Comics to Read Before ‘Absolute Carnage’
The symbiotic slasher event will paint the Marvel Unlimited library red!
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“GOD IS COMING.” The ABSOLUTE CARNAGE event by Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman is right around the corner in digital comics mega-library Marvel Unlimited!
To get you prepped for Cletus Kasady’s most savage spree yet, we’ve got you covered with all the comics that help set the stage, as picked by the event’s editors! After being resurrected by a symbiote god-worshipping cult, Carnage creates a kill list for everyone who’s ever worn a symbiote… meaning there’s a whole ton of beings with targets on their back, (or in their codex).
Want to run down a list of every single symbiote host present and past who may be featured? We’ve got a Reading List for that.
Also, this is suggested reading, meaning that you can try any or all of the comics below, and still be right on track for ABSOLUTE CARNAGE (2019) #1, hitting February, 10.
But, the more you read here, the more faces you’ll recognize directly from the event!
Try the event’s Reading List! A criminally insane Carnage once escaped the Ravencroft Institute… and assembled a Carnage “family” of like-minded fiends to spread his anarchy throughout New York. We’ve already given you 14 Reasons Why you need to read this one, and it’s one of Editorial’s top suggestions too.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: LETHAL PROTECTORS (2019) features a lot of the same heroes who flocked to Spider-Man’s side when things got Cletus-level crazy.
VENOM: LETHAL PROTECTOR (1993)
Never one to back away from recognition, Eddie Brock and Venom coalesced into one murkily manic vigilante for San Francisco’s streets. This was the series that also introduced a gaggle of symbiote “offspring” who cropped up in the pages of 1994’s SEPARATION ANXIETY.
VENOM: SEPARATION ANXIETY (1994)
The main story arc for the Life Foundation symbiotes, including fan-favorite Scream!
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Riot, Phage, Agony and Lasher will show up again in ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: SEPARATION ANXIETY (2019) #1, although in that issue they’ll be in way more hellish form(s) and without any of that pesky humanity.
VENOM: SINNER TAKES ALL (1995)
An all-new Sin-Eater nearly devoured Eddie Brock’s ex-wife, and the only way to save her was to let a symbiote take over. See what happened when Anne Weying became She-Venom, psycho bride of Venom.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Stay tuned for the main event which will cover Anne’s final fate.
CARNAGE: MIND BOMB (1996) #1
A deranged (and pretty perverse) one-shot by Warren Ellis and Kyle Hotz. Kasady may have been in a white padded cell, but he still spread his infection from the inside out while in custody at Ravencroft. Read this for an intense peek at Carnage’s time with the “Institute,” and for John Jameson, AKA Man-Wolf’s, connected history to Carnage.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: More on that history in WEB OF VENOM: CULT OF CARNAGE (2019) #1.
SIEGE: SPIDER-MAN (2010) #1
When she was still Ms. Marvel, Carol Danvers bonded with the Venom symbiote during the events of Siege, (that time Norman Osborn screwed it up real bad).
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: This connection won’t bode well for Carol, or Flerken Chewie, in the pages of ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: CAPTAIN MARVEL (2019) #1. ME-OW.
CARNAGE, U.S.A. (2011)
In one of his most twisted turns to date, Carnage bonded an entire Colorado town to copies of his symbiote, kids included.
A “Hybrid” symbiote, comprised of Agony, Phage, Riot and Lasher, was taken off-ice, plus the Scorn symbiote introduced in CARNAGE (2010) played a pivotal role too, piloted by Dr. Tanis Nieves. Nieves holds the honor of being Shriek’s former psychiatrist too.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: You’ll see Doverton again in the pages of WEB OF VENOM: CULT OF CARNAGE (2019) #1.
CIRCLE OF FOUR
Read through issues #13.1-.4, plus issue #14! When a portal to Hell opened in the middle of Sin City, Flash Thompson: Venom and Red Hulk set aside their differences to join with Ghost Rider: Alejandra Jones and mutant X-23 on an unholy crusade to quell a demon invasion.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: This arc ties directly back to ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: IMMORTAL HULK (2019) #1.
VENOM (2011) #31-38
Writer Cullen Bunn introduced us to Andrea “Andi” Benton in this run starring Venom: Flash Thompson. At first appearance she’s a punky teen washout, but 7 issues down the line she became a spawn of Venom—Mania.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Andi’s horror story continues in WEB OF VENOM: FUNERAL PYRE (2019) #1.
Read through issue #6. The series that gave us Lee Price, one of several people to bond with the Venom symbiote. Petty crook Price doesn’t realize it yet, but the biggest price will be the one on his head…
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Oh. Just keeeeep on reading.
VENOM BY DONNY CATES AND RYAN STEGMAN
If you read nothing else on this list, try Venom’s 2018 series that leads directly into the event. When Carnage is finally unleashed, Eddie Brock throws in everything plus the kitchen sink to protect his son Dylan.
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Pretty much this whole series will be referenced. Another one of Editorial’s top prelude picks.
WEB OF VENOM: CARNAGE BORN (2018)
Few mourned Cletus Kasady after he seemingly died in VENOMIZED (2018). But a cult devoted to the madman gathered in reverence of the symbiote god Knull, and sought to resurrect their fallen idol…
WEB OF VENOM: VENOM UNLEASHED (2019)
More like off the leash! A former “good boy” becomes an unremorseful hellhound! This weird, one-off tale takes a journey from the symbiote’s perspective through Eddie’s old haunts in San Francisco.
WEB OF VENOM: CULT OF CARNAGE (2019)
We return to Doverton, Colorado (see: CARNAGE, U.S.A.), to find the town immersed in yet another oozy puddle of symbiotic doom. Detective Misty Knight is on the case, and she encounters John Jameson, raving mad and stark naked, uttering that “God is coming”...
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Look out for John Jameson’s Man-Wolf form in the pages of ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: LETHAL PROTECTORS (2019).
WEB OF VENOM: FUNERAL PYRE (2019)
Curious what Andi Benton’s been up to since wearing the Mania symbiote? Here, we head back to her native Philadelphia where’s she’s been living a quiet, albeit boring, life. Things are about to pick up though: for weeks the serial killing Carnage has had her on his list…
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Check out Andi’s final fate in the pages of ABSOLUTE CARNAGE: SCREAM.
FREE COMIC BOOK DAY (2019)
Yep, Price mouthed off to the wrong side of Brock while the two were imprisoned, and ended up having a symbiote ripped from his guts. Not the last you’ll see of this sly dog…
ABSOLUTE CARNAGE TIE-IN: Stay tuned for the main event, ABSOLUTE CARNAGE (2019).
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