Marvel’s Next Big Thing: “The Venom Event”

Venom #13 CoverToday, Marvel Comics hosted a press conference call to announce The Venom Event, coming in February 2012.  Spanning across 6 issues of Venom, beginning with Venom #13, followed by 4 Point One issues (Venom #13.1, 13.2, 13.3, 13.4) and culminating in March with Venom #14, The Venom Event promises to be a status quo changing team up of epic proportions bringing together Venom, Red Hulk, X-23 and Ghost Rider.  The event will be written by Rick Remender, Jeff Parker and Rob Williams, with Venom #13 and #14 drawn by Tony Moore, with covers by Stefano Caselli.  On the call today, Remender, Parker, Williams and Moore were joined by editor Jeanine Schaefer to break down the story and what it means for fans of Venom, Ghost Rider, Red Hulk and X-23.

Remender explained the genesis of this story came from an idea that he and Jason Aaron were knocking around for a potential crossover between Wolverine and Venom.  Remender explained that they were, “trying to find a way to freshen that really terrific thing that Walt Simonson and Art Adams did when they took Wolverine, The Hulk, Ghost Rider and Spider-Man and made them the Fantastic Four,” (which occurred in the early 1990s in the pages of Fantastic Four #348 & #349).  Remender added that the idea behind that, while exploitative, was to have fun with some great characters.  As that idea developed internally at Marvel Comics, Remender pointed out that this line-up is the 2.0 version of that Fantastic Four line up, with the next generations of those characters with X-23 (Wolverine), Red Hulk (The Hulk), Ghost Rider (the latest Ghost Rider is a female Ghost Rider), and Venom (Spider-Man).  Additionally, editor Jeanine Schaefer added that these characters are all working through issues within their own books, on a slow spiral downward that leads them to Las Vegas, the setting of the story, and to come together as a team.  Ghost Rider writer Rob Williams further adds that “These are 2nd generation characters looking to define themselves.  They will all be changed by this.”  Remender further explained that this is not just a bunch of characters being pushed together, rather that “There is going to be some status quo change for these characters.” Williams added the plus that, “They look really cool together”

While they were loathe to give away story specifics, some story points were explained.  Each writer stressed that they’ve been planting seeds in the individual titles of each character for some time to lead up to this story.  Remender explains that Red Hulk is sent on a mission by Captain America to hunt down Venom, while Venom, who is at is lowest point yet in his series in on a mission himself in Las Vegas.  Ghost Rider and X-23 join the fray as they come together to fight an unrevealed villain who is attempting to being another dimension to Earth, and is succeeding.  Schaefer adds that the location of Las Vegas is another attempt to expand the Marvel Universe.  She commented “We’re building the Marvel Universe outward…over the past couple of years there’s been a big push to populate other areas of the world with Marvel characters…so now we decided to put a little stamp on Vegas.”

Venom #13 kicks things off with a 30 page issue drawn by Tony Moore, who shared his excitement to draw these characters, “I love drawing Venom, it’s great to see my design and I’m excited to see other people handle that. I’m excited to draw Ghost Rider again, and probably the most exciting thing that I haven’t gotten to draw in my professional career yet, is that I get to draw Hulk now.”  To which Jeff Parker excitedly added, “That was pretty boss.  I look at alot of Red Hulks, and that was right up there at the top.”

Fans of X-23 will notice that X-23 writer Marjorie Liu is not involved in this event, but we were assured that she’s been consulting and on board with how X-23 is presented within the story.  Schaefer explained, “In X-23 there’s been a storyline where she’s separated from the X-Men and has been on a literal soul searching journey…and that will lead into this.”  When discussing X-23’s role in the story, Remender stated that the character of X-23 never really clicked for him until this project where he realized her story arc which he explained, “We’re answering the question ‘Does a clone have a soul?'”

When asked if this event is required reading for fans of the all the characters within the story, all the writers agreed that indeed it was.  Jeff Parker added “I think readers get mad about stuff when they think its some other unsympathetic [creative] team that gets handed the characters.  This is an extension of our books, because it’s us, so it’s all very consistent.  There’s no reason for it to feel like it’s an extra thing.” Further, Remender added that “Everybody on the team wanted to make sure it not only had a status quo change for the characters, but it was a natural end to an arc. So what you’re getting here is very satisfying.”  Remender and others on the call re-enforced that not only is the event key for fans of the characters involved, but it’s an opportunity for new readers who have been curious about the characters to get a feel for who they are as Remender explained, “I think that people who haven’t even read any of these characters could hop on at Venom #13, if nothing else but for Tony Moore’s artwork, but you could hop on that point…and get a real good view of who they are and you’ll find they’re very interesting characters, very different than their counterparts.”  To which Tony Moore added, “Plus it’s going to be so awesome, you’d be a fool to miss it!”

The 6 issue event, The Venom Event (which we assume will be re-named/re-branded some time between now and February) will be published under the Venom banner will take place across 6 weeks beginning in February and leading into March, taking advantage of February being a 5 week month, so giving us an extra week of comics. It starts with February’s Venom #13 and runs through Venom #13.1, #13.2, #13.3, #13.4 and finishes up with March’s Venom #14.   Fans of Venom, X-23, Ghost Rider and Red Hulk should take note as this event will be lead into by the various characters books and promises to have ramifications beyond Venom #14, when it’s all said and done.

Venom Point Issue Covers

Comments

  1. More point issues!? I hope I can read just 13 and 14 and understand it since that’s all I’m getting

    • doesn’t sound like it – from what they explained – they’re being written to be required reading for all the characters and to get the entire story

    • That’s a real bummer… I’ll be digital on Venom by then though so I’ll at least be able to get everything if it ends up being a good story

  2. I really like the idea of taking a bunch of second generation characters and throwing them together. Not sure how I feel about the numbering.

  3. I’m not sure about the numbering either, but I read both Venom and X-23 so I’m excited to see where this event goes.

  4. Hmmm…I’m not sure about this one. We’ll have to see how Venom plays out from here on out. If the story is interesting, I’ll be on board, but I’m not really stoked by how many additional issues I’d have to buy to read it. Also, I don’t read nor care very much about X-23 or Ghost Rider, so their involvement doesn’t get my mojo going even though I can see what they’re trying to do from a nostalgia standpoint.

    Major ughs on four “point” issues to tell the story.

  5. JeffR (@JeffRReid) says:

    So they’ve moved away from the idea that every Point One issue is a good jumping on point? I’d imagine that Venom 13.3 would be a bad spot to jump on with.

  6. The New Fantastic Four!

  7. What a complete mishmash of characters, leaving an intriguing premise that titillates my curiosity. Although, I’m a huge X-23 fan and I’m reading Venom mainly because of Remender, so I am already on board by default!

  8. These .1 issues may just get me to leave Marvel entirely. I really do not like this policy. If they want to double ship, just do it, there is nothing wrong with that. But these silly half-truths about the .1’s offend me enough to just walk away.

  9. Ok, so the numbering is pretty dumb. But the event itself looks awesome. I’m already a fan of venom and red hulk at the moment and I would love to read a little ghost rider and x-23 seeing as i’m not familiar with them at all. So I’m in! Only question is, which format? Ron, I don’t suppose there was any hint of digital releases? If not it will have to be a trade wait.

    Cummon Marvel! I’m still waiting for issue 2 of Astonishing Spiderman and Wolverine to pop up for chrisakes.

  10. 4 Point-One issues? And this is why people download comics.

  11. Stop complaining about numbering. Just read the damn comic or don’t. If you’re offended by what number is on it then you’re a moron.

    • What if one is complaining about the policy idea and not the numbering itself? Is that permissible?

      Also, welcome to the internet, people tend to bitch here…

  12. That “new” fantastic four was one of my favorite story arc’s when i was kid. This looks interesting to me. Although.. Ive been reading Ghost rider.. and i couldnt recommend that to anyone…. however Remender’s run on Uncanny is going to force me to take a look at this. Venom is Flash Tompson now right?

  13. So tired of events. So very very tired. May not read this on general principle of hating events despite my love of Remender and Parker.

    • I doesn’t seem like your normal “event” comic, with all the satellite titles. It all takes place in one book, the arc is just called “The Venom Event”.

  14. Sorry to also complain about numbering but man do I hate this Point One stuff. At first I thought it would be a short lived gimmick but now it’s SOP with .1, .2, and .3 issues. I know the numbering should be secondary to the work and whether or not you enjoy it but this is too dumb for me to play along.

    Remender and Parker are my favorite writers at Marvel right now (haven’t read anything by Rob Williams). Tony Moore is great. This team looks interesting. Why can’t this be a mini-series, or a series of one shots, or a one month cross over between the 4 already ongoing titles? Those things aren’t more accessible than releasing something called Venom #13.4?

  15. Stupid idea of numbering and a real boring mini event.

    No thanks, I’ll save my money for something better.

  16. As much as I like Remender I have zero interest in this. Yes the numbering is dumb, but I just could care less for the whole pitch. Female Ghost Rider ?? when the heck did that happen ?? pass..

    • It just happened a few months back. Ive been reading it and im so bored to tears with it.. i couldnt even tell you how it happened.. cause i dont even remember. Ive been meaning to drop it.. but just keep forgetting. Blaze is in her book.. i could tell you that much.. i seem to remember him running around a lot. Anyway not very memorable. Although i think even the Jason Arron G Rider comics have been awful.. and i think Jason Arron is awesome. Just havent been any good G rider tales for a while. Before this there was a story with multiple G riders.. that sucked too.
      Tom.. Im not sure she even has any curtains.. or carpet for that matter…. Oh burnt hair… what a delightful aroma….

  17. I just realized this and maybe it wasn’t brought up but:

    Are they doing this because all four of these character’s books are not selling well? It would make sense in a way for Ghost Rider, X-23, and Red Hulk. I am surprised a book about Venom would be a low seller so that’s why this is just a question and not stating a fact. But again it would make a lot of sense why this ‘event’ is happening.

    Then again they would just do a crossover with all four books instead of doing 4 pointless .1-.4 issues.

    Also, the fact I had to do .1-.4 to describe issue numbers is a real low point as a fan…

    • I think you hit the nail on the head.
      Ive given all of them a chance and passed.. i assume others have too… but somehow Ghost Rider remains in my pull box……cant expain that. I think i read the first issue of Venom.. .. at least that one probably isnt that bad.. It is Remender after all. Flash Thompson as Venom may be a reason its sales are low.. if they are… im pretty sure flash is venom now… everything changes so fast.. a coupla years back the scorpion was venom.. next year itll be Aunt May.

    • Just sayin’ I would read the HELL out of “Aunt May is Venom.”

  18. I’m on board for this. I love Remender and I hear good things about Parker’s Hulk. However, this numbering extra dumb.

  19. I wish wanda had said no more events at the end of house of m.

  20. I’m currently reading Venom and X-23, but I just dropped Hulk. I may buy the tie-in issues, but I prefer the green guy than the red. This female Ghost Rider looks like the Red Skull in a dominatrix outfit.

  21. I was excited about the idea at first and thought this would be a great jumping on point (Dropped it sometime ago due to money issues) but this….what’s the point of the 13.1, 13.2, etc? I really didn’t care for this point 1 concept in the first place but having a bunch in a row? Really turns me off. And if it’s required reading for all characters why don’t they just go the old fashion route and just have run through all the books? Bah!

    I’ll just wait for this to past by to jump back on. =/

  22. Ha!… i like that!

  23. Interesting. I wonder if this will suck or continue the greatness that this title already exudes.

  24. When Tony Moore and I make a comic, you will enjoy it, by God. Quit judging shit before it’s even out.

  25. I’m actually looking forward to this, especially Tony Moore’s 13 & 14. They’re all characters I’ve been meaning to check out more of (except Red Hulk, but that may change.)
    And to be honest, numbering means nothing to me when it comes to my enjoyment of comic or whether or not I’ll buy it.
    They could number something #Z*@r.37 but if it’s a story I’m interested in, I’ll pick it up.

  26. Yea, the numbering is dumb… but I don’t care in the slightest! More Flash Thompson awesomeness from Remender, with Jeff Parker throwin’ Thunderbolt Ross in the mix? Sounds rad to me.

    I’ve completely became a Remender Marvel Zombie, with all his books instantly becoming my favorites. I’m so down for this.

    I’ve already planned it out, if comics ever go completely south, I’ll just escape into the Remender-verse and hang out there till things level back out. Hearing he is going to be pulling all his books tighter together brings me much joy.

  27. You had me at “Jeff Parker”

  28. The only reason i clicked on this link was because the venom ‘thumbnail’ looked like Caselli art. Am i wrong? He’s not mentioned in the article anywhere.

    • You are right and wrong. It is Caselli and he IS mentioned in the article. Look at the first paragraph where they are saying who is doing what. Caselli is doing the covers.

  29. I didnt enjoy frankencastle but I love venom

  30. I will read this if, and ONLY IF the title remains “THE VENOM EVENT”, because that sounds hilarious and awesome.

  31. More pointless Marvel crossovers. More Spider-Man in titles he shouldn’t be in. Just bring back Team Up for this silly stories…

    • …or limited series because that’s what the point issues seem to reflect.

      Seriously what’s the company line on these “point” issues?

      I understood (though didn’t agree) with the reasoning behind the 0.1 issues but I’m really curious to hear the justification behind this numbering.

  32. Who gives an F about the numbering when we get six straight weeks of Venom (whats a decimal point when you get that in return). By the way who is the artist(s) doing the point issues Fowler?

  33. I just keep picturing Ghost Rider looking at the other three characters and sighing, saying “Man, I’m Ghost Rider. Ghost Rider! What the hell happened to me?!”

  34. Venom is one of the best ongoings these days IMO. I love all the characters other than Ghost Rider, so count me in!

  35. I’m excited to potentially jump into some X-23 and Hulk if the ramifications seem interesting enough to follow. Otherwise I to am stoked for SIX STRAIGHT WEEKS OF VENOM! Sucks to be Ghost Rider imo.