Carlton Drake is the head of the Life Foundation, a consortium he established under the paranoid belief that the world was unavoidably headed for a nuclear holocaust brought about by the end of the Cold War. Searching for a means of survival for himself and his clients, with whom he intended to rebuild society as a utopia, Drake hired the supervillain mercenary Chance to steal advanced technology to use in the construction of a bunker called Sanctum Maximus, but betrayed him hoping to steal the technology used in his suit; Chance escaping with the assistance of Spider-Man.
Coming to see symbiotes as the key to human survival, Drake became obsessed with capturing and studying the Venom symbiote, becoming a benefactor of Roland Treece's corporation Treece International in exchange for Treece helping him capture the symbiote's host, Eddie Brock.
Separating the Venom symbiote from Eddie, Drake forcibly extracted five offspring from it and bonded them to mercenaries the Life Foundation had hired as security guards. Drake decided Eddie Brock had outlived his usefulness, but Donna Diego attacked a mall to test the capabilities of her new symbiote and drew the attention of Spider-Man, who helped Eddie escape, reunite with the Venom symbiote, and seemingly kill the Life Foundation's symbiote squad.
Discovering he had terminal cancer, Drake hired Professor Toshiro Mikashi through the Life Foundation to work on biogenic research. When Spider-Man was captured by the Jury, Drake had Professor Mikashi use him to accelerate their research. Seeking to assassinate Drake and usurp control of the Life Foundation, Roland Treece injected him with the results of Professor Mikashi's research, instead causing Drake to mutate into a humanoid spider-monster called Homo Arachnis. When Spoiler and the Jury turned on the Life Foundation and helped Spider-Man escape, Drake chased them down and got into a fight with Venom. Following Professor Mikashi self-destructing the facility to destroy his research, Drake reverted to human form and vowed to find a way to permanently regain his powers.
At some point following the Life Foundation succumbing to bankruptcy, Drake made a pact with the King in Black called Meridius, who restored him to human form and manipulated history to help the Life Foundation make a comeback. In the wake of three symbiote attacks occurring within months of each other, Drake was approached by Senator Arthur Krane -- the leader of the anti-extraterrestrial hate-group Friends of Humanity -- and offered the authority to shape symbiote-related government policy. While annoyed about Meridius involving Alchemax, Drake acted in accordance with the King in Black's plans; dispatching his agent Spearhead to antagonize the Venom symbiote and ordering him to assemble a new Jury squad.
- Knowledge of Symbiotes: Drake has an above average knowledge of symbiotes, able to surmise that the Venom symbiote contained five more "seeds," and subsequently extract them.
- Although Drake claimed to have extracted all of the seeds from the Venom symbiote, the Sleeper symbiote would be born out of Venom years later.
- 23 appearance(s) of Carlton Drake (Earth-616)
- 7 image(s) of Carlton Drake (Earth-616)
- 2 quotation(s) by or about Carlton Drake (Earth-616)