How does a studio follow the hit third big-screen version of Spider-Man, last seen in Spider-Man: Homecoming? Sony is sticking with the Spidey stable of characters, and finally giving one of the web-slinger’s classic villains his own movie. Venom, which will treat the former Spidey-beater as an anti-hero, boasts an impressive cast including Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams and Woody Harrelson.

We know hardly anything about the film’s plot, however. Sony is being secretive about the project, but that doesn’t mean fans are totally in the dark. Thanks to a recently released teaser trailer, we have better idea of what to expect from Venom. The first footage reveals that Venom won’t be the usual superhero fare. Tom Hardy’s character, Eddie Brock, appears to be on the run from someone, and there’s a sci-fi/thriller tone.

For those unfamiliar with the character of Venom or the comic books, the trailer may seem chaotic. Thankfully, there are decades of source material that give us a better idea of what to expect from Venom. Join us as we journey into the character’s comic book history. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about the focus of Sony’s upcoming Marvel film before it premieres in October.

Who Is Venom, Anyway?

 

[Credit: Marvel Comics]

Venom is distinct life forms wrapped into one. One half is an amorphous alien symbiote that clings to a sentient life-form. The second half is the host the symbiote merges with. The most notable hosts are Eddie Brock, Flash Thompson and even Peter Parker. In fact, the first person the Venom Symbiote attached itself to was Spider-Man. So Venom’s powers tend to mimic those of the wall-crawler. (More on that later.)

Venom was a villain for a long time, originally facing off against Spider-Man. There are cases, however, of Venom working with superheroes from time to time. Venom’s displays of heroism changed his reputation, and he is now seen as more of an anti-hero than an outright bad guy.

Sony’s Venom appears to be going with the anti-hero version of the character. Tom Hardy plays the protagonist, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be heroic. Based on the somewhat dark tone of the teaser, we may see Venom’s villainous nature, but he’ll likely be facing off with someone even worse than he can be.

What Are Venom’s Powers And Abilities?

 

[Credit: Marvel Comics]

Once the Venom Symbiote attaches itself to a host, the resulting pair is formidable. The symbiote covers the host from head to toe, imbuing them with incredible, strength, reflexes and durability. Due to the symbiote’s former bond with Spider-Man, this typically passes along a version of all the wall-crawler’s abilities. This includes shooting symbiote webs and the ability to fly under the radar of Spider-Man’s “spidey sense”.

The Venom Symbiote can also change shape while still attached to the host. This allows Venom to create weapons and defensive forms, which are usually sharp spikes protruding off its body. Venom is large and muscular, a result of the symbiote’s shape-shifting abilities. Yet, for all his powers, Venom is vulnerable to sonic attacks and fire. If it’s exposed to either of those long enough, the symbiote will abandon its host and retreat.

Who Is Eddie Brock?

 

[Credit: Marvel Comics]

Tom Hardy will be playing Eddie Brock in Sony’s Venom and will serve as the film’s main protagonist. We know very little about Tom Hardy’s version of the character; however, Eddie Brock has a long history in Marvel Comics. Eddie Brock first appeared in Web of Spider-Man #18 in 1986.  However, he wasn’t a main character until The Amazing Spider-Man #300 in 1988.

For the most part, Eddie Brock is as a journalist who has no supernatural abilities. He is, however, not too fond of Spider-Man or Peter Parker. He is the first person to bond with the Venom Symbiote after Spider-Man. Although the symbiote has taken many hosts, Eddie Brock is the quintessential version of Venom.

Who Is Venom’s Main Villain?

Sony hasn’t revealed who the villain is in Venom, but many assumed it would be Carnage/Cletus Kasady (although it hasn’t been confirmed). Like his name suggest, Carnage is a nasty piece of work. Carnage is a symbiote/human hybrid like Venom, but they are very different. The Carnage Symbiote is red in color, but it’s the symbiote’s host, Cletus Kasady, that makes Carnage dangerous.

Kasady was already an extremely disturbed serial killer before he merged with the Carnage Symbiote. Once he merged with the symbiote, Kasady becomes infinitely more unstable. Based on the Venom teaser trailer, it’s unclear if Carnage will appear, but rumors suggest that Woody Harrelson could be playing the popular Marvel character.

How Does Sony’s Venom Fit In With Other Marvel Movies?

 

[Credit: Marvel Studios]

Now that Sony has rebooted the Spider-Man franchise with the help of Marvel Studios, many fans were hoping Venom would appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Unlike Spider-Man: Homecoming, Venom is being produced solely by Sony. For now, it appears that Venom is not connected to Spider-Man or the MCU. There are, however, lots of rumors that suggest Tom Holland’s Spider-Man will appear in the film. Sony seems to be holding Venom close to the chest, but at this point, Venom is considered a standalone film.

Venom’s Big Screen History

 

[Credit: Sony Pictures]

Sony’s Venom will be the character’s second appearance in a feature film. Eddie Brock and Venom made their big screen debut in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3. Many Marvel Comics fans were not happy about the way Venom was portrayed in the film. The film was loaded with villains and Venom appeared to be an afterthought. But the chief complaint was Topher Grace’s portrayal of Eddie Brock. Hopefully, Sony will learn from their past and give Venom the film he deserves.

See Venom in theaters on October 5, 2018. Check out the Movie Info below to set a reminder to buy tickets as soon as they go on sale!