With Venom, Donny Cates Promises a Lovecraftian Action Film In Comic Form

The Venom symbiote has undergone a number of changes in recent years, and that's sort of affected its relationship with former and current host, Eddie Brock. What's your sense of the dynamic between Eddie and his Klyntar "Other" when you pick up with them in Venom #1?

When our series picks up, their relationship is at an all-time low. Eddie can’t trust his other, and the symbiote is acting very erratic. There’s a reason for that, one beyond the usual “it’s an angry monster all the time” kind of sentiment. Something is affecting the symbiote. This isn’t a change that’s coming from within it, and whatever’s happening is making it almost animalistic.

That’s something I wanted to explore in this arc and the arcs going forward. What would it really be like to wear this alien as a second skin? We’ve seen a lot of hosts put the symbiote on, and almost all of them have been scared of it. But not Eddie. Eddie took to it like a bird in the sky. Why is that? What is it about Eddie that he would just accept something like that? So, a lot of this first arc, I thought it would be fun to see what would scare Eddie. What would have to happen to push Eddie off that ledge…

EXCLUSIVE: Art from Venom #1 by Ryan Stegman and JP Mayer

What can you tell us about the tone you're aiming for in Venom? How does it compare to some of the other Venom series of the past?

RELATED: Venom: Cates & Stegman Team for New Series in Marvel’s Fresh Start

I’m not sure I can compare it to anything else in the Venom Canon (Good band name) but I’ll say that I’ve been describing it as a kind of “Lovecraftian action film.” So, big scary stuff, with some big set pieces and action in there. It’s all very big and grand and scary. Lots of reveals.

In this initial story you pit Eddie and his Other against a threat that's haunted both of their kind in the past. Is this a new character? What can you tell us about its motivations and your inspiration for this antagonist?

It is a new character, yes. And no, I can’t tell you much about it! Sorry!! That’s the big one I can’t talk about. I promise you though…Eddie has never faced anything like this before.

EXCLUSIVE: Art from Venom #1 by Ryan Stegman and JP Mayer

In Venom#3, another character Eddie has never faced before becomes embroiled in his adventures: Miles Morales. What made you want to bring Miles into this story? What's it like bouncing this Web-Slinger off of Eddie and his other?

Oh, man! The best! Here’s what is just so cool about those two: A Venom-like creature led to the death of Miles’ mother back in the Ultimate Universe, you know? So, Miles seeing Venom like this…it’s not great. And from where Eddie is sitting… well, damn. Here’s another Spider-Man who hates him! And he’s never even met this kid! So yeah, bouncing those two off of each other has been so much fun. And just such an honor being able to write Miles. And to write the first meeting of Eddie and Miles. I’ve had many late-night conversations with Bendis getting tips from him on how to write that guy. Probably too many haha! I’m sure Brian is sick of me. But I just want to make sure I’m nailing it!

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