2018 was a miraculous year filled with a barrage of comic book movies. Infinity War, Into the Spider-Verse, Aquaman, and the list goes on and on.
One of the most infamous (and surprising) comic book films to date came out that same year as well. Oh yeah, I’m talking about Venom. Some fans love it while others claim it to be a messy, uninspired film. It seems people either love this film or hate it. Unlike fans, critics almost universally hated this film. Critics from Rotten Tomatoes rated it at a 29%.
Despite the mixed reception and glaring divide between critics and audiences, Venom still made $855 million worldwide at the box office which is very promising for Sony and its ever-growing Spider-Verse.
A SEQUEL IS COMING
Sony has recently confirmed that a sequel is on its way, but Reuben Fliescher will not be returning to the director’s chair. By the looks of that post-credit scene, Sony is planning on introducing Carnage in the sequel (played by none other than the legend known as Woody Harrelson).
Many fans were frustrated that Carnage wasn’t the main villain in Venom, but Carnage is a villain you want in a second or third film. A villain as powerful and popular as Carnage deserves a build up.
Having him has the villain in the first Venom film would’ve been a mistake as you really want the first film to focus solely on solidifying the Venom/Eddie Brock relationship. Using the first film to really build the foundation and then teasing Carnage in the post-credit scene was a terrific choice.
Despite making over $850 million at the box office, Venom was still riddled with issues. Some fans have even called it “The worst comic book movie of all time” and in all honesty, that might not be too far from the truth. Venom can be a learning experience for Sony moving forward and that’s why I feel we (comic book community) need a Venom 2.
THE PROBLEMS WITH VENOM
As mentioned earlier, Venom does have its fair share of flaws. Some of these flaws were glaring, others were very minor and easily fixable. It’s the glaring flaws that the needs to be corrected in a sequel. This is a character fans were dying to see done right on the big screen ever since that train-wreck of a portray we got in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3. The glaring flaws from the first Venom that I saw are as follows:
Probably the worst thing about Venom is the unbearable, horrid, and rollercoaster-like pacing. The pacing in Venom is terrible, the first act is sloppy and a jumbled mess. The first twenty minutes or so of the film are probably one of the worst opening twenty minutes I have ever seen.
I’m not exaggerating, it’s truly that bad.
There’s no consistency in how quickly or slowly the story progressed. It took awhile for Eddie to even come into contact with Symbiote and then it sped through the action sequences making it tough to even be able to really tell what all Venom is capable of.
When fans argue about the worst comic book movie villains of all time, the names that are brought up the most are Malekith in Thor: The Dark World, Whiplash in Iron Man 2, or even Mr. Freeze in Batman & Robin. Well, I’m here to say that someone else has entered that competition.
Riot in Venom has to be one of the worst villains ever. He’s underdeveloped, dull, uses cheap dialogue, and a under-explained motivation.
The villain in a film can sometimes make or break a movie. One of the main reasons why Venom was not up to par is because of its villain. There are so many glaring issues in Venom, but it’s villain may be the most glaring of them
Many fans are under the impression that Spider-Man needs to be in a Venom movie in order to make it good. I agree, but only to a certain extent. A coherent Venom movie can be done without our favorite web-swinging hero.
Fans everywhere were disappointed that Spider-Man wasn’t in Venom. Not even a cameo, easter egg, or name drop… nothing. The film still worked on certain levels, but most can and will admit that watching a movie about Venom and not having Spider-Man in it at all felt weird.
However, it looks like there is a high chance Spider-Man will be in Venom 2. Spider-Man Far From Home is coming soon and it could potentially introduce the symbiote. There’s rumors that Sony want Venom to appear in a Spider-Man 3 instead of the also rumored to appear, Deadpool. If they do hint at the symbiote in Far From Home, that could segue into an appearance from the web-head in Venom 2.
There are many issues with Venom. I could go on all day about them. Venom to many is an outright disaster on so many levels. This film features a barebones plot which is pushed by weird tonal shifts, inconsistencies, and poor pacing. There’s no question that this film has a ton of problems.
However, I see all of these glaring issues as easily fixable, which is why I believe we need a Venom 2. With the addition of Carnage (an enormous step up from Riot), a more coherent plot, dialogue, and improved pacing, Venom 2 can be an enormous improvement over its predecessor. If all else fails, just add more Spider-Man!