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Birth

Andrea "Andi" Benton was born on October 27th in the back of a Chevy, her father having gotten into an accident on the way to St. Mary's Hospital. Shortly after her birth, Andi's mother left her in the care of her father and disappeared, a topic which became a source of great anger and despair for her as she grew up.[4]

Becoming Mania

Andi's life was changed forever the day Flash Thompson moved to Philadelphia, coming to live in an apartment upstairs from her father's.[5] Andi happened to attend West Philadelphia High School, where Flash started working as an assistant coach. She usually skipped gym class, and one day she was the only witness when Flash used his symbiote-enhanced arm to throw a ball at a bully, and came to the conclusion Thompson was Venom.[6]

When mob boss Lord Ogre put a price on Venom's head, Andi was targeted by Jack O'Lantern, a villain who knew Flash's alter-ego. Venom was unable to save Andi's father from being stabbed by the maniac, but when Jack released a poisonous gas, Flash protected Andi with a portion of his symbiote, which ended up bonding to Andi rather than only protecting her from her imminent death.[2]

Dubbing herself "Mania", Andi proceeded to brutally attack Jack O'Lantern, but after removing his mask, Venom realized it was actually an impostor brainwashed by the real Jack O'Lantern into replacing him while he was in prison. After a furious battle in which numerous supervillains looking for Venom stepped in, Mania started suffocating the fake Jack with her new symbiote, but Venom convinced her not to cross that line.

Andrea Benton (Earth-616) from Venom Vol 2 36 001

Andi as a regular human

Partner of Agent Venom

Andi moved in with her aunt Sarah in Jenkintown although she remained in touch with Flash, who let her keep the symbiote, though he was concerned that it had mysteriously bonded to Andi faster than it could have bonded to any other host.[7]

While Flash went to attend other business outside the city, Andi continued to battle the mob in order to hunt down Lord Ogre and avenge her father. Unknown to her, Flash not only had transferred a part of his symbiote to Andi, but also the Hell-Mark the symbiote had received during his battle against Blackheart in Las Vegas, for which she had been targeted by Crossbones.[8]

When Mania confronted Ogre in his penthouse, the mob boss stated he had a chemical bomb in his chest that it would go off and unleash a death-cloud that would kill many innocents if he died. Mania called his bluff and attempted to kill him, but was stopped by Venom, and their argument was interrupted by Crossbones and agents of the Department of Occult Armaments, which Agent Venom had been investigating. One of Crossbones' allies, Master Mayhem, opened a dimensional portal in his chest which summoned numerous demons that attacked Mania, Venom, and Ogre - the latter of whom was killed. During the battle, Mania discovered the hell-mark gave her control over the demons and ordered them to turn on Crossbones. Venom and Mania escaped while Crossbones and his allies were fighting the demons.[9]

Andrea Benton (Earth-616) from Venom Space Knight Vol 1 6 001

With the symbiote

Venom and Mania contacted Mephisto in order to remove Andi's hell-mark, though the demon refused to do so. When Crossbones located them once more, Mephisto helped the heroes battle him by summoning the Monsters of Evil, a legion of demonic monsters at the command of whoever had the hell-mark. When Crossbones and his allies were defeated and before disappearing, Mephisto stated that the hell-mark wasn't Andi's, but the symbiote's, and that Andi's symbiote was actually the Venom symbiote's long-assimilated clone. Flash promised he would help Andi remove the hell mark at any cost.[10] However, they were unable to find any information on the Descent, and when Flash was summoned to join the Guardians of the Galaxy he left Andi behind, expressing the hope that everything would work out.[11]

Possessed by the Hell-Mark

In Flash's absence, Andi continued to fight organized crime in Philadelphia as Mania.[12] However, she slowly lost control of her anger, which caused the Hell-Mark to transfer from the Mania symbiote to her.[11] This corrupted the Mania symbiote even further, turning it into a bloodthirsty monster she had no control over.[13]

When Venom returned to Earth, Mania furiously attacked him, accusing him of abandoning her and demanding he fight back against her. She was separated from her symbiote by Spider-Man and passed out, before being taken to Parker Industries' Philadelphia branch by Flash. She regained consciousness when her Hell-Mark activated.[14] Attempting to take both the Mania and Venom symbiotes, Andi attacked Flash with an army of demons, wreaking havoc in the city in the process. She was stopped when Venom's allies arrived, having retrieved a purifying elixir from the planet Wenb, which temporarily cured Andi's possession and brought her back to her senses. Venom decided to remain on Earth together with Andi and her symbiote so they could find a permanent cure.[11]

Andrea Benton (Earth-616) from Venom Space Knight Vol 1 12 001

Andi possessed by the Hell-Mark

War against the Poisons

Andi was later recruited by Venomized versions of Captain America and Doctor Strange to fight against the Poisons that were trying to consume symbiotes and their hosts. Eddie Brock, who was in possession of the Venom symbiote of her reality, was later recruited as well. She recognized the symbiote but not its host, who she dismissed as not being her Venom.[15] At the end, the Venoms were able to plant a bomb that destroyed the Poisons' ship before the Venomized Doctor Strange sent them and Mania to their proper realities.[16]

Venom Inc.

Now knowing that Eddie Brock was Venom's current host and reading about their actions in the newspaper, she offered to help Flash find them so that he could be Agent Venom again. However, Lee Price — a former Army Ranger who had bonded to the Venom symbiote for a short period of time — and his allies attacked Andi separated the Mania symbiote from her using a sonic disruptor and flamethrowers. Price took the Mania symbiote for himself and used it to build his own crime organization as "Maniac", sharing the symbiote with its members to control them. Badly injured by Price's attack, Andi was sent to a hospital, where she was visited by Flash and informed him about what had happened.[1] Andi traveled to New York intending to help Flash hunt down her symbiote, using her lingering connection to it and the Hell-Mark to ambush a group of Inklings about to execute the new Anti-Venom - who she realized was Flash Thompson. Andi tried to help Agent Anti-Venom fight Spider-Man, who had been infected with part of her symbiote, but was unable to be of much use.

After Spider-Man was freed from Maniac's control by the Black Cat, using an Anti-Venom serum developed by Alchemax,[17] the heroes mounted an attack on a gathering of the five biggest crime families in the world, on whose attendees Maniac had used his powers. Andi used her powers to provide cover from above.[18] Maniac was eventually struck down and weakened by Anti-Venom, but the symbiote remained bonded to him. While she couldn't regain the symbiote, Andi was proud she could prove herself without it and set out to return to Philadelphia while Flash stayed in New York to keep an eye on Venom and Spider-Man.[19]

Absolute Carnage

Back in Philadelphia, Andi struggled to adjust to civilian life and cope with the death of her mentor, graduating from high school and obtaining a job at Mitch's record store. Still living with her Aunt Sarah, she began suffering from recurring nightmares and hallucinations of the Mania symbiote attacking her and those around her. While the nightmares and hallucinations got worse over time, Andi dismissed them until she was attacked by Carnage, who killed her aunt and attacked her to claim the remnants of the Mania symbiote in her body. Andi used the Hell-Mark to summon the Monsters of Evil and transform into a demonic form of her own, but the symbiote-augmented serial killer proved immune to their hellfire - having been empowered by Knull, the god of the symbiotes - and slaughtered the demonically-augmented monsters. Andi managed to escape through Hell, and set out to New York to find and warn Eddie Brock.[3] While fending off a horde of symbiote doppelgangers sent by Carnage to kill her, Andi was attacked by Patricia Robertson - another former host of the Mania symbiote who had been taken over by the Scream symbiote, which had been resurrected and corrupted by Knull.[20]

Andi managed to convince Scream to break free of Knull's control, but their discussion of how to proceed was interrupted when Carnage attacked them.[21] Scream succumbed to Knull's corruption and Andi fled into a meat processing warehouse, trying to think of what Flash would do in her situation. Andi was ambushed by Carnage and impaled on a meat hook, but Scream attempted to rescue her — being fatally wounded in the process. The Scream symbiote separated from Patricia's corpse and bonded to Andi. Recognizing that even with her new symbiote and the Hell Mark she couldn't defeat Carnage, Scream fled but was quickly recruited by Cloak to help turn the tide against Carnage's horde.[22][23]

Life as Scream

Left homeless in New York, blaming herself for Patricia's death, and feeling abandoned by everyone who had cared about her, Andi began a downward spiral into depression, coming to hate sharing headspace with the Scream symbiote. Tired of spending her nights at homeless shelters or hunting would-be rapists to vent her rage and despair on, Andi attempted to commit suicide by jumping off the Manhattan Bridge. The Scream symbiote saved her, and shortly thereafter they were forced to work together when attacked by grotesque monsters formed from drowned corpses reanimated and fused to sea life by an ancient entity empowered by a primordial symbiote. A few days after this incident, Andi encountered a woman claiming to be her long-lost mother; and while initially disbelieving was won over when the woman described the circumstances of her birth.[4]

Powers

Hell-Mark: The Hell-Mark bestowed upon the Venom symbiote by Mephisto marks Andi as a potential candidate to become a Hell-Lord during the Descent and gives her the ability to conjure hellfire and summon, subjugate, and control lesser demons, although powerful demons are able to resist this.[9][11] As a side-effect of its ability to conjure hellfire, the Hell-Mark makes Andi immune to fire.[17] The Hell-Mark also has a corruptive effect on symbiotes.[13] By drawing on the full power of the Hellmark, Andi can transform into a demon.[3]

Scream Symbiote: The Scream symbiote gives to its host the following powers:

  • Superhuman Strength
  • Superhuman Durability
  • Superhuman Stamina
  • Accelerated Healing Factor
  • Wall-Crawling
  • ESP (Spider-Sense)
  • Immunity to Spider-Man's Spider Sense
  • Webbing Generation
  • Camouflage Capabilities
  • Constituent-Matter Generation
  • Constituent-Matter Manipulation (Hair): Unlike her fellow symbiotes, Scream prefers to extend her hair-like tendrils to lash at or encircle her foes.


Weaknesses


Equipment

  • Demonic Armor: By tapping into the full power of the Hellmark and transforming into a demon, Andi conjures a suit of demonic black and red armor.[3]

Weapons

  • Demonic Pipe Wrench: After transforming into a demon, Andi conjures a demonically-augmented pipe wrench to use as a weapon.[3]
  • Initially, Cullen Bunn planned for Eddie Brock to take the Venom symbiote's clone, creating a second hellish version of Venom. However, since Eddie was bonded to Toxin around that time and he decided they could stay together longer, Bunn decided to keep the plot point, but introduce Mania instead.[25]

Discover and Discuss

Footnotes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Amazing Spider-Man: Venom Inc. Alpha #1
  2. 2.0 2.1 Venom Vol 2 #38
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Web of Venom: Funeral Pyre #1
  4. 4.0 4.1 Scream: Curse of Carnage #1
  5. Venom Vol 2 #31
  6. Venom Vol 2 #36
  7. Venom Vol 2 #39
  8. Venom Vol 2 #40
  9. 9.0 9.1 Venom Vol 2 #41
  10. Venom Vol 2 #42
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 Venom: Space Knight #13
  12. Venom: Space Knight #9
  13. 13.0 13.1 Venom: Space Knight #10
  14. Venom: Space Knight #12
  15. Venomverse #1
  16. Venomverse #5
  17. 17.0 17.1 Amazing Spider-Man #793
  18. Venom #160
  19. Amazing Spider-Man: Venom Inc. Omega #1
  20. Absolute Carnage: Scream #1
  21. Absolute Carnage: Scream #2
  22. Absolute Carnage: Scream #3
  23. Absolute Carnage #5
  24. Bunn, Cullen (8 March 2013). Ending One 2nd @ a Time, What is Andi's full name?. Tumblr. Retrieved on 15 June 2018.
  25. Bunn, Cullen (11 June 2013). Ending One 2nd @ a Time, A while back you said Mania ended up being someone.... Tumblr. Retrieved on 15 June 2018.



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