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By Marc Strom
Get ready for an out of this world history lesson.
For anyone out there with some lingering questions about Eddie Brock's alien costume/partner-in-crime, writer Zeb Wells and artist Angel Medina bring you the tale of the alien symbiote's genesis in the pages of VENOM: DARK ORIGINS #4 on sale this week, November 5.
While the first three issues of the five-part limited series focused on Brock's beginnings, Wells says that giving fans the symbiote's side of the story proved absolutely necessary.
"I see Venom as a 'couple' made up of Brock and the symbiote," he explains. "I think we'd only be getting half of Venom's origin if I didn't shed some light on Eddie's 'better' half."
In bringing the symbiote into the spotlight, Wells will also take readers to its home planet and explore some fundamental questions he himself had about the alien creature.
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"The questions I had when thinking about the symbiote's home planet were: 'What kind of environment would cause a creature like the symbiote to evolve?' and 'What purpose would its symbiosis with another creature serve?'" Wells notes. "Our educational 'trip' to the symbiote's homeworld will answer these questions."
In the process, the symbiote will become more of a character in its own right, a goal which Wells says he "definitely" wanted to accomplish.
"There's a bit more of its motivations in issues #4 and #5," he elaborates. "We get to see its point of view and what it wants out of the pairing with Brock."
Wells points out that exploring the relationship between the symbiote and Brock proves a little complicated, with the question of which party has more influence over the other constituting "a gray area."
"Personally, I think the symbiote is driven by emotional need and instinct, and wouldn't be capable of deceit on a complex level," Wells reasons. "It's like a dog that knows when it's hungry, when it's angry or in pain, and knows how to deal with those
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things instinctually. But, at the same time it's capable of reacting to—and influencing the intelligence of—its host, so that's where it gets fuzzy. Still, I don't think that the symbiote would play
Eddie on any conscious level."
VENOM: DARK ORIGINS #3 intentionally slowed down the pace of the story so as to emphasize the moment where Brock and his symbiote first met, but Wells tells us it wasn't only a storytelling tactic that led him to make that decision.
"I think Angel was chomping at the bit to go crazy with the symbiote, and I was chomping at the bit to see him do it," he confesses. "I thought it had potential to be a very disturbing, cinematic scene in Angel's hands, so I wanted to give him plenty of room to breathe. This is the birth of one of Spidey's most popular villains—we needed to do it justice."
With only two issues to go, Wells left with a few last hints to get readers salivating worse than Venom himself for the stories' conclusion.
"In issue #4 we get to see what Venom said to Mary Jane that left her in the state she's in at the beginning of AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #300. And let's not forget the main event in issue #5: Venom vs. Spidey!"
VENOM: DARK ORIGIN #4 slithers onto stand this Wednesday, November 5. For more Venom, visit Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited!
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