Read these 3 Venom comics before seeing the movie
Venom hits the big screen this week. Sadly, advance reviews are not good.
So before you head to the theater, visit your local comic shop for these three Venom stories that are almost guaranteed to be better than the movie.
But first, a little back-story.
The Venom Symbiote first appeared in Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #8 as a costume for Spider-Man while he was in space with most of Marvel's other heroes and villains on the Beyonder's Battleworld.
Spidey thought that he just got some cool, new, alien threads, and brought the suit home with him to Earth.
Later, it was revealed that the suit was sentient and was trying to take over the body and mind of Peter Parker.
Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic) and the Fantastic Four helped Spider-Man escape the suit and locked it up for safe keeping.
You can imagine that the suit was none too happy with Peter about that.
Next, meet Eddie Brock. A photographer at The Daily Bugle (hey, isn't that where Peter Parker works?) who develops a pretty nasty grudge against Pete because Bugle publisher, J. Jonah Jameson, keeps choosing Parker's pictures of Spider-Man (duh) instead of Brock's.
So we have an alien Symbiote Suit that gives the wearer powers that hates Spider-Man.
And a body-building, disgraced photographer that hates Peter Parker.
Man, it would really be bad for 'ol webhead if those two got together...
Spider-Man: Birth of Venom
This 344 page collection starts with Spidey getting his new alien costume in Secret Wars #8 and includes Peter's adventures back on Earth in the alien costume.
Followed by his battle to seperate himself from it, it's bonding with Eddie Brock, Venom's first appearance and his first two battles with Spider-Man. But that's not all!
You also get the wedding of Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson, the first appearance of villains Puma and The Rose, and guest stars The Fantastic Four and The Black Cat.
Venom: Lethal Protector
Venom co-creator, David Michelinie, takes the Spider-Man villain in a new direction - San Francisco - where Spider-Man isn't around to drive him crazy.
It's also Venom's first solo mini-series.
THIS is the inspiration for the Tom Hardy Venom movie and presents Venom more as an anti-hero than a villain.
It also introduces several sinister symbiotes spawned from Venom.
Venom by Donny Cates Vol. 1
Alright, we're cheating with this one a little because it's not out until November 21st.
But it's so darn good!
You see, in between Venom: Lethal Protector and this collection, there were plenty of Venom stories.
(The best being writer Rick Remender making the Venom Symbiote an agent of SHIELD worn by Peter Parker's high school pal/nemesis Flash Thompson.)
And there was a long stretch where Eddie Brock wasn't Venom.
But most writers and fans agree that Venom works best when it's Brock. And Donny Cates makes that happen.
Featuring stunning artwork by Ryan Stegman, this volume explores the relationship between Brock and the Symbiote. How they truly need each other.
And that they both are really trying to help people.
But was the Symbiote's first appearance really back in Secret Wars #8?
Could there be something bigger and scarier that spawned the suit? (YES!)
So there you have it, three awesome Venom comic books for new and old readers alike.
Thanks for reading, and remember, comics are awesome!