Say what you will about the symbiote itself, but Venom has never been short on interesting hosts. From OG Peter Parker to jealous Eddie Brock to Agent-turned-Guardian Flash Thompson, much of what makes Venom tick comes from his relationship with his vessels. And that’s what makes this new incarnation so hard to get behind. Despite some solid symbiote action, the book’s paper-thin narrative and lack of strong characterization ultimately translates to more slobber than bite.
Continuing to flesh out the not-so-meet-cute presented in his debut, Mike Costa initially does a solid job of furthering the new dynamic between Venom and his new human host, Lee. With Venom having always been in control, by either host willingness or direct force, painting Lee as the man in charge opens up some unexpected roads. Costa’s explanation for Lee’s dominance is a bit thin – particularly given that Flash Thompson possessed an assumedly similar skill set and training – but it nonetheless allows Costa to approach his tale with a different mindset.