02 September 2006

The Many Foes of Spider-Man - Carnage

We are under 250 days and ready for a crazy on the countdown, I bring you Carnage.

In 1992, Venom was hugely popular, and also becoming more of an anti-hero than all out bad guy. So, it was decided to make another Venom-like character, but meaner and more deadly. They gave us Carnage. Venom's alien suit spawned an offspring "costume," which merged with seriel killer Cletus Kasady.

From the wikipedia:

His past is uncertain. Kasady claims he killed his father, who apparently killed the boy's mother when she tried to kill him; however, he is unclear on the exact details ("...or is it the other way around?"). He also claims he killed his grandmother when he was younger, pushing her down a flight of stairs. Kasady tortured animals (including his own dog) when he was young. By his early twenties, Cletus had been convicted of eleven murders, although he bragged about dozens. His largely self-invented past and chaotic personality are two of the traits he shares with the Joker. Ironically, in a Marvel/DC Comics crossover between Spider-Man and Batman, Carnage actually had a very brief alliance with the Joker, but turned on him.

Kasady has been separated from and re-bonded with the symbiote several times. The Carnage symbiote, attracted to stronger hosts, has attempted to bond with Ben Reilly (Spider-Man at the time) to become Spider-Carnage, and the Silver Surfer. Later, Venom decided to absorb the Carnage symbiote "for good." Without the symbiote, Kasady retained the Carnage persona by costuming himself in red paint and continuing his killing sprees (albeit as a powerless human). Soon after, Kasady found an exact replica of the symbiote in the Negative Zone. Why this symbiote is an identical copy, or where it came from, has yet to be explained.


Powers

The alien symbiote suit is made of tough, flexible fibers of organic polymer which have the ability to mimic any type of clothing whatsoever (typically colored black or red in Kasady's case). It also makes him undetectable (like Venom) to Spider-Man's spider-sense. Similarly, Venom's ability to "detect" Kasady's presence can be blocked by the suit.

In addition, the suit gives Carnage the ability to adhere to most surfaces with his hands and feet, a power which the symbiote inherited, via Venom, from Spider-Man. Also adapted from Spider-Man is the ability to project a web-like substance from his body. Unlike Venom, Kasady can also separate parts of the symbiote costume from himself and use them as weapons, but they crumble to dust after about ten seconds. Carnage's symbiote originally had the power to "see" from any part of itself and relay the visual information to Kasady although he appears to have lost this power.

The living costume endows Carnage with superhuman strength, sufficient to lift roughly 50 tons. Originally, he was stronger than both Spider-Man and Venom combined. Carnage also possesses levels of superhuman agility and reaction time comparable to those of Spider-Man.

Cletus Kasady is also a formidable hand-to-hand combatant as well as a merciless killer. Combined with the alien symbiote, Kasady is one of the most lethal and unpredictable of all Marvel supervillains.


Venom vs. Carnage

Carnage starred in the miniseries Venom vs. Carnage in 2005. The Carnage symbiote spawned its own offspring symbiote, which he failed to kill. The spawn later bonded with police officer Patrick Mulligan. Carnage continued to try and kill his offspring while Venom defended it (it was his grandchild after all). Venom dubbed the new symbiote Toxin. Mulligan has since attempted to steer the symbiote towards heroism instead of murder, but its probably only a matter of time until Toxin adds another member to the family (She-Venom perhaps?).



Villain Profiles:

the Beetle
Black Cat
Boomerang
Calypso
Carnage



Spider-Man 3 debuts in 244 days!

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