With the release of Venom, I started to wonder how many heroes and villains have worn the symbiote suit? Most fans tend to think of Peter Parker, Eddie Brock, and Cletus Kasady, but there are many more people who get down with the sickness. The heroes and villains here have been hosts to our favorite slimy creatures.
#15: X-23 (Laura Kinney)
Laura made an incredible debut to casual fans with Logan. Not that long after the film, in the comic books, she joined in a series that had the clone of Wolverine has donned the black alien suit. After trying to escape the facility for the fifth time, she accidentally punctures a container with the venom symbiote.
Along with her usual powers, she has fangs and razor-sharp nails given to her by her new found friend. She spends plenty of time in combat next to her father figure, Wolverine.
Out of every symbiote variant, X-23 is arguably my favorite. Not only does the black and yellow work for her suit, but she is absolutely horrifying. The claws coming out of her hands along with the pointed teeth that will rip your head right off are intimidating enough to make any baddie run away.
#14: Scorpion (Mac Gargan)
After being recruited by Norman Osborn, Mac Gargan is hired to kidnap Aunt May to get at Peter Parker/Spider-Man. During the task of capturing Parker’s beloved aunt, Gargan runs into a recently freed Venom. With their common hatred towards the web-slinging hero, Gargan becomes the new host for Venom.
With Gargan’s initial lack of a moral compass and Venom’s hunger for flesh, he became a killing machine. Venom was in full control eating people left and right. Gargan was too afraid to really fight back against the overwhelmingly powerful creature. He would eventually be stopped and have the symbiote forcibly removed to return back into Scorpion.
#13: Eugene “Flash” Thompson
Peter Parker’s high school bully becomes worse in adulthood once he meets the vicious symbiote. After enlisting in a program called Project: Rebirth 2.0. Flash becomes the new Venom. He is able to regrow his legs that he lost back when he was serving in the military and has plenty of powers.
Known as Agent Venom, he has plenty of powers and tools to take down anyone in his way. Outside of the typical superpowers such as healing, strength, and durability, Thompon can utilize shapeshifting for stealth, morph with technology, and stole missile launchers and armor from the Beetle.
Out of every variation of Venom, the militarized version with Agent Venom is one of the most unique variants ever created. Thompson’s Venom look is a lot less nightmare-inducing compared to other symbiote suits we have seen.
#12: Scarlet Spider (Ben Reilly)
Venom taking over a new host is pretty horrific, but to make things worse is if it is Carnage. In Web of Carnage, Ben Reilly, a clone of Peter Parker, becomes the newest host for the evil symbiote. If you know anything about the Clone Saga then you know things get bizarre with Ben Reilly.
His powers are the same basics from Spider-Man with a mix of Carnage’s. The ability to transform his body into deadly weapons such as knives and axes, Spider-Carnage can web you up then hack you into pieces. He can disguise himself by morphing into his old suit.
#11: Venom 2099 (Kron Stone)
Miguel O’Hara’s (Spider-Man 2099) half-brother Kron is quite the evil family member. His first appearance involved killing Punisher 2099’s family, so you get a good idea where his moral code stands. Frank Castle stabs Kron and leaves him to die in a sewer. The same sewer happens to have Venom waiting for a host. Kron gains Venom’s powers along with an acidic touch and liquid body.
#10: Punisher (Frank Castle)
In the What If? series, we get to see some rather interesting scenarios, one of which involves Frank Castle becoming Venom. You don’t want an angry man with the murder of his family on his mind being fused together with a bloodthirsty alien to come after you. Spoiler, you will die.
With a gliding wing for flight, Venom’s powers, and Punisher’s skills with guns, he becomes a deadly force. The main weakness is their motives are quite different. Venom’s feelings about Spider-Man don’t meet Castle’s.
#9: Rocket Racoon
The awesome blend between the vicious Venom and the snarky Rocket Racoon from the Guardians of the Galaxy makes for a surprise that is hard to think of, especially with Rocket’s claim to fame in the MCU. He would become a bounty hunter set to kill Captain America then summoned into another reality. In the new world Rocket finds himself, he joins the Resistance of Venoms to fight a group called The Hive.
His weapons are the same as the other symbiote hybrids with the addition of a new way to carry weapons. His vast arsenal is stored within himself where the symbiote carries all of his gadgets and guns, ready to kill any enemies who appear.
Venom makes everyone look better, and Rocket is no exception. A raccoon with the black and white Venom aesthetic makes Rocket look like he has been infected with rabies.
Yes, another member of the Guardians of the Galaxy has been taken over as a host for Venom. The loveable talking tree looks like an abomination that will haunt you for weeks. Before you ask, yes he says, “I am Venom.”
After extinguishing a threat from the symbiote’s home planet, the Guardians of the Galaxy keep a jar filled with the black goo that is the iconic creature. Groot clumsily breaks the container and becomes fused together with Venom.
#7: Drax the Destroyer
The final Guardian of the Galaxy to be infected is Drax. I know a lot of these characters look horrifying, but Drax needs to be mentioned by his horrific new look. The already big member gets far larger as he turns into his symbiote form.
When trying to stop Venomized Rocket is causing havoc. Drax has a plan to grab Rocket, but Quil orders him to not touch their friend. Drax goes for it anyways which has the symbiote slide right off of Rocket into a new host.
#6: Ms. Marvel (Carol Danvers)
While many now know Carol Danvers as Captain Marvel with her big screen debut next year, she was previously known as Ms. Marvel. Captain Marvel/Ms. Marvel has a whole history for another day to discuss.
She-Venom, Carol Danvers’ symbiote alter ego is one of the better female venoms. Many of the characters tend to be more sexualized in some aspects. Just like the men, Carol ends up turning into a nightmarish monster, that is true equality right there.
Norman Osborn leads a battle into Asgard, in which Mac Gargan’s Venom appeared. Spidey, as always, ends up fighting Venom. Marvel comes into to the rescue but ends up being the new host for the symbiote. Having one of the most powerful heroes in Marvel Comics mixed with any symbiote will cause some serious harm.
One of the most powerful versions of Venom is when he takes over Thor. Symbiotes range in strength depending on their hosts. The powers of the symbiote and the host combine into one powerful foe. Mixing together with a God will make things nearly impossible. After nearly wiping out Earth, Venomized Thor is taken down by a sonic weapon.
#4: The Inklings
This entry technically consists of multiple Venomized characters, the group is special in their own way to be under one category.
When Lee Price donned the black suit to become Maniac, he gained some unique abilities, unlike most symbiotes we see. He could spit at anyone which would infect them with an extended symbiote. Under the power of the symbiote, Price could mind control people who have been spat on. The powerful group he had taken over consist of Black Cat, Scorpion, Hammerhead, Looter, 8-Ball, Killer Shrike, The Brothers Grimm, and the Melter.
#3: Red Hulk
Hell has been brought to Earth by Blackheart, literal hell on Earth. The Circle of Four, Red Hulk, Flash Thompson AKA Agent Venom, X-23, and Ghost Rider must defeat the incredibly powerful villain. The only way meant that Red Hulk becomes Venom. Alejandro (Ghost Rider) temporarily gives her powers to Red Hulk. Yeah, we have a Venom-Red Hulk-Ghost Rider combination, you cannot get more badass.
Arguably the best looking Venom hybrid ever created. A fiery demon that looks like it came from hell, but no, it is just Red Hulk fused with Venom and given the power of Ghost Rider. Comics get really crazy, now Marvel should step it up in the next phase of the MCU.
#2: Spider-Gwen (Gwen Stacey)
Gwen Stacey is either Peter Parker’s first love who dies or the Gwen who becomes Spider-Gwen after being bit by a radioactive spider. I don’t need to say which is more interesting. Since she dons a spider suit, she eventually becomes Venom. Of course, you did that Marvel.
#1: Deadpool (Wade Wilson)
While the movies portray Deadpool as a bit of a psychopath while showing he has some humanity deep down. He is far crazier in the comics, so when he gets infused with Venom, that is not a good mixture at all.
Some iterations have Venom using Deadpool as a host, while other times he gets mixed with multiple symbiotes. A storyline involves Deadpool facing Carnage. During the conflict, Deadpool gets used as a host for Lasher and Agony. Thus giving Deadpool his regenerative powers along with the abilities from Agony and Lasher. Agony grants acidic chemicals along with Spidey powers. Lasher is focused on lashing foes with whips, very creative of Marvel to name him Lasher.
Trust me, there are plenty more symbiote versions of your favorite heroes and villains out in the world of comics. Many of which are not canon and some that are not comic books can get mind-numbingly complicated. Most of the wackiest of crossovers came from Venomverse and What If? series. Consume those stories to gather all of the crazy different hosts for Venom and the other symbiotes.
What have been some of your favorites on this list? Out of the many characters I did not touch on, who are some of your favorite Venomized characters?
All images via Marvel Comics