- Ha! You are a simple and trusting host, Edward Brock. I see why my child adores you so. But you have been lied to for so very long. What you think of as their homeworld, their planet... is nothing more than the largest horde of symbiotes in the galaxy trying desperately to keep their greatest secret. An infinity of them churning and roiling endlessly around the one thing that binds them all... the hive mind they cannot do without. Do you see the shape of it now? Do you understand? There is no Planet of the Symbiotes. Klyntar is their word for cage. That is where I am right now, host. Where I have been sleeping for eons. I am there. Imprisoned. As I am here piloting this... what did your people call it? The Grendel? Thank you for releasing my other, Eddie Brock. Though I'm not sure how much you had to do with the choice... no doubt your symbiote has been reacting to my resurrection on late, no? I'm sure it all must be quite... overwhelming for you both... but all is well, child. Your God is awake. And God is coming. When this Grendel is complete... when I find its missing... parts... it will come for me. It will free me from my klyntar. From my cage. And then I will finish what I began. I will rid my dark kingdom of this invasive light once and for all... and I will start with Earth.
- -- Knull
Appearing in 1st story
- Knull (First appearance chronologically) (Main story and flashback) (Origin revealed) (Possesses the Grendel Symbiote in main story)
- Grendel Symbiote (First appearance chronologically) (Main story and flashback) (Origin revealed) (Controlled by Knull)
- Unnamed Celestials (Only in flashback)
- Unnamed gold-armored alien gods (Only appearance; death) (Only in flashback)
- Gorr (Only in flashback) (Bonds with the All-Black Symbiote)
- Symbiote Imperium (First appearance chronologically) (Only in flashback) (Origin revealed) (Continuity Error)
- Vikings (Only in flashback)
- Beowulf (Mentioned) (Only in flashback)
- Thor (Odinson) (Only in flashback)
- Agents of the Cosmos (Mentioned) (Origin revealed)
- Venom Symbiote (First appearance chronologically) (Origin revealed)
- God (Yahweh) (Invoked)
Races and Species:
- Alien Gods (Main story and flashback)
- Celestials (Only in flashback)
- Klyntar (First appearance chronologically) (Main story and flashback) (Origin revealed)
- Numerous unidentified alien species (Only in flashback)
- Humans (Main story and flashback)
- Asgardians (Only in flashback)
- Gods (Mentioned)
- The Abyss (Only in flashback)
- Knowhere (First appearance chronologically) (Origin revealed) (Only in flashback)
- Andromeda Galaxy (Only in flashback)
- Milky Way Galaxy (Main story and flashback)
- All-Black Symbiote / All-Black the Necrosword (Only in flashback) (First appearance chronologically) (Origin revealed) (Continuity Error)
- Mjolnir (Only in flashback) (Continuity Error)
- Spider-Man's Suit
- Web-Shooters (Behind the scenes)
Synopsis for 1st story
Showing Eddie Brock visions of the past, Knull reveals that he came into being in the abyss that existed before the beginning of the universe, content to slumber in the endless darkness of the Void. When the Big Bang occurred, the Celestials appeared and began flooding the abyss with cosmic light, creating planets and seeding them with life; awakening Knull, who was outraged by this pollution of his kingdom of darkness. When a Celestial picked him up to examine him, Knull bared his fangs, plunged his hand into his newly-cast shadow, and pulled out a sword of living darkness — the first symbiote. Decapitating the Celestial with a single strike, he attempted to attack the others but was repelled and cast back into the abyss. Converting the Celestial's severed head into a forge, Knull used its divine energy to refine the crude blade - revealing that the symbiotes' vulnerability to intense heat and sound is a psychosomatic condition passed down through their genetic memory of this forging.
Manifesting a suit of armor from the same eldritch darkness as his sword, Knull embarked on a genocide against the gods; his symbiotic weapon becoming known as All-Black the Necrosword. While massacring a group of gold-armored gods, Knull was stabbed through the face while simultaniously impaling the last one through the heart. Crash-landing on a desolate planet, Knull awakened to find that All-Black had been stolen by one of the planet's indigenous inhabitants - who would unwittingly go on to continue Knull's deicidal crusade. Knull condescendingly asks Eddie if he can comprehend what it would be like to have a dark god fall from the sky and provide a weapon of incomprehensible power, the depths of madness a mortal would need to possess in order to wield such a weapon; and is amusedly impressed when Eddie says he can and asks Knull to continue. Alone and stranded, Knull spent at least a century convalescing in the crater. Emerging when a strange new hunger arose inside him, Knull discovered he could manifest the eldritch "living abyss" that had formed his sword and armor into amorphous parasites that could be bonded to "lesser creatures", turning them into predatory monsters that Knull could indwell and draw strength from. Knull amassed a massive army of these symbiotes, conquered the planet, and established himself as the nexus of their hive-mind. Refining his creations to construct a replacement symbiote-sword and a fleet of composited symbiote-dragons, Knull and his army conquered countless worlds and devoured entire civilizations.
Drawn to Earth by its abundance of the cosmic light he hated, Knull inhabited one of his symbiote-dragons and attacked Scandinavia during the sixth century CE, reveling in the terror his creation - dubbed Grendel - inspired in the planet's indigenous population; however, Knull's rampage attracted the attention of a powerful young storm-god, whose divine lightning severed his connection to the symbiote hive-mind. Freed from Knull's control, the symbiote-dragons unraveled into their constituent symbiotes, which sought out new hosts to give their lives context and existence meaning. On the Symbiote Throneworld, the symbiotes who had bonded to benevolent and noble hosts rebelled against Knull, overwhelming and drowning him in the very abyss he had created.
Holding up the Venom symbiote, whose eyespots have turned red, Knull asks Eddie if he understands the dark secret of how the symbiotes became the Klyntar. Eddie stammers that it can't be true, Knull sneering that the symbiotes of Klyntar are liars and traitors who are desperate to conceal their dark past. When Knull gloats that he's close to breaking free from the traitor symbiotes' "klyntar," Eddie incredulously asks what he means; saying that his symbiote was told that "Klyntar" was the name of the symbiotes' species and homeworld. Knull mockingly tells Eddie that everything the Agents of the Cosmos had told the Venom symbiote had been a lie, and shows him that the the so-called "Planet of the Symbiotes" is nothing more than a planet-sized cocoon of symbiotes imprisoning his body - "klyntar" being the symbiotes' word for "cage." Knull thanks Eddie for aiding in his resurrection, noting that he undoubtedly had no choice in the matter given the Venom symbiote's reaction to his awakening. Knull states that once he recovers all the missing pieces of Grendel, he will use it to free himself from Klyntar and resume his conquest of the universe - starting with Earth. Spider-Man regains consciousness and punches Knull in the face with a Venom Blast, urging Eddie to get up as the Venom symbiote rebonds to him. Knull, his avatar twisted and destabilized, sneers that Miles is a fool for underestimating him and doubting his power. Ignoring Knull, Miles tries to rip open a hole in the wall of symbiote biomass, only to see that Knull has reformed Grendel's dragon form around them and they are flying into space.
• An ancient Klyntar has awakened on Earth, and with it, something has stirred in Eddie Brock’s symbiote.
• And while Venom would never do anything to hurt Eddie or an innocent person, the ancient symbiote has no such qualms…
- The timeline of the creation of the Symbiote Imperium billions of years in the past - as established in Venom Vol 4 #3 - contradicts Thor: God of Thunder #6, which establishes that Gorr acquired All-Black only 3000 years in the past. Donny Cates established this as a continuity error-turned-retcon on Twitter.
- Cates identifying Knull's weapon while on his throne as All-Black the Necrosword later on Twitter is also a continuity error, as this issue establishes that Knull didn't create his symbiote army and become their god until after All-Black had been stolen from him by Gorr.
- An third continuity error occurs in this issue when it shows Thor wielding Mjolnir in the 6th century, whereas Thor: God of Thunder established that he hadn't yet been worthy of the mystical hammer by the time of the 10th century.
- The severed head of the Celestial killed by Knull would later become Knowhere.
- This issue establishes Gorr's unnamed homeworld from Thor: God of Thunder #6 as being the same planet seen in the Venom symbiote's flashback in Venom: Dark Origin #4.
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- Discuss Venom Vol 4 4 on the forums
- 8 Images from Venom Vol 4 4
- ↑ Cates, Donny (3 November 2018). DONNY CATES on Twitter: "Sure. Or I’m just dumb. I dunno.". Twitter. Retrieved on 3 November 2018.
- ↑ Cates, Donny (26 July 2018). DONNY CATES on Twitter: "Yep! The severed celestial head in VENOM #4 would someday erode and decay and become Knowhere! Good catch!". Twitter. Retrieved on 26 July 2018.
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