Sony’s Venom film is a hugely anticipated one in the sphere of superhero movies. The movie got through the production stage very quickly and is on its way to theaters in October. Not long ago, the first trailer was revealed. However, many fans were disappointed in how much of the title character was shown – specifically, none at all. Then, CinemaCon footage leaked, revealing the first look at Marvel’s Lethal Protector.
Suffice it to say, many fans were indeed happy with this reveal. It’s a very comics-accurate look, depicting the character’s mouthful of jagged fangs and serpent-like tongue. That isn’t to say there weren’t those critical of this reveal. Some harped on the CG used to bring the symbiote to life, calling it silly. But there are several factors to this. The most obvious is that, much like with his absence from the previous trailer, the CG isn’t entirely done. Perhaps they ran this to appease fans because it looked at least presentable. There’s also the possibility that the CG intentionally plays up Venom’s otherworldly nature. He’s a seven-foot alien, made of a gelatinous substance. They could have been trying to make him seem as alien as possible.
Another major point of the trailer is, for some reason, the pronunciation of the word “symbiote.” Apparently, the internet is just so bored, it decided to debate this minor detail. The trailer introduces a Life Foundation scientist who tells Eddie about them. In that clip, she repeatedly says the word as “sim-bahy-ote”. For years, though, fans have been taught to say the word as “sim-bee-ote” through various animated and video game adaptations. Though one has to wonder exactly how much it matters. Both pronunciations (along with the less frequently used “sim-bee-uht”) are accepted. It’s a very odd thing to form whole debates about.
Another thing people noticed is the action of the trailer. It craftily tried to hide that all of its action was from just one scene. That scene likely came from an early point in the movie, as well, given the context. It was possibly the first time Eddie truly became Venom. This is further supported by what audiences know of the plot. No other symbiotes were seen in the trailer. Yet it’s been confirmed that Venom will be fighting others. These include those from the Venom: Lethal Protector comic, as well as longtime fan-favorite, Carnage. With months to go before the film’s release, it’s likely there will be at least one more trailer, showing a glimpse of Venom’s real competition.
The most obvious thing being discussed is the absence of Spider-Man as a character. While Venom has since gone on to become a much more fleshed-out character, in his own right, his origins are very Spider-Man centric. Without Spider-Man in the picture, obviously Venom’s origins would need changing. Though that leads to the question of if they really need to tell his origin at all. The film could have easily just begun with him relocating to LA, already in possession of the symbiote, and only mentioning Spider-Man in passing. Altering his origins too much runs the risk of altering Venom’s motives too much.
Eddie Brock is originally driven by vengeance. But it’s partially misguided. He blames Spider-Man for ruining his life. The irony is that while Spider-Man certainly didn’t help, Brock did much of it to himself. The symbiote forms its connection with Brock largely because it likes to feed on his anger and hate. The thing keeping Venom from being a villain is that despite his being a jerk, he’s not a “bad” person, per se. In fact, he wants to do good. That much does come across in the trailer. But the nuance of Brock’s vengefulness doesn’t really come across. And while it’s possible the Life Foundation might drive him to that point, the trailer also doesn’t exactly show Eddie tragic edge of being largely at fault for the bad things that befall him.
Could the movie still wind up doing well for itself, despite this? It’s possible. Venom has had many iterations over the years and there’s no shortage of content to pull inspiration from. But the trailer doesn’t really show much in terms of the actual arc. It only shows the basic elements of the plot. And for only setting out to do that much, it’s pretty engaging to fans. Especially those let down by 2006’s Spider-Man 3 interpretation of the character.