By GraniteSoldier 9 Comments
I know I'm a bit behind on this, so pardon my lateness to the party, but this is something I've really wanted to talk about.
Why? For the love of Flash, why?
It seems like Venom is getting caught up in Marvel's reshuffle, rebrand, re-name antics and it seems strongly that Flash Thompson is on the chopping block.
Venom: Space Knight is ending with issue 13, and all the previews of Amazing Spider-Man leads towards a death of a Spider-Man character in issue 19, so coupled with the teaser caption with the provided image (which is a direct quote of Marvel's teaser) it seems Flash may be Venom no more.
Now before I discuss this I need to address the concerns I've had with Venom Space Knight. Firstly, Flash has been a poor fit in space. Secondly, for an issue slated for 13 issues, writer Robbie Thompson gave us a very slow burn story of Flash becoming independent once again, without the need for the symbiote. Not a bad idea, but it has taken way too long and has essentially been a rehashed version of the story told by Rick Remender when Flash kicked his alcoholism issue.
Now I understand Marvel is a business and Venom: Space Knight's sales have been fairly bad, so Marvel may be over Flash as a host. However I would point them to Venom's sales as 'Agent Venom' where he sold well for a B-list character compared to other B-list character titles, such as Scarlet Spider. However ever since Flash's foray into space (ideally to boost his popularity by pairing him with Marvel's then-hottest commodity: the Guardians of the Galaxy) he's been cooling.
This is largely due, in my opinion, to writer Brian Bendis' lackluster handling of the GotG and specifically Venom himself. Robbie Thompson has a good handle on Flash's personality in the pages of Space Knight but is largely doing rehashed versions of stories we've already gotten with Thompson from earlier runs. It been very unexciting, and I say this as someone who loves Flash Thompson and who has been very open to trying out the avenues Marvel wanted to go with him.
Now, as for 'Lethal Arrival'. The image shows us a very Eddie Brock-esque Venom, but as any comic reader will tell you covers are often very misleading, and teaser captions are meant to sensationalize and grab your curiosity. So it's entirely possible Flash remains as Venom.
However, this whole 'Lethal Arrival' thing then completely seems to negate the redemption story that has been put in place for Flash and Venom since the start of Space Knight and in the pages of Guardians of the Galaxy.
Personally, unless Marvel wants to just throw away several years of works for a sensationalist boost in sales (they would I'm sure) it leads me to another path: Thompson does in fact lose the symbiote (and is potentially the teased death in the Spidey Circle).
Why that's a shame I'll address some other time...because I can go into 100 reasons why Marvel should keep him around.
So if not Thompson, then who? It'd taken some juggling to get Brock to don the black and white again, largely because he is currently Toxin. And unless Toxin and Venom, as well as Flash and Eddie, decide for some reason to switch hosts and symbiotes (like some sort of weird swinger event) then I doubt that will happen.
So then who?
Well, I know a great deal of the fanbase would want to see Peter don the symbiote once more, but it seems unlikely to me. Prowler would be a more likely option, since he has been a recurring character in the current Amazing Spider-Man run.
But again, I doubt that one as well.
No I think the Eddie-esque Venom is deliberate, and while not Brock himself I think it may be indicative of Venom's return to villainy. My personal prediction? Norman Osborne.
Osborne has been absent (to my knowledge) since his curing at Spider-Man's hands, and the removal of the Goblin Serum from his body. However, Norman left us with the warning that he could finally think clearly once again and was more dangerous than ever.
What better way to make him a greater threat than to meld Peter's two greatest foes into one threat?
It's a long shot, and we will have to wait and see, but I don't think Flash Thompson is long for this world, especially in the black and white. Here's hoping that if they are taking him down, he goes down as the hero he is and should be portrayed as.