Changing a character’s guise has always been a much debated issue in comic books, especially so when it involves one of the most popular villains of all time. From the very moment Marvel released its plan to overhaul the character of Venom, fans have been extremely skeptical as to his new look. Although the series is merely two issues deep, many qualms have already been settled; Remender and Moore have proven that they can re-create the symbiotic suit, and do it damn well. The team has reinvented the character, giving readers a new look into the entity that is Venom. Flash Thompson, the symbiote’s newest host, struggles to keep his mind and his body from being completely taken over by the black space goo, and from the looks of it, our beloved venom, along with his snake-like tongue and gaping maw, will be returning this issue. Read on for the skinny…
“Flash has lost control of the symbiote! Jack-O’-Lantern and his enigmatic boss are poised to flood the black market with weaponized Antarctic Vibranium! With his military handler’s finger on the self-destruct button, can Flash overcome his temper to regain control over Venom and save the world from descending into chaos before he’s blown to pieces?”
So far, the story is quite episodic and has not developed much, which is not surprising given that the series just started. However, it’s already apparent that the symbiote isn’t as controllable as the government thought when they gave it to Flash Thompson. Sent on a 48-hour mission into the jungle (a common place for madness to ensue) Venom is slowly creeping his way into Thompson’s mind. Flash’s inner dialogue is incredibly well written and reflects the action surrounding the characters; the writing is slow, scattered, broken, and dark, which is exactly what one would expect the mind of Venom to be. With time running out and Flash’s mental state slowly deteriorating, it’s only a matter of time before he admits, “we are Venom”.
Flash’s time spent struggling in the jungle as a government agent is wonderfully contrasted with his city life, which also seems to be crumbling. Thompson’s girlfriend, Betty, is spending time with Peter Parker, feeling sad and alone because she has no idea where her beloved Flash could be. Still on his mission to stop Jack-O’-Lantern, It doesn’t look like Flash will be returning home anytime soon, at least alone. He’s already lost control in the first issue, and Venom is only getting stronger. But, we’ll have to wait and see if the Venom symbiote forms a permanent bond with Flash before he can return home to his lover.
Tony Moore’s artwork in the series looks great. Faces are drawn with lots of detail, panels are dark at just the right moments, and the subtle glimpses of the old Venom leave you craving more. Not to mention how terrifying Jack-O’-Lantern looks both with and without his mask.
I think it’s fair to say by now that the aesthetic shift of the character wasn’t a bad idea; in fact, it’s probably the best thing that could have happened for Venom. Remender and Moore are twisting around and redefining a character that nobody else has the guts to change, and I tip my hat to them for that. I’m eager to see Flash completely lose control, let Venom take over, and continue his legacy as one of the most revered characters in the Marvel universe. Whether you’re a die-hard fan of the original venom, or new to the space goo, Venom is back, and you won’t want to miss it.
“VENOM” Issue #3 Drops May 25th From marvel Comics! (MSRP – $3.99)