Comic Review: Venom Volume 2

The first volume of Donny Cates’ new Venom series was OK but didn’t do much for me.  That struck me as odd.  I usually loves Cates’ work, and his Venom series was getting a lot of positive buzz.  I just didn’t see where that came from.

Then I opted to give the second volume, subtitled The Abyss, a try.  Maybe it was just a weak beginning.

Good news for me:  it was a weak beginning.

After defeating the god of symbiotes, Eddie Brock wakes up to find himself a prisoner of the Maker, the evil Reed Richards from the Ultimate Universe.  Eddie isn’t sure how he even got there, and he’s even further shocked to learn former Venom Flash Thompson is dead despite going to the funeral and he’s been the Maker’s prisoner for multiple days.  What happened?

It turns out Eddie’s memories have been a bit…off for a good long time.  And once he escapes from the Maker, he needs to confront his past.  First stop?  His abusive father out in San Francisco.  Apparently, that was where he was captured in the first place.

This second volume was a big improvement on the first.  While the first seemed like a generic superhero story, the second actually digs into Eddie’s past and how much his memories of the past might be a wee bit unreliable.  The symbiote has been doing things to Eddie for quite some time.  It’s an alien creature, and it has its own way of doing things.  The two have had an interdependent relationship.for a long time.  Is it truly possible such a relationship can be truly healthy?  Does the symbiote care about Eddie?  Or vice versa?  And what happens when Eddie learns the real consequences of what the symbiote has done to him?

These are the sorts of questions the book asks, and with the Maker (among others) out there to bring Venom down, I think I do see now why this series was getting as much attention as it did.  I’ll have to try this one again soon.  9 out of 10 unexpected revelations about relatives.

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