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.
Andi's life was changed forever the day Flash Thompson moved to Philadelphia, coming to live in an apartment upstairs from her father's. 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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. 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.
Possessed by the Hell-Mark
In Flash's absence, Andi continued to fight organized crime in Philadelphia as Mania. However, she slowly lost control of her anger, which caused the Hell-Mark to transfer from the Mania symbiote to her. This corrupted the Mania symbiote even further, turning it into a bloodthirsty monster she had no control over.
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. 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.
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. 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.
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 and 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. 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, 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. 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.
Back in Philadelphia, Andi struggled to adjust to civilian life and cope with the death of her mentor, either graduating from or dropping out of 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 as a form of phantom limb syndrome 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. 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.
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. 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.
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. Staying at the F.E.A.S.T. homeless shelter, she was accosted by a homeless woman named Agnes - who had been traumatized by Carnage's attack on the city. The head of the F.E.A.S.T. shelter, an elderly woman named May Parker, intervened and Andi protected her from Agnes. Tired of spending her nights hunting would-be rapists to vent her rage and despair on, Andi attempted to commit suicide by jumping off the Manhattan Bridge, but the Scream symbiote saved her. Shortly thereafter, they were forced to work together when attacked by grotesque monsters formed from drowned corpses reanimated and fused to sea life 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 accurately described the circumstances of her birth, ignoring the Scream symbiote's warnings that it was a trap.
Andi was devastated when the woman was revealed to be another symbiote-reanimated corpse, which managed to escape by infecting the contents of a nearby seafood stall with living abyss. Spending the night at the F.E.A.S.T. shelter, she was attacked by Agnes - who had been taken over by the symbiote offshoot that had impersonated her mother. During their fight, the symbiote offshoot vacated Agnes' corpse and infected the other homeless people at the shelter, the Scream symbiote taking over to fight them. When the Scream symbiote absorbed a piece of the symbiote offshoot and went berserk, Andi witnessed a vision of Knull. Interviewed by Detective Henley of the NYPD, Andi decided to confront the primordial symbiote head-on, the Scream symbiote assuming an aquatic form.
Facing off against the ancient symbiote dragon known as "Grendel's Mother," Scream rebuked the monster's desire to claim the Scream symbiote as her "daughter" and attempted to garotte her with hair-tendrils. Overwhelmed by the horde of undead creatures, Andi was separated from her symbiote by Grendel's Mother. Andi nearly gave up and allowed herself to drown, but the Scream symbiote managed to rebond to her. Andi finally accepting her symbiote as the only family she had left, Scream fought back against Grendel's Mother and attempted to escape by manifesting wings. Before she could fly away, Grendel's Mother dragged Scream back down to the depths and ripped the symbiote from Andi a second time. Urged to flee by her symbiote, Andi tried to swim to the surface but was swallowed whole by Grendel's Mother before she could escape. The Scream symbiote saved Andi, who fully accepted her bond to it, and as Scream ripped her way free and fled to the surface. Grendel's Mother pursued them, intent on killing Scream for having the audacity to side with humans over the symbiotes, but Scream used a nearby construction crane to lynch and decapitate the symbiote-giantess - the Scream symbiote warning Andi that this wouldn't be the end of Grendel's Mother.
Oblivious to Detective Henley putting out an APB on her, Andi returned to the F.E.A.S.T. center to rest and recover. The next day Andi was confronted by May Parker, who revealed she was aware Andi was hosting a symbiote. Andi was initially worried May would kick her out, only for the older woman to place her trust in Andi to use her powers for good and to protect those in need, offering her a home and family at the shelter if she so desired.
One of the other homeless teens, a girl named Guinevere, developed an interest in Andi, who despite her attempts to be standoffish found herself intrigued - to both her and the symbiote's confusion. Despite trying to lay low, Scream became involved in an altercation between the Punisher and William Baker over the fate of a wealthy pedophile, the symbiote opting to kill the man itself to resolve the conflict. When the Punisher commended her and requested they team up, however, Scream bluntly refused. Andi was later approached by Detective Henley, who requested Scream's aid in tracking down homeless teenagers and children who'd gone missing over the past month; though Andi bluntly refused. Invited out to Coney Island by Guinevere, the two girls further bonded; though Andi cut the meeting short and fled when Guinevere accidentally triggered her PTSD over everyone she'd come to care about having been killed.
King in Black
When Knull commenced his attack on Earth, Scream confronted the other Life Foundation symbiotes - which were under Knull's control and hunting for Dylan Brock. Saving an orphaned child from being eaten, Scream was almost assimilated when the symbiotes merged into Hybrid and devoured her, but used her Hell-Mark to explode the gestalt symbiote from the inside. Assuming Hybrid had been killed, Scream took the child to safety before deciding to take the fight to Knull.
Instead of fighting him directly, Andi took the fight to Demagoblin, who was recruiting homeless children into a cult based on her twisted version of Christianity. Saving the children from the fire on Demagoblin's church, Scream was quick to destroy her glider when taking her attention to her before Knull manifested an avatar to confront her. Tossing Demagoblin aside, he showed interest in assimilating her symbiote back into the Hive. When Scream resisted his control, he sicced a swarm of symbiote-dragons on her until she incinerated them using her Hell-Mark. Knull attacked Scream directly, but she was able to injure his avatar with an explosion of hellfire. Impressed by her use of the Hell-Mark, Knull decided to let them live until he could figure out what to do with them.
Following Knull's defeat, Scream resumed searching for Demagoblin until she came across the Doppelgänger in the middle of escaping from Alchemax, which had taken to performing cruel and unethical experiments on captured extraterrestrials and monsters. Subduing Doppelgänger, Scream was attacked by one of Alchemax's Guardsmen, disarming and interrogating him as to why he was targeting them. As a broadcast of Senator Peter Krane's interview was played over a set of televisions on display at a nearby store, the Scream symbiote sensed an odd thrumming sound that only it could hear, but which made Andi feel nauseous as it increased in volume. As Andi struggled to process what was happening, the Scream symbiote began behaving erratically - ranting that it was being called by its family and couldn't resist. Confused and alarmed, Andi decided to retreat into a nearby sewer to figure out what was going on.
The Scream symbiote and Andi were abruptly pulled into the Symbiote Hive-Mind by Carnage, the source of the overwhelming urge that the Scream symbiote had felt. Silencing Andi, Carnage informed the Scream symbiote that he was planning on putting together his own Hive to rival Venom's and intended to recruit the other Life-Foundation symbiotes into it. To Andi's shock, the Scream symbiote willingly embraced Carnage's influence, allowing him to take over and causing its to assume a Carnage-ized form and go on a rampage while puppeteering Andi's body. Her consciousness trapped in the Hive-Mind, Andi berated the Scream symbiote for its betrayal, saying she thought they were family, but the Scream symbiote retorted that Carnage was its true family. To put an end to the Carnage-Infested Scream's slaughter, Andi revoked its immunity from her Hell-Mark and blasted it with hellfire until its hold on her mind was broken. As Andi lamented that she thought they would be together, demanding to know why it would betray her after everything they'd been through, the Scream symbiote - enraged and spurred on by Carnage - accused Andi of lying to and betraying it. As the Scream symbiote tried to kill her, out of desperation Andi blasted it with an explosion of hellfire, burning away Carnage's corruption but seemingly killing it in the process, leaving her sobbing in despair as it sloughed away from her. While mourning the Scream symbiote and begging it not to be dead, Andi was placed under arrest by a squad of Guardsmen.
Captured by Alchemax, Andi learned from astrobiologist Dr. Steve that the Scream symbiote could possibly be resuscitated from remnants taken from her skin and blood. Contained in a holding cell, Andi was attacked by Phage, who had been corrupted by Carnage and sought to avenge Scream. Andi attempted to vanquish Phage with her Hell-Mark, but was overpowered and thrown through a wall just as the recently resurrected Agent Anti-Venom - who had learned of her arrest and come to rescue her - arrived. Before Andi or Agent Anti-Venom could do anything, Phage impaled Andi through the chest with an arm-blade. Agent Anti-Venom rushed the mortally-wounded Andi to Dr. Steven's lab, where he revealed he'd spliced the Scream symbiote's remains with a sample of Anti-Venom to create a new gestalt symbiote. Delirious from blood-loss, Andi mistook the new symbiote for Scream and bonded to it. Introducing itself as Silence, the symbiote then took over Andi and easily trounced Phage using its cleansing touch. At Flash's urging, Andi attempted to confront Carnage in the Hive-Mind, intending to use Silence to destroy him, but encountered Toxin instead. Teaming up with Toxin and its host Bren Waters, Andi and Flash travelled to Washington DC and met with Flash's contact, Hank, deducing based on his intel that Carnage intended to assassinate the President. Connecting to the Hive-Mind, Andi attempted to spy on Carnage's hive and discovered that he was aware of them and was luring them into a trap. When Carnage was revealed to have taken over Senator Krane's son Arthur, Silence, Agent Anti-Venom, and Toxin realized his plot was to assassinate Senator Krane and rushed to stop him, but arrived too late. Joined by Sleeper - who Flash had secretly sent to bond to Hank, Silence confronted Agony and its host Gemma Shin while Toxin confronted Lasher and Sleeper battled Phage. Silence quickly subdued Agony, but was caught off-guard when a squad of Guardsmen joined the fray on their side and helped subdue Lasher and Phage. Carnage - transformed into a symbiote-dragon by assimilating Iron Man's Extrembiote armor - freed Agony and escaped with her.
Andi used the Silence symbiote to help Dr. Steven separate the captured Life Foundation symbiotes from their hosts and isolate them from Carnage's hive, with them being placed into containment in Alchemax's xenobiology lab. Andi later met with Flash and expressed misgivings about Bren - who she dismissed as a child - joining their team, begrudgingly acquiescing when Flash and Bren pointed out that sooner or later the Life Foundation symbiotes would escape and Carnage would return.
- I don't want to hurt you, but you are leaving me no choice... my hellfire's always been more powerful. It was me who allowed Scream to stay bonded and not get burned. You aren't invulnerable to the fire, Scream... I made sure you didn't get hurt. I protected you from myself. My rage. But I can't protect you any longer.
- --Andi Benton[src]
Prior to her meeting with Flash Thompson, Andi had been a somewhat typical punk teenage girl, slacking off and cutting class - particularly gym - whenever she could get away with it, and expressing disaffected sarcasm at the world. Despite this, Andi harbored a deep loneliness rooted in her belief that her mother had abandoned her as an infant; and despite her sass was a compassionate person - expressing concern when she came across Flash badly wounded on the roof of their apartment.
Jack O'Lantern's murder of her father filled Andi with a vengeful rage, which was exacerbated by her symbiote and the Hell-Mark it carried. Despite frequently bickering with him, Andi quickly came to see Flash as not only a mentor but a surrogate father; and felt abandoned by him when he left Earth to join the Guardians of the Galaxy, exacerbating her anger even further. This lead to the Hell-Mark transferring from the Mania symbiote to Andi, corrupting her into a vengeful and bloodthirsty vigilante. When Flash returned to Earth, Mania attacked him for having abandoned her; and under the sway of the Hell-Mark attempted to kill him and take both the Venom and Mania symbiotes for herself. Upon being returned to her senses, Andi rage was soothed when Flash decided to remain on Earth, and she began operating as a superhero under his mentorship even after he lost the Venom symbiote.
After losing the Mania symbiote to Lee Price, Andi was desperate to get it back, though as she learned to control the Hell-Mark she decided she didn't need it to be a hero and opted not to reclaim it after Price was defeated. Following Flash's death, Andi was devastated by the loss of her father-figure and struggled to maintain the semblance of a normal life; though this was shattered when Dark Carnage murdered her Aunt Sarah to get at her. Afraid and alone, Andi was forced to flee for her life and was left stranded in New York City; bonded to the Scream symbiote after Trish Robertson sacrificed herself to save Andi from Carnage.
Traumatized and blaming herself for the deaths of everyone she'd cared about, Andi began hunting rapists and other criminals to vent her rage and despair on; her downward spiral into depression intensifying to the point where she eventually attempted to commit suicide. Despite initially hating the Scream symbiote, their battle against Big Mother caused Andi to realize they weren't so different after all and she came to accept the symbiote as family. As such, Scream's betrayal and embracing of Carnage's corruption deeply hurt her, though she was devastated when she was forced to kill Scream in self-defence.
Despite going out of her way to be standoffish towards other humans - seeing herself as cursed and afraid that anyone who got too close to her would end up dying; Andi found herself forming a budding maternal relationship with May Parker, in a tentative alliance with NYPD Detective Henley, and drawn to a homeless girl named Guinevere. Despite this, Andi decided to push Guinevere away to protect her from ending up like her other friends and loved ones.
Hell-Mark: The Hell-Mark was bestowed upon the Venom symbiote by Mephisto, and ultimately transferred to Andi Benton; The marking her as a potential candidate to become a Hell-Lord and take Mephisto's place as the ruler of his Hell should he be chosen to become Satan during the Descent. The demonic sigil gives her an assortment of demonic abilities, but has a corruptive effect on not only symbiotes but Andi herself.
- Healing Factor: The Hell-Mark is capable of rapidly healing Andi from wounds as severe as being impaled through her torso.
- Hell Portal Creation: When Andi's life is in danger, the Hell-Mark can open a portal to Hell and forcibly teleport Andi there.
- Hellfire Conjuration: Andi's most-frequently used ability granted by the Hell-Mark is the conjuration and manipulation of hellfire. Andi is capable of granting Symbiotes immunity to its effects in order to channel hellfire through them, though this can be revoked at her discretion. Andi's hellfire is powerful enough to immolate symbiote-dragons - which are highly resilient to traditional symbiote weaknesses - and even temporarily incapacitate an avatar of Knull. As a side-effect of its ability to conjure hellfire, the Hell-Mark makes Andi immune to fire.
- Demon Summoning and Control: As a potential Hell-Lord, Andi is able to use the Hell-Mark to summon and command a variety of demons. Amused by her impertinence, Mephisto gifted Andi with the Monsters of Evil to serve as her bodyguards, though they were slain by Carnage - who had been augmented by Chthon and Knull.
- Demonic Armaments: Andi is able to manifest demonic weapons - including a sword with a blade of hellfire and a spiked pipe wrench, and armor.
- Demonic Transformation: By drawing on the full power of the Hellmark, Andi can transform herself into a demon - sporting horns, clawed fingers, and furry hock-jointed legs with hooves.
Silence Symbiote: The Silence symbiote gives to its host the following powers:
- Superhuman Strength
- Superhuman Durability
- Superhuman Stamina
- Superhuman Speed, Agility, and Reflexes
- Accelerated Healing Factor
- 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, Silence prefers to extend her hair-like tendrils to lash at or encircle her foes.
- External Symbiote Rejection
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.
Demonic Pipe Wrench: After transforming into a demon, Andi conjures a demonically-augmented pipe wrench to use as a weapon.
- Andi's family name was first revealed by Cullen Bunn on his blog.
- At the end of Venom: Space Knight #12, Andi's Hell-Mark is shown on her forehead. However, in Venom: Space Knight #13, it is shown on her chest.
- 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.
- An unused concept design for Andi as Scream - featured on several variant covers - depicts her with red eyes, a black upper body with red splotches, and a yellow lower body with black splotches.
- According to Dan Slott, the reason Andi was stripped of the Mania symbiote in Venom Inc. was because the editorial department felt there were too many heroic symbiote characters.
- Following the cancellation of Scream: Curse of Carnage, Clay McLeod Chapman was asked whether he had planned to establish Andi Benton as a lesbian or bisexual with Guinevere as a love interest, and responded in a teasing manner that he would never tell.
- 45 appearance(s) of Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 1 appearance(s) in handbook(s) of Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 5 minor appearance(s) of Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 2 mention(s) of Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 1 mention(s) in handbook(s) of Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 96 image(s) of Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 5 quotation(s) by or about Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 2 victim(s) killed by Andrea Benton (Earth-616)
- 1 item(s) used/owned by Andrea Benton (Earth-616)