Appearing in 1st story
- King in Black (Eddie Brock) (Main story and recap) (As Venom and Carnage in recap only)
- Venom (Dylan Brock) (Main story and recap) (Bonds to the Venom Symbiote) (First appearance as Venom)
- Agent Anti-Venom (Flash Thompson)
- Venom Symbiote (Main story and recap) (Bonds to Dylan Brock)
- Spider-Man (Peter Parker) (Main story and recap)
- Symbiote Hive (Main story and recap) (Controlled by Knull in recap and Eddie Brock in the present)
- Grendel (Recap)
- Dark Carnage (Cletus Kasady) (Recap)
- God of Light (Recap)
- Knull (Recap)
- Tyrannosaurus (Rex Strickland) (Mentioned)
- Numerous unnamed Valravns
- All-Father Thor Odinson
- King Loki Laufeyson
- Sym-Soldier Program (Mentioned)
- Weapon Plus (Mentioned)
- Weapon V (Mentioned)
- Beowulf (Mentioned)
- Grendel (Mentioned)
- Avengers (Cameo)
- Guardians of the Galaxy (Cameo)
- Quiet Council of Krakoa (Cameo)
- Agent Venom (Anne Weying) (Recap)
- Carl Brock (Recap)
- Interdimensional Council of Reeds (Mentioned)
- Maker (Reed Richards) (Mentioned)
- Silver Surfer (Norrin Radd) (Cameo)
- Unnamed symbiote host
- King Kong (Kenny McFarlane) (Referenced)
- Principal Bean (First appearance)
Races and Species:
- Humans (Main story and recap)
- Symbiotes (Main story and recap)
- Alien Gods (Recap)
- Frost Giants
- Prime Marvel Universe (Main story and recap)
- North America
- Gorr's Homeworld
- Shi'ar Galaxy
- Parliament of Gods (Referenced)
- Battleworld (Recap)
- The Void (Recap)
- Cancerverse (Referenced)
- Ultimate Universe (Mentioned)
- Spider-Man's Suit and Web-Shooters (Main story and recap)
- Venom's Necrosword and Battle-Axe
- The Spire
- Beowulf (Mentioned)
- Captain America's Uniform and Shield (Cameo)
- Captain Marvel's Suit (Cameo)
- Iron Man Armor Model 70 (Cameo)
- Cerebro (Cameo)
- Magneto's Helmet (Cameo)
- Knull's Symbiote-Armor (Recap)
- Venom Symbiote (Earth-1610) (Recap)
- Panther Habit (Cameo)
- Silver Surfer's Surfboard (Cameo)
- Jack O'Lantern's Suit
- Rex (Recap)
- Absolute Carnage (Recap)
- King in Black (Recap)
- Vietnam War (Mentioned)
- Venom Island (Recap)
- Venom Beyond (Recap)
Synopsis for 1st story
Noting that he's been fighting his entire life, Eddie Brock recaps the events that led to him effectively becoming a god, noting that this is just the start of a new chapter of fighting.
Eddie exposites that by defeating Knull he obtained all the dark god's powers, letting him remotely pilot symbiotes to create avatars of himself as both Venom and as Eddie. On an unnamed planet, one such avatar leads an army of symbiotes against a horde of space-pirates, dual-wielding a Necrosword and a battle-axe identical to the one he'd used against Knull. Absorbing the other symbiotes, Venom's avatar transforms into a colossal monster and lays waste to the space-pirates, impaling and devouring several of them. Internally, Eddie notes that an old friend once told him his worst fear was being alone, but that now - as the nexus of the Symbiote Hive - he never will be. On the planet Fallo, a group of symbiotes help the Valravn Priests repair the damage Knull's invasion wrought. In deep space, a swarm of symbiotes work to seal the Fault, which has reopened and threatens to let the Cancerverse spill through once again. On Mount Wundagore, some symbiotes rescue lost travellers stranded in the deep snow. On Asgard, Venom meets with All-Father Thor and King Loki, who congratulate him for defeating Knull.
However, Eddie Brock himself remains at home - a house purchased for him by Tony Stark in thanks for saving the world. Having relocated the Spire the building's basement, Eddie uses it to amplify his connection to the Symbiote Hive, but the strain of possessing the powers of a god has caused his still-mortal body to rapidly age over the course of the last few months. As Venom disconnects from the Spire, Dylan Brock tells him to hurry up or he'll be late for school. The Venom symbiote transforming into a cane, Eddie tells his son to have a little patience since he's not as spry as he used to be. Making his way upstairs, Eddie notes that while his body has weakened, it's a price he's happy to pay for peace. However, even the power of the Symbiote Hive isn't enough to contend with a moody teenager. Arriving in the kitchen to find Dylan still eating breakfast, Eddie admonishes his son for making a mess and starts cleaning up. As Dylan protests he's not finished, he knocks over a bottle of milk - which the Venom symbiote quickly catches before it can smash on the floor. The Venom symbiote sternly tells Dylan to get ready for school, then scolds Eddie for spending too much time connected to the Symbiote Hive. Eddie protests that he's fine, but the Venom symbiote gently tells him he needs to rest and should know by now he has nothing left to prove. Lamenting that old habits die hard, Eddie thanks his old friend for its concern. Internally, Eddie notes that the Venom symbiote is the only one he can't control, track, or see through - which in some respects makes it the most powerful symbiote in existence. Transforming into a dog, the Venom symbiote says it will accompany Dylan to school and keep an eye on him. Eddie says it doesn't have to do that, but the Venom symbiote insists, saying that their mission is no longer misplaced revenge or fighting super villains, but looking after Dylan. Coming downstairs, Dylan says he might be late - the Venom symbiote interrupting to reveal that he has detention. Annoyed, Eddie scolds his son for getting into another fight, Dylan protesting that he was just defending himself. Eddie asks why Dylan didn't tell him he was being bullied, and Dylan grumbles that he tried to but that Eddie's been spending all his time connected to the Symbiote Hive. Eddie's apology is interrupted by Sleeper - still in the form of a cat, who says that Spider-Man called several times and that Eddie's running late for their "team-up". Eddie demands to know why Sleeper didn't say something sooner, and Sleeper smugly retorts that he doesn't work for Eddie before deliberately knocking Eddie's phone onto the floor. As Eddie admonishes Sleeper, Dylan tells Eddie he's heading out to school, rebuking Eddie's protests by saying if he's late he'll be in even more trouble. Dylan rushes out the door with Venom, slamming it in Eddie's face as he says he loves his son. Eddie lets out a sigh before exasperatedly shouting at Sleeper when the feline symbiote says Spider-Man called again to say he's running late.
As Dylan and the Venom symbiote walk down the street, Dylan asks what its name is - noting that while it usually goes by "Venom" that's just a moniker it and his father came up with. The Venom symbiote notes that it's not sure how to answer since nobody has ever for its name before; explaining that symbiotes don't have names like humans do, but unique emotional patterns that are unpronounceable by human vocal chords. The Venom symbiote explains that it was originally cast out of the Hive for going against Knull's orders and wandered aimlessly across the galaxy before being found, saying that it's a long story for another time. Dylan asks if he can hear the Venom symbiote's "name", shedding a tear as it conveys it to him.
At the Coffee Bean, Spider-Man and Eddie sit down for lunch, Peter apologizing for meeting him in-costume. Eddie says he already knows there was a robbery nearby, Spider-Man taking a bite out of his sandwich and saying he forgot Eddie is an omnipotent god now. Eddie corrects him, saying omnipresent would be a more accurate term, and Spider-Man asks if Eddie is alright. Eddie says he's doing good, refuting Spider-Man's attempts to correct his grammar by saying he used to be a journalist while Spider-Man was a mere photographer. Eddie asks what brought about his old rival's sudden concern for his wellbeing, and Spider-Man confesses he feels guilty for all the devastation Knull caused - having drawn the dark god to Earth by bringing the Venom symbiote there. Eddie interrupts Spider-Man to inform him that symbiotes have been on Earth for thousands of years, were used as bioweapons in the Vietnam War and by Weapon Plus, and even the legend of Beowulf and Grendel is based on them. Spider-Man stares incredulously at Eddie for several seconds before pulling his mask down, asking Eddie how long he's known this. Eddie says he found out the day the Grendel symbiote-dragon attacked New York, and with forced calmness Spider-Man asks why Eddie waited so long to tell him. Eddie says that he did tell him eventually, Spider-Man saying that if Eddie ever wanted to go back to being a super-villain he'd be happy to resume their old enmity. Smirking, Eddie tells Spider-Man to trust him that he wouldn't. Calming down, Spider-Man says it's a relief to finally let go of his guilt regarding the symbiotes being on Earth, only to notice Eddie's eyes are glowing blue. Deducing that Eddie must be jacked into the Hive-Mind, Spider-Man tries to steal one of Eddie's french fries before getting his hand swatted away. His eyes returning to normal, Eddie says he was just in the middle of a meeting with the Avengers and reveals that he's actually a remote-piloted avatar. As Spider-Man processes this, Eddie's avatar interrupts to say they're about to be robbed. A robber bursts in the door only to recognize Spider-Man and Eddie from their last encounter. Spider-Man offers to take care of the would-be theif again, but Eddie's avatar lobs his cane at the man - which transforms into living abyss and sticks him to the wall. Sitting back down, Eddie's avatar says he's already alerted the police before asking if Spider-Man can pay their tab. As the police escort the robber away, Eddie's avatar apologizes and says he should have told Spider-Man he wasn't the real Eddie Brock sooner - correcting Spider-Man's assumption he's controlling the symbiotes by saying that unlike Knull the symbiotes are free to choose if they will let him pilot them or not. Spider-Man says he's still struggling to process Eddie being a god, wondering if Eddie even needs his offer to help now, but Eddie's avatar says that despite having the powers of a god he's still very much Eddie Brock and will need all the help he can get. Shaking hands, Eddie's avatar acknowledges Spider-Man as a friend before saying he should get home - transforming into a swarm of symbiote bats, thanking Spider-Man for lunch, and flying away.
Internally, Eddie notes that he's still adjusting to his powers, which let him see through the eyes of every symbiote that's ever existed, and pilot them to be in multiple places all at once. His powers even let him see backwards through time all the way back to Knull's crusade against the Light at the dawn of the universe, leading Eddie to speculate he eventually might even be able to traverse the timestream and alter history itself. However, the only being that has escaped his omniscience is the Maker, an evil version of Reed Richards from an alternate universe. Having obtained an artificial symbiote from his own universe, Reed augmented it with samples of Earth-616's symbiotes and used it to return to his home dimension. Using his powers to meet with the Avengers, Quiet Council of Krakoa, Guardians of the Galaxy, and other groups simultaneously, Eddie explains that the Maker likely intends to return and conquer Earth-616 in service to the Interdimensional Council of Reeds - who have tasked him with restoring Earth-1610, which the Maker will attempt to do by overwriting Earth-616. Iron Man interrupts to ask where Eddie is getting this intel from, Eddie responding that he sees things Iron Man can't. As Iron Man asks when the invasion will begin, Eddie falls silent and sits still for several moments before explaining that another one of his avatars is having lunch with Spider-Man, who just tried to steal his food. As Eddie prepares to leave, Captain America thanks him for the warning and says the offer for Venom to join the Avengers still stands. Eddie thanks him but declines, saying he's just a stay-at-home dad now, before saying he knows just the man for the job - someone Captain America has worked with before.
Walking down a street, Flash Thompson thinks to himself that his day couldn't get any worse, wondering why he came back to New York when he's supposed to be dead and finding out he's "alive" would put his mother through unspeakable trauma - especially since resurrected heroes don't tend to stay resurrected for long, and the world is currently reeling from the aftermath of a global symbiote invasion. Stopping at a coffee shop, Flash notes that the fact the city is still in chaos might make it easier to find work while he rebuilds his life. The woman in front of him ushers him forward, saying she's just waiting on her order, and Flash approaches the counter only to be confused by the strange terminology the coffee shop uses. The woman laughs and says that another coffee shop of the same chain uses completely different terms and even has a different menu, Flash trying to avoid making small-talk with her. Abruptly, a bullet punches through the window and ruptures the barista's head, Flash shoving the woman to the ground and starts to transform into Agent Anti-Venom. As Flash blames himself for the barista's death, wondering if an old enemy found out he was back and missed their shot, a troop of Alchemax Guardsmen enter the coffee shop to confirm they killed their target. Furious over their callousness towards having killed an innocent teenager, Flash transforms into Agent Anti-Venom and attacks them, only to be confused when the Guardsmen say they don't even know who he is. Explaining their mandate to exterminate symbiotes and other illegal extraterrestrials, one of the Guardsman says he recognizes Agent Anti-Venom's symbiote but that Flash Thompson is dead and buried - though he'd've happily taken the shot even if Flash had been the target. Slamming the Guardsman into the ground hard enough to mangle his face, Agent Anti-Venom demands to know who their target was if not him. The wounded Guardsman says they got their target, Flash turning to see another Guardsman holding the still-alive barista - who is bonded to a symbiote - hostage. Saying he's armed his gun with incendiary rounds, the Guardsman snaps that since the invasion symbiotes have been everywhere. The barista protests that he and his symbiote haven't hurt anyone, and that it's the only thing keeping him alive given that he has a terminal illness. Pressing his gun to the side of the barista's head, the Guardsman sneers he won't have to worry about that any longer, but Agent Anti-Venom kills him before he can pull the trigger. Transforming his symbiote into a black hoodie, Flash asks if the other customers are alright only to see them - even the woman who'd been talking to him earlier - looking at him in terror. Putting his hood up, Flash realizes that since Knull's invasion there are more symbiotes on Earth than ever, and people are now terrified of them. Wondering what this means for him, Flash walks away unaware that people have taken photos of him as Agent Anti-Venom with his face exposed and are posting them online.
At Midtown High School, Dylan Brock thinks to himself that he misses the chaos of the war against Knull, and that without his powers he feels lost and weak. He's abruptly shoved to the ground and turns to see Kenny McFarlane Jr., a local bully nicknamed "King Kong" - a moniker he stole from his dad. Kenny sneers that he's told Dylan before that this hallway is for seniors only, Dylan retorting that Kenny would know given he's been held back so long it must be a new record. As Dylan mocks his masculinity, Kenny grabs Dylan by the front of his shirt and furiously asks if Dylan has a death wish. Dylan snaps that he's not afraid of Kenny, but that Kenny's afraid of him for being what Kenny pretends to be. Dylan headbutts Kenny in the nose and breaks one of his ribs. As Kenny slams him into a locker, Dylan tells himself to be careful and not go too far, but his body moves on autopilot - tackling Kenny through a nearby window, brutally pummelling him, and then grabbing a large shard of glass to finish him off; disregarding his mind's pleas to stop. Dylan comes to his senses still being held by his coat, Kenny demanding to know why he zoned out before giving up and punching him in the face.
Later, Dylan sits in Principal Bean's office and is scolded for getting into another fight, angrily protesting that Kenny was the one who attacked him. Principal Bean clarifies that he never said Dylan started the fight, but that he's worried about Dylan's anger issues. Dylan brusquely refutes Principal Bean asking if his home-life is troubled, but when asked why he can't stop fighting Dylan breaks down and says that he's been fighting his entire life.
That evening, Dylan walks down a street - having avoided going home out of shame and anger. Wondering who he's even angry at, Dylan concludes that he's angry at his mother for abandoning him, his grandfather for abusing him, and his father for taking away his powers - the one thing that made him special - and now spending most of his time overseeing the Symbiote Hive instead of being a parent. As Dylan laments that he doesn't know who he is anymore, the Venom symbiote senses something is wrong. Hearing a scream from a nearby alley, Dylan investigates despite the Venom symbiote's protests to find Jack O'Lantern mugging an old woman. While Dylan fails to intimidate him, the woman takes advantage of the distraction to punch Jack O'Lantern in the face and run away. Furious, Jack O'Lantern turns to confront Dylan and holds him at gunpoint, the Venom symbiote transforming into a massive pair of jaws in an attempt to scare him away. Panicking, Jack O'Lantern shoots Dylan in the chest, the Venom symbiote reacting in horror as Jack O'Lantern stammers that he didn't actually intend to kill a kid. Bleeding out, Dylan tells the Venom symbiote to let Eddie know he died trying to be a hero he'd be proud of, but the Venom symbiote says they can tell him together and bonds to Dylan. As Jack O'Lantern recognizes both the symbiote and Dylan as Eddie's son, Dylan transforms into a towering Venom form with chains wrapped around his forearms and white dragon emblems and lunges at him.
Later, Eddie Brock waits on the roof of an apartment as Venom arrives, saying that this development didn't long to happen. The Venom symbiote separates from Dylan, who apologizes and tries to explain what happened, but Eddie says that he fully expected for Dylan to eventually bond to the Venom symbiote sooner or later. Apologizing for having neglected his son, Eddie says he knows how angry and frustrated Dylan has been at the loss of his powers, but that all he's wanted is for his son to be safe and happy - adding that while happiness is something they'll need to work on there's nowhere safer than inside the Venom symbiote. Eddie telepathically thanks the Venom symbiote for saving Dylan, Dylan marvelling that he can hear their conversation in his head. Eddie remarks that the symbiote's powers will take getting used to, but that he can sneak up on Spider-Man now. Dylan admits that he's unsure he can follow in his father's footsteps as Venom, but Eddie says that Dylan will be a better Venom than he ever was since he lacks the hatred and rage that had drowned so much of his life in darkness, and has a father who loves and supports him. Eddie hugs Dylan before stepping back and asking to get a better look at his Venom form. Once Dylan transforms, Eddie commenting that his son's Venom form is even bigger than his own before questioning the chains wrapped around Venom's arms. Speaking through Venom, Dylan responds that webs are played out and that all the cool comic-book characters he grew up reading had chains. Dylan asks if Eddie minds him using the Venom codename, but Eddie says that Dylan isn't Venom, nor is the symbiote, nor is Eddie himself. As Dylan expresses confusion, Eddie says that they are Venom together before informing his son of a Goblin sighting in the warehouse district. Smiling proudly, Eddie tells his son to get to work and watches proudly as the new Venom chain-swings away.
Appearing in "Mini Marvels"
- Sleeper (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Phage (Carl Mach) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Scorn (Tanis Nieves) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Agony (Leslie Gesneria) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Riot (Trevor Cole) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Toxin (Bren Waters) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Agent Anti-Venom (Flash Thompson) (First appearance as Agent Anti-Venom) (Cameo)
- Lasher (Ramón Hernández) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Scream (Andi Benton) (First appearance) (Cameo)
- Carnage (Cletus Kasady) (First appearance)
- Church of the New Darkness (Mentioned)
- Knull (Mentioned)
Races and Species:
Synopsis for "Mini Marvels"
Arriving at Venom's symbiote family reunion, Spider-Man remarks that Eddie did an amazing job at taming the Venom symbiote when even he couldn't do it. When he calls it a horrifying, disgusting creature, the Venom symbiote separates from Eddie's head and indignantly states it's right there; Eddie admonishing Spider-Man for being rude and telling him not to make them regret inviting him. As the Venom symbiote laments that inviting Spider-Man was a bad idea, Eddie - cooking cheeseburgers on a barbeque - tells it to relax and ignore Spider-Man. Spider-Man apologizes and says he was trying to say that he's just impressed by how far Venom has come since his days as a cannibalistic super villain. Venom says that Spider-Man introducing him to cheeseburgers satiated that craving, serving one to his former rival.
Turning to look at the other guests, Spider-Man remarks that he's surprised at the turnout, Venom scolding him for giving another backhanded compliment. Ignoring him, Spider-Man marvels at there being so many symbiotes, Venom admitting that even he lost track at some point. In the back yard, Sleeper watches in the form of a cat as Phage and Agony chat; Agent Anti-Venom and Scream celebrating their reunion with cans of soda.
Turning to see Carnage arriving, Spider-Man asks in a disgusted tone why he was invited; Venom saying that Carnage mellowed out after finding religion and starting a death-cult dedicated to the eradication of all life. Carnage corrects Venom, saying it's a "death church", before asking if Venom and Spider-Man have a minute to talk about their lord and destroyer Knull. Groaning in exasperation, Spider-Man asks for one of the symbiotes to just eat him, but Venom says that won't happen on his watch and serves up another round of cheeseburgers.
The Final Chapter in the Book of VENOM by Donny Cates & Ryan Stegman!
This is it, Venomaniacs! The landmark 200th issue starring the most sinister symbiote in the Marvel Universe arrives – and after this, NOTHING WILL BE THE SAME! From Donny Cates, Ryan Stegman, and a who’s who of artists from the issues that tore Eddie Brock’s life asunder and brought the KING IN BLACK to Earth, comes the first chapter of the rest of Venom’s life. But in Knull’s wake, what even remains of the Lethal Protector?
- This issue marks the end of Donny Cates' Venom run.
- This issue's opening quote, credited to Eddie Brock, originates from Venom: Seed of Darkness #-1.
- Dylan Brock's Venom form sporting chains is a reference to Spawn, who was created by Venom's co-creator Todd McFarlane.
- Prior to Absolute Carnage, Donny Cates had planned to have Miles Morales succeed Eddie Brock as the next host of the Venom symbiote.