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Venom #32 - Toxic Lifestyle Review

4

Flash begins putting together the pieces of his life in Philly.

The Good

So begins writer Cullen Bunn's chore of filling in the supporting cast for Flash's new life in Philly. If you're wondering why Flash doesn't contact his "girlfriend" (Valkyrie) or his other friends, a logical and very amusing reason is provided right off the bat ("the call of valor!"). His time as a coach could be really cool if fleshed out properly and has the potential to provide a great insight into Flash's psyche. We've already seen him encounter a mirror reflection of his past self, so I'm curious to see how this will develop.

Flash doesn't really have a standout personality, but that rings true to his character and Bunn definitely has the character's voice down. Despite not being an especially witty character, his monologues still manage to amuse and even pop a smirk or two. I love how having him talk about his life makes us realize just how absurd it truly is. Furthermore, Bunn has an interesting future prepared for Venom. After the incident with the U-Foes (crazy technology has now leaked) and Toxin searching for him, I have faith in what Bunn has in store for us in the coming issues.

Declan Shalvey was born to pencil a symbiote book. That said, his style is definitely an acquired taste, though. It's lacking detail when it comes to people in the distance and is very rough, but it's a perfect fit for Venom. The slithering of the tendrils, the jagged teeth and seemingly random flow of the symbiote... it's a real treat to see him illustrate symbiotes and the unique tone is fitting for this book's world. He did a wonderful job with the "villain" in this issue. It felt like a character stripped right out of a monster movie and legitimately looked creepier and creepier as the fun battle progressed.

The Bad

I know we've barely met her, but so far Andi reads like a cliche punk/goth girl who hates the status quo. This is something we've seen a gazillion times before, so I'm really hoping Bunn has plans to add depth to the character or provide a clever twist.

Like I said above, Shalvey's art is very rough around the edges. This is pretty much a double-edged sword. It works wonders most of the time, but it is distracting when characters faces are limited to three lines or so.

The Verdict

It appears that teasing us with Toxin has finally come to an end. Brock has reached The City of Brothery Love and I imagine there's no real obstacle preventing him from encountering Venom in the next issue. That alone should make any longtime Venom fan count down the days until the next issue comes out. Bring on the symbiote on symbiote violence, Bunn and Shalvey!

12 Comments
Posted by WWAJfan

excellent issue : ), great review

Posted by saoakden

Venom in Philly, interesting. The City of Brothery Love is about to become the battlefield for Venom and Toxin. Should be fun!

Posted by Master_Thief

YES!!!!

Posted by sparty-dbq

This is the third straight issue that ends with a Toxin cliffhanger. WILL THEY JUST FIGHT, ALREADY?!

Posted by InnerVenom123

@sparty-dbq said:

This is the third straight issue that ends with a Toxin cliffhanger. WILL THEY JUST FIGHT, ALREADY?!

It's called incentive.

Helps any potential readers who think of dropping the book stick around long enough to see Flash's supporting cast grow, and in turn, maybe stops a few from dropping.

It's genius.

Posted by millennium

@InnerVenom123: true thats what happened to me i dropped it during the whole u-foes b.s and i started reading it again just to see if Brock is being turned into a villain again in which i hope is not the case

Posted by InnerVenom123

@millennium said:

@InnerVenom123: true thats what happened to me i dropped it during the whole u-foes b.s and i started reading it again just to see if Brock is being turned into a villain again in which i hope is not the case

He's not.

He's the same as ever, he just hates Venom.

Posted by TheAcidSkull

@millennium said:

@InnerVenom123: true thats what happened to me i dropped it during the whole u-foes b.s and i started reading it again just to see if Brock is being turned into a villain again in which i hope is not the case

He is exactly the same, but instead of guns and anti-Venom he has toxin now.

Posted by GrandSymbiote94

I really hate those banners. Ruins all the good covers.

Posted by Hanson724

Great issue and review! Can't wait for next issue.

Posted by millennium

@TheAcidSkull: thats good i liked him more has a anti-hero it made since with everythang that has happened to the character

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

really like the art and the story is great