WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Absolute Carnage #4 by Donny Cates, Ryan Stegman, JP Mayer, Jay Leisten, Frank Martin and VC's Clayton Cowles, on sale Wednesday, Oct. 16.
Just as the tide looked to be turning in Carnage's favor in Absolute Carnage, the Venom symbiote has made a decision that completely changes the outlook for the event series moving forward. Heroes such as Captain America, Thing and Wolverine are currently sedated while a machine removes the codex from their bodies. These codices are what is attracting Cletus Kasady to hunt down any former symbiote hosts in the Marvel Universe, in hopes of bringing back the god of all symbiotes, Knull.
Carnage caught up with the heroes just as the majority of their ranks are unconscious, leaving only Spider-Man, Venom and Bruce Banner standing in his way from ultimate victory. Venom and Eddie Brock recently disagreed on using lethal force on Norman Osborn, who believes himself to be the real Cletus Kasady. This difference of opinion is what drives the symbiote to ditch Eddie and find a much stronger host in the Immortal Hulk.
The combination of an undead-gamma-powered Hulk and an alien symbiote should be enough to make Carnage think twice about his gameplan. However, as a preview of Absolute Carnage #4 displays, the villain finds the entire situation amusing. Two people who aren't laughing are Spider-Man and Eddie, who have to protect their friends as well as Dylan, Eddie's brother/son, and Norman's grandson Normie.
Eddie comes up with the plan of Spider-Man watching over the kids in a basement level of their safehouse, while Eddie tries to join the fight upstairs and protect Cap, Wolverine and Thing. Thankfully, there is some leftover anti-symbiote tech from an old outfit called The Jury. Also laying around is gear from the three unconscious heroes -- like Captain America's Vibranium shield.
Unlike Thor's magical hammer Mjolnir, anyone can lift Cap's shield, even though it doesn't happen often in the Marvel Universe. The biggest example came when Sam Wilson, aka Falcon, replace Steve Rogers as Captain America. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is also teasing this same scenario with Old Man Steve Rogers gifting Sam his shield in the closing moments of Avengers: Endgame.
The Venom most likely to pick up additional weapons for a fight would be the Spider-Man supporting character Flash Thompson. Flash served as Agent Venom for the United States government, with the symbiote providing a new pair of legs for Flash to walk with. He was killed by Norman Osborn in Dan Slott's final Amazing Spider-Man story arc, after Norman merged with the Carnage symbiote to become the Red Goblin.
Will Eddie make Captain America proud as he uses his red-white-and-blue shield to serve up some justice in Absolute Carnage #4? Thankfully, we only have a few more days to find out.