WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Venom #20 by Donny Cates, Iban Coello, Zé Carlos, Rain Beredo and VC's Clayton Cowles, on sale now.
A character who has made himself comfortable inside the pages of Donny Cates and company's Venom is The Maker, aka the Reed Richards from the Ultimate Universe. The Maker made a surprising debut in Venom #7 when he was revealed to be behind the imprisonment of Eddie Brock. This twisted version of Reed has called the Marvel Prime Universe home ever since the Ultimate Universe came to an end during the second Secret Wars event.
While Maker isn't the only Ultimate Universe survivor to pop back up, he has unquestionably caused the most chaos, making appearances in New Avengers and Ultimates. However, instead of terrorizing super-teams, Maker has set his sights on Eddie and his alien symbiote. His interest came in handy during the Absolute Carnage crossover event, as Maker used his superior intellect to create a device to extract the codex samples out of previous symbiote hosts.
Of course, it was revealed that Maker had no plans to destroy the codices -- instead, the villain intended to collect them for an unknown reason. The release of Venom #20 makes that reason crystal clear, but with that revelation comes another surprise with the return of a weapon from The Maker's home universe.
A Synthetic Symbiote
The Maker spends the majority of the issue talking to someone on a monitor screen. As Maker informs the mystery man about his observations regarding Eddie Brock's son Dylan, the topic of Project Oversight comes up. The name was first brought up when Maker tried to explain to Eddie who he works for, but at the time, he described it more as a gathering than an organization.
Project Oversight involves Maker's research into finding a way to safely travel between dimensional rifts, with the end goal of making it back to the Ultimate Universe. "It would seem the strain of multiple rift travels is... too much for the human mind and body," Maker says. However, though it is damaged, something was able to come through the rift from the Ultimate Universe during Maker's last attempt: the synthetic Venom symbiote.
The Venom symbiote of the Ultimate Universe was originally created by Eddie Brock and Peter Parker's fathers, Eddie Brock Sr. and Richard Parker. The fathers envisioned the symbiote as a method to cure the world of diseases, but their research ultimately led to their deaths, with the Venom project continuing at Trask Industries and Roxxon until Eddie Jr. and Peter reunited. Miles Morales would have several run-ins with the Venom symbiote as well, with it fatally wounding his mother.
We now know Maker's true reason for collecting the symbiote codex samples was to bond them to the Ultimate Universe symbiote with the hopes of repairing it. Unfortunately, all of those codices are now a part of Eddie and the Earth-616 Venom, but this is where Dylan comes back into play. Since he is a living codex -- a piece of the alien symbiote combined with a living human fetus -- he should, in theory, be able to repair the synthetic symbiote.
Just how Maker plans on orchestrating this plan remains a mystery for now, but as Dylan has shown us in Absolute Carnage #5, there may be no limits to his unknown powers. Also, if the Ultimate Universe symbiote was able to make it through a dimensional rift, who knows what else could have also traveled through the openings during The Maker's trials?
These events will surely continue to play out in Venom, but Miles will certainly have some strong opinions when he eventually discovers what is going on. Miles and Eddie teamed up against Knull and the Grendel in Venom, so a reunion looks to be in the making.
And why is The Maker so intent on reviving the Ultimate Universe? Marvel has teased its return since last year's C2E2, with Senior Vice President Tom Brevoort responding to a fan, "We’ll be vague and mysterious... there are always plans." The universe also popped up in the conclusion of Spider-Men II #5. It now appears those secret plans are bearing some alien fruit.