Cletus Kasady, the mad killer portrayed by Woody Harrelson in the upcoming Venom: May there be carnage sequel, is the human host most commonly associated with the supervillain Carnage. In Marvel Comics, however, there have been many other humans who have had the misfortune of crossing paths with the Symbiote Carnage and bonding with its chaotic and violent spirit.
In some cases, the Symbiote Carnage was simply looking for a temporary home to escape the current circumstances. On other occasions, the heroes bond with the Symbiote Destroyer to prevent them from spreading more violence and mayhem.
Here’s a look at ten of the most interesting Hosts of Carnage, from major Marvel plot developments to a short but intriguing side trip or two.
ten Ben Reilly became Spider-Carnage
The Jackal, or Miles Warren, was a biochemistry teacher gone wrong, obsessed with both Spider-Man revenge and cloning. He creates Ben Reilly from the DNA of Peter Parker. Poor Ben ends up with the low self-esteem of a clone, using Uncle Ben’s first name and Aunt May’s last name. He and the real Pete find themselves friends, and Ben takes over as Spider-Man when Peter and Mary Jane leave town. When the Carnage symbiote escapes from the Ravencroft Institute, Ben selflessly bonds with him to prevent him from harming anyone. Eventually, John Jameson forces him to return to Kasady.
9 Karl Malus becomes Superior Carnage
Wizard, a genius supervillain, and Klaw (Ulysses Klaue), a physicist whose body is made of living sounds, release Kasady from prison after being lobotomized by the state. Unable to control Kasady, Wizard is able to transfer the Symbiote to Dr. Karl Malus. Malus is a bio-geneticist, fascinated by the study of superhuman powers. As Superior Carnage, he became a thug in a battle with Superior Spider-Man and stabbed Klaw with a vibranium blade. This disrupted Klaw’s sonic body, and he explodes, releasing the Symbiote.
8 The wizard lost control and became Carnage long enough to take revenge
Wizard (Bentley Wittman), is a super genius and was a child prodigy. He is an inventor who turns to crime. Wizard teams up with three other villains to become the Frightful Four, whose members ultimately include Carnage, Klaw, and Karl Malus. He creates Superior Carnage, and when the latter is defeated by Superior-Spider-Man, the Carnage Symbiote bonds with Wizard. What’s remarkable about Carnage’s brief vacation in Wizard is that he used it to get revenge on Malus – and devour him alive.
7 Eddie Brock bound – and fought for control – with Dark Carnage
Towards the end of the Absolute Carnage storyline, Eddie became Venom / Legion, an overpowered Symbiote. He fights Dark Carnage and wins with help from Deadpool, Captain Marvel, and others – but it’s a problematic victory.
In order to prevent the Dark God Knull from awakening, Eddie absorbs Venom, fights Grendel, and ultimately the Symbiotes of Dark Carnage at the same time. After fighting Dark Carnage for control of his body, Eddie is finally able to part ways with it again with the help of the Venom Symbiote and others.
6 Norman Osborn / Green Goblin became the Red Goblin
After the Secret Empire 2017 miniseries ended, the Carnage Symbiote ended up in a former SHIELD warehouse. Norman Osborn breaks up and bonds with Carnage to become the Red Goblin. At first, he lets Carnage embark on the usual senseless rampage. Later, Osborn regains enough control to bring a method to the madness, and he collides – and wins against Miles Morales and others. He even transfers part of the symbiote to his grandson Normie, who becomes a miniature red goblin.
5 Carnage escapes imprisoned Cletus to bond with John Jameson
While still linked to Cletus Kasady, the Carnage Symbiote got bored while incarcerated at Ravenscroft. The ever-resourceful Symbiote finds its way into the institution’s water pipes. From there he was able to overwhelm John Jameson. John Jonah Jameson III was the head of security at the insane criminal facility at the time. Jameson tries to fight him, but Carnage is too strong, and he embarks on a brief, murderous rampage before jumping into Ben Reilly and Spider-Man.
4 Dr. Tanis Nevies becomes contemptuous
Dr. Tanis Nevies was treating Shriek, Carnage’s eternal girlfriend. Sentry is a superhero created with a super soldier who finds himself in a multi-hero / villain showdown on the Raft, SHIELD’s prison for super-villains.
Carnage enters the fray and Sentry takes him to space, where he rips him in two. The Symbiote, however, is only dormant and is discovered by Michael Hall, a rival of Tony Stark. He tries to create prosthetics with the Symbiote, but he takes control of Nevies’ prosthetic arm, creating the superhero Scorn.
3 Carnage inspired Carla Unger to get rid of an abusive spouse
Carla Unger was just a researcher running her own business, examining a piece of the Symbiote Carnage Spider-Man had brought to Morse Labs. During her analysis, she received a call from her abusive husband. Symbiote’s flap locks onto her strong emotions and enters her body through her left eye. Carla / Carnage burns the rest of the sample and then returns home. As her husband begins his abuse, the Symbiote will influence her to kill him and then attack the facilities of Morse Labs. This possession ends up killing the host and Carla dies as Carnage leaves her.
2 Carnage Creepily pretends to be Gwen Stacy
Ultimate Spider-Man updated Webslinger’s story for the 21st century, with Gwen Stacy emerging as a friendly character to both Peter and Mary-Jane. The Lizard creates Carnage in part from Spider-Man’s DNA. Gwen ends up living with Peter and Aunt May, and in a horrific incident, Carnage throws Gwen off a bridge and kills her. Yet … a few problems later, Gwen reappears, apparently no worse for wear. Later, it was revealed that she was a clone and had become the new Carnage. After Carnage is later reabsorbed into Venom, Gwen is apparently like new.
1 DC’s Bizarro created Bizarnage in Amalgam Comics
Amalgam Comics was owned by both Marvel and DC, and used to bring their respective superheroes and villains together. Founded in 1996, it only lasted a year. In one series, Carnage merges with Bizarro – who is already a strange mirror image and a supervillain copy of Superman. This happens during an experiment at Cadmus Labs, where scientists are trying to synthesize alien DNA. The result – dubbed Bizarnage – escapes and lashes out, battling Spider-Boy (Spider-Man / Superboy cross) and others in a complicated storyline.
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