Eddie Brock was raised as a Roman Catholic in suburban San Francisco. His father, Carl Brock, was cold and unloving towards him because he blamed Eddie for his wife's death during childbirth. Eddie constantly attempted to obtain his father's approval, though even after excelling in school, he only received half-hearted encouragements. Eddie often stole things from other children, just so he could "find" these items to gain their friendship. He also suffered from bullying as a child. When Eddie was a teenager, he stole his father's car and snuck out to get drunk with some friends, attempting to sneak it back home before his father noticed. In the process, he accidentally ran over the son of Ms. Lewis, one of his neighbours. Eddie was horrified by what he had done and intended to plead guilty, but his father ordered him to plead innocent and brutally beat him when he refused. While the charges were dropped when he plead not-guilty, covering up the incident almost bankrupted Carl Brock, ruining his reputation, and further amplified his hatred and resentment towards his son.
In his teenage years, he gained entrance to ESU's journalism program, fabricating an internship, and he romanced law student Anne Weying. Though exceptional in athletics, Brock switched his major in college to journalism after reading an article on the Watergate scandal. Upon graduating, he moved to New York City, married Ann and as a member of the Associated Press, he obtained a job as a journalist for the Daily Globe. He proved himself to be highly talented, though even this did not get his father's approval.
From Success to Failure
Early in his career as a reporter, Brock faced down the shadowy alien Krobaa, and uncovered illegal human testing at Devlin-MacGregor Pharmaceuticals, although threats on Anne's life prevented him from reporting that. He later began to suffer from severe anxiety, which was soon discovered to be adrenal cancer. With just months to live, Brock wanted to break a big story, and thought he had found this story when he was accidentally contacted by Emil Gregg, who claimed to be the serial killer Sin-Eater. Eddie wrote front-page exclusives of the Sin-Eater, protecting his identity under the First Amendment, until a crisis of conscience and pressure from the police and his editor forced him to write an exclusive article revealing Gregg as the Sin-Eater.
Although that edition of the paper sold out immediately, that same day Spider-Man captured and revealed the true identity of the Sin-Eater to be Detective Stan Carter. Gregg was found to be Carter's delusional neighbor, making Brock a laughingstock among his fellow journalists. Fired from the Daily Globe, he was forced to write venomous drivel for a tawdry tabloid. Anne left him, his father disowned him and his future appeared to be over. Brock blamed all of these problems on Spider-Man and began an intense physical workout program hoping to reduce the stress of his life. However, such physical exertions only increased his violent obsession with Spider-Man. Although his body had been honed to near-perfection, Brock’s mind was reduced to an all-consuming vessel of hatred.
Birth of Venom
Some time after Eddie's life took these drastic changes, and overwhelmed by his shame and the knowledge of his impending death, he began contemplating suicide. He decided to visit Our Lady of Saints Church to beg forgiveness from God for this mortal sin before doing it. As Eddie questioned his resolve to go through with his suicide, a strange man approached and said he might find what he was "looking for" inside. Once inside the church, he was caught by surprise when the symbiotic alien costume, which had earlier been discarded by Spider-Man in the church's bell tower, attacked and bonded with him, drawn by his despair, adrenaline, and fierce hate, on which it fed. The symbiote bonded mentally and physically to Brock, whose rage and hatred toward Spider-Man further corrupted it, causing it to become increasingly vicious and bloodthirsty.
Brock soon discovered that the costume gave him all of Spider-Man's powers, adding its biomass to his already large frame and increasing his strength to levels surpassing those of Spider-Man. Through the symbiote, Brock learned a great deal about Spider-Man, including his secret identity, and chose to name their merged form Venom: "Because that's what I'm paid to spew these days!"
Stalking the Spider
Brock taunted Peter Parker with minor assaults, such as pushing him in front of an oncoming train and then grabbing his ankle while scaling an Atlantic City building. The alien costume could cancel out the wall-crawler’s spider-sense presumably by projecting conflicting frequencies upon Spider-Man's brain waves. Venom finally made a bold move when he confronted Parker's wife, Mary Jane Watson, at their old Chelsea apartment. Although Venom’s twisted sense of morality did not allow him to physically harm Mary Jane, Spider-Man immediately realized the nature of this threat. Remembering the symbiote's weakness, Spider-Man retrieved a sonic blaster from the Fantastic Four, and fired the blaster at Venom. Spider-Man then discovered that the symbiote could not be separated from Brock because it had completely bonded with him. Spider-Man rationalized that further use of the weapon on Venom might kill him and decided to relent. Trying to escape and rethink his options, Spider-Man was caught unaware by Venom. He captured Spider-Man and secured him to the inside of the church bell with a considerable amount of webbing. Spider-Man narrowly escaped the bell’s crushing clapper before defeating Venom by forcing him to deplete his webbing supply, of which the alien symbiote was actually comprised. Before the alien could regenerate enough of its mass to become a renewed threat, Spider-Man brought Venom to the Fantastic Four who imprisoned him in a sonic containment cell. The Fantastic Four then shipped Venom to the government super-prison in the Colorado Rockies called the Vault.
A young Guardsman, Hugh Taylor, who had just been assigned to the Vault was fooled into thinking that Venom was a fallen colleague and released the gate mechanism, which imprisoned the criminal. Venom killed the naive guard and escaped to New York City. Later on, to avenge his son, General Orwell Taylor founded the armored vigilante team known as the Jury.
While hitchhiking back to Spider-Man in Manhattan, he thwarted the criminal activity of a small militia in Missouri. This marked the first time he used the symbiote heroically and demonstrated his soft spot for those he deemed innocent.
Resuming his vendetta, Brock brutalized the Black Cat, menaced May Parker and bested Spider-Man in combat on an isolated Montauk, Long Island beach. However, this time, Spider-Man used psychological warfare upon Venom, by taunting the alien symbiote to return to him. The alien, torn by its love-hate relationship for Spider-Man, tried to leave Brock and to re-establish its link with its original owner, but the trauma of trying to detach itself from Brock’s nervous system was too much to bear. The alien costume and Eddie Brock were both knocked unconscious and subsequently returned to the Vault, where they were incarcerated.
Eddie then faked his own suicide and escaped the Vault again. He attacked Spider-Man in Central Park, but abandoned the battle to save an innocent baby. When Venom returned to his underground lair, he was followed by Styx and Stone in the hope of finding Spider-Man. Unfortunately for them, Venom escaped the sewers in his human guise. Venom lured Spider-Man into a confrontation in his sewer lair, but when Styx and Stone intervened and attempted to kill Spider-Man. Fortunately for Spidey, albeit in a bad way, Venom would not allow anyone else to kill Spider-Man save himself and attacked them. Despite Spider-Man's best efforts to save Venom, Styx touched the symbiote with his carcinogenic touch, seemingly killing it in the process. Returned to human form, Eddie Brock was sent to a normal prison at Ryker's Island.
Short Reprieve and an Uneasy Alliance
In Ryker's Island, Eddie was placed in the same cell as the nihilistic sociopath Cletus Kasady, a notorious serial killer, and developed an intense mutual hatred of him after learning he'd boasted of killing dozens of innocents. Later it was revealed the symbiote was merely sent into a comatose state, apparently immune to Earthly diseases, and when it recovered it sought Eddie out and rebonded to him. In the ensuing breakout, however, the suit left a small asexually-produced offspring behind it which bonded to Kasady and transformed him into Carnage. Unaware of this development, Eddie captured Spider-Man and battled him on a deserted island in the Caribbeans, away from people and innocents in the hope of killing him alone. However, Spider-Man later realized that Venom would only be happy if he knew that Spider-Man was dead. Faking his death, Spider-Man made Venom believe that he had died, and thus was able to escape. Happy at last, Venom saw there was no reason to return to civilization, having all he needed on the island, and stayed there.
In a plan to help his father, Darkhawk hijacked a cargo plane which crashed onto the island. The two fought mostly because Venom desired privacy. After the symbiote sensed Powell's innocence, misleading the hero into thinking that he was dead. His peaceful solitude was also interrupted by his stint as an unwitting pawn of Nightmare, to torment Wolverine inside a dream zone. Subsequently Venom & Wolverine allied to try and foil Nightmare's scheme. At one point Wolverine seemingly saved Eddie's life.
A few months later, however, Carnage began a mass-murdering rampage throughout Manhattan, killing hundreds of people. Spider-Man attempted to stop him, but swiftly learned that despite his superior experience he was outmatched. Realizing that Carnage possessed a symbiote, Peter reluctantly realized that he needed Venom's help in order to stop this menace. Contacting Johnny Storm, the Human Torch, they traveled to the Caribbean island where Venom resided. When Venom realized that Spider-Man was alive, he attacked the two. After a brief spat, Venom listened to what Spider-Man had to say. Promising to help Spider-Man stop Carnage in exchange for his freedom, Spider-Man reluctantly agreed, starting the first of many uneasy alliances with each other.
Returning to New York, Venom and Spider-Man attempted to stop Carnage's rampage twice with equal failure. In their final attempt at Madison Square Garden, they stopped Carnage after he began trying to kill J. Jonah Jameson. Turning on the sound system to the maximum frequency, Spider-Man stopped Carnage. He then proceeded (albeit reluctantly) to use the sound waves on Venom before he attacked him, still possessing enough hatred and strength to choke him. His attempt to kill the wall-crawler, however, was stopped by the Fantastic Four, who Venom realized were behind this plan all along. Venom's hatred for Spider-Man now grew greater than ever.
While hunting for Spider-Man, Venom attacked the Bar with No Name and picked a fight with Wolverine, who he'd previously crossed paths with when pulled into the Dimension of Dreams by Nightmare. While Venom was defeated, Wolverine noted they weren't so different and chose to spare Venom, advising him to overcome his bloodlust and make something better of himself. While Venom initially disregarded this advice, it laid the groundwork for his transition into an antihero.
Venom escaped when Hag and Troll killed the Vault Guardsmen transporting him to prison. Brock wanted to avenge the murders, which led him into a battle with Demogoblin, Doppelganger,and a legion of Deathspawn with help from Spider-Man, Ghost Rider and Johnny Blaze. Simultaneously, Ghost Rider and Johnny Blaze prevented Venom from attacking Spider-Man, and Venom was forced back to the Vault.
Venom soon sprung himself from the prison and immediately sought Spider-Man in what was meant to be their last battle to end it all. Learning that Parker's long-lost parents had resurfaced (unaware they were actually robot duplicates), Venom kidnapped them in order to protect their innocence from his corruption. Spider-Man contacted Eddie's ex-wife, Ann Weying, in order to gain info on his whereabouts, which led Spider-Man to Thrill World where he found Venom waiting. Eddie noticed Ann, who had traveled there to try and reach him one last time. As the Wild Pack arrived, a battle ensued. An amusement ride fell next to Ann and Eddie couldn't hold it on his own. As Eddie started to falter, Spider-Man assisted him in holding the tremendous weight, and together they tossed the ride aside. Afterwards, Venom began to resume the fight with Spider-Man, but Ann stopped him, reminding Eddie that Spider-Man just saved an innocent life. Pondering this fact for a moment, Eddie realized that by not killing Spider-Man, more innocent lives could be saved. Venom then made a deal with him: so long as Spider-Man did not go after them, they would not go after him. Agreeing to the terms, Spider-Man watched as Venom attached a web line to a nearby helicopter, departing for a new city where he wouldn't interfere.
The Lethal Protector
After dealing a truce with Spider-Man, Venom relocated to his hometown of San Francisco. Some cops recognized Eddie Brock and tried to bring him in, but he turned into Venom and while resisting arrest, incapacitated them. Spider-Man reads about how Venom is beating up police officers and breaks the truce by going to find him. Venom saved a handful of homeless people from being abused by criminals and in gratitude revealed their underground society descended from survivors of the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake. Seeking revenge for Venom's murder of his son, General Orwell Taylor sent his task force called the Jury, to take down Venom, but ultimately failed. Venom was then taken prisoner by the Life Foundation and was forcefully made to spawn five more symbiotes. During this time, Venom managed to convince a pursuing Spider-Man that he was dedicated to protecting innocent people enough to solicit his help; though Spider-Man remained wary of Venom's ruthless aggression. He managed to incapacitate the other symbiotes and escaped the Life Foundation. The man responsible for the Life Foundation and the symbiotes, Roland Treece, planned on killing the underground civilization in order to obtain a large mass of gold supposedly buried within it. Enlisting Spider-Man's aid once again the two thwarted his evil scheme. Saving the citizens of the underground city, they awarded him their vote of acceptance to take up residence there.
When Venom heard the news of Carnage leading a massacre across NYC, he went there to stop the villain, but was outnumbered by Carnage and his minions. He took up alliance with Spider-Man and many other superheroes in an effort to stop Carnage and his henchmen. Venom advocated the use of lethal force against Carnage but Spider-Man refused this tactic, putting them at odds. The heroes eventually succeeded, with Venom tackling Carnage into a generator system, rendering him unconscious. Spider-Man and Black Cat believed that Venom had sacrificed his body to save them from Carnage. Venom survives and eventually returns home.
During his period of vigilantism, Eddie crossed paths with other superheroes and anti-heroes such as the Punisher, Darkhawk, Daredevil, Iron Man, Morbius, Mace, Hulk (Bruce Banner), and Vengeance. In one of these encounters he attempted to rid his symbiote of its weakness to fire and sound by acquiring a bio-virus but was convinced by Daredevil, that his weakness actually provides him an opportunity to prove himself as a hero.
Venom learned he was being hunted by a criminal group which led to his second encounter with Darkhawk. Venom expressed to Darkhawk how he felt betrayed by him, due to Darkhawk attacking him and swearing to turn him over to the authorities for his past crimes, despite Venom seemingly sparring Darkhawk's life in their previous encounter. Venom bested him in battle but resisted killing him as a return favor for his aiding him in battle against the Seekers. Venom offered to ally however Darkhawk believed Venom was intent on killing and swore to bring him to justice. Venom was then heavily assaulted and knocked unconscious by Darkhawk to prevent him from possibly killing their target. Despite this, Venom was still able to escape Darkhawk.
Romance and Transformation / Possession
Eddie became romantically involved with Beck Underwood, a lawyer and above-ground contact of the underground society. A company called Scarmore Inc. was behind some illegal experiments in which they mixed their toxic waste with mercury, however, all the substance did was sicken anyone who worked with it, both physically and mentally. Scarmore Inc. hired Black Tom and Juggernaut to kidnap Beck, who was prosecuting the Company. While protecting Beck from the Juggernaut, Venom became submerged in the mercury mixture.
The mercury mixture turned out to be a sentient virus that bonded to Venom, augmenting his strength and figure drastically while simultaneously manipulating him. Venom became increasingly aggressive during an intimate moment with Beck that went awry. Demons from another dimension called the "Realm of Insanity" plotted to lure Venom into their world, by seeking to drive him further insane. Venom was convinced by a man to help Beck's cause by attacking Scarmore. He subsequently tried to kill the company president but, actually killed a janitor, which upon learning this, would cause Beck much grief. Later, Juggernaut attempted to kidnap Beck and once again fought Venom until Venom fell into the "Realm of Insanity". A demon by the name Necromancer (taking the appearance of Ghost Rider) explained that every time someone went mad they fell into the Realm of Insanity for an amount of time, and the degree of Venom's madness meant he could remain there indefinitely. During this time, Eddie hears the Symbiote tell him it is Cancerous, and Venom believes he is dying from it. Venom conquered his conflicting personalities and the demons inside the realm, and was sent back to Earth. Eventually, an employee of Scarmore publicly confessed to the crimes.
As Juggernaut was holding Beck hostage, Venom burst in and attacked; the two fought until Juggernaut got fed up and left. Due to all that had happened Beck ended their romance and Venom extracted the Mercury Virus from his system. Despite everything, Venom respected the sentient virus and welcomed a reunion if he ever needed another power boost.
During his wandering of New York, deprived of sleep, Eddie grew more and more delusional with people appearing as demons and monsters to him. Everything he ate tasted like garbage, and he had a craving for something but did not know what it was. Using his old resources and skills as a journalist to find trouble, he went to a bar filled with the corrupt and started a fight for the sake of punishing the guilty and working up an appetite. He took down everyone in the bar fight with little effort, and proceeded to feed on one of the men's brains, however hearing the other bar patron's screams snapped him out of his feeding. To Eddie’s disgust, he felt the symbiote asking him for more; Eddie stood up to his other and refused to feed it. The symbiote separated from Eddie and went off on its own. In his attempts to warn the innocents of New York about the alien, Eddie (nude without the symbiote) was arrested. He was eventually handed over to Doctor Paine.
Paine thought that Eddie had organic brain syndrome, but unknown proteins in his system, enlarged pores and a severe lack of phenethylamine in his brain proved otherwise. Paine listened to Eddie, and he was allowed to leave the hospital (due to Paine's ulterior motives.) Eddie stocked up on different supplies so as to better combat his "other," since he decided that he could not live with what it had become. Their mental link allowed Eddie to see through its attempt to ambush him and Eddie first tried to talk to the creature, but it raged at him and he had no choice but to fight it. Eventually, he downed the alien and had it at his mercy. Stating the symbiote was sick he gave it a dose of phenethylamine, which he overheard Dr. Paine mention. Having eaten away all it could leech from Eddie, the symbiote needed it from other sources. The other brains couldn't feed it nearly as much as Eddie’s due to his emotional attachment, and after digesting it the alien calmed down.
Dr. Paine and his Orderlies ambushed them, took the symbiote and left Eddie. After escaping an explosion he sensed that Paine was torturing & experimenting on the symbiote. He snuck into the complex and found the symbiote and freed it to become Venom again. With his powers returned Venom defeated the Orderlies before impaling Doctor Paine. Wanting to torture him, Paine retorted to Venom that he wouldn't be able to feel any of it; in response, Venom absorbed all the phenethylamine from the doctor's brain leaving him with an insatiable hunger for brains. Eddie later found that chocolate was also a good source of phenethylamine, removing the need to feed.
Return to Villainy
Venom was recruited via an ultimatum by the government to be a special operations counter-terrorist agent. Venom agreed, but one stipulation of the deal did not sit too well with him. A bomb was planted in his chest to assure complete and utter obedience. After a few missions, Venom became tired of the situation and had the symbiote perform surgery on him and extracted the bomb. A brouhaha ensued wherein the end result was Eddie Brock lying unconscious and the symbiote "dead," only to return later on and re-join with Eddie. Thus, Venom was whole again and looking to square things with Spider-Man once again. He had lost his memory and no longer knew the secret identity of Spider-Man, but knew that a deep seated hatred resided within him for the wall crawler.
Shortly after the reunion, Venom joined the Sinister Six for a brief period in order to get at Spider-Man. After being scorned by the group, he hunted down certain members of the team for revenge (including Electro, the Sandman, and Kraven the Hunter (Alyosha Kravinoff).) Later Eddie Brock approached his ex-wife Anne Weying, and at the thought of having the symbiote back in her life, she jumped out of her apartment window and killed herself. Venom blamed Spider-Man, whom he had a skirmish with right before Anne died. Thus, the hatred for the old Web-Head was fueled anew.
Toxin the Newborn
During a battle with Carnage, Venom explained the birthing process to Carnage, Carnage was disgusted and fled, as he was about to give birth to another symbiote, he was threatened by its existence and attempted to destroy it. Venom, however, wanted to raise and train the new symbiote as an ally and partner. Weakened by the actual birthing, Carnage was unable to kill the newborn. Supplanting the symbiote in Patrick Mulligan, a New York City cop, it returned days later. Venom named the new symbiote Toxin, after himself. Venom and Carnage knew how powerful Toxin would be, and because he would most likely be a hero (since the host was a cop), they made a temporary alliance to kill Toxin. In the end, though, they were defeated.
Life with Cancer and the "Inner Venom"
After an extended period of inactivity, Venom resurfaced with cancer, and the only thing keeping him alive was the symbiote, who did not want him anymore. After seeing a spiritual movie, Eddie decided to sell his symbiote off in an auction, swearing off his life of vigilantism. The winner of the auction was the gang lord Don Fortunato. He gave the symbiote to his son, Angelo, in hopes that Angelo would finally make a name for himself. Unimpressed with Angelo, however, the symbiote eventually left him right in the middle of a powered jump, abandoning its host in mid-air and leaving Angelo to fall helplessly to his death. The symbiote passed on to Mac Gargan, the Scorpion, and after learning of Angelo's death Brock attempted to kill himself and was hospitalized.
He was rapidly succumbing physically to his cancer and experiencing hallucinations of the symbiote, representing his dark side. After a while of being tormented by his other, he spotted Mary Jane Watson-Parker watching over Aunt May, who had been seriously wounded by a bullet. Eddie had no idea what to do, but his dark side then persuaded him to order a black suit similar to Peter's and put it on, apparently making the decision that may forever damn him.
Making a decision to go and try to murder Aunt May while she was in a coma, Eddie Brock embodied the black costume and set out to kill her, first murdering a nurse for getting in his way. But after sneaking into Aunt May's room, Brock had a change of heart, finding he could not murder someone as innocent as Aunt May. Peter entered the room moments later to find Brock sitting on the shattered window, having slit his own wrists dozens of times. Believing he had done too many terrible things to live on he jumped off, but Peter broke his fall by catching him. Awakening chained to his bed, Brock decided to take better control of himself for the remaining days he had left.
Anti-Venom: New Ways To Live
Eddie started working for Mr. Li and Aunt May at the F.E.A.S.T. center. There he worked serving food to the homeless. Thanks to Mr. Li's "mysterious powers," Eddie was cured of both his cancer and the remnants of the symbiote. Unfortunately, the current Venom entered the F.E.A.S.T. center looking for Spider-Man. He found Eddie and the symbiote began to crawl onto him again. However, Mr. Li's powers clash with the takeover and they formed Anti-Venom. Later in a fight against Spider-Man, he noticed his foe rescue an innocent old man. Inspired, Anti-venom helped Spidey cure the current Venom. He engaged Venom in a fight, and after receiving some help from Spider-Man, cured Gargan from the symbiote, but also felt some remnants of the symbiote inside Peter's blood and began "curing" him as well, but also ended up sucking the radiation from Spider-Man's blood, something that might de-power him.
Later, Thunderbolts guards arrived to take the disabled Gargan to the ship while Songbird and Radioactive Man battled Spider-Man and Anti-Venom. After the fight, Anti-Venom sneaked on the Thunderbolts ship and stole back Peter Parker's camera, looted by Norman Osborn in a bid to reverse engineer the tracing system allowing the camera to zero on Spider-Man's chest. He was able to help Peter escape Osborn's tracer and forewarns him about the villain's next move in a show of friendship and good-will.
Anti-Venom led Spider-Man to Oscorp and the two split up. Brock disguised himself as Spider-Man to distract the other Thunderbolts while Spider-Man went after Osborn. After webbing up Songbird and Radioactive Man to a wall, Anti-Venom faced Gargan, who was now wearing a new Scorpion battlesuit to protect his recovering symbiote. After a grueling battle Gargan, as Scorpion, hit Anti-Venom with his stinger and injected a poisonous formula that seemingly destroyed Brock's symbiote. Gargan (now Venom) advanced to kill Brock but was met with resistance by his Venom symbiote. The symbiote gained strength and broke through Gargan's battle suit, refusing to let Gargan kill Brock. Gargan explained that the alien still loved Brock too much and gave up, but he promised Brock that he would get past this problem and someday finish him off, to which Brock replied: "Not if I kill you first." Unknown to Gargan, Brock's Anti-Venom suit reformed. Now a fugitive for helping Spider-Man and fighting the Thunderbolts, Brock was back on the streets, planning to continue his former vigilante antihero career with seemingly increased religious emphasis as the Anti-Venom. He even cured a young girl, Jenna Cole, from her heroin addiction.
Brock was the first person to find out that Martin Li was Mister Negative. In the end, Eddie questioned his own faith and cried out that no one would believe him, because he was a monster.
Working with Jenna Cole, Eddie fought crime in the sleazier areas of New York, having separated themselves from the F.E.A.S.T. foundation. As Anti-Venom, he would "cure" the streets of drug dealers after Jenna would go undercover to lure them out. He became increasingly mentally unstable, however, reverting back to his "Lethal Protector" personality, and was overtly/near-lethally protective of Jenna. At a drug bust Eddie walked in on the Quintas gang after they had captured Jenna, preparing to transform until the Punisher intervened. Anti-Venom and Castle slaughtered the criminals until a gang member took Jenna hostage. Eddie stopped Castle from shooting the gang member through Jenna, however upon hearing his full name ("Eddie Brock the serial killer") he shot Anti-Venom in the head with a shotgun. Anti-Venom recovered and attacked the Punisher in retaliation. Eddie and the Punisher almost killed each other, but Eddie declared a truce, saying that if the Punisher didn't back down he'd make him go to Mexico with him in a wheelchair and that he could drive the Punisher's van. The Punisher agreed to the truce, but tried to kill Eddie again during the border crossing with a knife. He dropped Eddie off at the compound, figuring Eddie would die instead of him, and this way he planned to take care of two birds with one stone. When he talked on the phone to the leader of the Quintas gang and found that Jenna had relapsed and was doing drugs again, Eddie lost control and tore one of the Quintas in half in a fit of rage. After killing the remaining guards, Eddie rejoined the Punisher, and the two launched an attack on the Quintas. At the end of the raid, Eddie found a severely drugged Jenna, who seemed afraid of his Anti-Venom costume. After withdrawing the symbiote into himself, Eddie managed to calm her down. At this point, the Punisher attempted to snipe Eddie from a distance, but ultimately decided not to, only later discovering he had run out of ammo. After the Punisher left, Jenna and Eddie took a jeep and returned home.
Return of Anti-Venom
Anti-Venom later teamed up with Spider-Man and the new Wraith to deal with Mr. Negative. Intending to deal with one of Mister Negative's drug shipments at the harbor, Anti-Venom encountered Wraith, who had gotten there first. Later, after assuming a disguise as a civilian, he observed May Parker-Jameson have a seizure from meeting with Martin Li for the first time in a while (due to a memory relapse when she discovered his secret), causing Brock to realize that May had also stumbled onto Martin Li's secret. Once Li left the center, Anti-Venom attacked his car only to fight a confused Spider-Man, who didn't know what was going on and assumed Anti-Venom had gone back to his cannibalistic ways. Irritated, Anti-Venom captured him and webbed him to a pillar in his hideout, trying to explain the situation. Even though Spider-Man didn't believe his story about Li being Mister Negative, Anti-Venom brought him to the museum and webbed him to a statue so he could witness the truth as Mister Negative had heroin shipped there that was placed within ancient Chinese terracotta statues, but Mister Negative was waiting for him and defeated Anti-Venom by placing his sword filled with his negative energy to disable Anti-Venom's healing powers (due to Negative's power being the source of his power). Once Wraith arrived and freed Spider-Man, and Spider-Man defeated Mister Negative, Wraith used her face recognition software to confirm Anti-Venom was telling the truth. Afterwards, Spider-Man removed the sword from Anti-Venom and they put an end to their previously tenuous relationship.
As Anti-Venom, Eddie Brock was recruited by Simon Williams to serve in his new Anti-Avengers team The Revengers. The Revengers defeated the New Avengers at Avengers Mansion, and later, they called a press conference at the court, where the Avengers appeared to confront them. After failing discussions with Wonder Man, Iron Man trapped him in his ionic form in a containment unit. Not willing to fight with too many civilians near, Thor teleported the Revengers to the Citi Field, where they were subdued by both the Avengers and the New Avengers and later imprisoned.
Anti-Venom was freed or escaped prison, returning to Our Lady of Saints Church. During the release of a virus that gave New York's civilians copies of Spider-Man's powers and started mutating them into spider-monsters, Anti-Venom used his curative abilities to return people to normal. Venom was sent to get him, and a fight erupted between them, during which the symbiote briefly re-bonded to Brock. However, he was visibly terrified as they bonded, even shedding tears. However, Flash Thompson managed to call the symbiote back to him, and took Eddie to Horizon Labs. As an ultimatum, Reed Richards proposed that Eddie use his symbiote as a cure to be distributed to everyone, however, he would never be able to become Anti-Venom again. As a result, without the symbiote, Eddie was now considered the hero of Spider-Island.
Not being bonded to a symbiote anymore, Eddie used an obtained arsenal to hunt down Carnage, Venom, Toxin and the other symbiotes, starting with Hybrid and Scream. Despite having helped to save New York, Eddie was homeless and poor, and his arsenal was the only thing he had.
Toxin tracked down Venom in order to kill him but was incapacitated by a sonic weapon and webbed up by Venom. He later recovered and returned to Crime-Master's hideout. When Venom arrived there searching for Betty Brant, Toxin and Megatak faced him, but finally both battled against each other to kill Venom. Finally, Thompson burned Toxin and tried to remove Eddie from it, but the symbiote recovered its host to die with him. It was revealed that both the symbiote and Eddie survived, they continued to work as Toxin, hunting down and killing numerous criminals and gang members in their way to get revenge on Venom.
In Philadelphia, Venom's new base of operations, Toxin found Thompson trying to reason with a alien-machine hybrid monster, and ate the cyborg to prove a point before attacking Thompson. Using the sedative he was saving for his symbiote, Flash incapacitated Brock, who left the scene vowing a new encounter soon. Toxin tracked down Flash to the high school he now worked in, wanting to confront him, but the alien machines whose host Toxin had killed infected new people, people who were now looking for both Toxin and Venom, their new natural enemies. In order to save innocent lives, Flash convinced Brock to temporarily team up and defeat the monsters, who were ultimately killed. Realizing he was doing good with Venom, Brock offered Flash a deal: he would let Flash live as long as he had control over the symbiote, but would mercy-kill him if he lost control.
Anti-Carnage Task Force
The FBI caught up with Toxin and had him in their sights for nearly a week until Brock finished dealing with Philadephia's drug gangs. They detained him with the employ of sonic cannons, but they saw the good Toxin could do and offered an opportunity. Toxin became an agent for the FBI, with his handler Claire Dixon using a symbiote dampener to control the symbiote, and let Brock use it as long as he followed orders, but only when needed.
Under Dixon's command, Eddie, John Jameson III, and Manuela Calderon instigated a trap to capture Carnage that resulted in Jameson, Carnage and several agents being trapped in Grey Ridge Mine, Virgina. The team delved deeper into the mine to confront Carnage, ultimately discovering the entire operation and its downfall was part of a plan orchestrated by the mine's owner Barry Gleason to sacrifice Carnage in a temple hidden deep within the mines for a Chthonic ritual. The team failed to apprehend Carnage, who had been empowered by Gleason's ritual instead of killed, and had escaped with the ritual's book, the Darkhold.
Even after the anti-Carnage task force was disbanded by the FBI, it continued operating with funding from Victoria Montesi, an occult expert looking for the Darkhold. Early into their new adventure, they were joined by Jubulile van Scotter, a young woman who had assisted Kasady on her boat when she found him adrift, unaware he was a homicidal lunatic. Jubulile had also been merged to a symbiote in a failed attempt by Carnage to control her before she escaped from him. Brock saw his team's subsequent quest to find Carnage and stop him from unleashing dark evils on the world as a signal that God was giving him a second chance to atone for his past wrongs, and tried to become a better man. While tracking down Carnage, Brock also became very protective towards Jubulile, who had been discovered to share a psychic bond with Carnage.
Brock's team finally located Carnage after the maniac delved deep into a mysterious uncharted island. Unfortunately, they arrived late, as Carnage had reached an ancient temple where he started a ritual to summon the Elder God Chthon. As they came closer to Carnage, the psychic influence over Jubulile from the Carnage symbiote grew stronger. In a last-ditch effort to prevent Jubulile from being taken over by Carnage, Eddie gave her the Toxin symbiote in hopes its presence in her body could diminish Carnage's influence. Eddie was initially reluctant due to the risk it posed for Jubulile to have two symbiotes, but she convinced him to give her the symbiote.
Empowered with her own symbiote, the Toxin symbiote and yet another one she absorbed, Jubulile confronted Chthon when he arrived. After Montesi took the Darkhold from Carnage and used it to empower Jubulile with the psychic energies of the entire world, she managed to banish Chthon. When the dust settled, the anti-Carnage task force disbanded. Their members bid farewell to each other and parted ways.
Back in Black
Eddie returned to the FBI, seeking to recruit new replacement members into the Symbiote Task Force. When he heard rumors that Venom had returned to villainy, Eddie travelled to New York and volunteered his services. Upon arriving and seeing that his "darling" symbiote had indeed returned to Earth, Eddie tricked Spider-Man into helping separate the suit from its current host, Lee Price. Once the suit was taken away, Eddie freed it from its containment, reclaiming it to become Venom once again.
However, Eddie was not completely at-ease with being reunited with the Venom symbiote, as its renewed proclivity for extreme violence interfered with his desire to go straight and not relapse into being the Lethal Protector. After it caused him to murder a couple of tech thieves he mistook for terrorists, he visited the Our Lady of Saints Church and spoke with the new priest, who advised Eddie to reconsider rekindling his relationship — angering the symbiote. Attacked by the Scorpion after leaving the church, Eddie managed to defeat Gargan by exploiting his fear of the symbiote before passing out. The symbiote took over his body and returned to the church to vengefully attack the priest, saying it would kill anyone who threatened its bond with Eddie. After taking the comatose priest to a hospital, Eddie overheard a young man say that his friends were killed and eaten by a humanoid monster with huge fangs in the sewers near Our Lady of Saints Church. Initially fearing the symbiote was responsible, Eddie lectured it on trust and it revealed it knew he used Spider-Man to trick it and wasn't sure it could trust him either. In the sewers, Venom was attacked by a human-dinosaur hybrid and lapsed into a feral rage, killing it. Taking it to Alchemax — its place of origin — he learned that the military had released Stegron to them in order to research regenerative technology, but that Stegron had escaped and resumed his plot to conquer the world by turning people into humanoid dinosaurs. Eddie struck a deal with Liz Allen: he would hunt down Stegron and bring him in, in exchange for her finding out what was wrong with the Venom symbiote. Locating Stegron's lair, Venom discovered it was full of hundreds of dinosaur-men, but was incapacitated and captured.
The dinosaur-men debated what to do with him: eat him or "bless" him by transforming him into one of them. Due to their indecision, Stegron decided to turn Eddie into one of them out of curiosity to see what it would do to the symbiote. Eddie was able to fight back, however, and caused a rupture in the wall that flooded the cave with water. Both the symbiote and Eddie escaped, and were found by Devil Dinosaur and Moon Girl. Moon Girl introduced herself and her dinosaur, and explained what they were doing: Devil Dinosaur had smelled the dinosaur-men and led her to the sewers. Venom recomended that they both stay out of it before going back to Alchemax to talk to Liz Allan. Edward explained the situation of the dinosaur-people, before the scientist Dr. Steven explained the what was going wrong with the symbiote: it was losing physical cohesion, leaving pieces of itself that separate from the original mass; and losing psychological stability as well due to its re-corruption. The greatest source of this problem was that the symbiote suppressant drugs that Eddie took during his time with the FBI altered his metabolism, causing his body to become incompatible with any Klyntar that bonded to him. Eddie reacted with anger and denial, transforming into Venom and attacking Steven, but Liz calmed him down and said that if he killed Steven then no one could save his life. She informed him that Steven created a medicine that could stabilize his metabolism and prevent the symbiote from degenerating any further, and promised she would give him a supply to take home if he brought in Stegron. With prodding from the symbiote, Eddie accepted the offer, but Moon Girl's involvement led to Devil Dinosaur being psychically taken over by Stegron. Venom and Moon Girl were able to defeat Stegron, leaving him unconscious and terminating his control of the dinosaur-people and Devil Dinosaur. Venom parted ways with Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, the former suggesting he act as the dinosaur-peoples' protector. Eddie brought Stegron and the equipment back to Alchemax, and in return received a month's supply of serums. Eddie asked if he could get a job at Alchemax since his assets from working with the FBI were frozen. Liz Allan refused due to Eddie being a federal fugitive, suggesting he either rob from criminals to get money or go back to writing journalism for tabloids.
Eddie's renewed bond with the symbiote was not without complications, as it was dismissive of needing the medication from Alchemax and developed a habit of forcing him to sleep so that it could observe human emotions by watching TV. Out of a job and needing money, Eddie attempted to sell the television, but was unable to do so.
During a one-sided fight with Jack O'Lantern, Venom was abruptly pulled through a portal into a post-apocalyptic version of New York. He was approached by what appeared to be a small child, who reached out to take his hand but was killed by an incarnation of Captain America bonded to the Venom symbiote. Captain Venom told Eddie that what he'd seen was actually a monster that would have killed him, leading him to a group of Venomized heroes and antiheroes: Mania, Agent Venom, Venompool, and Venomized versions of Ant-Man, Black Panther, Doctor Strange, Ghost Rider, Old Man Logan, Rocket Raccoon, Spider-Man, Spinneret, and X-23. The group started to explain to Eddie that a group of creatures called Poisons were hunting and assimilating incarnations of Venom across the multiverse. The Venomized Spider-Man — whose version of Eddie Brock had never developed beyond being a revenge-obsessed supervillain, leading to Spider-Man retaking the Venom symbiote — interrupted the explanation by trying to pick a fight. Angered by their refusal to believe he'd gone straight, Venom demanded that Doctor Strange return him to Earth-616, but the Resistance was attacked by a Poison version of the Hulk, who killed Agent Venom and captured Captain Venom. Separated from the others, Venom and Venomized Spider-Man were forced to set aside their differences. During a fight against a Poison version of Doctor Octopus, Venomized Spider-Man was consumed and assimilated by a hostless Poison despite Venom's best efforts to save him.
Poison Spider-Man easily defeated Venom and was about to feed him to a hostless Poison when Venompool, Spinneret, and Logan Venom intervened; and Poison Spider-Man retreated when the hostless Poisons were killed. With Agent Venom dead, Spider-Man and Captain Venom consumed, and Venompool defecting, Venom proposed the Resistance take drastic measures to defeat the Poisons by summoning an alternate version of Carnage. After Strange did so, the alternate Carnage recognized Venom, calling him "not-daddy" and threatening to kill him like he did the Eddie Brock of his reality. Venom tried to reason with him, but Carnage instead wanted to fight him and the other Venoms present. However, they were surprised by an attack by the Poisons, who had located them thanks to the new Poisoned Deadpool. The Poisons took Doctor Strange and consumed Host Rider, who was killed by Carnage. Relocating to a new safezone, Venom persuaded Carnage to agree to a truce, but Cletus said that after the war against the Poisons was finished their alliance would be over and he'd kill them all too. Taking charge of the team, Venom helped lead a rescue mission with help from Poison Deadpool (who had retained his original persona), defeated Poison Spider-Man in a rematch, and destroyed the Poisons' ship before being returned to Earth-616.
Protecting the Dinosaur-People
After returning home from his confrontation with the Poisons, further complications arose as a result of the symbiote's re-corruption renewing its appetite for flesh. Needing a job, Eddie applied to the Fact Sheet, a tabloid branch of the Fact Channel. Eddie hoped to renew his journalistic integrity by exposing the corruption in the NYPD and FBI, but was disgusted when informed that the Fact Sheet's purview was falsified sensationalism much like what he'd once been forced to write after the Sin Eater scandal. Wanting to feed the symbiote, Venom visited the dinosaur-people's village in time to prevent a war between them and the Moloids, brokering a truce by returning their dead in exchange for the corpse of a mole monsters killed in the skirmish.
As a result of an article Eddie published in the Fact Sheet tabloid revealing the existence of the Dinosaur-People, Kraven the Hunter came to New York and attacked Tana, a pterosaur-hybrid who then sought Eddie out to ask for help. Venom's initial confrontation with Kraven ended with him being shot point-blank with a high-caliber bullet, Eddie passing out and leaving the increasingly unstable symbiote to take him to safety. After being stitched up by Dr. Steven, Eddie learned that Kraven had been placed in charge of a SWAT team charged with hunting down the Dinosaur-People. His attempt to ambush Kraven failed when Sergei revealed he had recruited Shriek, who used her sonic powers to stun Venom and then collapse the chamber and the street above on his head. Tana was able to find Venom and recruited Moloids to excavate him, but by that time the symbiote was succumbing to bloodlust and with the last of his control Eddie sent her to get its medication. Attacking Kraven and Shriek in a feral rage, Venom easily defeated them, but before he could eat them Tana injected him with the medication, restoring his sanity.
As the symbiote's violent outbursts became more frequent and harder to control, Eddie confronted Dr. Steven about why the cure wasn't working. Dr. Steven stated that the symbiote was developing an immunity to it and that he'd created a new cure serum using a sample of the Anti-Venom symbiote, but before he could test it Flash Thompson arrived and demanded Eddie return the symbiote to him. Their argument over who was the better host resulted in the symbiote trying to bond with both of them at the same time, and when Spider-Man tried to kill the symbiote and cleanse them both by overturning one of the serum vats (which caused the symbiote to be cured from its re-corruption and made Eddie's metabolism return to normal), the half of the symbiote that bonded to Flash was transformed into a replica of the Anti-Venom symbiote.
When Eddie refused to willingly relinquish the Venom symbiote, Anti-Venom forcibly removed it from him. Despite having been cleansed of the symbiote, Eddie was still able to sense its presence and began searching for it, swearing to seek vengeance on Spider-Man and Flash when he was Venom again. He encountered Black Cat, who filled him in on Lee Price's return and ability to infect people with pieces of his stolen symbiote. The Venom symbiote appeared from the sewers bonded to Eddie again; and Venom and Black Cat retrieved the artificial Anti-Venom from Alchemax and weaponized it, using it to free Spider-Man from Maniac's control. Venom, Black Cat, Spider-Man, Anti-Venom, and Andi Benton then teamed up to take down Maniac, who had infiltrated and taken over the Five Families. With Lee Price in prison, Agent Anti-Venom brokered a truce between Spider-Man and Venom, who persuaded Black Cat to return to being an anti-hero.
Informed by Liz Allan that being cleansed by the Anti-Venom serum had cured Eddie of his metabolic affliction, Venom decided to celebrate by apprehending the Looter. He was attacked by Spider-Woman but managed to escape by distracting her using the Looter as a distraction. She managed to track him down to his apartment and knocked Eddie unconscious, but before she could take him to prison the symbiote bonded to her and informed her that it was about to give birth to a seventh spawn; causing her to reluctantly let Eddie go.
The Poisons Strike Back
Venom interrupted an arms deal involving arm-mounted flamethrowers. However, he was approached by the time-displaced X-Men, who asked for his assistance in rescuing the Starjammers from a team of symbiote-clad alien bounty hunters. Eddie brusquely refused - only caring about his symbiote and not wanting to get involved in another battle for its species - but the symbiote scolded him for being stubborn and rude. The Young X-Men attempted to capture him by force, provoking a fight that ended when the Venom symbiote knocked Eddie out. Regaining consciousness onboard the X-Men's Blackbird, Eddie was initially enraged but reluctantly agreed to assist them on behalf of the symbiote.
When the symbiote-augmented space-pirates attacked them and badly wounded Scott, Venom bought time for the Young X-Men to escape before pursuing an alien who he'd noticed spying on them and who had sold them out. Venom tortured the alien for information and then killed him, leaving his partially-eaten remains suspended by webbing; then tracked down the Young X-Men and led them to Haze Mancer, an arms-dealer specializing in symbiotes. Venom infiltrated Haze Mancer's warehouse and confronted him, but was caught off-guard when the arms-dealer recognized the Venom symbiote as one he'd previously captured many years ago and was subsequently incapacitated. The X-Men bounded with some of the symbiotes and defeated Haze Mancer. Jean Grey used her powers to read his mind and discover he put trackers in the symbiotes.
With that, they delivered him to the Nova Corps and tracked down the bounty hunters. However, a Poison Kraven the Hunter freed him from prison so he could help to abduct the symbiotes from their planet and weaponize them so they couldn't be separated from their hosts. While saving the Starjammers, Jean was consumed by a Poison along with Killer Thrill, creating Poison Marvel Girl and Poison Killer Thrill. Venom warned the X-Men to stay away from the unbound Poisons. Fortunately, the Starjammers, who weren't fused with a symbiote, managed to help Venom and the X-Men escape and evetually return their symbiotes to the Klyntar's planet, but when they arrived all the symbiotes there were gone, but they immediately understood the Poisons' plan.
En route to Earth, Venom and the Young X-Men contacted Jimmy Hudson and warned him of the oncoming threat. Upon arrival, Venom discovered they were too late when he was confronted by Spider-Man, who had been bonded to a symbiote and initially blamed Venom for the Poisons' attack; trying to pick a fight before being stopped by Magneto. Venom brought the superheroes who had been infected with symbiotes to Alchemax, protesting Liz and Dr. Steve's suggestion of using Agent Anti-Venom to kill the symbiotes. Venom suggested using Flash to annihilate the Poisons instead when it was discovered his touch was lethal to them. When Cyclops mentioned that he could still sense Jean Grey, Venom scolded him for falling for an obvious trap; though this resulted in Alchemax being attacked by a battalion of Poisons. Opting to directly attack the Poisons' mothership, Venom and Spider-Man battled Poison Carnage, who nearly decapitated the former and impaled the latter. To save his long-time rival, Venom threw Poison Carnage into space before helping the Young X-Men take down the Poison Queen, destroying the Hive and seeing to it that the surviving symbiotes were returned to Klyntar.
Several weeks after being cleansed of his metabolic affliction, Eddie began to have recurring nightmares influenced by the Venom symbiote's fear that its newest spawn would be corrupted into a monster like its previous offspring and clone had been. Unaware that the symbiote was pregnant, Eddie was initially confused by its odd behavior; but was captured by Special Agent Claire Dixon - who had been resurrected by the Darkhold and resumed command of the Symbiote Task Force. Informed of the symbiote's impending birth, Eddie was angered that the symbiote had not told him it was pregnant; and was further betrayed when Claire revealed the FBI had recruited Mac Gargan to be the newborn symbiote's host. Eddie was rescued by Spider-Woman and - following an argument with the symbiote - travelled to Alchemax to confront Doctor Steve, who had unwittingly provided the FBI with the information. When Dr. Steve protested that he considered Eddie a friend, Eddie asked him for help delivering the symbiote's spawn. Forced to separate from the symbiote due to the strain its labor placed on his body, Eddie attacked the Scorpion when Gargan arrived to kill the Venom symbiote and claim its spawn. Dixon intervened before Gargan could kill Eddie, knocking him unconscious; but Dr. Steve lied that the baby symbiote had been stillborn to prevent any further violence. After Dixon left and Gargan was arrested, Eddie gave Alchemax custody of the newborn symbiote, telling Liz Allan that they could study it non-invasively until he and the Venom symbiote decided it was ready to bond to a worthy host.
Rise of the Red Goblin
Following Norman Osborn bonding to the Carnage symbiote and becoming the Red Goblin, Eddie was contacted by J. Jonah Jameson, who used a little blackmail to get Venom to protect Mary Jane Watson. Arriving at Stark Tower, he was attacked by her using anti-symbiote defenses despite informing her he was there to help. The Red Goblin arrived seconds later, and despite being in extreme pain Venom attacked him; convincing Mary Jane to turn off the anti-symbiote defenses given their ineffectiveness against the Red Goblin.
Venom was able to thwart the Red Goblin's attempt on Mary Jane's life with Spider-Man's help, and Eddie agreed to help even the odds against Osborn by loaning the Venom symbiote to his long-time rival, telling Spider-Man to be good with and to take care of it. Spider-Man later declared to Flash Thompson that he forgave Venom moments before he passed away, and the symbiote separated from him and made its way back to Eddie. While separating, Spider-Man told for the symbiote be careful given the fire around them and to not worry about him, showing concern for it despite their tumultuous history. Eddie, after reacquiring the symbiote, attended Flash Thompson's funeral.
Soon afterward, Edward was outraged when Liz proposed utilizing the infant symbiote's unique chemical-production abilities in order to turn a profit for Alchemax. After storming out of her office, he was attacked by a Skrull Warbride named M'lanz, who tried to sever his connection with the Venom symbiote. Eddie was saved by a Kree man named Tel-Kar, who informed him that he was the Venom symbiote's original host. Venom took Tel-Kar to Alchemax for medical treatment, the symbiote regaining its long-suppressed memories of being bonded to him during the Kree-Skrull War. Tel-Kar asked Eddie to return the symbiote to him, but it refused; and Tel-Kar promptly attacked Liz before blackmailing the symbiote into rejoining with him by threatening its offspring - dubbed Sleeper. M'lanz arrived too late to stop him, revealing that Tel-Kar was planning to unleash a potent bioweapon the Skrull had developed during the war. In order to rescue the Venom symbiote, Eddie bonded to its offspring and accompanied M'lanz into space. Eddie was reunited with the Venom symbiote when it managed to rebel against Tel-Kar, and while the Kree armada destroyed the research station Venom returned to Earth alongside the Sleeper symbiote - M'lanz stating she hoped to never see him again.
Eddie went to Alchemax to formally cut ties with Liz Allan, but was denied entrance by the security guards. Encountering Harry Osborn, Eddie confronted him over his dismissal and the two wound up going out for drinks. Eddie and Harry compared their respective supervillain careers and bickered over who had been a better arch-enemy for Spider-Man, eventually agreeing that family was what inspired them to better themselves. Eddie returned to his apartment to find Tel-Kar had survived and stowed away on M'lanz's ship; prepared to fry the Sleeper symbiote with what was left of M'lanz's halberd. The Venom symbiote separated from Eddie to shield its offspring from the attack, and Tel-Kar revealed to Eddie that he had coded the last remaining sample of the bioweapon to exterminate humanity. The Sleeper symbiote caught the bioweapon capsule and Eddie tackled Tel-Kar out the window of his apartment. Despite getting some good blows in, Eddie was overwhelmed; but before Tel-Kar could kill him the Sleeper symbiote bonded to and lobotomized him as revenge for what he'd done to the Venom symbiote. Eddie was dismayed by what Sleeper had done, but the young symbiote bid him farewell - intent on exploring the cosmos using Tel-Kar's body as a meat-puppet. Eddie returned to his apartment and rebonded to the Venom symbiote, assuring it that they would be together forever.
God of the Symbiotes
When the Venom symbiote suddenly began alternating between lucidity and its bloodthirsty corrupted state, Eddie began suffering from recurring nightmares about a primordial draconic symbiote. Unable to concentrate with it screaming in his mind, he lost his job at the Fact Sheet and took up work as a freelance photographer. While tracking an arms-dealer he believed to be Jack O'Lantern, the symbiote went berserk and began speaking in an eldritch language; though Venom was knocked unconscious and abducted by a man who introduced himself as Rex Strickland. Rex informed Eddie that he had been a member of a team of symbiote-augmented supersoldiers during the Vietnam War, and asked Venom to rescue his comrades. However, when Venom attacked the convoy transporting the Sym-Soldiers, he discovered they were being controlled by the same malevolent force that was trying to take over the Venom symbiote, and unwittingly unleashed the primordial symbiote-dragon from his nightmares.
When Eddie confronted Rex over what had happened, the symbiote went berserk and attacked him; though Eddie was able to subdue it with the flames from a furnace. Setting out to fight the symbiote-dragon, Venom was attacked by Spider-Man (Miles Morales) who had mistaken Eddie for the Venom that had once killed his mother. After a short skirmish, Eddie called a truce with Miles to fight the symbiote dragon, subduing it with one of Miles' Venom Blasts. However, a humanoid entity manifested itself using the symbiote-dragon's biomass, introducing himself as Knull - the abyssal god of the symbiotes. Knull's avatar stripped the Venom symbiote from Eddie and attempted to assimilate it into his hive-mind, showing Eddie the true history of the symbiotes and mocking him for believing the lies told to the symbiote by the Klyntar hive mind. Eddie reclaimed the Venom symbiote and escaped with help from Miles, though its contact with Knull's avatar had unlocked new abilities - such as the ability to manifest a pair of wings identical to the symbiote-dragon's. Venom confronted Rex, who revealed himself to be the symbiote that had once been bonded to the real Rex Strickland, and informed him that Knull was hunting him. In order to become strong enough to stop Knull, Eddie bonded to the Tyrannosaurus symbiote and amalgamated it with the Venom symbiote. Using an arsenal of high-tech weapons, the augmented Venom was able to weaken Knull's avatar enough for the Tyrannosaurus symbiote to sacrifice itself immolating the Grendel symbiote using a blast furnace; but the intense heat seemingly killed the Venom symbiote.
A mysterious organization called Project Oversight came across Eddie's badly-burnt body while obtaining a surviving sample of the Grendel symbiote; the now-feral Venom symbiote taking over him and slaughtering several soldiers. Venom eluded capture for three weeks, eventually resurfacing on the doorstep of Eddie's father - frightening his younger half-brother Dylan. As Eddie begged him for help, Carl Brock dismissed him as no-one and allowed Project Oversight's soldiers to capture him. For the following two weeks, Eddie was repeatedly interrogated by the Maker, suffering from partial amnesia due to the otherwise braindead symbiote instinctively erasing traumatic memories, like the death of Flash Thompson. Escaping from the Maker with the help of a copy of Flash's consciousness left over from his time as Agent Venom, Eddie resolved to face his inner demons and make something better of himself. Travelling to San Francisco, he tried to make amends with his father, but was left shocked and infuriated when Carl Brock told him he had no idea who Mary was and denied having ever had a daughter. When the symbiote lashed out after Carl punched Eddie in an effort to make him leave, Eddie fled in despair at seeing his father had had a new son to replace him; later coughing up blood as a result of his cancer returning with a vengeance. He was later approached by Dylan, who revealed that Carl was physically abusive towards him and asked that Eddie kill their father. Telling Dylan a bit of his past, Eddie agreed to make sure their father stopped abusing him, but suddenly suffered a hallucination of Dylan transforming into Knull. Regaining his senses moments before killing his half-brother, Eddie vomited blood and passed out; Dylan calling an ambulance and taking him to the hospital, where the symbiote placed Eddie into a comatose state.
- Way I see it, these Poisons might be hard cases now, but that wasn't always the way. Before they found out that Venom Symbiotes would turn them into monsters, they were weak, cowardly. That just gave them a shot in the arm. Gave them a kick in the rear, but it turned them into bullies, too. Guess we all know a thing or two about that. But we aren't the ones hunting people -- consuming people. We chose to be better -- to be protectors. They think that's a weakness. Despite taking dozens of us, they still don't know the truth. That valuing life doesn't make you incapable of taking it when survival is at stake. They won't know how to deal with us... not when we stop running... not when we start hitting back... not when we're willing to die fighting them.
- --Venom (Eddie Brock)[src]
By his own admission, Eddie was never a particularly functional or benevolent man, though he frequently made efforts to better himself. Obsessed with and desperate for success, as a child and into his adulthood he stole and lied in order to get the acknowledgement he desperately craved and further his career. His self-loathing and obsession with protecting the innocent stem from a traumatic incident where he accidentally killed a young child as a teenager, which his father went to extreme lengths to cover up - including brutally beating him when he announced his intent to plead guilty. Despite excelling academically and becoming a successful journalist, Eddie was never able to impress his father. After the Sin Eater incident and bonding with the symbiote, Eddie was initially obsessed with revenge against Spider-Man at all cost and little-better than the criminals he would go on to take down, but after a fight with Wolverine he was inspired to use his powers for good - leading to him becoming the Lethal Protector. His Catholic upbringing significantly influenced his actions, in particular as Anti-Venom, and for a time he came to see himself as having been chosen by God to cleanse Earth of the symbiotes. However, Eddie's faith was not unshakable, and he would occasionally find himself doubting whether God was listening, which led him to ultimately abandon his faith. Eddie also has an odd habit of forming protective bonds to young women such as Beck Underwood, Jenna Cole, and Jubulile van Scotter, using them as a moral compass to guide his actions.
Eddie's attitude towards the symbiotes has changed significantly over the years, though it has been characterized by often-toxic codependency brought about by his fear of being alone and his addiction to their power. His love-hate relationship with the Venom symbiote is particularly convoluted, as its appetite for flesh grew, Eddie came to fear and despise it, considering it a demon that God had sent to punish him for contemplating suicide. After divesting himself of the Venom symbiote, Eddie blamed it for the violent criminal actions he had committed, and sought to redeem himself as Anti-Venom; though his worsening mental instability and occasional relapses into his Lethal Protector persona hindered this. When bonded to Toxin, Eddie was initially dominated by the symbiote, but later worked out a "temporary" truce with it, taking umbrage with Agent Venom's accusation that he was deluding himself and addicted to the power being bonded to a symbiote gave him. After receiving a lecture from Agent Venom, Eddie embraced being bonded to Toxin, and slowly came to acknowledge that the Venom symbiote had not been solely responsible for the crimes he committed as Venom. Following his return to New York, Eddie's attitude towards the Venom symbiote had taken a complete 180, as he not only possessively referred to it as his "darling" but enacted a complex plan to reunite with it. Despite living without a symbiote for some extended periods of time, Eddie's greatest fear is being alone, and that without the symbiote's voice in his head he will go insane.
Despite reuniting with the symbiote, Eddie refused to relapse into his Lethal Protector mindset, determined to go straight and become a true superhero. The symbiote's re-corruption and renewed proclivity for violence, coupled with its volatile obsession with staying bonded to him, led Eddie to question his decision to reunite with it. However, Eddie resolved to stay bonded to it and find a way to help it recover. This magnanimity does not extend to non-humans, as he was willing to eat a Deviant Mutate to satiate the symbiote's hunger, devoured an alien he'd noticed spying on him and the Young X-Men, and wanted to eat Tel-Kar for what he'd done to the Venom symbiote.
Despite their rivalry, Eddie and Spider-Man eventually developed a sufficient degree of begrudging mutual respect that Eddie was willing to let Spider-Man bond to the Venom symbiote in order to even the odds against the Red Goblin. Eddie also showed that he had developed a sufficient degree of respect for Flash Thompson after their battle against Maniac, as seen by his attending the fallen soldier's funeral; begrudgingly acknowledging Flash as having been a badass Venom despite his jealousy over the symbiote's remaining affection towards him.
|Power Grid |
Black Symbiotic Costume: The alien costume, which had grafted itself to the nervous system of Eddie Brock, somehow absorbed the powers of Spider-Man during its brief symbiotic relationship with him, seemingly due to the lasting impression that Spider-Man had on its psyche due to being rejected by him. These powers had been transferred to Brock, so long as he wore the costume, and combined with Eddie's natural bulk made Venom physically stronger than Spider-Man. The symbiote also kept Brock's cancer in check until they separated. Ultimately the costume's influence hurt more than helped Brock's psyche and when he finally realized this, he decided to auction it. Several years later, Eddie reclaimed it, becoming Venom once more. The symbiote grants Eddie the following powers:
- Superhuman Strength
- Superhuman Durability
- Superhuman Stamina
- Superhuman Speed
- Superhuman Agility
- Superhuman Reflexes
- Regenerative Healing Factor
- Webbing Generation
- Offspring Detection
- Genetic Memory
- ESP (Spider-Sense)
- Spider Sense Immunity
- Constituent-Matter Generation
- Night Vision
- Spider-Man Detection
- Venomous Fangs
- Telepathy Resistance
Expert Reporter: Before his bonding with the symbiote, Eddie Brock was an incredibly skilled reporter for the Daily Globe, and knew how to investigate. He also had many sources of information that aided him in helping with his plans.
Skilled Hand-to-Hand Combatant: Although he's had no proper training, Eddie is a formidable hand-to-hand combatant when using symbiotes.
Skilled Symbiote Hunter: Even though he is only human, Eddie was been able to take on and defeat several symbiotes. This was shown when he killed Scream and Hybrid while using advanced and normal weaponry.
Class 70; Eddie Brock worked his body to the natural peak human level of a man of his height, age, weight and build exercise. He is able to lift no more than 700 lbs without any symbiotic suit. The Venom symbiote has enabled Eddie to lift up to 70 tons in their regular size, but this is not their true limit as their strength increases with their variable muscle mass.
Mental Instability: Eddie has been repeatedly shown relapsing into his unstable "lethal protector" mindset. As both Anti-Venom and Toxin, he reverted back to this persona, killing criminals just as offhandedly as when he was Venom. He is also addicted to the power bestowed upon him by being bonded to a symbiote, which has caused drastic shifts in his personality.
Sonic and Heat: The Venom symbiote, like all others of its kind, is extremely vulnerable to heat and sonic based attacks. They can cause the symbiote physical pain and discomfort, whereas "more powerful" attacks might be completely ineffective.
Knull: Knull, a dark god who created the symbiotes, is able to mentally influence and dominate them, including Venom, driving them insane with bloodlust and enslaving them to his will. If Eddie is wearing the symbiote while Knull is controlling it, he loses control over it.
Venom mainly fights using the fangs and claws granted to him by the symbiote. He can shape his limbs into various weapons, though this is not an ability he utilizes frequently, unlike his son Carnage.
- Despite the common belief that Eddie did not indulge in cannibalism, there have been several incidents where he did so, seriously attempted to do so, or otherwise used his symbiotes' fanged jaws to kill or maim opponents in combat:
- Venom killed one of the Sunrise Society's High-Tech Ninja in Venom The Mace #3 by biting down on his head.
- Venom ate a man's brain while under the influence of the Venom symbiote in Venom The Hunger #1, after which Eddie was revolted by the symbiote's carnivorous appetite and stated that he'd never intended his frequent threats of cannibalism as anything more than a joke.
- Venom ate a chunk of Sandman in Peter Parker: Spider-Man Vol 2 #16, nearly killing Baker in the process.
- Venom attempted to eat Spider-Man while under the influence of Kulan Gath in Spider-Man / Red Sonja #2, using an attack resembling his Forward-Heavy move from the Marvel vs. Capcom series.
- While bonded to the Toxin symbiote, Eddie bit off Megatak's head, ate a group of SWAT police troopers, and devoured two symbiote slayer-infected individuals.
- Both Cullen Bunn and Mike Costa have implied in Venom Vol 2 #35, Venom #157, and Venom #158 that Eddie had succumbed to the symbiote's hunger on other occasions; with Costa having intended for Venom to eat people during his run but having been unable to fit it in beyond the symbiote's attempts to devour people while berserk.
- Eddie and Peter Parker are the only characters to have been bonded to three symbiotes. While Peter bonded with the Venom symbiote and other two unnamed symbiotes, Eddie bonded with the Venom symbiote, the Anti-Venom symbiote, and the Toxin symbiote.
- Eddie believed that Spider-Man 2099 stole his costume design from him.
- During his Venom run starring Flash Thompson, writer Cullen Bunn originally planned for Eddie Brock to take the clone of the Venom symbiote with the Hell-Mark, becoming 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 Andi Benton to become the symbiote clone's host instead.
- For Eddie Brock's return as Venom starting with Venom Vol 3 #6, the character's exaggerated musculature and more monstrous features were toned down in favor of a look which called back to his earliest appearances. The monstrous aspects have instead been used thematically a visual cue to reflect the symbiote's mental state.
- 389 Appearances of Edward Brock (Earth-616)
- 62 Minor Appearances of Edward Brock (Earth-616)
- Media Edward Brock (Earth-616) was Mentioned in
- 621 Images featuring Edward Brock (Earth-616)
- 125 Quotations by or about Edward Brock (Earth-616)
- Character Gallery: Edward Brock (Earth-616)
- Edward Brock (Earth-616) at Wikipedia.org
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- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Spider-Man: Brand New Day Yearbook #1
- ↑ In Venom Vs. Carnage #1 Venom named the Carnage Symbiote as the 999th symbiote in their lineage, making him the 998th and Toxin the 1000th
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #569
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Venom Vol 4 #3
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 5.2 Venom: First Host #3
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 Venom Vol 2 #17
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Venom Lethal Protector #1
- ↑ The Spectacular Spider-Man Vol 2 #5
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 9.2 Venom: Dark Origin #1
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Venom #152
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Venom Vol 4 #10
- ↑ Venom Seed of Darkness #-1
- ↑ Spider-Man Family Vol 2 #2
- ↑ Deadpool: Back in Black #5
- ↑ Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 #23
- ↑ 16.0 16.1 Venomverse #1
- ↑ 17.0 17.1 17.2 Venom The Hunger #1
- ↑ 18.0 18.1 Amazing Spider-Man #300
- ↑ Web of Spider-Man #18
- ↑ Web of Spider-Man #24
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #298-299
- ↑ Venom: Dark Origin #4
- ↑ Venom: Dark Origin #5
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man Annual #25
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #316
- ↑ Avengers: Death Trap - The Vault #1
- ↑ Quasar #6
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #332-333
- ↑ 29.0 29.1 29.2 Carnage Vol 2 #12
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #344-347
- ↑ Darkhawk #14
- ↑ Marvel Comics Presents #117
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #362
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #363
- ↑ 35.0 35.1 35.2 Venom Annual #1
- ↑ Marvel Comics Presents #117-122
- ↑ Spider-Man Special Edition #1
- ↑ Web of Spider-Man #95
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #373
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #374
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #375
- ↑ Venom Funeral Pyre #1
- ↑ Darkhawk #35
- ↑ Daredevil #323
- ↑ Iron Man #302
- ↑ Venom Enemy Within #2
- ↑ Venom The Mace #1
- ↑ Incredible Hulk vs. Venom #1
- ↑ Venom Nights of Vengeance #1
- ↑ Venom: The Madness #3
- ↑ Venom Vs. Carnage #1-4
- ↑ 52.0 52.1 Marvel Knights: Spider-Man #5-8
- ↑ Sensational Spider-Man Vol 2 #38-39
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man: Extra! #2
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Anti-Venom - New Ways To Live #1-3
- ↑ New Avengers Annual Vol 2 #1
- ↑ Avengers Annual Vol 4 #1
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #667-673
- ↑ Venom Vol 2 #16
- ↑ 60.0 60.1 60.2 60.3 60.4 Venom Vol 2 #21
- ↑ 61.0 61.1 61.2 Venom Vol 2 #30
- ↑ Venom Vol 2 #33
- ↑ 63.0 63.1 63.2 63.3 63.4 63.5 Venom Vol 2 #34
- ↑ 64.0 64.1 64.2 64.3 Venom Vol 2 #35
- ↑ Carnage Vol 2 #1
- ↑ Carnage Vol 2 #5
- ↑ Carnage Vol 2 #7
- ↑ Carnage Vol 2 #6
- ↑ 69.0 69.1 69.2 Carnage Vol 2 #15
- ↑ Carnage Vol 2 #10
- ↑ Carnage Vol 2 #16
- ↑ Venom Vol 3 #5
- ↑ 73.0 73.1 73.2 Venom Vol 3 #6
- ↑ 74.0 74.1 74.2 Venom #150
- ↑ 75.0 75.1 75.2 Venom #151
- ↑ 76.0 76.1 Venom #153
- ↑ Venom #154
- ↑ Venomverse #2
- ↑ Venomverse #3
- ↑ Venomverse #4-5
- ↑ 81.0 81.1 Venom #155
- ↑ Venom #155-156
- ↑ Venom #157-158
- ↑ 84.0 84.1 Amazing Spider-Man: Venom Inc. Alpha #1
- ↑ Venom #159
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #793
- ↑ 87.0 87.1 Venom #160
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man: Venom Inc. Omega #1
- ↑ 89.0 89.1 Venom #161
- ↑ X-Men: Blue Annual #1
- ↑ 91.0 91.1 X-Men: Blue #21
- ↑ Venom #162
- ↑ X-Men: Blue #22
- ↑ Venom #163
- ↑ Venomized #1
- ↑ Venomized #2-4
- ↑ Venomized #5
- ↑ Venom #164
- ↑ Venom #165
- ↑ 100.0 100.1 100.2 Amazing Spider-Man #800
- ↑ Venom: First Host #1
- ↑ Venom: First Host #2
- ↑ Venom: First Host #4
- ↑ 104.0 104.1 104.2 Venom: First Host #5
- ↑ 105.0 105.1 Venom Vol 4 #1
- ↑ Venom Vol 4 #2
- ↑ Venom Vol 4 #4
- ↑ Venom Vol 4 #5
- ↑ 109.0 109.1 Venom Vol 4 #6
- ↑ 110.0 110.1 Venom Vol 4 #7
- ↑ Donny Cates said this on Twitter
- ↑ Venom Vol 4 #8
- ↑ Venom Vol 4 #9
- ↑ 114.0 114.1 Amazing Spider-Man Presents: Anti-Venom - New Ways To Live #1
- ↑ 115.0 115.1 Carnage Vol 2 #14
- ↑ 116.0 116.1 116.2 Venom Vol 2 #7
- ↑ The Spectacular Spider-Man Vol 2 #1
- ↑ 118.0 118.1 118.2 118.3 Carnage Vol 2 #4
- ↑ Venom Vol 2 #17-21
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #568-570
- ↑ Venom Vol 2 #18
- ↑ Venom Vs. Carnage #3
- ↑ Toxin #1
- ↑ Venom Vol 2 #32
- ↑ 125.0 125.1 Venom Vol 2 #15
- ↑ Spider-Man The Ultimate Guide #1
- ↑ Amazing Spider-Man #792
- ↑ Venom #158
- ↑ Costa, Mike (11 Aug 2018). Mike Costa on Twitter: "When I started my run on Venom, I set a goal that I WOULD have him eat a brain in my book. Sadly, I am just finishing my final (at least for now) issue and I never got there. Some times you just gotta follow the story, even when it doesn’t lead to brain-eating :(". Twitter. Retrieved on 2 November 2018.
- ↑ Bunn, Cullen (11 Aug 2018). Cullen Bunn on Twitter: "Why not?". Twitter. Retrieved on 2 November 2018.
- ↑ Spider-Man 2099 Meets Spider-Man #1
- ↑ Bunn, Cullen (11 June 2013). Ending One 2nd @ a Time, A while back you said Mania ended up being someone.... Tumblr. Retrieved on 15 June 2018.
- ↑ Holub, Christian (14 July 2017). Marvel Legacy first look at Spider-Man, Venom. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved on 14 July 2017.
- ↑ Spider-Man: Brand New Day Yearbook #1
- ↑ Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z #14
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