We know a few big things about Venom, opening October 5, because star Tom Hardy has confirmed that it is inspired by a specific comic book storyline. Venom draws from the popular “Lethal Protector” arc, which saw Eddie Brock (played by Hardy in the movie) attempt to start a new life as an antihero in San Francisco. He collided with the sinister Life Foundation, which believed the human race was on the verge of nuclear war.
In the film, Riz Ahmed plays Carlton Drake, the head of the Foundation. He believes humanity is on the brink of an extinction-level ecological catastrophe. When Drake discovers a crashed spaceship full of alien symbiotes, he thinks our problems are solved. A blend of human and alien symbiote will, Drake believes, allow humanity to survive.
Venom aside, the comic has five major symbiote characters. Let’s talk about who they are, and which ones you might see in the movie. So far, it’s clear that at least two of the five symbiotes will appear in Venom, while a third has been switched for another symbiotic character.
There’s A Riot Going On
The comic book version of Carlton Drake has five symbiotic characters working for him. Each symbiote possesses different powers; some seem pretty random. Agony, for example, can absorb chemicals and spit acid. Lasher sprouts tentacle-like whips from his back, and can use them as deadly weapons.
Then there’s Riot, who looks like the main villain of the movie. Riot is unlike the other symbiotes in that it doesn’t settle in a single host. It jumps from one body to another, like a predator seeking prey. Riot seems to love causing destruction. We see that in the trailer, where the creature tears apart the Life Foundation with glee. Riot will likely bond with another major character, setting up a climactic battle with Venom.
Scream Is Dangerous, Too
Details in the trailer suggest that one of the symbiotes escapes containment when the spaceship crashes in Asia. Expect this symbiote to bond with one of the first responders, and go on a bloody and violent rampage in the nearest town. This is Scream. She’ll clearly wind up captured by the Life Foundation, as other footage shows that Eddie Brock encounters her when he breaks into the Foundation’s building.
In the comics, Scream is the leader of the symbiote crew. She has powers similar to Venom and Spider-Man, such as wall-crawling and web-swinging. Where Lasher can grow tentacles from his back, Scream uses her hair as a weapon.
In the comics, Toxin is one of the few symbiotes to ever be on the side of the angels. The symbiote is spawned from Carnage, and bonds with police officer Patrick Mulligan. Toxin is influenced by Mulligan’s upstanding morals, which makes him different from the other symbiotes. Toxin is a surprising element to see in play for Venom.
Venom should be worried if he has to square off against Toxin. In the comics, Toxin is the most powerful symbiote seen to date.
The Rest Of The Roster
We don’t know if the film will feature all five symbiotes from the comics. The other options are Agony and Lasher, who we mentioned before. Then there’s Phage, who creates long, serrated blades.
The other major observation so far is that the film redesigns how the symbiotes behave. The trailer shows both Scream and Riot doing things that are traditionally associated with other characters. Perhaps Venom‘s symbiotes each possess all the abilities of the five different comic book characters. That would certainly simplify the plot and character roster.
Venom opens on October 5. Tickets are on sale now!