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Becoming Mania

Andi Benton was one of the first neighbors Flash Thompson met in Philadelphia, who moved to live upstairs.[2] Andi happened to attend West Philadelphia High School, where Flash started working as assistant coach. She usually skipped gym, and one day she was the only witness when Flash used his symbiotic-enhanced arm to throw a ball at a bully, and came to the conclusion Thompson was Venom.[3]

When mob boss Lord Ogre put a price on Venom's head, Andi was targeted by Jack O'Lantern, a villain who knew Flash's alter-ego. Venom couldn't save Andi's father from being stabbed by the maniac, but when Jack released a poisonous gas, Flash protected Andi with a portion of his symbiote, which ended up bonding with Andrea rather than only protecting her from her imminent death.[4]

Andi proceeded to brutally attack Jack O'Lantern, but after removing his mask, Venom realized it was actually an impostor brainwashed by the real Jack O'Lantern into replacing him while he was in prison. After a furious battle in which numerous super villains looking for Venom stepped in, Mania started suffocating the fake Jack with the symbiote, but Venom convinced her not to cross that line.

Andrea Benton (Earth-616) from Venom Vol 2 36 001

Andi as a regular human

Partner of Agent Venom

Andi moved with her aunt to Jenkintown although she remained in touch with Flash, who let her have the symbiote, which mysteriously bonded to Andi faster than it could have bonded to any other host.[5]

Flash went to attend other business outside the city, and Andi continued to battle the mob in order to threaten Lord Ogre, who she swore to kill in revenge, as Ogre was who sent Jack O'Lantern to kill her and her father. Unknown to her, Flash not only had transferred a part of his symbiote to Andi, but also the hell-mark the symbiote received during his battle against Blackheart in Las Vegas, for which she had been targeted by Crossbones.[6]

Mania confronted Ogre in his penthouse. Ogre stated he had a chemical bomb in his chest, and that it would go off and unleash a death-cloud that would kill many innocents if he died, Mania called it a bluff and attempted to kill him, but was stopped by Venom. The confrontation was interrupted by Crossbones.

One of Crossbones' allies, Master Mayhem, opened a dimensional portal in his chest which summoned numerous demons that attacked Mania, Venom and Ogre. During the battle, Mania discovered the hell-mark gave her control over the demons, and ordered them to turn on Crossbones. Venom and Mania escaped while Crossbones and his allies were fighting the demons.[7]

Andrea Benton (Earth-616) from Venom Space Knight Vol 1 6 001

With the symbiote

Venom and Mania contacted Mephisto in order to remove Andi's hell-mark. When Crossbones located them once more, Mephisto helped the heroes battle him by summoning the Monsters of Evil, a legion of monsters at the command of whoever had the hell-mark. When Crossbones and his allies were defeated and before disappearing, Mephisto stated that the hell-mark wasn't Andi's, but the symbiote's. Flash promised he would help Andi remove the hell mark at any cost.[8] However, they were unable to find any information on the Descent, and when Flash was summoned to join the Guardians of the Galaxy he left Andi behind, expressing the hope that everything would work out.[9]

Possessed by the Hell-Mark

Andi retained the Mania symbiote and remained in Philadelphia, continuing to fight organized crime.[10] However, she slowly lost control of her anger, which caused the hell mark to transfer from the Mania symbiote to her.[9] This corrupted the Mania symbiote even further, turning into a bloodthirsty monster she has no control over.[11]

When Venom returned to Earth, Mania attacked him, demanding he fight back against her. She was separated from her symbiote by Spider-Man and passed out, before being taken to Parker Industries' Philadelphia branch by Flash. She regained consciousness when her Hell-Mark activated, summoning several demons.[12] Attempting to take both the Mania and Venom symbiotes, Andi attacked Flash with an army of monsters, wreaking havoc in the city in the process. She was stopped when Venom's allies arrived, having retrieved a purifying elixir from the planet Wenb, which temporarily cured Andi's possession and brought her back to her senses. Venom decided to remain on Earth together with Andi and her symbiote so they could find a permanent cure.[9]

Andrea Benton (Earth-616) from Venom Space Knight Vol 1 12 001

Andi possessed by the Hell-Mark

War against the Poisons

Andi was later recruited by Venomized versions of Captain America and Doctor Strange to fight against the Poisons that were trying to consume symbiotes and their hosts. Eddie Brock, who was in possesion of the Venom symbiote of her reality, was later recruited as well. She recognized the symbiote but not its host, who she dismissed as not being her Venom.[13] At the end, the Venoms were able to explode the ship of the Poisons before the Venomized Doctor Strange sent them and Mania to their proper realities.[14]

Venom Inc.

Now knowing that Eddie Brock was Venom's current host and reading about their actions in the newspaper, she tried to find them so Flash could be Agent Venom again. However, Lee Price — a former Army Ranger who had bonded to the Venom symbiote for a short period of time — and his allies separated the Mania symbiote from Andi using a sonic disruptor and flamethrowers. Price took the Mania symbiote for himself and used it to build his own crime organization, sharing the symbiote with its members to control them. Badly injured by Price's attack, Andi was sent to a hospital, where she was visited by Flash and informed him about what had happened.[1] Andi travelled to New York intending to help Flash hunt down her symbiote, using her lingering connection to it and the Hell-Mark to ambush a group of Inklings about to execute Anti-Venom - who she realized was Flash Thompson. Andi tried to help Anti-Venom fight Spider-Man, who had been infected with part of her symbiote, but was unable to be of much use.

After Spider-Man was freed from Maniac's control by the Black Cat, using an Anti-Venom serum developed by Alchemax,[15] the heroes mounted an attack on a gathering of the five biggest crime families in the world, on whose attendees Maniac had used his powers. Andi used her powers to provide cover from above.[16] Maniac was eventually struck down and weakened by Anti-Venom, but the symbiote remained bonded to him. While she couldn't regain the symbiote, Andi was proud she could prove herself without it, and set out to return to Philadelphia while Flash stayed in New York to keep an eye on Venom and Spider-Man.[17]

Powers

Hell-Mark: The Hell-Mark bestowed upon the Venom symbiote by Mephisto marks Andi as a potential candidate to become a Hell-Lord during the Descent and gives her the ability to conjure hellfire and summon, subjugate, and control lesser demons, although powerful demons are able to resist this.[7][9] As a side-effect of its ability to conjure hellfire, the Hell-Mark makes Andi immune to fire.[15] The Hell-Mark also has a corruptive effect on symbiotes.[11]


Weaknesses


  • Initially, Cullen Bunn planned for Eddie Brock to take the Venom symbiote's clone, creating a second hellish version of Venom. However, since Eddie was bonded to Toxin around that time and he decided they could stay together longer, Bunn decided to keep the plot point, but introduce Mania instead.[19]

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Footnotes



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