Venom first appeared as an alternate dark costume for Spider-man who was unaware of the true nature of the alien symbiote upon encounter. When he realized that he consistently felt more tired when he awoke from sleep than before (I'm sure you can relate!) and that his webbing was organic, he made an effort to investigate his suit. He discovered that the alien symbiote was bonding with him even taking over his decisions and sought to get rid of it. Eventually, he did manage to do so, but it was certainly not the last of Venom, as it bonded with Eddie Brock forming Venom’s true identity and its career as a villain was born.
As a hero from the Old West, Hex's exploits are pretty impressive for someone from his time period. He traveled to China and South America. Most of his relevant character history occurred in the North America though, first as a soldier in the Civil War (the side that fought against slavery) and then as a member of an apache tribe (which is where he got his scar.)
A_O_N: Venom’s origin is unique and more creative.
RazzaTazz: I am sort of torn, both have interesting origins. I guess I will go with Venom though because it is more original.
Venom provides super strength, enhanced endurance, quick healing and longevity to its host. It also has the ability to shape shift. Venom is immune to diseases; it has shown to negate the effects of cancer and generate artificial body parts for its host when attached. Venom also shows signs of establishing a mental link with its host as it can acquire the memories and even influence decisions of its host. Venom’s only kryptonite is enhanced sounds.
Hex has none, other than expert marksmanship.
A_O_N: Venom will juggle between slaughtering him and probably enjoying a good breakfast.
RazzaTazz: Once again a case of having some powers beats not having any. Venom wins here.
Venom’s costume is black and white and as one fellow viner denoted that there are indeed a lot of characters that wield this color scheme. However, Venom may be just about the coolest character exhibiting this chiaroscuro effect. His costume makes him look scary and definitely someone you do not want to run into!
Hex is pretty typical costume for a western hero. Cowboy hat, sash tied around the neck. Presumably wears boots most of the time (though artists rarely show his feet)
A_O_N: Venom – black and white is overused but it’s still cool!
RazzaTazz: Venom wins here for the costume (because again he actually has one). Also because it made Spider-Man have a black costume for a while.
Venom has quite an assortment of personalities (he will give SC a fair challenge) because his personality always seems to change a little as he jumps hosts and there seem to have been quite a few Venoms, although some only momentary. Let’s see, with Peter, Venom brings out the opposite in oneself, with Brock, Venom give his host a purpose albeit one as a villain, with Gargan he becomes a bit unpredictable and likes eating people! Yes, good old cannibalism. With Flash Thompson, can Venom be a hero?
Sort of acts as the crass surly version of the Western hero. As opposed to others, though this often leads to better dialogue and funnier scenes.
A_O_N: Venom – He has tasted humans, Atlanteans, Skrulls and Asgardians!
RazzaTazz: I will go with the grisled cowboy here. I am a big fan of the tough as nails characters when they are well written.
Venom’s spooky eyes and large tongue create for an ideal Halloween mask!
First of all, there is something wrong with his face. He bears the scar from a red hot tomahawk being pushed into his skin for betraying the apache tribe (though this is told differently in different versions). Mostly though he is tough and burly, and is pretty cool looking. No sequin covered Western clothing for this guy.
A_O_N: For a guy going for the gross appearance, Hex is even overshadowed by Venom in that category!
RazzaTazz: If Venom gets the costume then Jonah has to get this. His scarred face makes him well known to comic fans who don't know anything about Western comics (sort of like me)
The one where Peter finally managed to severe his connection to Venom. After numerous futile attempts, Peter went near a church bell and tried to use the symbiote’s
weakness to his advantage. However, it was not so much for the sound because Spider-man fainted before he could free himself but Venom himself chose to separate itself. However, it was not the last of Venom as it bonded with Eddie Brock inside the church. It was a best of both situations.
I am going to go off the grid here for this one because there is a story that I really like but it doesn't come from comics. It is from the Justice League Unlimited television series where Wonder Woman, Batman and John Stewart are caught in a time travel episode (actually a series of episodes) because of Chronos. They run across a number of Western heroes including Hex.
A_O_N: Venom – Provided I’m not a huge fan of Hex, most of his stories feel the same to me.
RazzaTazz: I am going with my heavily biased opinion here and going with the JLU episode.
The concept of Venom was invented by a fan and reader of the Spider-man comics who was paid a paltry sum for his contribution. It turned into quite a worthy investment for the creators!
At one point Jonah Hex was rebooted as being based in the future.
A_O_N: Tie – Both are cool fun facts! Can you imagine how out of place Jonah would feel in the future?
RazzaTazz: Venom, though stealing intellectual property is wrong.
Venom was portrayed in the third installment of the Spider-man movie. It came as a surprise as he wasn’t shown in any of the trailers and only appeared for the last twenty minutes of the movie. That was a catastrophic decision; it would have been much better to end the movie with Brock becoming Venom. It would have generated much interest in the next installment (why just a trilogy?) but instead the movie closed its books. Also, there have been rumors about a Venom movie ever since Spider-man 3 hit theaters but I wouldn’t count on it happening.
In addition to the JLU episode. Jonah starred in his own 2010 movie. It was a little bit off the comic canon, and wasn't well received by critics, but it starred Josh Brolin, which was well cast. It also had Megan Fox, in a supporting role as a prostitute that Jonah knows. Prostitute is a step down in career respectability, but not working with Michael Bay is a huge step up, so Megan comes out ahead. That’s kind of beside the point though.
A_O_N: Tie – Both characters really didn’t get any justice in the movies. Venom looks like he’s anorexic and Jonah fights super naturals? I did see Spider-man 3, whereas I didn’t see Jonah Hex so that should make me inclined to pick Venom? No! I didn’t even know that Venom was going to be in the movie until I watched it and he turned out to be a disappointment.
RazzaTazz: Both big screen versions were kind of weak, so Jonah wins this on the basis of his JLU appearance.
Venom is currently working as a government agent and is bonded with Flash Thompson. He has his own ongoing series for now and it was stated that Flash will have about 20 missions after which Venom will take over him. However, on the second mission, Flash already lost control and Venom has started bonding with him. Nevertheless, it is perhaps one of the best times to be a Venom fan!
Probably in a mangy bar somewhere waiting for that right dame or bounty to walk through the door. Seriously though, Jonah is probably the most valuable DC Comics Western character (yes I am looking at you Bat-Lash) and so while his series come and go he is always a favourite.
A_O_N: Venom – Venom actually just got his so he is in a pretty good place right now.
RazzaTazz: Venom, because the villain turned hero angle is always good.
A_O_N: 7 – 0
RazzaTazz: 5 – 4
Total: 12 – 4
Venom: Game. Over. Muhahahahaha!
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