Comics
Published November 11, 2020

How ‘Web of Venom: Empyre's End’ Opened the Door for the King in Black

The Marvel Universe’s fragile peace has been shattered by the coming of Knull!

The god of the symbiotes is coming! VENOM revealed the truth about Knull, the creator of all symbiotes and a scourge of the galaxy so dire that Klyntar, the Planet of the Symbiotes, was created just to be his cage. Knull was freed from his confinement in ABSOLUTE CARNAGE, and he’s coming to Earth very soon, in KING IN BLACK.

EMPYRE was barely in our rearview mirror, but Knull’s emergence means that the fragile peace won’t last much longer. In WEB OF VENOM: EMPYRE’S END #1 – on sale now – Clay McLeod Chapman and artist Guiu Vilanova put the Alliance of the Kree and Skrull empires to the test of their newfound unity. But even when united, their power paled to the might of Knull and his dark creations.

Web of Venom: Empyre's End
WEB OF VENOM: EMPYRE'S END (2020) #1

A small crew of warriors loyal to Emperor Hulkling answered a distress call in deep space. Among them were a few familiar faces, including Talos, a Skrull who has fought the Fantastic Four in the past, as well as Ethan Edwards, a Skrull who attempted to be one of Earth’s greatest heroes in MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #13-18. Former Space Knight, Tarna, also had an unexpected connection with the coming threat. She was once a symbiote host alongside the late Flash Thompson in VENOM: SPACE KNIGHT.

Captain Av-Rom and his crew attempted to rescue survivors of a disaster, only to find that the escape pods were hiding sinister symbiotes under Knull’s direct control. Av-Rom was infected, and later killed as a mercy. However, Tarna refused to be rebonded, and she was subsequently murdered.

WEB OF VENOM: EMPYRE'S END (2020) #1
WEB OF VENOM: EMPYRE'S END (2020) #1

Only the Skrull officer, M’Lanz, may have escaped Knull’s grasp, but her fate is uncertain. Mighty Talos, however, trembled in fear when he came face-to-face with Knull himself. Knull let Talos go, largely because it amused him to do so – but also because there’s nowhere to run. And the ship that rescued Talos is doomed to meet the same fate as Talos’ crew.

WEB OF VENOM: WRAITH #1, by Donny Cates and Vilanova, also delivered some important information that may prove to be vital in KING IN BLACK. After receiving intel in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY, Wraith, a hero from ANNIHILATION: CONQUEST, confirmed his suspicions that his Exolon symbiote was also created by Knull. Determined to be free of his curse, Wraith tracked down Knull just as he emerged from Klyntar.

It wasn’t anything close to a fair fight. Knull easily defeated Wraith, stripped him of his Exolon, and left him to die naked in space. But before darkness claimed him, Knull received a vision. With the last of his strength, Knull teleported to Earth and warned Eddie Brock AKA Venom that Knull “has a shadow, an opposite, a God of Light.”

WEB OF VENOM: EMPYRE'S END (2020) #1
WEB OF VENOM: EMPYRE'S END (2020) #1

Wraith’s demise means that his war is over, but the Marvel Universe’s problems are only just beginning. GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (2020) #8 revealed that the galactic powers now realize that Knull is killing planets and absorbing new hosts along the way. Knull’s path is even more destructive than that of Galactus, and he won’t stop until he’s enveloped creation in the darkness from whence it came.

Can Marvel’s heroes survive the onslaught? Find out when KING IN BLACK #1 hits comic book stores on Wednesday, December 2!

Stay tuned to Marvel.com for the latest news about KING IN BLACK and all upcoming comic releases!

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