When the Spider-Man character of Venom first debuted in 2007's Spider-Man 3, there were many fans who were not entirely impressed by his appearance as played by Topher Grace. With complaints that Venom just wasn't Vemon-y enough, it would be a whole 11 years before the symbiote partner, Eddie Brock, would get another shot at the big time. This time, it would be a different story, with Tom Hardy in the title role behind a much more brutal and satisfying rendition of the character. Now artist, Matt Millard, has revealed that some of the original character designs would have seen Venom be an even more creepy and imposing figure than the one we got.
As some of the Venom concept artwork from the movie has emerged from the man behind the designs, Millard shared several images of some of his other versions that were created for the movie four years ago. According to the Tweet, his take on the character came directly from Mark Bagley, who is best known to comic book fans for this work in bringing the Ultimate version of Venom to the page. Bagley is hailed by many as having created some of the best Venom designs, which in turn were based on the original character crated way back in 1988 by Todd McFarlane and David Michelinie.
While the movie went along with the backstory of Venom being an alien life-form, Bagley's Ultimate incarnation, which was co-created with Brian Michael Bendis, was instead an engineered artificial skin "suit" created by the fathers of Eddie Brock and Peter Parker which was intended to protect the wearer and cure disease. While this story remains untold, the writers of the film did use some aspects of the Ultimate version when working out how to bring Venom to the screen with the absence of Peter Parker and Spider-Man, Hardy's Venom is certainly a striking superhero in his own right.
Unlike the messy and family-friendly version from Spider-Man 3, the new Venom is brutal and violent, and not adverse to eating one or two people. With the potential for a Sony-based universe building, a crossover with Tom Holland's Spider-Man almost as guaranteed as it can be without being set in stone, and a sequel coming in the next few months, this time Venom isn't going away quickly and quietly.
On its initial release, critics were not quick to heap praise on Venom, but box office takings well in excess of $800 million was more than enough to guarantee a sequel, which had already been set up by a mid-credit scene in the movie. In the scene, we were introduced to serial killer Cletus Kasady, played by Woody Harrelson, who Hardy's, Eddie Brock visits to interview. In the sequel, Kasady will become Carnage, another even more unstable symbiote, who will cause chaos and destruction with the aid of Naomi Harris' Shriek, and only Brock/Venom can stop them. With this and constant Spider Man crossover rumors, as well as potential linkups with other Sony properties such as Morbius, there is a lot to look forward to from everyone's favorite slimy symbiote in the coming years. Venom: Let There Be Carnage hits cinemas on September 24th, 2021.