The new Marvel NOW! era has brought with a big change for Venom. The symbiote has a brand new series, written by Mike Costa and illustrated by Gerardo Sandoval, and a brand new host, Lee Price.
There's more still to come. A promotional item sent out to comic shops last week featured a teaser image for Venom #150, billed as the biggest Venom story in a decade.
ComicBook.com spoke to Marvel editor Nick Lowe about what is going to make this new era so special for Venom. Read on, and be sure to check out the preview art for Venom #2 and the cover art for Venom #5 in the gallery below.
Venom #1 just debuted and introduced a new Venom host in Lee Price, who is a really fascinating character. How did you and writer Mike Costa land on this new character as the protagonist?
Nick Lowe: Venom has been a passion project for [assistant editor] Devin Lewis, who’s an even bigger Spidey and Venom fan than I am. Lee Price is very, very different than Flash Thompson. The Venom Symbiote has had a really nice run with Flash where it's been learning to be more of a hero than a villain. But as you saw in Venom #1, Lee ain't so nice.
What happens in issue two and three and four are really going to test the prevailing concept (that I think was Devin's idea): we've always seen the Symbiote as the corrupting force, from the very beginning with Peter and then with Eddie and all. But what if the person that it's bonded with is the corrupting force? That was a fascinating idea that writer Mike [Costa] has just breathed such amazing life into with Lee.
We've got so many exciting plans for that. After Venom #6, we're going to have Venom #150, which will be this huge oversized issue. Devin has incredible plans with Mike and with some other creators as well to really pump that up. It's going to be such a cool issue. I cannot wait. We've also been teasing from the very beginning that Eddie Brock is coming back. Right now he’s in Carnage, which everyone absolutely should check out because it is such a great book. I love that book. I hope people keep checking that out and look forward to Venom #150.
You mentioned that Eddie Brock is coming back, and Mac Gargan, another former Venom host, was in Venom #1. Is Venom #150 going to bring all of the Venom hosts together?
NL: We definitely want to touch base on all the major Venoms, that's for sure. For those wondering how the Symbiote and Flash get separated, that question will be answered in Venom #150. Mike's idea to bring Mac in was really, really cool. We basically wanted this to be the place for Venom fans to get everything.
And we can’t talk about this book without lauding artist Gerardo Sandoval! He draws one of the best Venoms ever. When one volume of a series is closing up shop and the next is opening, we don't often have that same artist keep on going. But he did such amazing work on Venom: Space Knight and the few tastes he got of a savage Venom made casting him here inevitable.
What was the thinking behind numbering it as Venom #150?
NL: Devin did the research and it just added up. This is a trick we've been pulling for years, I'll credit Steve Wacker with it even though I don't know if it was him. Whenever we get close to one of those huge anniversary numbers, like Amazing Spider-Man #500 - which was well before Steve, so screw Steve. Steve can go suck an egg. ANYWAY, Devin was doing some math one day with an intern and they figured it out. We thought this is a great way to show off that second arc and tell the story of Flash Thompson and some other little gems that Devin has planned with creators new and old, (in career, not age). It's going to be a really special package. Which is also my band name.
Since we’re looking at a possible Venom host reunion, for you personally, do you have a favorite?
NL: I try not to choose. Eddie will always have a special place in my heart, but I really love Flash as Venom. But I'm looking forward to Lee. He is a tough customer and not a very nice man, and sometimes those are fascinating to read about.
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