Venom #27.1 Review

Posted by Spiderfan001 28 December 2012

Venom battles his inner demons...

The Story - The Evil Inside Us All...

Working off a tip from Daimon Hellstrom, Venom attacks a devil worshipping cult called the Harkspur Brood in an effort to learn more about the Descent, but the cult yields no information.  Returning to talk to Hellstrom, Venom nearly destroys Hellstrom's cell in a fit of anger and has to be escorted out by security.

Later, Peter Parker joins Flash Thompson as Flash's mother checks herself into the Rose Manor Center for Wellness due to being traumatized after being kidnapped by the Fly and witnessing what her son as Venom did to him.  After they get Flash's mother settled in, Peter tells Flash that an old friend from Midtown High named A.J. Patton has just moved back to New York.  Apparently Flash bullied A.J. back in high school because A.J. is a homosexual, going so far as to break his arm.  Peter tells Flash that A.J. wants to see him. 

Flash visits A.J. and his husband in their new apartment in Brooklyn.  During the visit, A.J.'s husband pulls A.J. aside and asks him why he invited Flash over after all the horrible things he did, to which A.J. replies that when he looks at Flash now he just sees a "broken-down wash out."  Unbeknownst to them, Flash can overhear their conversation.

Later that night, Flash, under the influence of the demon inside him, goes out as Venom and interrogates the cultists in the hospital.  He then goes to Rose Manor and scares his mother.  Flash has no memory of this the next day when he goes to meet Peter.  Flash tells Peter that he has decided to leave New York for good...


The highlight of this issue was definitely Mark Checchetto's artwork.  He absolutely nailed this issue, especially the scenes with Venom in action.

However, I wasn't a fan of the rest of the issue, specifically the way Cullen Bunn portrays Flash Thompson when he was in high school.  I never got the sense when reading the old Lee/Ditko issues that Flash was as bad as he's described in this issue.  Yeah, Flash was mean to Peter, but he was portrayed more as a lovable doofus than a vicious predator.  Reading in this issue how Flash beat A.J. because of his sexual orientation and how A.J. still wakes up at night remembering those beatings really puts Flash's character in a new light, making him more brutal and mentally disturbed then I think was originally intended.

I have mixed feelings on Venom's impending move to Philadelphia.  On the one hand, it's about time the Marvel superheroes started branching off to areas outside of New York, but at the same time it also means that Flash will interact less with the Spider-Man cast.

Bunn is taking Venom in some new directions, but I'm not sure I'm on board....

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