REVIEW: ‘Venom,’ Issue #34

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Venom #34

Venom #34 “Rise” is published by Marvel Comics written by Donny Cates, art by Iban Coello, colors by Jesus Aburtov, and letters by VC’s Clayton Cowles. Eddie is battling for his soul deep within the bowels of the Symbiote hive mind, which is controlled by Knull, God of the Void. Meanwhile, in the world above, Knull fights off a frontal assault led by Dylan Brock and the Avengers.

A word of advice, read Venom #34 BEFORE you read King in Black #5.

Previously, after Eddie had passed away, his soul, now part of the Symbiote codex, entered into the hive mind. There he was guided by Rex and Flash Thompson, aka Agent Venom. When they reached the epicenter, Flash took over a Grendel dragon and broke free into the physical world. Meanwhile, Eddie was captured by Knull.

Now, in Venom #34, Eddie must break the clutches of God. Knull tries to re-establish a Symbiote suit to Eddie, but due to the frontal assault in the world above, Venom reconnects with Eddie, and the two escape to the mortal realm once above Eddie and Venom are confronted by a powerful force that will change the entire battle for Earth.

It all comes down to this for Cates. Since the inception of the Venom run in 2018, the big finale is finally here! What a glorious ending it is as well. The battalions of Knull’s forces have utterly battered the earth, and with Eddie in the underworld, all seems lost. The stakes couldn’t be higher. So when Cates delivers this plot twist at the end, it is abundantly satisfying.

Herein lies the joy in the freedom Cates has operated with. Taking these well-established characters and adding a layer to them that hasn’t been seen before.

Coello’s art has been solid the entire run, and he continues to shine in this issue. It’s hard to call attention to just one or two images, one because of spoilers and two because this issue is packed with some stunning art. Coello excels in capturing muscular anatomy, facial expressions, and background detail. 

Paired with the colors of Aburtov, the two really combine perfectly to create the kind of visuals that jump from the page and leave lasting impressions on the reader. The colors of Venom and Dragon Flash Thompson are confidently chosen as they jump to the panels’ forefront.

The lettering is well placed from Cowles and keeps the pace and intensity of the issue. The onomatopoeia was solid and dynamically designed to impress upon the situation.

Overall, the Venom King in Black series has been one of Marvel’s best premier annual events for some years. This is a world-changing series, and Venom will not be written the same again for a long time to come. Cates and his creative team have elevated an already very popular character to elite-level status. Exploring things about these characters that no one had ever thought to ask. I’m going to be sad to see this series end, but holy hell, what a ride it’s been.

Venom #34 is available now wherever comics are sold. 

Venom #34
5

TL;DR

Overall, the Venom King in Black series has been one of Marvel’s best premier annual events for some years. This is a world-changing series, and Venom will not be written the same again for a long time to come. Cates and his creative team have elevated an already very popular character to elite-level status. Exploring things about these characters that no one had ever thought to ask. I’m going to be sad to see this series end, but holy hell, what a ride it’s been.