We Care a Lot Part 15: Way Too Hard to Comprehend

July 20th, 2009 by | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Last time on We Care a Lot, I discussed Eddie Brock’s cancer retcon. Before that, I was talking about Daniel Way’s Venom on-going series. To refresh your memory, the Venom symbiote is on the loose up in Canada. It killed off all of army girl Patricia Robertson’s friends and is on its way to a more populated area. Robertson is allied with an alien life form named the Suit, who fights with a cell phone gun. They are being antagonized by a pair of spy chicks who want Venom for themselves. Although they have already been killed, another couple of them have popped up. Venom has finally settled on a host that he can live off of forever.

And that’s where we left off. Venom #10 begins with the Venom-controlled Wolverine attacking Vic and Frankie’s ship and forcing it to crash. The two suit up in their armor and reveal to the reader that they’re probably into each other sexually. Of course they are.

They don’t last a minute. Frankie is stabbed to death by Venom-Wolverine and Vic stumbles upon her doppelganger’s corpse from earlier. She realizes that she’s nothing more than a clone, puts her gun to her head and pulls the trigger.

The torso remains of the Suit give Patricia a new cell phone he has created. He says that he placed the original in a special place and that the new phone acts as a detonator. Venom-Wolverine busts in after her and she presses the button to activate the first phone. As we see, after Wolverine was knocked out by that nuke, the Suit tore open his chest and shoved his phone in there. Now the cell phone goes off, electrocuting Wolverine from the inside and forcing off the symbiote.


Where else could the Venom symbiote go, but onto Patricia? Because of her special implants, she now has control over the symbiote, which should make for some interesting storytelling.

Despite the nuke nuttiness, this arc was actually not bad. Easily the best of the series. Then, with a few pages left, it takes a turn for the senseless.

The Suit – who has been pretty wise on things so far and wants nothing more than to kill Venom – tells Patricia that once he’s fully regenerated his body, he will painlessly remove the devices from her body. If she was smart, she’d take him up on his offer and we’d be spared eight more issues.

Instead, she destroys the Suit’s cell phone, webs his torso to a tree stump and walks off, saying, “No. It stays. It’s the only way I can control it. It’s the only way I can stop it.”


Wolverine wakes up, figures out the cell phone thing, smirks it off and walks off to find another bar, totally forgetting about the many innocent lives lost. There you have it. If you shove foreign objects and special technology into Wolverine’s body against his will for your own personal goals, he’ll find it hilarious. That’s the kind of guy he is.

It always surprised me that this somehow led to Way getting control over Wolverine’s complete history.

A few weeks later, Patricia goes to New York City, where she calls up a guy she knew from her hometown and asks to deliver a message to her mother that she’s all right. This is monitored by another pair of Vic and Frankie clones, who inform their boss. Their boss, who looks like Wilson Fisk with a mustache, wants them to leave her alone for the time being. As he watches Spider-Man swinging around below, he mentions, “Finally… Finally, we can end this…”

The plot thickens!

Speaking of the plot, the next three issues attempt to fill in the blanks via prequel storytelling. Issues #11-13 explain how Venom got tangled up with Vic, Frankie and the arctic in the first place.

Ha, what a great cover. Francisco Herrera makes his return for this story arc. It begins with Venom at his absolute bulkiest (yes, I know that’s saying a lot), standing over a defeated Spider-Man. He retracts his mask to reveal that this is none other than Eddie Brock under the costume. THERE WE GO!

That’s right. It took eleven issues for Eddie Brock to even appear in a comic called “Venom”. And in a flashback, nonetheless!

Despite all his problems, Way has come up with a solid reason for why Venom hasn’t gotten around to killing Spider-Man yet, despite overpowering him 99% of the time and usually not being in prison. Spider-Man is at his most popular with the public, so even though Venom thinks him a villain, he understands that the world sees otherwise. He’ll wait until the tide turns again to finish the job, but for the time being, Venom will sneak up on Spider-Man and beat him within an inch of his life every once and a while like a big bully.

Suddenly, a wall gives way to show the Thing rushing out. Rather than punch Venom, he goes for a grab. This opens it up for… for… shit, just look at the horrible pictures.

I hate the internet for making me sure that somewhere out there, someone is getting aroused by this image.

The other Fantastic Four members come in to save him. Human Torch cuts off Venom’s tongue with flame, Reed hits him with a sonic blast and Invisible Woman separates Eddie and the symbiote with force fields. Thing vomits out the tongue, they pick up Spider-Man and leave for the Baxter Building.

Once they’re done, we see that a young man nearby had seen the entire thing go down while in the middle of throwing away the garbage from his job. He sees the remains of Venom’s tongue and runs off with it, telling his boss that he quits.

He comes home to his pregnant wife with the news that he’s going to take care of all their money problems by selling this tongue on eBay. It’s ridiculous, but a very sound theory no matter how you slice it. The moment he uploads the information, the auction is closed. Then the power in that specific apartment goes off. The guy looks out the window to see a helicopter shining at them and the apartment explodes.

Vic and Frankie enter the burnt remains of the apartment to find that the couple has run off. Which is a wise out for that situation, since killing off an innocent pregnant woman is going just a little too far for this minor part of the story.

I still believe it’s a little overboard for how overreaching these bad guys are supposed to be. The idea that within seconds of a guy posting on eBay that he has Venom’s tongue, the site would be immediately hacked into, the power would be shut off, a helicopter would appear outside his window, it would blow up his home in the middle of Superhero Central with nobody reacting and despite the entire place being blown to bits, the Venom tongue – which is susceptible to fire – is completely untouched, is just a little too over-the-top to buy.

Whoever these bad guys are, they have the tongue. That’s when we meet the evil mastermind of the story, Bob.

On the other end of the line is another Bob. This identical man is in New Mexico, experimenting and physically torturing a poor research scientist for likely no reason other than to show that he’s evil. But hey, if we can have multiple pairs of Vic and Frankies running around, surely there can be two Bobs.

At the Baxter Building, Spider-Man comes to. He wakes up to Reed Richards reading him the riot act for wasting their time and resources to fight Spider-Man’s enemy for him. Dick. He then introduces Spider-Man to these tiny nanite spiders he acquired on a space expedition. They are seemingly indestructible, self-replicating and build anything Reed asks them to. He’s been using them to help study the Venom symbiote, but he’s puzzled at how the little spiders appear to have a vested interest in gathering data on the symbiote. Almost like they’re trying to figure out enough information on how to destroy it.

The next issue begins with the blatant explanation about the series’ symbiote. The Venom we’ve been seeing since issue #1 is not the one Spider-Man brought back to Earth from Secret Wars. Rather, it’s a clone created from that chunk of tongue. I’m not against the idea of using cloning as a plot device in comic books because… comic books. I do think that when Marvel is in the midst of their 90’s healing process, it might not be the best idea for a Spider-Man character to get involved with cloning. “Too soon!” sums up my thoughts.

Though if Patricia’s Venom started wearing a torn sweatshirt over the symbiote, I could get behind that.

Scientist versions of Vic and Frankie experiment with the clone symbiote. Whenever they toss a human into its cell, it doesn’t merge with them, but tears them apart. Instinctively, it would rather kill than feed. Bob comes up with the idea of sending in two people. The victims are a crazy, elderly man named Alfonse and a convicted murderer named Eric. When the symbiote attaches itself to them, Eric starts swinging his fists and it vanishes.

Alfonse then calmly stands in the cell, telling Eric that he knows that he killed a bunch of fellow prisoners for raping him. Eric screams at him that it isn’t true.

Great Zampano! It’s like the bad teeth Olympics!

Bob leaves the other two to take down the data. They discuss Bob’s immense knowledge on the subject, like he’s some kind of symbiote expert. They aren’t sure how, but have faith in his judgment.

In the next scene, we get an idea as to what Bob is about. Both Bobs. They aren’t clones like Vic and Frankie.

There you have it. Bob is the same type of being as the Suit. Another man made of tiny spiders.

We return to the Baxter Building. Nick Fury and SHIELD are there to take away Eddie Brock and the Venom symbiote. Time hiccup there, considering it took four months to create that Venom clone. Maybe Fury was just really, really busy for all that time. Fury and Reed discuss Eddie Brock’s cancer (tying things into the mainstream ever so slightly) and the nanites that Reed has been using for data. Once Fury leaves on a helicopter, we see that he’s stolen one of the nanites for himself.

Later, Fury discusses the symbiote with a SHIELD scientist. The scientist is annoyed that the creature is too dangerous to do any kinds of experiments on and doesn’t know any real information on it. Fury says that he doesn’t either, but the little metal spider does.

“Wh…what’s this? Where did it come from?”

“From my pocket.”

“But… how do you know that it—“

“Because it told me.”


Fury stares at his cell phone. “It called me.”

Bob speaks to the scientist incarnations of Vic and Frankie, who have a ton of information on the Venom clone. They’re ready to ship the clone off to the arctic for the other scientists to study, as well as their findings. Bob tells them to destroy their data, claiming it’s part of the plan. Vic and Frankie don’t understand, but go with it. Then we see that Bob is meeting with Perry, one of the unfortunate chumps from the initial story arc.

Later, we see Fury storm into a SHIELD laboratory, angrily arguing with Reed Richards over the phone. Eddie Brock and the Venom symbiote have escaped the Vault and Reed is angry that Fury didn’t tell him. This from a guy who told off Spider-Man off because Venom isn’t Reed’s business. What a dick.

Based on what Fury’s been told by the robot spiders, he knows that Venom is linked to a plot involving chaos on a global scale and tons of government corruption. Luckily, the spiders have been able to replicate themselves a whole lot and create a new body to get around in.

Jacket, trousers and a snazzy, black tie! These are the ingredients chosen to create the perfect badass android! But, Director Fury accidentally added an extra ingredient to the concoction: black sunglasses! …And thus! The Suit was born! Using his ultra-super cell phone, the Suit has dedicated his life to fighting symbiotes and the forces of evil!

This also answers the question of who the Suit is always talking to on the phone. Coincidentally, Way would use a similar reveal four years later in his Deadpool run.

As for the Ararat research facility in the arctic, the scientists are annoyed. They aren’t allowed to extract a tissue sample from the cloned symbiote and they can only get so much information without it. Having hit a dead end, they ask Bob for help. Bob presses a button that releases the creature from its prison. It slaughters all the scientists, except for Perry, who locks himself in a freezer. The symbiote taunts him from beyond the door, but is interrupted by Patricia Robertson on the intercom. And thus, we’ve come full circle.

That leaves one last arc, known as Twist. This time art duties go to Skottie Young. As someone who was reading these when they came out, I have to mention that I was still interested in the series. Despite everything, I kept feeling like it was finally moving towards something. It was all leading up to these final five issues.

Patricia walks the streets of New York, cloaked and with fake blond hair. She climbs up to a rooftop to find the Suit waiting for her. The Suit claims he isn’t there to stop her, but has plans of what they should do. It’s nice that she could have some direction, since Patricia never did come up with anything after, “Web up the Suit and run off as the new She-Venom.” He wants her to go kill off the original Venom and for once she listens to him. Though as we discover, it’s all a trick. That’s not really the Suit, but Bob taking the form of the Suit to get Patricia to do his dirty work.

Nick Fury, with help of either the Suit or Bob pretending to be the Suit, knows where Eddie Brock is held up. He and a crew of SHIELD troops bust into his current home and engage. For once, it goes pretty well, with Venom soon getting shot up with freeze rays. They’re trying to pull him away in a helicopter, but that copter gets blown up by another.

Piloting that attacking helicopter is Patricia. Earlier in the night, she went to a bar to beat up some jerks that sexually assaulted her, followed by seducing a SHIELD soldier. Afterwards, she webs up the soldier, takes his form and goes off with the others. She webs them up on the copter and makes the attempt to destroy the original Venom, rather than see him taken away.

The fact that she pulled all that off is fairly impressive, but since she’s being played, I can’t really call it an act of competence. That means that the ONE act of competence that Patricia Robertson pulls off in the entire 18 issues is pressing the right button on the Suit’s cell phone to electrocute Wolverine after the Suit gives her the instructions. That’s it! God, she sucks.

There’s a big clusterfuck between the helicopter, Nick Fury and Spider-Man, who shows up out of nowhere. The copter explodes and She-Venom escapes unscathed. Spider-Man yells at her, thinking that it’s his usual Venom. Instead, he finds the real Venom standing behind him.

“Listen to me: I’m not… ‘Eddie’!”

“Oh, Please… Don’t you think that act is getting a little old—“

“Actually, Parker… No… This is definitely something new.”

We’re treated to a Venom vs. Venom fight, as the two swat Spider-Man away. Since She-Venom is so bulky, we don’t see anything remotely feminine and the only way we have to tell them apart is that the clone symbiote is grayish while the original is bluish.

In the shadows, we see Bob looking on with Vic and Frankie. He had turned off Patricia’s collar device, so any minute the symbiote should be taking over. The blotchy fight scene takes a time out when Nick Fury pops in with a rocket launcher. That interrupts the fight, but the regular Venom gets his hands on Fury. He webs him up and decides that he has more important matters now.

As that’s going on, Patricia begins to lose control of her symbiote. To make things just a little more stressful, Spider-Man swings over.

Spider-Man becomes genuinely concerned, but then is offended when Patricia says she needs to kill Venom. Spider-Man says he’ll stand against her, but then the real deal Venom walks over and punches Spider-Man down. The Venoms continue their fight, this time with Patricia losing control of her powers.

Oh, I almost forgot about the retarded conclusion to Nick Fury’s role in the story! He’s cut down from where Venom left him by Vic and Frankie. Bob tears the webbing from Nick Fury’s face and basically whips out his synthetic wang by reciting some kind of special code that only someone as high up the ladder as Fury would know. He goes over how all those still alive from this SHIELD mission are debriefed and Fury needs to stay clear or he’ll pay for it.

Fury, being a total badass who is currently on the run because he doesn’t take shit from anyone, reacts by telling that walrus-looking bastard that…

What the hell? Really? To have your newly-created villain bitch out Fury like that so close to cancellation is ballsy as hell, I have to admit.

Far be it for me to say I’m a better writer than Daniel Way. The man just had Deadpool beat up Bullseye while dressed in a suit made out of meat. But with this very segment, I think I can do better. Behold!

Ah… Much better.

Venom vs. Venom goes into the sewer. The two float in the water with Eddie’s mask retracting as he tells Patricia to accept what she is and stop fighting. As they get closer and closer and it looks like something might happen, a cell phone drops next to them and zaps them both. Classic Venom is blown elsewhere into the sewer, while She-Venom sees the Suit standing there. For reasons never explained, he’s very much worse for wear and says that he was delayed.

The Suit is unable to fix Patricia’s collar and chastises her for going to New York in the first place. Patricia is angry, since the Suit (really Bob in disguise, remember) told her about where Eddie Brock was going to be and what to do. The Suit stands silent for a moment, realizing what’s going down. He finally figures out that Bob is of his race. He finally gets into his backstory, while Patricia sits there naked and constantly morphing into a monster. I’ll continue on that in a second.

The backstory, not the hideous nudity.

I legitimately enjoyed this specific issue (#16) because not only did it finally answer some questions, but we got an actual, honest-to-God Spider-Man vs. Eddie Brock Venom scene that was written well. Hey, sometimes the classics work.

Spider-Man is looking for Venom, for the sake of warning him. Venom jumps out of nowhere and tackles him into a building. Venom demands Spider-Man tell him who that guy in the suit with the cell phone is, but Spider-Man doesn’t know what he’s talking about. Venom tosses him through a window and asks what he does know. Spider-Man knows that She-Venom wants to kill Eddie, so he begs Eddie to leave town for the time being so he can figure out what’s going on. Venom laughs him off.

“Heh… You really don’t know anything, do you?”

“Actually, Eddie… I know three things.”

“…and I’ve always been…” He punches Venom through the wall. “…stronger than you.”

Ha! No, you haven’t.

Which Venom backs up by being unfazed by that beatdown. Venom laughs at Spider-Man’s intentions to save him, which angers Spider-Man so much that he decides that he’s going to just step away and let She-Venom do her stuff.

That was refreshing. I think this was my last gasp of thinking that something good might come out of this series.

Now back to the Suit and Patricia. The Suit’s spider race is a benevolent race. Centuries ago, an outside force asked them to take care of the humans, which were painted as demonic creatures. The nano-spiders spread over civilization in clusters, ready to take out the humans in one act. Then they realized that they were being played. The being that gave them the mission was merely out to cause genocide and recolonize the Earth. The Suit’s race decided that all bets were off and left the planet immediately. Apparently, a cluster of nano-spiders didn’t get the memo and remained on Earth, with too little power to do anything. Since then, they’ve been preparing to find a way to kill off mankind under the guise of Bob.

That’s not a bad backstory, but all those years of waiting before using Venom as the harbinger of mankind’s eradication? I don’t know if I can buy that.

A third party joins the conversation. It’s Frankie, or to be more specific, that Frankie that realized she was a clone from that Wolverine story. She’s out to get revenge by mucking up Bob’s plans. She is able to return Patricia’s control over the symbiote, but only for an hour. This act causes Patricia to go unconscious. Suit carries her naked body through the sewer, while he and the rogue Frankie trade information.

You know that whole story in the bible about Noah’s Ark? Turns out, that was just history misremembering how that whole attempted genocide went. They were getting ready to kill off humanity, but then the weather got all crazy and they had to delay it. During the delay, they realized that the one who hired them had protected some selected humans from the upcoming destruction. So… wait. Noah hired nano-spiders to wipe out the human race? Is that what I’m supposed to get from this exposition?

Whoa, wait! Sisters? What about all those moments and panels that suggested they were more than friends? Ew!

It’s also brought up that the Venom clone is genetically engineered to have some kind of hormone influx. If it runs into the original Venom, it will cause… something. They never say.

The Suit has an idea to throw a wrench in Bob’s plans. Since he’s got such a hold over technology, the Suit breaks into a power plant and punches the power grid. New York has another blackout. Patricia is delivered to the Baxter Building, where the Suit and the Fantastic Four conspire on a plan. The rogue Frankie? She just falls out of the story and is never mentioned again.

On the radio, news of the blackout is accompanied by news that the Fantastic Four have defeated Venom and are now holding him in the Baxter Building. Eddie Brock hears this and smiles.

Spider-Man bangs on the window, trying to talk to Reed and warn him about something, but since Way’s Reed is a super-dick, he ignores him and tells him to leave. Venom busts down through the roof and gets ready for a fight.

Okay! Now! That was the cliffhanger of Venom #17, meaning that we have one issue left to wrap up everything! Let’s go!

The final issue is seriously rushed and filled with scenes of, “Hey, ready for a sweet fight scene? PSYCHE!”

For instance, Fantastic Four vs. Venom starts the issue and before a fist can be swung, the F4 run for it in the opposite direction. Then Spider-Man tries to jump in through the big hole in the roof and give us some kind of fight, only to be bounced off a force field. Sue and Thing are already up on the roof, telling him that they need him out of the way. Reed and Torch fly off in the Fantasticar, secretly carrying Patricia in a high-tech straightjacket.

Spider-Man thinks that the Fantastic Four are going to kill Venom, so he picks up Thing and throws him off the roof. Sue has to go after him, which turns off the force field and allows Spider-Man to jump in there and deal with Venom. He’s immediately thrown into a wall and Venom keeps on his merry way.

As for Patricia, she’s off in another building. The Suit comes up to her and says that the Fantastic Four have no intentions of ever letting her go. They’re going to keep her and experiment on her. He lets her free, tells her that she’ll have control over the symbiote and gives her the Fantasticar. Patricia needs to return to the Baxter Building and kill Venom once and for all.

As you can guess, that’s Bob pretending to be the Suit once again. Off-panel, he’s also dealt with Reed and Johnny beforehand.

“I am so angry! NOW I AM SHOCKED!”

Don’t worry about our Fantastic friends. Them being buried under a pile of metal spiders is never touched upon again, but they’re currently starring in a Mark Millar on-going series while Bob is only remembered by a crappy comic blog and the occasional Venom fansite. We know who the true winner is.

Back at the Baxter Building, Venom goes to the prison which he thinks is holding Patricia and her clone symbiote. What’s really inside is the Suit, who blasts Venom back once he opens the door. The Suit is then ruined by one of the worst one-liners in all comic book history.

“Come to papa…”

“Very well.” He blasts Venom back. “But, as you can see – and to paraphrase – papa now possesses an entirely brand-new bag. I believe my attempt at levity was successful. Ha. Ha.”

The Suit lets out a major power discharge, just as Invisible Woman puts a force field around him. It probably kills him. I don’t know. We never see any follow-up or remains of any kind. Just Venom seemingly appreciative that the Fantastic Four have saved his life, all thanks to Spider-Man. Then She-Venom busts through the wall and punches Venom.

Here it is! Venom vs. Venom: Round 3!

Except then her collar is deactivated. Patricia loses control of her symbiote. There’s a big splash page that I’ll spare you of where the symbiotes wrap around each other like a big double-helix and their tongues twist around each other. We see Eddie Brock cheering over becoming more.

More, indeed. Now his head is ten-feet tall!

The even bulkier Venom swings away into the night as Bob and his incestuous flunkies look on.

“What now, Bob?”

“Now? We wait. But not for long.”

This is finished off with, “THE…END?”

Yes. Yes, it is! Finally!

The fate of Patricia Robertson is unknown. After that double-helix image I mentioned, she isn’t shown at all. We don’t know if she is dead or what and I’m sure nobody cares. Rather than show some follow-up on the protagonist as her series ends, that above panel of Spider-Man, Invisible Woman and Thing staring blankly was far more important. The only other mention of her or anything that links this comic to any other Marvel series is that she gets namedropped as a symbiote alumni in Mighty Avengers.

So. Bigger Venom, huh? Yes, that will certainly bring the end of humanity. Or it will be forgotten and never mentioned again.

Still, at least Bob is more interesting than freaking Romulus.

Back when these comics were coming out, I always liked to check out Paul Sebert and Jason Godin’s reviews of the series at SpiderFan. They’re definitely worth looking at. I tried not to reread his reviews while writing this article, just because it probably would have led to me stealing a bunch of their jokes (I probably did so unconsciously anyway. Sorry, guys). I remember Paul constantly referring to the Suit’s cell phone as the “Deus ex Nokia”. That always made me smile.

It also shows that I’m not the only one who wasn’t feeling this series. On average, Paul rated the series 1.6 webs out of five. Four of those issues were given half a web. Having read these past couple summaries, can you really blame him?

Next time on We Care a Lot: with Venom a straight-up bad guy again, certainly somebody has to fill in the role of symbiote superhero.

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13 comments to “We Care a Lot Part 15: Way Too Hard to Comprehend”

  1. “It’s Slobberin’ Time!”
    Something about that seems clever to me, in a spectacularly cornball way.

    Also: Where are Sue Richard’s irises.

  2. @Jordan: Oh no another victim of Liefeld Syndrome!

  3. I actually really loved this series. Mostly because I never saw this kind of art before. However, I was really disappointed by the fact that it never really… ended. After this, it changed into Venom vs Carnage, and then Toxin, neither of which I had any interest in. I’ve always hoped Bob would come back, but I never saw him again, and I don’t have enough money to follow every Marvel comic looking for the wrap up to this story.

    And as for the series not being respected… well, at least it has a self contained story that doesn’t rely too much on crossovers and doesn’t have too many characters to follow. That’s more than I can say about most Marvel comics. For someone who doesn’t like collecting lots of different titles in order to follow some major, convoluted plot (See: Disassembled, House of M, Civil War, Skrull Invasion, ect), Venom was pretty good.

  4. Way is living proof that a writer in an established universe has to find the right character to do an entertaining job. All he needed was an anti-hero who has the corny vaudeville built in.

  5. @rizzo:

    You know, I’m certain someone could make a list similar to the Progressive Boink article about Liefeld, except about F. Herrera or Humberto Ramos. It could be hilarious. I’ve seen at least 2 examples in the “We Care a Lot” articles alone.

  6. Thanks for giving my reviews the nod. For the past couple of years I haven’t done any comic reviews due to my new job at the Herald-Dispatch newspaper in Huntington, but I fondly look back at my days on the Spider-Fan crew.

    Daniel Way’s Venom series still sticks out at me as one of the most disjointed, mean spirited, and ill-conceived books of the decade. The fact that it helped bring down the Tsunami Imprint (which included Runaways and the excellent Sentinel) made it even worse.

    The reviews seemed to write themselves for awhile but eventually it got to the point where I was repeating the same jokes over and over to the point it stopped being fun. I kept thinking that at some point I would review the final 6 issues of the book but Jason did such a good job that I eventually thought anything else I would have to say about the book would be superfluous.

    Anyway keep up the good work on the site. Maye one of these days I’ll go back to reviewing comics again.

  7. That mention of Romulus is so right. I was thinking that Romulus really sucked and was wondering who created him. I checked on Wikipedia and found it’s Jeph Loeb. Oh. No wonder.

  8. @Paul Sebert:

    Paul, even a massive Venom apologist like me can reluctantly admit this series was mostly suck.

    However I really think it is unfair to accuse Way of being mean spirited and saying it bought down the tsunami line.

    I highly expect that it bought a lot of attention to the tsunami line in general because venom was the only big name title being produced (sorry X-fans Mystique isn’t a big name)

    They were more likely to go in for Venom and grab some issue 1#’s of the other series while they were there. Or look into the tsunami line in general after venom was announced. “lets see what else they are doing”

    It was highly unlikely that someone would go:

    “Oh Venom actually sucked, now I am not going to buy all three other tsunami titles, even though they have complelty different creative teams, despite the fact that I was totally going to do that before reading this issue of Venom” – not going to happen.

    If anything the huge initial sales the first few issues of Venom got may have supported the whole initial line as well as attention bought in by Venom.

    As for mean spirited, it may have sucked but it was hardly a concious effort on Way’s part to ruin the character and imprint line, he is a nice bloke.

    Perhaps you want to take the comment back or rephrase/elaborate.

    I’m not too fussed just felt like that deserved a response.

  9. No, Paul is right. It was mean-spirited.

    Almost all the good guys are shown as assholes or stupid, while ending up on their backs at the end of the day. Scores of innocent people and those at least undeserving end up slaughtered and nobody does anything about it. Our main character is used, abused and is shown to be worthless. And despite all of this, over the course of a year and a half of storytelling, evil is never punished.

    So yes, this comic was mean-spirited.

  10. Evil was never punished because the series simply didn’t finish, that makes Quesada mean spirited not Way or the series itself.

    People got killed by a rampaging monster that seems pretty standard to a rampaging monster story no more mean spirited then Godzilla or Cloverfield

    By main character do you mean Eddie or the chick. Eddie got a power upgrade, set back to villain status (as people foolishly wanted) and the symbiote got the chance to reproduce again as seen in the Eddie has cancer series you covered last time.

    The Nick Fury thing really pissed me off but made sense in the sense that SHIELD is a UN organisation all it takes is someone high up in US government to say “sorry don’t want you help anymore Kthxbye” which is what that exchange was although your LMD idea works too.

    Reed being portrayed as ahead of the game and perfect all the time is frigging annoying and I was glad to see him stuck in a pile of spiders.

    As for Patricia she did get a raw deal but again only because the series never got a chance to finish same goes for the FF being stuck.

    I genuinely believe he wanted about sixty issues as he is getting for Wolverine origins.

    In fact wolverine is only now launching a counter attack against Romulus at issues 36!!

    People complained with origins how Cap and Cyclops were portrayed, how Romulus was too powerful and well connected and how wolverine kept getting beaten and the art. EXACTLY the same complaints Venom got.

    I’m certain 99% of the problems can be attributed to the fact it didn’t finish, especially when you compare it to Origins and can see the exact same things happen with the one difference being that it finished.

    None the less I respect both your rights to your opinions and ultimately what you say goes because its your blog page. But I cant feel the same way about that point not that it ultimately matters.

  11. By main character do you mean Eddie or the chick.

    Why the fuck would I be talking about the guy who appeared in a handful of latter issues? Of course I meant Patricia.

    Evil was never punished because the series simply didn’t finish, that makes Quesada mean spirited not Way or the series itself.

    I genuinely believe he wanted about sixty issues as he is getting for Wolverine origins.

    No, this just means that Way was a lousy writer on this. Sixty issues? Really? How was he going to earn this? He’s lucky he even got eighteen. You know why Wolverine Origins works? Because we actually get payoff every once and a while. Wolverine doesn’t need to beat Romulus at the end of the day. He can beat Cyber or Omega Red or Deadpool and we feel like something happened. I mean, even as something as mean spirited as Garth Ennis’ the Boys, the corrupt superheroes are still prevalent throughout the issues, but there’s some progress made. Ennis earns his right to continue via actual competent storytelling. I say this and I hate that series.

    Way’s Venom is just snuff porn that never went anywhere and never had any reason to go anywhere.

  12. We would have seen Patricias fate come issue 19, havent read the Boys so I cant comment but Im sure I’d like it as I do almost all Ennis’s, I Enjoyed your comparisons to wolverine origins and yeh I totally agree origins is superior, but I think your distinction about ‘pay off’s is relativly arbitary in that just because wolverine has more mini boss battles than Venom that less happened overall. He fought Omega red twice and didnt kill him the second time when he should have. After all that faff with tricking and using poor Deadpool AND getting Xavier involved in the legacy tie ins (even more issues to tell his story there) He has once again lost Deaken and Deaken is still a dick (albeit slightly less of one).

    Venom got cloned, fought the clone and spider-man absorbed the clone got pregnant again, seemingly got a boost in size and power for subsequent appearences and a whole alien race of spider-robots were revealed.

    We also have no idea what restrictions Way was under for being under the tsunani imprint, he probably wasnt allowed to use too much marvel continuity that would stop it supposedly being new reader friendly and scare away the supposed manga readers they were supposed to be attracting. Also as a junior writer he probably wasnt allowed to do stuff like major character deaths and status qou changes as someone like Bendis is.

    Venom has no rouges gallery, no one else has had to write him for more then six issues at a stretch, at least he was trying to make a larger story arc, and a nemesis in bob’s people.
    (how were the spider bots going to overthrow civilisation using Venom and his new spawn?)

    We know nothing about the behind the scenes stuff at marvel he as a newbie writer at the time was given the task of writing someone with no rogues gallery for EIGHTEEN ISSUES with probably massive restrictions.

    All that and I still say the series was crap, I just think that personally calling D.Way mean spirited is harsh and innapropriate given that he seems genuinely like a nice bloke and didnt do any lasting damage to the character (except perpetuating the hulk like size of Venom), Yes a few characters got bitched out but they always do before then getting a second wind and kicking the bad guys ass, as I can all but gurantee you was going to happen. And the poor bastard didnt even get to finish his yarn.

    I dont know why I felt the need to defend Way he isnt even in my top five favourite writers. I think its simply that mean spirited is a term I would reserve for Quesada’s involvement in Sins Past and One More Day. And we can all agree it fits in that context.

    But whatever, this is the last I will say on it, I cant tell over the internet wether you are enjoying discussing this with me or getting pissed of with me so I’ll leave it at that.

  13. @Toby Stokes: you’re an idiot