REVIEW: ‘Carnage: Black White & Blood,’ Issue #3

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Carnage Black White and Blood #3 - But Why Tho?

Carnage: Black, White & Blood #3 is an anthology series published by Marvel Comics. Like the first two issues before it, the comic contains a new trio of tales centered around the sinister symbiote. Said tales feature black and white artwork soaked with blood red, and continue to push the horror elements of the book to their limits. It also continues to feature Carnage in multiple genres, including historical fiction.

“No Survivors” is written by Dan Slott and illustrated by Greg Smallwood, and centers on the sole survivor of one of Carnage’s rampages who believes the symbiotic serial killer is hunting him down. “Sea of Blood” is written by Karla Pacheco, illustrated by Chris Mooneyham, and colored by Mattia Iacono; it reimagines Cletus Kasaday as a ruthless pirate who discovers a treasure with a horrific secret. Finally,  “The Convention” is written by Alyssa Wong, penciled by Geraldo Sandoval, inked by Victor Nava, and colored by Erick Arciniega. It features a Carnage cosplayer at Comic-Con who runs afoul of the Cult of Carnage from Absolute Carnage.

“No Survivors” is an utterly chilling tale, with Slott’s script slowly building up an aura of menace. Though Blake survived Carnage’s wrath, a combination of survivor’s guilt and paranoia continues to haunt him. Smallwood visualizes the specter of Carnage in various ways through his art. When Blake coughs up blood, the spatter of particles resembles Carnage’s twisted grin. When he goes to a doctor, the X-rays feature Carnage laughing at him. Even at a therapy session, Carnage’s head appears to coil around Blake’s ear and whispers vicious words. Readers will be on the edge of their seats for this story.

“Sea of Blood,” like any alternate universe worth its salt, takes various characters and reimagines them as seafaring heroes and villains courtesy of Pacheco. Kasady, Scream, and even Eddie Brock are given a swashbuckling spin, with Mooneyham designing seafaring gear for them. Kasady wears a massive coat and tri-cornered hat, complete with massive sideburns. And when he is possessed by the Carnage symbiote, it’s like a sea of blood is rolling over his body, sinking into his skin. That same blood-red color sinks into the sea, with Iacono making sure the story lives up to its name.

Finally, “The Convention” struck a strange chord with me, as it reminded me of all the comic book conventions I’ve missed since the COVID-19 pandemic struck. Seeing Sandoval illustrating fans in costumes talking with each other and taking pictures took me back to my time at Emerald City Comic Con and San Diego Comic Con. I had a great time there and I await the day I can go back. However, Wong and Sandoval quickly swerve into horror territory with the Cult of Carnage. They are clad in robes with the spiral symbol of Knull on their robes, and like any cult, they believe in a heaping helping of human sacrifice. And when Carnage arrives on the scene, he’s a massive twisting collection of tentacles and teeth that sheds blood with abandon.

Carnage: Black, White & Blood #3 continues to spread the menace of Carnage across different genres, courtesy of various creators. With only one issue left, I can’t wait to see who else gets to put their own spin on Carnage and if other characters in Marvel’s stable will get the Black, White & Blood treatment. Personally, my fingers are crossed for a Blade series in the same vein.

Carnage: Black, White & Blood #3 is available wherever comics are sold.

Carnage: Black, White & Blood #3
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TL;DR

Carnage: Black, White & Blood #3 continues to spread the menace of Carnage across different genres, courtesy of various creators. With only one issue left, I can’t wait to see who else gets to put their own spin on Carnage and if other characters in Marvel’s stable will get the Black, White & Blood treatment. Personally, my fingers are crossed for a Blade series in the same vein.