Jul 13, 2018

We Are Venomaniacs! Podcast, Episode 011 - Merchandise 2018!

Venomaniacs Orion, Carlos, and Aaron run down the list of recent and upcoming Venom-related merchandise for 2018 from toys to statues and various paraphernalia in the latest episode of We Are Venomaniacs! Check out the video below!

entertainment weekly venom first look

EW: VENOM First Look

EW gives us a couple new stills from VENOM:

There are a few reasons Tom Hardy wanted to star in Venom. He’s played his fair share of villains, he explains, and he was looking to try his hand at a comic book superhero for once — preferably an interesting one, with a complicated past and murky morals. His son Louis is a huge fan of the character and was more than willing to school his dad in Venom’s rich comics history. And gee, wouldn’t it be fun to play both a down-on-his-luck journalist and the goopy alien parasite who infects him?

But really, it came down to one thing.

“As far as Marvel characters, I have to say for me, Venom looks the coolest,” Hardy says with a laugh. “That sounds a bit shallow! But I appreciate that he has a kind of brazen swagger and a zero foxtrot attitude.”

And so the Oscar-nominated actor signed on to bring one of comics’ most notorious anti-heroes to the big screen. See, Venom may be a Marvel protagonist, but he’s no cape-and-tights do-gooder. His human side is Eddie Brock, a journalist reeling from a recent scandal. Desperate to get back on top, he starts investigating the Life Foundation and its cryptic leader, Dr. Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed). Before long, Eddie is exposed to a slimy, tar-like alien known as a symbiote, which imbues him with extraordinary powers and takes up residence in his head, rent-free.

“There’s a tragic clown element, which I find funny and is harmonious with some of the work that I like to do,” the British actor, 40, says. “There’s something funny about the circumstances of having a gift but it’s a tragic gift. It’s a superpower you don’t really want, but at the same time, you love it. It makes you feel special. He’s a reluctant hero and an anti-hero.”
Venom is the first of Sony’s new films based on characters from the Spider-Man comics, although it’s a separate world from last year’s Spider-Man: Homecoming. (It’s also not part of the deal between Sony and Disney that allows Tom Holland’s Spidey into the Marvel Cinematic Universe). The creature first made its comics debut in the early ‘80s, where it bonded with Peter Parker before eventually setting its sights on Eddie Brock. Over the years, Venom has evolved from Spider-Man villain to misunderstood anti-hero, and after an appearance in 2007’s Topher Grace-starrer Spider-Man 3, he’s finally stepping into the spotlight.

The film leans heavily into Venom’s violent tendencies (have you seen those teeth?) as well as the body horror that comes with sharing your skin with an alien. In forming this Venom, director Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland) explains, “We talked a lot about a werewolf and what it is when you get infected or bit by a werewolf.”

But although a man may transform into a wolf or Jekyll may transform into Hyde, Eddie Brock and Venom don’t really switch from one to the other: Instead, they occupy the same body at the same time and have to reluctantly learn how to coexist.

“Usually a human gets imbued with powers or an alien comes from outer space and has to figure out how to live on our Earth,” Fleischer says. “But this is really about a relationship between two people who have to work together to create this hybrid symbiotic relationship.”

That duality of the role is what fascinated Hardy, and a key part of developing each character was finding their two separate voices. “It’s a bit like Ren and Stimpy, you know?” Hardy says, laughing. “They have different sounds. I always saw Venom as sounding like a James Brown lounge lizard, and Eddie Brock is kind of…” — he switches to an aw-shucks American accent — “I don’t know, an everyday kind of guy. But he’s inherited this massive ego, this beast.”

The result is a black-and-white hero whose morals are anything but. “There’s that biting-off-heads issue,” Hardy admits, “which is not what you would expect from, say, Captain America taking down a crook.”

Venom infects theaters Oct. 5.

Jul 11, 2018

cates ve'nam interview

Ve'Nam Interview

VENOM writer, Donny Cates, sat down with CBR to talk about next month's WEB OF VENOM one shot, Ve'Nam:
CBR: If I were to do an “elevator pitch” for Ve’Nam it would be Apocalypse Now set in the Marvel Universe. Is that what you’re aiming for with this story? 
Donny Cates: That’s 100 percent right! It’s a first for me in a lot of ways. I’ve never written a war story and I’ve never written a period piece. In the first issue of Venom readers met Rex Strickland. Rex was involved in the symbiote soldier program of Project Rebirth, which is what gave Flash Thompson his suit. There was a reveal in that issue that Flash was not the first by a long shot. There were people wearing symbiotes at least as far back as the Vietnam War. 
Rex is a veteran from that time period, and in Venom #1 he shows us a picture of himself and four other men – his platoon. We saw the deaths of those other men at the end of the first issue, but at a Marvel retreat we were all talking about it. I want to say it was Dan Slott who asked, “What else are you going to do with those symbiote soldiers?” I was like, “They die in the first issue. It’s a set up thing.” He replied. “I don’t know. It’s a really cool idea. There’s meat on those bones.” Because he’s Dan Slott, he knows good story ideas like the back of his hands. So I said that I had the idea of maybe doing a one-shot of them in Vietnam; a Heart of Darkness kind of thing. Jason Aaron then said, “Ve’Nam!” He’s the one who uttered that delightful pun. 
I laughed as soon as he said it and picked up my pen to write it down. Jason was like, “Don’t write that down! It was a joke. Don’t do that.” So I had kind of forgotten about it. Then when C.B. Cebulski called to tell me that the Cosmic Ghost Rider series had been green lit he also asked, “Hey, in the room you and Jason joked about Ve’Nam. But do you want to do it? Do you want to publish that?” I was like, “If you guys want to pay for it and publish it, hell yeah, I want to do that!” 
So, I hope I’m not demystifying how Marvel Comics are made, but sometimes it is a group of friends in a room making jokes. Then someone takes you too seriously, and is like, “Let’s do it! As much as I joke around about the title it is sincerely important to the overall story. 
It’s written by me and it’s canon. It’s also an important part of what I’m doing with Rex in this first arc. That’s the gag. You can’t do these things and not take them seriously. Because when you have something like Cosmic Ghost Rider or Ve’Nam the joke is already there, and the joke is, “Holy shit! They let you do that!” So when they open the book you owe it to the reader for the joke to be over and to take it as seriously as possible. It also makes the joke better. When they put the book down the reader is like, Holy #$%@! They really took that joke seriously.” [Laughs] That’s part of a great joke.
So, Ve’Nam is really fun. There are some surprise guest stars in it. I can’t say who they are, but I can reveal that neither are characters that I’ve ever written. They are also period appropriate, popular characters that people are going to be excited to see. 
One thing I understand we’ll see is how Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. influenced the Vietnam War in the Marvel U. 
Yes, that’s one of the things I really liked. We got to go back to ’70s and ’80s S.H.I.E.L.D. books and have this dichotomy at work of Jim Steranko style trippy, far out, super sexy spy stuff intercut with a more grounded approach, similar to The ‘Nam. So there’s blood, guts, and horror and the idea that while all that was going on Nick Fury was sipping a martini while engaging in Cold War style espionage. That’s phenomenal. 
You’re working with Juanan Ramirez who Marvel fans probably know best from his work on the recent Secret Warriors series and the assists he provided on Uncanny Avengers. 
He’s phenomenal. Right away, without us even having to tell him, he clued in on a big influence of the book. Because, let’s just put all our cards on the table, it’s a bunch of human soldiers in Vietnam going into the jungle looking for a bunch of monsters who can turn invisible and that are killing people. It’s the film Predator. There’s a little bit more to it than that, but the horror adventure in a jungle environment is where this story lives. And Juan latched onto that right away. 
There’s an opening beat before we get to our title page that for anybody who’s read Marvel’s The ‘Nam comic will feel very familiar. Juan made some artistic choices that helped pull that off in a really great way. 
The book is a lot of fun and there’s a fine line when you do things like this because you want it to be important. You want to make something that empowers shops to say, “If you have Venom on you pull list you have to get this too because this is part of that overall story.” At the same time, you want to write the ongoing core Venom title in such a way that if you haven’t read this one-shot you’re going to be fine. 
That’s certainly true, but your reading experience will be greatly enriched. You will know things that no one else knows if you read Ve’Nam. This book and Venom fit together in a very tight package. 

Are you ready for Ve'Nam in August?

Jun 27, 2018

TALK ABOUT: venom3


Issue three is out! What did you think? Join the book club discussion in the comments below! Beware of spoilers!!

Jun 21, 2018

venom 3 preview


Coming out Wednesday