As a Venom fan, there are few things I enjoy more than seeing the character put the symbiote to proper use. It's far more than just a gooey layer of claws, teeth and an insanely long tongue (seriously, the tongue is ridiculously long in this issue), and characters like Gargan never quite understood that. Clearly, writer Cullen Bunn gets that, and when the symbiote (or potentially the demon... or both...) takes full control in this issue, the result is spectacular. But it doesn't go through a wide gauntlet of ways it can humiliate these goons and hold off the U-Foes. Instead, it uses one surprisingly awesome tactic that pretty much saves the day. At first it looks like it's merely using tendrils to strangle and suffocate its enemies, but soon you'll see it's doing something far more brilliant.
The action scene is amusing but the real surprise here is the cliffhanger. Let's just say someone with a very extensive symbiotic history is back and it's presented in an amazingly cool and creepy manner.
Additionally, there's an unexpectedly deep moment with Flash Thompson as he stands on a rooftop after the massive battle. It's not only another great use of the symbiote, but it's another much needed insight into how emotionally messed up Flash Thompson truly is. Little moments like that one really invest me in the character. Eddie Brock might be my favorite Venom host, but Flash is by far the most interesting.
This book has 2 people providing pencils, 4 inkers and 2 on colors. So, as you can imagine, there's a lot of drastic changes in art throughout the issue and it's extremely jarring. One minute we have a smooth version of Valkyrie, the next minute she's blurry and filled with rough details. It's a very inconsistent feeling and definitely detracted from the reading experience for me. However, the switch up does pay off for the final pages because the style is a perfect fit for the horror-laced scene.
The struggle with the U-Foes more or less plays out exactly how you think it will. It's amusing and probably won't shock you, but the frequent and drastically different changes to the art in the issue takes away from the moments. That said, what comes after the battle is where the all of the truly interesting content takes place. Any Venom fan will get goosebumps from the cliffhanger and I love the character driven rooftop moment. It's just too bad the visuals fluctuate so much.