WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Scream: Curse of Carnage #1 by Clay McLeod Chapman, Chris Mooneyham, Rain Beredo and VC's Corey Petit, on sale now.
The symbiotes' gooey nature makes them some of the grossest, most unnerving creatures in the Marvel Universe. This quality is amplified further depending on their host, with Carnage and the long-tongued Venom pushing the envelope of body horror. The same goes for Venom's other offspring besides Carnage: the female symbiote, Scream.
Following the events of Absolute Carnage, Scream has gained a new host in Andi Benton, who's less than happy to accommodate the alien. Her quest to rid herself of Scream in Scream: Curse of Carnage #1 leads to a drastic decision, which then causes a showdown with some of the grossest symbiotes yet.
The beginning of the issue deals with Andi Benton trying to handle the fallout of Absolute Carnage, with much the city left on edge about symbiotes. This is compounded with her own personal trauma leftover from dealing with her family life, in particular: a sense of abandonment from her mother. She tries to check into F.E.A.S.T., a local shelter where Spider-Man's Aunt May works, but even there, her solace is short-lived.
A possibly mentally ill woman who also stays there is able to discern that Andi has a symbiote, which also protects her when the woman attacks Andi with a knife. The less-than-warm welcome leads to a party, and even here, she can't help but get sucked into a fight. Feeling lost, hopeless and without a home, Andi breaks down and attempts to commit suicide by jumping off of the George Washington Bridge. Before she hits the water, however, the Scream symbiote takes over and saves her. Before it completely envelopes her body, however, a few drops of Andi's blood sink into the water, leading to an aquatic nightmare.
BRING OUT THE BODIES
The blood and the symbiote droplets intertwine with fish and dead bodies under the sea and are actually able to bring the bodies to life in a horrid fusion of rotting corpses and sealife. This coincides with a scene earlier in the issue, in which a dead woman's body was found with fish growing out of it.
Examples of this disgusting new species include bipedal humanoid fish; skeletons with crustacean arms jutting from their backs and gooey corpses whose heads have been taken over by mollusks. The creatures attack Andi, who, after turning into Scream, notices how feeble they are. It would seem that using completely lifeless hosts drastically weakens the potential of a symbiote, though this wasn't necessarily the case with Sleeper's host, the long-dead Tel-Kar.
It's also not clear as to why the symbiote chose these lower intellect or dead creatures as hosts, as their ability to be easily controlled would be juxtaposed with less lifeforce/nutrients to share. Disgusted with the fish-faced freaks herself, Scream makes quick work of the aquatic cadavers, before the symbiote that had bonded with them skitters away into a gutter.
It's unclear if this symbiote and its piscine hosts will return in future Scream: Curse of Carnage issues, but the new tendency for symbiotes to merge with deceased creatures or animals makes New York even less safe.
KEEP READING: Spider-Man: All of Carnage's Powers, Ranked