The Carnage symbiote has had its fair share of hosts over the years, but for Marvel fans there is only one true version of the Spider-Man and Venom villain: Carnage's original host, sadistic serial killer Cletus Kasady!
Well, as Venom #8 hits stands this week, Marvel fans are getting several big shocks (Spoilers Follow!). Out of those surprise twists in the book, the biggest is no doubt the fact that Cletus Kasady will soon be getting the chance to become a whole new kind of Carnage!
Venom #8 throws a game-changing twist into the symbiote mythos, when it is revealed that symbiotes actually leave traces of their genetic material attached to the DNA of a host - a marker that forever links the host to the symbiote's hive. The discovery is made by The Maker, after Eddie Brock experiences his first shared body experience with the late Flash Thompson. Here's how The Maker explains the phenomenon:
"You see we've discovered that the symbiote never truly leaves a host. A cellular imprint, a codex as we've been calling it, is always left behind as a way for their kind to share information about hosts with the rest of the hive. Your symbiote has not been connected to its hive in some time, however. So this codex, and the others it's left behind, has more or less gone unused.
But they are there. Wrapped around the host's DNA structure like a great black serpent. Always... waiting."
Right now, there are a lot of vague aspects to this newly-revealed ability of the symbiotes, and how it will relate to the resurrection of Carnage. So far we know that the Venom symbiote can manifest the personas of previous hosts - which is presumably what could help Cletus Kasady getting back on his feet. There are some big technical questions about how this symbiote legacy system works - i.e., as the spawn of the Venom symbiote, would the Carnage symbiote have inherited those memories?and would the opposite case be just as true? Would the Venom symbiote contain a link to all the hosts of the Carnage symbiote, as well?
Needless to say, writer Donny Cates is opening up what will either be a big wide doorway, or Pandora's Box of problems, with this new update to the symbiotes' abilities. It seems that having more than one mind in a single symbiote could quickly denigrate into some serious personality issues. One shudders to think what a version of Carnage would be, if Kasady and say Norman Osborn's minds - or Kasady and Eddie Brock's minds - were competing for control of the killer symbiote.