The news that Sony's upcoming #Venom standalone film will be totally separate from the Marvel Cinematic Universe (and the swiftly approaching #SpiderManHomecoming) leaves us with the very real prospect of a Spider-Man villain film without Spider-Man. Fans are wondering how this could possibly work — after all, Venom is one of the web-slinger's greatest foes (perhaps THE greatest), and his origin story is intrinsically linked to Spider-Man's black costume.
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It seems almost impossible that Sony could create this film without featuring Peter Parker — currently played by Tom Holland — while keeping Venom accurate to the comics. But what if the studio found a loophole and instead choose to feature the live-action debut of another Spider-Man: Miles Morales?
Miles Morales first appeared in the Ultimate Spider-Man comics as the successor to Peter Parker. He became inspired to take up the mantle after witnessing Peter's death at the hands of the Green Goblin. Since then, he's gone on to become a hugely popular character in his own right; he even appeared in the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon series, voiced by Donald Glover, a fan favorite to play Miles before he was cast as a different character in Homecoming.
Venom And Miles Morales' Relationship In The Comics
Miles Morales doesn't have the famous connection to Venom that Peter does, but that isn't to say that Miles and Venom don't have a connection at all. In fact, Venom plays quite a significant role in Miles' life in the comics.
In the Venom War story arc, the symbiote bonds to a man named Conrad Marcus, a biochemist at Roxxon who stole a sample of the suit. He had been questioned by Betty Brant about his connections to a spider that she believed gave Miles his powers. As Marcus had helped to create the spider, he panicked and used the symbiote to kill Betty. He then read all of the information that she'd gathered, and went off to find the man whom he believed to be Spider-Man.
Miles first encounters the symbiote after it confronts his father, Jefferson. Despite Jefferson protesting that he wasn't Spider-Man, Venom tries to kill him; Miles arrives in the nick of time and manages to fight off the symbiote, though it seriously injures his father. From this moment on, Venom becomes obsessed with the new Spider-Man, just as it was with Peter Parker, and begins to hunt him down.
Driven by its desire to bond with or consume Miles, the symbiote reemerged at the hospital Jefferson was recovering at. Venom went into a frenzy and went on a rampage, demanding Spider-Man. When Miles arrived, he was able to hold it off for a short while, but it eventually began to consume him.
Miles was saved when his mother, Rio, started shooting the symbiote, distracting it long enough for Miles to use a venom blast to escape its grasp.
Unfortunately, tragedy struck soon after. Venom began to consume Rio, and Miles allowed himself to be absorbed once again. Using a venom blast from inside the creature, he was able to free himself and his mother. After their escape, the police began shooting the creature, killing Conrad Marcus and allowing them to contain the remains of the symbiote.
Miles then moved his mother to safety and discovered that she had been caught in the crossfire and was dying. With her final breath she told Miles that she was proud of him.
After this, Miles vowed to be Spider-Man "No more!" It certainly would give dramatic heft to a Venom film that follows the comics.
A Darker, More Adult Spider-Movie?
It's already been announced that Venom will have an R-rating, which allows it to have more violence and adult themes. This would be appropriate when you consider the psychological aspects of Venom's character. If you were introduced to Venom in the '90s Spider-Man: The Animated Series like I was, you're aware that Venom knows everything about Spider-Man, thanks to the bond they shared together. As a result of this, Venom does not register on Peter's Spider-sense, as it is considered a part of him.
This allows Venom to get the upper hand on Spider-Man frequently and puts all of Peter's loved ones at risk — and we all know how Peter is about keeping his identity a secret. Obviously, there would need to be some changes made if the Spider-Man in the film is Miles, but it could still work. If the Venom film were to adapt the Venom War arc from Ultimate Spider-Man, it could well be the most disturbing Spider-Man film yet.
We already know that we're getting an animated film starring Miles Morales, but perhaps this could be the live-action debut of a much-loved character — and with Venom taking place outside of the #MCU, this would be the perfect place to do it.
Would you like to see Miles Morales on the big screen? Let me know in the comments!