cyberghostface: (Spidey & MJ)
cyberghostface ([personal profile] cyberghostface) wrote in [community profile] scans_daily2011-05-18 03:23 pm

Ultimate Venom 'Interlude': Carnage, Part 2

This is the second part of 'Carnage', with issues #63 to #65.

So Aunt May returns home to find no one there. She realizes something is off and discovers...

The backyard is being swarmed with police. Peter and May are questioned about what went on, and another cop mentions similar things that have gone on at Empire State University and Manhattan. 'Vampiric' and 'mutant' are being tossed around.

There's a bit more dealing with grief; Mary Jane talks to Peter, who assures him that he was still a good friend to Gwen. Peter wonders what's the point of being Spider-Mani if he can't save the ones closest to him.

Later, Peter is considering all the possible people behind Gwen's death, when he remembers Empire State University. He sees Curt Connors standing outside his house (right now Peter is at Mary Jane's) and runs out and attacks him. Peter assumes that Connors had done something as the Lizard, but Connors explains there was an accident at the lab.

Next issue...

Yeah, Carnage was a lot more intimidating when he was silent and wasn't yelling "Beh!"

Peter says to himself how he has failed at keeping Uncle Ben's mantra of "with great power comes great responsibility". Carnage flees and kills two cops, before turning into a naked version of Peter.

Later, Connors is back in his lab when he finds Peter there. Peter tells him "It's done". Connors asks what happened, and Peter explains via flashback:

Peter tells Connors how the creature wasn't a was an spore, an airborne virus. It didn't have a brain or a soul, and it didn't belong here. Peter lures it to a smoke stack.

Connors apologizes to Peter, who almost attacks him in response for his responsibility in Carnage and Gwen's death, but he restrains himself.

Later, Connors turns himself in.

Connor is taken into custody, his lab is closed but at the end of the issue, his lab assistant is seen pocketing Peter's blood samples.

So contrast to Venom, who I think in some ways works better than the standard 616 version, I think Bendis dropped the ball with Carnage. With the exception of Gwen's death, I don't think Ultimate Carnage would really have been a memorable villain and the whole thing comes off as a bad horror film at times. I do think the backstory of Carnage being an experiment was interesting, but Venom had that too.

One of the funniest things is how much contempt Bendis has for 616 Carnage, saying stuff like "I don't think it's impossible to tell a good story with Carnage, it just hasn't been done yet" and how this would be an improvement. Say what you want about Cletus, but at least he's fun to read sometimes with his crazy antics. Personally, given Bendis's tenure as a crime writer (especially Torso) I think a serial killer in an an alien suit would have been up his alley and he could have made it work.

Next issue was an 'epilogue' of sorts with Peter and friends in detention (long story). It had this opening scene:

One more 'interlude' post left before I can post the return of Venom.

icon_uk: (Default)

[personal profile] icon_uk 2011-05-18 07:34 pm (UTC)(link)
I find this Carnage to be MUCH more interesting than the characterless "murder murder ha-ha-ha!" cipher that first appeared in the MU as part of that interminable crossover thing.

I got the impression it was trying to say "Ben", to at least be able to say it's name. Creepy face morphing too.

Connors really does come across as an unforgivable asswipe here, and I rather like Peter's "I'll throwing it in the room with you and locking the door" outburst.

As others have noted, I've always liked how expressive Bagley makes faces.
icon_uk: (Default)

[personal profile] icon_uk 2011-05-18 07:48 pm (UTC)(link)
This Carnage was, in it's own way, trying to survive, I find that a much more interesting motivation than Cletus "I like murder" Kassady managed.

Plus I never said I thought it had the legs to be a recurring villain, I like that it was done in one, but I still prefer it to dragging back the original the way the 616 Carnage does (especially this most recent revival)

Speaking purely personally, I find camp is cancelled out by murder. Threaten folks? Sure. Elaborate deathtraps? Assuredly. Bodycount? Not so much. When Carnage starts killing people in gruesome agonising ways, I feel whimsy has pretty much left the building.
drmcninja: (Default)

[personal profile] drmcninja 2011-05-18 11:14 pm (UTC)(link)
I always saw carnage as symbol of what Peter could become, in the worst possible way. Venom (Brock) has his moments on either side, generally like this Carnage, where he goes through just trying to survive and sort things out, figuring out what he should be. Carnage to me, has always been "what if peter had no responsibility. What if he used his powers in the most selfish, crazy way possible." Carnage has this insane power, and he got it through a sheer accident, just like Peter did, and all he does is use it to do whatever he wants. He is the epitome of what an evil spider man would be, and thats why I think he works.
damianwayne: (Default)

[personal profile] damianwayne 2011-05-19 12:24 am (UTC)(link)
An evil Spider-Man has so much more potential though. Carnage wasn't anything like Peter and it makes for a much less interesting killer. Kasady was played as a 90's metalhead with a blood fetish -"Yeah baby! Anarchy! Woo, let's blast the new Guns n Roses while we slit a guy's throat and use his blood to write "sweet child of mine!" at the crime scene! That's DARK!"

It really wasn't, though. It was stupid.

IMO? You want to make an evil Spider-Man, it starts with a mirror not of Spidey but of Peter. The guy who gets the Carnage symbiote isn't Otto from the Simpsons, but a genius bookish, social outcast. Kicked all the way up the ladder, never noticed by girls or guys alike. Make him a devious serial killer who acts as a "hero" during the day, stopping petty supervillains, but also solving his own gruesome murders. Hell, introduce him as someone trying to help Spidey out, then the reveal. Maybe Spidey finds out his civvie identity inadvertently and then starts to piece together that this was a disturbed individual. He doesn't even know that it's been the Carnage symbiote, because this kid was actually batshit insane enough to [tame] it. Then Pete tracks him to his family home home on a hunch, nd finds, I unno, a bunch of victims cocooned up in cacaphony of webbing, being fed on by the kid and his hundreds of pet spiders. That could be a cool story.

Maximum Carnage wasn't. I read it too, I was 10 and the crossover had like every Marvel hero I loved drawing at the time, and a bitching Sega Genesis tie-in. With the nostalgia glasses off, though... it was still dreck.
drmcninja: (Default)

[personal profile] drmcninja 2011-05-19 01:01 am (UTC)(link)
I won't disagree. I think what I said was more my own personal canon, because as much as I can see it in the character itself, there is very little contextual evidence to work with that. The closest I can get to an actual parallel is the accidental powers: what if someone else had been bitten? But thats a tenuous link at best. The problem is still the nineties, when every slightly-obscure villain was written into a nutcase psychopath. Carnage had the bonus of being a new character, but guys like Reaper got destroyed. I just feel like they wasted so much potential with Carnage. He's got a great look, he's got really great powers, but I will not accept that they made him that over-the-top crazy because they felt like it. It seems like a waste of the chractaer, so I tend to roll with my version. This way, when something decent finally gets done with him, I can be all "I told you so."
damianwayne: (Default)

[personal profile] damianwayne 2011-05-19 12:14 am (UTC)(link)
The most recent Carnage miniseries isn't being played for camp value. I've seen serious discussions of that dreck like "Yeah, and then it went to Shriek, but like, Kasady got cyber legs and he's absorbing them to become like a big, mega Carnage. It's pretty badass."

I hate a lot of today's fans, it turns out.
misterbug: (Default)

[personal profile] misterbug 2011-05-18 07:43 pm (UTC)(link)
I really liked it when Gwen was the strange girl who no-one could figure out...haven't gotten that vibe out of the more recent series.
funbox: Funbox! (Default)

[personal profile] funbox 2011-05-19 01:27 am (UTC)(link)
In my opinion, there hasn't been any mystery injected to her anymore. Not that there isn't potential, but that the opportunities to tap into it haven't been taken
venatosapiens: griffin vulture (Default)

[personal profile] venatosapiens 2011-05-18 07:49 pm (UTC)(link)
Never having much cared about Carnage in one way or another, this seemed to me to be a pretty good idea where the execution was flawed. Carnage as pure killing machine would be boring in the long term, but it wasn't long term--it was a few issues and then dealt with. So I think it works.

As for the fridging of Gwen Stacy, that was done in a ham handed and detestable manner. It didn't need to happen, and it made Bendis look lazy.

[identity profile] 2011-05-18 08:03 pm (UTC)(link)
I like Carnage mainly as a villain that can actually challenge Spider-Man at his own game (speed and strength), but this one is kinda flat even with that, IMO.
nefrekeptah: (Default)


[personal profile] nefrekeptah 2011-05-19 02:14 am (UTC)(link)
Honestly, I liked Gwen Stacy's death. It was a gut-punch to the reader, was totally unexpected, was every bit as horrific as a scene like that was supposed to be, and had serious repercussions to the entire cast for a long while.

I also find it interesting how for much of this arc, including the final punch-out, Peter wasn't in costume, just like the Venom arc, as a matter of fact, and the Clone Saga arc that would occur later.

And you know what's weird? This is pretty much the first and only time Conners had a central role in Ult. Spidey - his previous and later appearances were little more then glorified cameos, and his Lizard persona has appeared exactly never.
shatners_bassoon: (Default)

Re: Carnage

[personal profile] shatners_bassoon 2011-05-19 06:16 pm (UTC)(link)
I found it weird that Peter and Connors were both talking about the lizard thing, which had never happened in Ultimate Spider-Man - until I read the Ultimate Team-Up trades. It does seem odd to just assume your readers knew about that though, especially if it's the "young person not intimately familiar with 616 Spidey" that I always figured the books were written for.