I would say things are getting weird, but things have been full-on weird in Donny Cates’ Venom run for some time now, and issue 27 merely slathers on some more craziness as we venture deeper into the Beyond arc.
For those of you catching up, Eddie & Dylan disrupted The Maker’s attempt to escape their dimension, pulling them through to another unknown world. Unfortunately, the revenge-crazed Virus was also brought along with them, and seems to have it out for Dylan as Eddie fights ruthlessly to protect his son.
The battle is cut short by the alternate universe’s version of The Avengers – definitely not your friendly neighborhood types.
While the Avengers are distracted by Virus, Eddie and Dylan escape, trying to find answers as to where they are, and how they can get home – especially since Knull is now on a fast-track to Earth to complete his symbiote collection like a depraved Pokemon master.
Virus is taken into custody, presented to a mysterious new character known as Codex. He seems largely uninterested in Virus’ story, and also seems surprised that he doesn’t recognize him once he’s unmasked.
Underground, Eddie and Dylan make their way through the sewers, but it doesn’t take long before they’re confronted by mysterious figures that instruct them to follow them. Unsure if they’ve been greeted by friend or foe, there’s a brief tease that perhaps this alternate universe features Flash Thompson as one of them introduces themselves as being “Just an agent.”
The real identity of this character is for you comic readers to enjoy – so I won’t spoil that here! Suffice it to say that it’s an interesting twist that’s sure to unpack some narrative ground that hasn’t been visited in quite some time.
Overall, Venom 27 was another great romp as we inch closer and closer to Knull’s impending arrival. The Virus vs. Venom fight was brief, but extremely charged – it was great to see Eddie’s paternal instincts kick in as Virus threatened Dylan’s life and we got to see the antihero really let loose.
That being said, once the main conflict was over, Virus’ continued interactions with the alternative/evil(?) Avengers went on a bit too long for my taste. Sure, there was a bit of a “reveal” in the process, but it could have been tightened up a bit.
Part of the hype around this week’s episode was yet another new character reveal with the introduction of Codex – he seems to be in charge of this city, but the extent of his powers and background have yet to be unveiled. His design is pretty slick, however.
Finally, I’m really excited for what the last page reveal is setting up for future issues. A major part of Eddie’s history is likely about to be re-told, and I’d have some tissues ready if I were you!
Can’t wait for the adventure to continue in Venom 28 – but in the meantime, you can pick up the latest issue below!