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Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s Run on Venom Arrives in April

The final issue of Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s hit run on Venom will arrive in April. The all-star creative team will be saying farewell to a character they helped redefine in a special milestone issue: Venom #200. With the revolutionary work on the symbiote mythology, the team’s incredible run will leave a lasting impact not only on the character of Venom but on the Marvel Universe as a whole.

The landmark issue will pick up after the events of King in Black. Over the years, Cates and Stegman have torn Eddie Brock’s life asunder while introducing new villains and uncovering long-hidden mysteries about the nature of symbiotes.

Throughout their run, they’ve explored Venom’s very nature as a Marvel hero. This issue will reveal what Venom’s future holds. But in Knull’s wake, what even remains of Marvel’s Lethal Protector?

Venom #200 will also feature a who’s who of artists who contributed to Cates and Stegman’s incredible run. Pick up this historic end of an era when Venom #200 hits stands in April.

Venom #200

Man-Thing Celebrates 50 Years with Variant Covers in March

Marvel announced a brand-new Man-Thing comic series launching in March and celebrating 50 years of the character, Avengers: Curse of the Man-Thing. But, the celebration doesn’t end there.

March will also see some of your favorite Marvel heroes transformed into outrageous Man-Thing personas on stunning variant covers by today’s best artists including Superlog, Bernard Chang, Greg Land, Sara Pichelli, and more! Check out the first three now and be on the lookout for more Man-Thing variant cover reveals in the coming weeks.

Man-Thing debuted in 1971’s Savage Tales #1 and was created by Stan Lee, Roy Thomas, Gerry Conway, and Gray Marrow.

  • AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #62 SPIDER-MAN-THING VARIANT COVER by GREG LAND
  • CAPTAIN MARVEL #27 CAPTAIN MARVEL-THING VARIANT COVER by BERNARD CHANG
  • CHAMPIONS #5 MS. MARVEL-THING VARIANT COVER by SARA PICHELLI
  • DAREDEVIL #28 DAREDEVIL-THING VARIANT COVER by RAY-ANTHONY HEIGHT
  • FANTASTIC FOUR #30 THE THING-THING VARIANT COVER by DANIEL ACUÑA
  • GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #12 GAMORA-THING VARIANT COVER by MEGHAN HETRICK
  • MILES MORALES: SPIDER-MAN #24 MILES-THING VARIANT COVER by KEN LASHLEY
  • VENOM #34 VENOM-THING VARIANT COVER by SUPERLOG

Marvel Celebrates 30 Years of Deadpool with Variant Covers by Rob Liefeld Plus Deadpool Nerdy 30 #1

The Merc with a Mouth turns 30! Three decades ago, Deadpool first appeared in the legendary New Mutants #98 by Rob Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza, and the comic book world has never been the same! Throughout 2021, Marvel is proud to celebrate the character’s anniversary in grand Marvel fashion starting with Deadpool Nerdy 30 #1, a giant-sized special issue of classic Deadpool creators exploring the past, present, and future of Wade Wilson. The celebration continues with superstar creator Rob Liefeld who will return to his creation in a series of 30 variant covers depicting Wade teaming up with heroes from all corners of the Marvel Universe!

These outstanding pieces of artwork will grace the covers of your favorite ongoing series in 2021. See Deadpool reunite with Cable on the cover of X-Force #15, get bloody with Wolverine on the cover of X-Men Legends #4, go web-slinging with Miles Morales on Miles Morales: Spider-Man #25, and more! Check out the first batch below and keep your eyes peeled for more Deadpool 30th Anniversary variant cover reveals.

  • IMMORTAL HULK #45 LIEFELD DEADPOOL 30TH VARIANT
  • MILES MORALES SPIDER-MAN #25 LIEFELD DEADPOOL 30TH VARIANT
  • VENOM #35 LIEFELD DEADPOOL 30TH VARIANT
  • X-FORCE #18 LIEFELD DEADPOOL 30TH VARIANT A
  • X-FORCE #18 LIEFELD DEADPOOL 30TH VARIANT B
  • X-MEN LEGENDS #4 LIEFELD DEADPOOL 30TH VARIANT

Review: Venom #31

Venom #31

A tie-in to King in Black, Venom #31 is going to irritate some readers while others will praise the interesting direction of the comic. As the opening issue of King of Black ended, Eddie Brock had his symbiote ripped from him and thrown from the top of a buildng. This issue… is just Eddie falling. That’s it. Seriously.

Titled “Thirty-Two Seconds“, writer Donny Cates spends the issue chronicling Eddie falling to his possible death. We know as readers the likelihood of that isn’t going to happen but as pages flip we’re expecting a miraculous save and some action and are delivered… falling. Seriously. That’s it.

It’s an interesting issue and it has a key goal. For those who are new to Venom and started King in Black with its first issue, Venom #31 acts as a way to catch individuals up. The issue takes us through some of the history of the character reflecting how this is an event years in the making and setting up the difficult battle ahead.

But, what’s truly amazing about the issue is that it never delivers what you expect it to.

Eddie falls. That’s it.

There is not miraculous save. There is no symbiote to the rescue. This is an issue that never delivers what you expect and leaves the reader waiting for something that never happens. In that way, it’s an amazing issue. It’s also sure to piss people off.

Cates pulls off the audacious issue with art by Iban Coello. Along with Jesus Aburtov on color and Clayton Cowles on lettering, the art is fantastic as expected. Coello and Aburtov are a great combo for art. With panels delivering but seconds, the duo use it to show the terror as Eddie falls. We’re taken through the motions of fear, attempts at finding a solution, and then acceptance. Much of this is conveyed through Eddie’s face as he falls. His body language delivers a sense of someone out of control. His eyes tells us as much as to what he’s thinking as does the dialogue. Cowles lettering takes advantage of some of the page layouts delivering an almost poet like text during Eddie’s plummeting.

Venom #31 is a gutsy issue and I’m not sure what to think honestly. I want to read it again and as a single issue, there’s something amazing about it. But, little happens. It’s a non-story. We get taken through the steps of grief and are never delivered to our expectations. In that way, it stands out, but it’s also an issue that’s sure to anger some readers at the same time.

Story: Donny Cates Art: Iban Coello
Color: Jesus Aburtov Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 7.5 Art: 8.75 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


Purchase: comiXologyAmazonKindleZeus Comics

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Lords of Misery

Wednesdays (and now Tuesdays) are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this week.

American Vampire 1976 #3 (DC Comics/DC Black Label) – A great return to this series so far that brings the action with each issue.

Batman: Black & White #1 (DC Comics) – A new anthology series from some top talent all giving their spin on the world of Batman.

Byte-Sized #1 (AWA Studios) – Horror comes to the holidays in this new series from writer Cullen Bunn!

Comic Book History of Animation #1 (IDW Publishing) – A new series focusing on the filmmakers and beloved characters of the past century and a half.

Crossover #2 (Image Comics) – The first issue was a lot of fun as the world of comics bled over into the real world causing all sorts of comics. The first issue felt like a love letter to comics and we’re excited to see where it all goes.

Heroes at Home #1 (Marvel) – We’ve been locked up due to COVID for much of the year so how are Marvel’s heroes dealing with it?

Home Sick Pilots #1 (Image Comics) – A brand new horror series that we’re excited to check out.

Legacy of Mandrake the Magician #3 (Red 5 Comics) – A great update to the classic character that has us excited for every issue. A solid series so far.

Mighty Morphin #2 (BOOM! Studios) – The first issue was such a solid re-introduction to the property with a direction that’s great for new and old readers. What’s next? We want to see!

King in Black: Namor #1 and Venom #31 (Marvel) – The opening issue of King in Black was solid and exceeded our expectations. These are the next two tie-ins and we really want to see where this goes from here and if the quality continues.

Locke & Key/Sandman: Hell & Gone #0 (IDW Publishing) – If you think you can unlock the gates of Hell and just invite yourself in, you must be Dreaming! The Sandman Universe crossover begins here. We’re… intrigued.

Lords of Misery (Albatross Funnybooks) – This standalone story reveals the adventure the Goon, along with several other mysterious figures, found himself entangled in after he departed the Nameless Town.

Scarenthood #2 (IDW Publishing) – The first issue took us by surprise and got us to laugh and gave some good scares too. A definite under-the-radar series that fans of horror should check out.

SWORD #1 (Marvel) – The Mutant nation of Krakoa has dominated Earth and now they’re taking their mission to space with the newly reformed SWORD.

Warhammer 40K: Marneus Calgar #3 (Marvel) – The last issue caught us off guard so we’re excited to see what else this series will throw at fans of Warhammer 40K.

Get Ready for King in Black with Free Venom and Absolute Carnage Comics on Marvel Unlimited

Marvel Unlimited King in Black

Starting today, Marvel Unlimited is preparing for the King in Black! To celebrate the highly anticipated arrival of Marvel’s next epic comic event in December, Marvel Unlimited is unlocking access to the first five issues of Venom and the first two issues of Absolute Carnage – all FREE for fans everywhere, no subscription required.

To read these free issues, fans only need to download the Marvel Unlimited app, available on iPhoneiPad and select Android devices, and dive right in. Venom #1-5 (2018) and Absolute Carnage #1-2 (2019) will be available today through December 14. Download the app and enjoy these issues today!

Before King in Black #1 lands in comic shops December 2, read the entire history of Knull, God of Symbiotes, and our recommended prelude reading, all on Marvel Unlimited. For $60 your first year*, gain instant access to the comics and storylines that will get you ready for the next definitive chapter in Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s groundbreaking Venom run. Just use code HOLIDAY60 at checkout for this limited-time offer!

A threat years in the making, Knull’s death march across the galaxy finally hits Earth in KING IN BLACK #1—with an army of thousands of symbiote dragons at his beck and call. Eddie Brock, AKA Venom, has seen firsthand the chaos that even one of Knull’s symbiotic monsters can wreak—will he survive an encounter with the God of the Abyss himself?

Now free on Marvel Unlimited, the first issues of Venom begin a saga beneath the streets of New York, where an ancient and primordial evil has been awakened. With it, something equally evil has been awakened in that most wicked of web-slingers: Venom! The symbiote may still be a Lethal Protector of innocents in New York, but this never-before-seen threat could possibly force Venom to relinquish everything it holds dear including its human host.

In last year’s Absolute Carnage, Cates and Stegman put the Sinister Symbiote through hell again by resurrecting his ultimate foe: Cletus Kasady, AKA Carnage. And no one was safe. On a hunt for every Super Hero in the Marvel Universe who had ever worn a symbiote, Carnage and his cult set their eyes on some of our favorite Marvel heroes, including Spider-Man, Deadpool, and the Avengers!


*(plus tax where applicable) All prices in US dollars. Offer valid through 12/13/2020 11:59 PM ET on annual memberships only. First year billed upfront at a one-time payment of $60.00; subsequent years billed annually to the payment card on file at the then-current annual subscription fee (currently $69 per year) unless and until cancelled. Offer is open to new and former (now-cancelled) Marvel Unlimited members. Valid payment card required to redeem offer. Auto-renewal and other terms and conditions apply. See below for additional terms. 

Mark Knull’s Arrival in King in Black with Temporary Tattoos

King in Black, the highly-anticipated Marvel event that will serve as the epic next chapter in Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman’s groundbreaking run on Venom, arrives December 2nd. To celebrate the launch of this years-in-the-making saga, fans will also have an opportunity to take home a King in Black temporary tattoo, designed by Donny Cates’ very own tattoo artist, Ian Bederman! Matching the King in Black #1 Tattoo variant cover, the darkly mesmerizing artwork serves as a perfect symbol of the chaos and destruction that awaits the Marvel Universe when Knull’s reign begins.

In addition, Bederman has contributed four other unique designs that will grace the covers of each King in Black issue. Check out the brand-new tattoo variant cover for King in Black #2 and collect all five Ian Bederman Tattoo variant covers starting with King in Black #1 on December 2nd!

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