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Venom Sans Venom

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The very first Venom trailer is here but seems to be missing something.

Like most Marvel reader I am of course a huge Venom fan (somewhere in my comic collection you will find most of the entire run of Venom: Lethal Protection) and was extremely excited to hear that the new teaser trailer for the standalone movie was here.  I immediately watched it and had a few first impressions.

Started off kind of cool.  Tom Hardy doing a voice over sounding like a broken homeless sociopath as in Eddie Brock.  Very par for the Venom origin I know and love.  But what's the deal with him being in an MRI?  Wait, San Francisco?  Didn't Venom get their start in NYC?  Is that Eddie Brock hitherto unknown girlfriend?  Why is the Venom suit in a science tube?  Didn't Spider-man bring it back from War World then loose in at a church?  Motorcycle - that's cool.  Science lab accident?  Is that Brock or some other guy using telekinesis?  Brock screaming.  Seen that many times.  Then of course the big question:

Where the hell is Venom?

Spider-man T-Shirts

I know this is a teaser trailer and probably will be followed up by at least two of them but honestly give me something here.  The last taste of Venom we the fans had was Topher Grace in the lamentable Spider-Man 3.  Show me a tentacle at least.

Of course the lack of Venom in the Venom trailer is not really the issue here.  Ultimately it is the lack of Spider-Man.  The origin of Venom is so linked to Spider-Man that not having them tied together is like trying to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich without the bread: just a big gooey mess.  

Of course Sony seems to struggle with origin stories and has for years.  Odds are there are some licensing issues that prevent them from using the true Marvel canon but going to laboratory accident (as this one seems to be doing) is such a lame trope that it makes me want to just take a nap.

Good thing Sony hasn't used that "lab accident gone wrong" thing as an origin before (except of course for Sandman in Spider-Man 3.  And Electro in the Amazing Spider-Man.  And Green Goblin in Spider-Man.  And Doctor Octopus in Spider-Man 2.  And the Lizard in the Amazing Spider-Man 2.  Come to think of it every single Spider-Man movie except for Homecoming started with a lab experiment gone wrong.  Kudos Sony).

Maybe that's my objection to what I saw here.  Are we all so lacking in imagination that we have to keep on beating the lab accident drum for origins?  Can't we come up with something new like an alien symbiote that Peter Parker picked up while off planet but who ends up hyping up Spider-Mans aggression and gets abandoned with a burning hatred for Spider-Man only to be picked up by a destitute man who also hates Peter Parker for ruining his career?

Venom t-shirts

That's the other issue with no Spider-Man in the Venom movie.  Venom wasn't a good guy and his hatred of Spider-Man was his main motivation.  He mostly helped people to kill time between Spider-Man murder attempts (one of the things that made him so dangerous to Peter Parker is Venom (and later Carnage) was the only thing that did not trigger the Spidey sense.  Nerd tidbit of the day).  

I think we are seeing the net result of superhero license fragmentation.  Sony has the license for both Spider-Man and Venom but odds are doesn't have access to the Marvel comics stories.  Either that or they would have to pay Marvel more to use two heroes in the same film and cheaped out.  Either that or made the incredibly lame marketing decision to not dilute Spider-Man in the Venom series in hopes they can have two franchises rather than some kind of contiguous universe (a marketing scheme that has never worked in the past, right?)

Anyway these are just first impressions.  I'm sure the next couple trailers will feature the title character and hopefully the movie will be great.  I'm just a little unimpressed with this trailer and the trailer checklist points I see on it.  Let's all keep our fingers crossed. 


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