Venom: You Bet Jurassic
The life and times of Stegron the Dinosaur Man!
You know how it can be. You wake in the morning with one plan—destroy Spider-man and eat his brain—and then something immediately comes up that derails the whole darn day. On June 14 in VENOM #151, the newly re-symbioted Eddie Brock faces exactly this problem as Stegron the Dinosaur Man selfishly decides that right now has to be the moment he turns all of New York City into Dino-people like himself.
Beyond knowing that Vincent—Stegron’s first name, if you don’t know—has a profound lack of tact, Venom has little experience with this Dinosaur Man. No worries, Lethal Protector, we have you covered with this handy-dandy guide to Stegron’s attitudes and accomplishments.
Falling Under a Bad Influence
Vincent Stegron—a career S.H.I.E.L.D. agent—ended up the guard in charge of Curt Connors when the spy organization attempted to have the then erstwhile Lizard use his expertise to their advantage. Unfortunately, being in close proximity to Connors’ genius triggered a heretofore-unrevealed obsessive love of dinosaurs in the secret agent man.
Acting with the same kind of recklessness that got Connors into this mess in the first place, Stegron injected himself with a modified with dinosaur bits version of the Lizard serum and rapidly became the Dinosaur Man.
Stegron escaped to the Savage Land with Spider-Man and Connors hot on his trail. In short order, the duo located Stegs ruling a tribe of Swamp Men. Spidey, together with Savage Land resident Ka-Zar, quickly overwhelmed the Dinosaur Man’s subjects and sent Stegron racing to escape.
Making It on Broadway
Like any musical theatre enthusiast, Stegron realized that if he could make it on Broadway, he could write his own ticket from then on. Unfortunately for the man-sized orange hued Stegosaurus “making it” meant leading a stampeding pack of dinosaurs down the Great White Way. Only the triple threat of ol’ Webhead, Black Panther, and one of Manhattan’s famous rivers managed to derail Steggie’s plans.
Stegron v. Lizard: Dawn of Reptile Wrasslin’
Curt Connors not being a man who handles his stress well seems to be something we can all agree on. Sadly, Stegron did not get that particular memo and decides to kidnap the scientist’s only son Billy to persuade the scientist to help him again. Connors agrees but demonstrates rather quickly that a put upon man who sometimes turns into a big lizard cannot be relied on to work in a lab under dubious circumstances.
Losing control of himself and reverted to his scaly form, Connors took the fight to his captor. The less experienced Stegron realized how out of his league he had wandered and turned tail in a hurry. Alas, December in New York has never been particularly hospitable to the cold-blooded and Stegron quickly became too sluggish to escape his fate—sinking to the bottom of the partially frozen Central Park pod.
A Tale of Lethal Foes and a Rock
Unlike his prehistoric predecessors, Stegron proved resilient and, after returning to human form, emerged from the water and began a life on the streets. The Vulture, however, reactivated the Dinosaur Man’s preferred form by wildly firing an experimental weapon on the streets of Manhattan.
Rather than take a moment to be thankful for such a strange twist of fate, Stegron instead immediately got back up to doing less than decent things. This took him to the New York Museum of Natural History where, instead of creating an army of dinosaur people as he intended, he ended up embroiled in a barn burner of a skirmish between Spider-Man and a fleet of villains including Rhino, Doc Ock, The Answer, Boomerang, and Swarm. Dinosaur people would have to wait for another day when one of the assembled foes—Strikeback—knocked Stegron unconscious.
A Brief Foray on to the Side of Good
Somehow surviving being frozen once again—this time in a glacier—Stegron lands on Savage Land shores and awakens as his ice prison thaws. Finding the Land under attack by the unscrupulous Roxxon Corporation, Stegron sides with the heroes—and environmentalists everywhere—to help repel Roxxon’s attempts to turn the prehistoric location into a kind of massive oil derrick.
Lest one think the Dinosaur Man has changed his scales, however, he quickly points out to the assembled heroes—including the likes of The Hulk and Shanna the She-Devil—that he cannot wait to fight against them the next chance he gets.
Back on that Dinosaur People Tip
After making the mistake of thinking Lizard would be a kindred spirit and trusting a group of villains not to accidentally knock him unconscious, Stegron understandably had a hard time trusting others. That said, the allure of teaming up with fellow human-dino and overall prehistoric beast enthusiast Sauron proved just too tempting to avoid.
The duo visited Stegron’s favorite Manhattan spot—the Museum of Natural History—and got to seizing Spider-Man and his class of young mutants, transporting them to Staten Island. There on New York City’s most disrespected borough, the Dino-pals set about building a beam to turn people into thunder lizards.
Unfortunately, Stegron and Sauron did not have good communication skills and the two eventually turned on each other. When last we saw them, the two had been reduced to literally petrified versions of themselves. However, obviously, Stegron has found a way out of waking death once more…
Dig in to Stegron’s latest prehistoric plot on June 14 in VENOM #151 by Mike Costa and Gerardo Sandoval!
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