Appearing in "The Carnage Cosmic"
- Jill Stacy
- Shantal Wilsk
- Martha Robertson
- Symbiote Hive (Only in flashback)
- Edwin Jarvis
- Bart Simpson (Mentioned) (Topical reference)
- Avengers (Mentioned)
- Louise Kasady (Only in flashback)
- Roscoe Kasady (Only in flashback)
- X-Man (Nate Grey) (Mentioned)
Races and Species
- Symbiotes (Only in flashback)
- Joot (Destruction) (Only in flashback)
Synopsis for "The Carnage Cosmic"
The Silver Surfer has been possessed by the Carnage symbiote and now struggles to keep in control. Seeing the Surfer struggle, Spider-Man tries to help, but the symbiote can access Norrin Radd's Power Cosmic and uses it to keep the wall-crawler at bay. The Surfer tells Spider-Man to keep away and let him try and handle this situation. Flying away, the Surfer smashes through a building, forcing the wall-crawler to save nearby bystanders who are beneath the rubble.[Continuity 1] At that moment, at the Empire State University lunch room, Mary Jane and her friends listen to the radio for further reports about Carnage's recent escape from Ravencroft. Mary Jane is particularly worried and hopes that her husband hasn't done anything stupid like go into costume to face his foe.[Continuity 2] While at the hospital, Martha Robertson is released after the wounds sustained from being attacked by Carnage have been patched up. Deeply upset by the situation, Martha tells her husband Joe that he has a choice to make: He needs to either choose the Daily Bugle, or their marriage. That's when Joe hears someone calling for help down the hall. This turns out to be Spider-Man who has arrived to get Cletus Kasady some medical help, as he has been in a bad way since his symbiote abandoned him to bond with the Silver Surfer. Although the doctors on site are quick to take Kasady into their care, security tries to arrest the wall-crawler, forcing him to flee to evade capture.
Meanwhile, in deep space, Cosmic Carnage flies far away from Earth. The symbiote has tapped into a distant genetic memory of a time, many years ago, when a planet conquered by symbiotes became the latest in the many planets eaten by Galactus. Remembering how the Silver Surfer was present as his master consumed that world, the symbiote intends to use the former herald of Galactus to get revenge against the cosmic being that slaughtered so many of its own kind. While back on Earth, Spider-Man tries to call the Avengers, but unfortunately the team is not present at the mansion.[Continuity 3] The wall-crawler is forced to cut the call short when a trio of men try to capture him and claim the bounty on his head. Back at the hospital, Martha Robertson has calmed down and tells Joe that he can't just quit at the Daily Bugle for her, he must also because it is what he wants to do. Joe has a lot to consider, however the recent sale of the Bugle to Norman Osborn, things have been very different at the newspaper.[Continuity 4] In one of the other rooms, a doctor has determined that Cletus Kasady is suffering from a severe form of stomach cancer and that the symbiote was preventing from killing. Hearing this from outside the window, Spider-Man believes that death-by-cancer couldn't happen to a more deserving person, however, due to his moral code, the wall-crawler can't just stand by and let Cletus Kasady die. Unfortunately, he cannot do that unless he can find some way to separate the symbiote from the Silver Surfer.
Back in space, the Silver Surfer continues to struggle with the symbiote. The creature responds by flooding his mind with memories of Cletus Kasady and his abusive childhood. While on Earth, Spider-Man goes to Washington Square Park to see if his friend Nate Grey, the X-Man, is present. However, he is chased away by the strange cult that has gathered in the area to worship him.[Continuity 5] Swinging up to the rooftops a frustrated wall-crawler wonders why he helps the very people who fear and hate him and begins considering leaving Cosmic Carnage for them to deal with. At that moment, the Silver Surfer reaches deep within his mind and uses the Cosmic Power to stop the warring personalities that is sharing his mind. By this point, Peter Parker has changed back into his street clothes, still wondering why he even bothers. However, when he sees something come rocketing from the sky toward the hospital where Kasady is staying and realizes that he really can't just stand by and do nothing. Changing back into Spider-Man, the wall-crawler attacks Cosmic Carnage, not wanting the symbiote to merge with Kasady again, deciding that the menace of Carnage must end. When news of Spider-Man's battle is broadcast on the radio, Mary Jane faints when she hears that her husband is battling a Carnage possessed Silver Surfer.
The battle continues on, the Silver Surfer tries to convince Spider-Man that letting the symbiote bond with Cletus Kasady again is the right thing to do. Realizing that if Kasady dies, the symbiote could permanently bond to the Silver Sufer, the wall-crawler realizes that the lesser of two evils is the best solution in this case and helps the Surfer get past security. When the symbiote bonds with Kasady, Carnage is ready to start slaughtering people all over again. However, the Silver Surfer refuses to allow any more deaths to happen because of this and uses the Power Cosmic to imprison Carnage in an unbreakable shell of ethereal energy. While at the Daily Bugle, Joe Robertson pays a visit to J. Jonah Jameson to tell him that he is leaving the Bugle.
- Spider-Men recounts how Norman Osborn currently has a bounty on his head. This was because he tricked Spider-Man into attacking him in Spectacular Spider-Man #250.
- Peter and Mary Jane are referred to as husband and wife here. However, years later, their marriage is erased from existence by Mephisto in Amazing Spider-Man #545. As such they should be considered a common-law couple here.
- At the time of this story, the Avengers had just left to confront Morgan le Fay as seen in Avengers (Vol. 3) #1.
- The Daily Bugle was in financial troubles since Amazing Spider-Man #417 until half ownership was purchased by Norman Osborn in Spectacular Spider-Man #249.
- This cult that worshiped the X-Man first formed in X-Man #34.
A flashback in this story affects the chronology of the following characters: