Oct 3, 2011

CLASSIC REVIEW: ssm the hunger

As Spider-Island continues and Anti-Venom's (and Eddie Brock's) fate remains to be unseen, I thought I would go back and reread the last time Eddie Brock 'died' in The Spectacular Spider-Man: The Hunger.

The Story: Spider-Man is investigating a series of attacks which leave the victims drained of their adrenaline.  He soon discovers the symbiote is responsible and is planning on leaving Eddie Brock to combined with a new host.

The Good: The Symbiote - This is the first time I can remember the symbiote being treated as an actual character, with feelings and a motive.  It had minor dialog in the past, but never communicated like this.  It is also the first time that I felt the symbiote was really the one in control; seeing it like this made me actually want a story where it takes command and jumps from host to host to terrorize Spidey.  Eddie - If you don't feel for Eddie after this story, you'll never feel for any character.  His struggle with wanting the symbiote to want him and wishing it would of never found him in the first place really sets the tone for his Anti-Venom days.

The Bad: Pretty much everything in Issue 5 - Spider-Man.  Instead of taking a dying man to the hospital to get help, is the best solution to slap him on his back and force him to bond with an alien?  The Symbiote's Child.  What ever became of that?  The Permanent Bond.  Since they symbiote bonded with Eddie on that fateful night, how did it bond with Mac or Eddie?  Does the symbiote have any control over who it combines with or would it of bonded with anything that got slung into its general vicinity?
Granted these are complaints I have with the knowledge of whats to come, but still with throwing things like this into the plot you would hope the writer had plans (maybe he never got the chance) to execute in future stories.

The Overall: 3.75 outta 5.  It really isn't a bad story, I just wish they would of took the groundwork they laid and expanded upon it.   I would of loved if they 'killed off' Eddie by just making him a shell that the symbiote uses to keep its shape and create a whole persona for the symbiote before bringing Eddie back (no one stays dead forever).  However, it is a pivotal story by setting the stage for Eddie to sell the symbiote, get cured of his cancer, become AV, and Flash ultimately securing the title of Venom.
 
Also if you enjoy Humberto Ramos' ASM Spider-Island art, he also does the pencils for this story.

11 comments:

  1. Gavok of 4th letter posted a great review of this story (here:http://www.4thletter.net/2009/07/we-care-a-lot-part-14-eddie-are-you-okay-will-you-tell-us-that-youre-okay/ ). I agree with him; that "child" seems like a botched introduction to Toxin. The only part of this story that matters is how the symbiote "evolved", Eddie's cancer, and how new hosts on Venom were starting to become plausible.

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  2. Also, the 90s story "The Hunger" is better. And the symbiote had a mind of its own there, but it wasn't as vocal.

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  3. (I put "also" because my other comment said a mod had to approve it. Weird.)

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  4. I would definitely recommend reading Gavok's 'We Care A Lot' pieces. Great Venom reviews/history lesson.

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  5. Comments with links/pics have to be approved.

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  6. I love how in his final piece, he gives Eddie the "Hero's Journey" treatment.

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  7. The permanent bong thing has always been a problem. They were permanently bonded to begin with (see First Kill and ASM 300) they kept with it for a while until the symbiote "died" after Styx touched them. After that continutiy is all over the place, sometimes it leaves him, sometimes it doesn't. They should just drop the "permanently" part because it is screwing things up WAY too much. Same thing with the fire weakness, they have to decide how strong or weak it is because in some comics Eddie could be covered in fire and nothing would happen. With Gargan and flash it seems like lighters are their problems.

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  8. Well y'all already said what I had to say :/ Toxin was just moved down a generation line, the whole permanent bond thing has been going on for a while like in Planet of the Symbiotes, and I was hoping it was the 90s The Hunger (one of my favorites) from the Tweet, guess not =]

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  9. Where are you getting the idea that Gargan and Flash are especially weak against fire??? Eddie is the only one who had the infamous "lighter beats Venom" scene. Gargan was notoriously resistant to any former symbiote weakness (to the point where it was terrible writing), while Flash is realistically resistant so far (he ran through a roaring blaze quickly to get a mother and child in #1, and in several instances so far, sonics have proven to be a problem for him).

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  10. Sometimes I wonder (fanwank) if the "permanent bond" is just a symbiote mind game to get its host to give in and stop fighting, though the first mention I recall was FF's Mr. Fantastic when Spidey sought his help. There's so much unknown about Venom and the suit keeps secrets from his hosts all the time.

    I really just take it as guesses and lies to roll with it. There's a bond that weakens and strengthens, yet it is never unbreakable.

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