the symbiote's host, he joined Norman Osborn's Dark Avengers. That's a slightly more twisted version of the group, but we'll let it slide for now.
Another time, Flash Thompson, when he was Agent Venom, hooked up with the Secret Avengers. The team consisted of the likes of Beast, Hawkeye, Black Widow, Valkyrie, and others. Interestingly enough, it was actually Captain America who agreed to let Venom join the party because he recognized Thompson's heroism. The team was apprehensive about him at first, but he won over their trust.
10 The Symbiote's Favorite Snack Is Brains
It's a little unsettling to read about how much Venom loves brains. Sure, it's an intimidation tactic, since no one would want their head matter eaten, but he's actually eaten brains before. So, yeah, it's weird.
As it turns out, there's a reason for this craving. The symbiote requires phenylethylamine, a chemical in the human brain, to survive.
Fortunately, for the whole world, Eddie Brock found out that the same chemical can be found in chocolate, so it quickly became his favorite snack. Mind you, with the price of everything nowadays, you could understand why he'd pop a few heads open to chow down on their brains, because chocolate is almost as expensive as real estate.
9 Eddie Brock Was Always Going To Be Venom
Venom co-creator David Michelinie revealed in an interview with Comic Crusaders that Eddie Brock wasn't always the first pick for Venom.
"That was originally what I was teasing, the woman who would be Venom. Editor Jim Salicrup wanted to do something special for issue 300 of The Amazing Spider-Man so I said 'OK I've got this character, this villain blah blah blah', he liked the idea but he didn't think the readers would accept a woman standing toe-to-toe with Spider-Man, which of course nowadays, that would not be a question. So I came up with the Eddie Brock character and his background, and his motivation," he said. Eventually, we did receive a She-Venom down the line, so the idea wasn't completely lost.
8 The Symbiote Was Created By Todd McFarlane
The character of Venom was created by Todd McFarlane and David Michelinie. However, the alien costume is the brainchild of Marvel fan Randy Schueller
In the '80s, Marvel ran a competition for aspiring creators.
Schueller took advantage of it and sent a letter where he suggested that Fantastic Four's Reed Richards could create a new black costume made out of Unstable Molecules for Spider-Man. The suit would increase Spidey's power by 25% and look similar to what we finally saw. Schueller received $220 for his idea and an opportunity to write the script. Unfortunately, he never got to write it, but Secret Wars was released a little later and his idea was incorporated into it.
7 Venom Was Always Going To Be A Part Of Spider-Man 3
While it might look like the inclusion of Venom in Spider-Man 3 was always the plan, Sam Raimi revealed the truth to Collider.
"I had worked on the story with my brother Ivan, and primarily it was a story that featured the Sandman. It was really about Peter, Mary Jane, Harry, and that new character. But when we were done, Avi Arad, my partner and the former president of Marvel at the time, said to me, 'Sam, you're not paying attention to the fans enough,'" he said. "The fans love Venom; he is the fan favorite. All Spider-Man readers love Venom, and even though you came from '70s Spider-Man, this is what the kids are thinking about. Please incorporate Venom. Listen to the fans now."
6 Venom Is The Strongest Symbiote
Considering how Venom is the most well-known of the symbiotes, there's the belief that he's also the strongest. It would make sense.
While he's undoubtedly a monster and can go toe-to-toe with numerous powerful characters, the title of strongest symbiote belongs to Toxin.
Venom spawned Carnage, and Carnage produced Toxin. So, you could consider him Venom's grandson. He possesses the same abilities as his lineage, as well as super-strength, speed, and the power to change his body parts into weapons like axes. In addition, he possesses more resistance to fire and sonic noises. Taking all of that into consideration, he's really unstoppable and the strongest of his kind. We wonder if Carnage is proud of his little guy.
5 The Symbiote Made Peter Parker Aggressive
The greatest thing that came out of Spider-Man 3 was Emo Peter Parker. The memes were incredible, as was his new hairstyle and wicked dancing in the streets. All of this was blamed on the symbiote – not the awful studio interference.
In the comic books, Parker didn't part with the symbiote because it made him overly aggressive or for turning him into the fifth member of Fall Out Boy. No, he rid himself of it because it was a parasite and wanted to permanently bond with him. It's sort of like getting bubblegum under your shoe. You can ignore it for a while, but after some time, you really just want to shake it off.
4 The Symbiote Hated Spider-Man
The symbiote doesn't hate Spider-Man or Peter Parker. The opposite, in fact. Like a scorned lover, it feels betrayed because Parker didn't want it anymore. In much the same way that your ex will rip up all your photos and burn your Rick & Morty posters, the symbiote truly misses Parker and is driven by hurt more than pure hatred.
In times when it has the opportunity to latch back onto Parker, it does so in the blink of an eye. It's like it hears the Creed song "With Arms Wide Open" and embraces its former host, thinking it'll be forever this time. But it never is. Poor symbiote obviously hasn't heard of Tinder yet.
3 The Symbiote Protects Its Host
If you've watched the latest clips for Venom, you've seen how the symbiote wraps itself around Eddie Brock and protects him from gunfire and attacks. In many ways, its characterization is similar to STEM from Leigh Whannell's Upgrade.
When you look at the source material, though, the symbiote isn't a benevolent protector of its host all the time. It can be quite dangerous.
After Eddie Brock auctioned off the symbiote to Don Fortunato, the mobster gave it to his son to make him "a man." Angelo Fortunato bonded with the suit and hunted down Spider-Man. Once the symbiote saw how cowardly Angelo really was, it detached itself from him, mid-air, leaving him to plummet to his fate.
2 Eddie Brock Didn't Lose His Job Because Of Peter Parker
Again, this misconception is because of Spider-Man 3. Did that movie do anything right? In that film, Eddie Brock and Peter Parker both work for the Daily Bugle, and Parker ends up exposing Brock for taking fake pictures of Spider-Man. Thus, it becomes the catalyst for Brock's anger towards Spider-Man and Parker.
In actual canon, Brock worked for the Daily Globe – a competitor of the Daily Bugle. He wrote columns about a villain called the Sin-Eater. A man named Emil Gregg told Brock that he was the villain and Brock eventually published the story, revealing his identity. However, the real Sin-Eater was a detective named Stan Carter, whom Spider-Man unmasked. This ruined Brock's career and sent him spiraling downwards.
1 Carnage Is Venom's Only Offspring
It's common knowledge to comic book fans that Carnage is Venom's spawn. In fact, it's sort of creepy how he calls him "Daddy" in most of the stories.
The symbiote has reproduced more than once, though. In one storyline, the Life Foundation experimented with and extracted from Venom to artificially create the Five Symbiotes (Agony, Lasher, Phage, Riot, and Scream). So, yes, Carnage has some brothers and sisters roaming around the streets and causing chaos like you'd expect them to. Poor Venom must spend a truckload on child support. Additionally, they look like spoilt brats, so he probably struggles to find them the right gifts for Christmas and birthdays. We wouldn't want to be in his shoes.
Tell us, what else does everyone get wrong about Venom? Let us know in the comments!