For the longest time, I’ve had in my head the perfect, four movie plan for a Spider-Man story-arc that delivers fully fleshed-out origins for my favorite villains, Venom and Carnage, leaving them space to grow, breath, and become the arch-villains they are in the Comics. It’s likely said plan has been materializing in the back of my brain since 2007, the year Spider-Man 3 more-or-less ruined Venom by treating him like a third rate, rushed villain. The lesson learned was, you can’t have Peter Parker receive the Black Suit/Symbiote, reject in, and face Venom in a single film… and have it feel earned.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe offers the opportunity not just to revise crimes of Spider-Man films past, but also the unique chance to develop characters and arcs across multiple titles without “Spider-Man” in the title. Case in point, Tom Holland is confirmed to play Peter Parker/Spider-Man in Avengers: Infinity War, a movie that will feature the Webhead and possibly some of his world’s characters. Using shared films like Avengers titles is the process I’d use to keep a complete Venom story limited to an official trilogy, from establishing Spidey’s world and normal villains to facing Carnage alongside Venom in “MCU Spider-Man 3.” Of course, all this is mute unless Sony feels compelled to to share Venom with Disney owned Marvel Studios. At the moment Sony foolishly plan on making their own, standalone Venom movie, aside from the MCU and even the character Spider-Man (WTF?).
If rights were to be worked out, and Marvel Studios set forth to create the ultimate and complete Venom story-arc, here are the four parts to the story they would need to do it right… this time.
Part 1: Establish Spider-Man’s Everyday World and Villains in OG Suit Days.
Spider-Man: Homecoming (July 7,2017)Peter Parker is already Spider-Man in the MCU; Captain America: Civil War made that clear and this time we didn’t need to witness Uncle Ben get shot! Spider-Man: Homecoming is an important step to Venom. We must first establish how a traditional, Earth-Bound Spider-Man villain, Michael Keaton’s Vulture in this case, threatens the traditional looking Spider-Man we know and love. Because, you can’t introduce the Black Suit in the establishing Spider-Man film! That’s crazy!
We already know a good deal of what to expect in July when Marvel Studios releases their Spider-Man: Homecoming, and the Black Suit and Venom are not among them. We are off to the right start in not jumping the gun! But… what if Homecoming does introduce Eddie Brock, who, of course, becomes Venom a few films down the line. In the Comics, Brock starts as a small-time criminal involved in bigger dealings than usual, ending up captured and incarcerated by Spider-Man. When Eddie Brock is a freed, he seeks to destroy Spider-Man, but he doesn’t have the means or the powers… until the Symbiote finds him. Introducing Brock as a henchman of Vulture’s would quickly plant the seed for an eventual appearance of Venom. It would also make one hell of an Easter Egg!
Though I recently wrote about casting Michael C. Hall as the MCU’s Ultimate Green Goblin, a traditional Eddie Brock is really the character I’ve always felt Hall was born to play. Since Homecoming is already shot and Michael C. Hall is very likely not in the film, who says Donald Glover isn’t playing Eddie Brock? In the first trailer, we see Glover keeping company with another Vulture henchman, implying Glover is playing a small-time criminal, sans cool toys. Some have surmised he may be playing Miles Morales’ uncle in order to set up a Spidey-Successor come contract negotiations. But, what if Glover’s our MCU Eddie Brock/Venom? Food for thought!
Part 2: Find the Black Suit in Space! Establish Its Great Power and Side Effects.
Avengers: Infinity War (May 4, 2018)/Untitled Avengers Film (May 3, 2019)In Spider-Man 3, Peter Parker found the alien Symbiote/Black Suit in his room… after it climbed into his bag… after it landed in Central Park next to him… on a meteorite… by complete chance. Whew! That’s a Shit-load of suspension of disbelief, even in a Superhero Film! In the comics, Spider-Man finds his black suit in outer-space during a cosmic battle during as Secret Wars. Guess where The Avengers (and Spider-Man) will be fighting in Avengers: Infinity War, Spidey’s 1st post-Homecoming film?
Infinity War and whatever Avengers Title follows will certainly have cosmic battle against Thanos, so actually picking up the Black Suit in outer-space is a real possibility in the MCU. Besides, The Avengers are going to need a secret weapon in the final fight against Thanos, part of which can be a super-super-powered Spider-Man with the added strength and abilities of the Symbiote. Then, towards the end of Untitled Avengers Film, just give us a hint at the side effects of wearing a living Alien Symbiote. Something along the lines of voices in Parker’s head.
Part 3: Ditch the Black Suit. Eddie Brock Becomes Main Villain… Venom!
Spider-Man: “Back In Black”* (July 5, 2019*)Finally, you’ve earned the actual Venom movie! Start with a 007/Indiana Jones-esque opening act with Spider-Man facing a classic villain from is rogue’s gallery… Eddie Brock should be involved and re-established. Give the villain a full act, not just 5 minutes like Rhino in Amazing Spider-Man 2. The villain is a red herring, as it’s all Peter Parker learning his Black Suit is influencing him in negative ways. Following his almost killing the villain, Parker desperately ditches the suit in that Church’s Bell Tower and Eddie Brock is below, fuming about Spider-Man, yet seeking forgiveness. The rest is history. Now you have at least half a film, if not more, for Spider-Man to face his ultimate villain/doppelganger… Venom!
Part 4: Carnage Is Spawned. Venom and Spider-Man Must Join Forces.
Spider-Man: “Maximum Carnage” (The Future?… Let’s Say 2022.)This Trilogy closer is sweet, sweet icing on the cake! If we’re already headed down the Venom path, it would be a shame to not also build to Carnage; we’ve done 90% of the leg-work already! Spider-Man catches the serial killer Cletus Kasady, who ends up sharing a cell with Eddie Brock. What remains of the Symbiote seeks out Brock, freeing him as Venom. A bit of the suit is left behind, spawning a child of Venom, Carnage, a new, more powerful Symbiote that affixes itself to a serial killer, not simply a small-time Spider-Man and Venom must eventually join forces to stop what we have finally reached… “Maximum Carnage.” What Spider-Man fan doesn’t want to see that?!?
* Invented titles and possible release dates.