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Who is Carnage in the Marvel Universe? – Origins and Powers

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BY February 19, 2020
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In Venom, a final scene shows Woody Harrelson in a hilariously on-the-nose red wig. That was our first look at Cletus Kasady, more well known to some as Carnage. With Spider-Man playing a vital role to the state of the MCU moving forward, we can assume Kasady is going to be a major villain to keep an eye on. In Venom, we see Tom Hardy’s Eddie Brock experience a sort of anti-hero adventure as he wrestles with his new symbiote invader. Is Kasady in for a similar experience, or is Carnage more of a true villain? Let’s get into what the comics say. So, who is Carnage in the Marvel Universe? 

Who is Carnage in the Marvel Universe?


Carnage made its debut in “The Amazing Spider-Man No. 359.” An offspring of Venom, the Carnage symbiote is most closely related in the comics to Cletus Kasady, the man portrayed by Harrelson in the end of Venom

Below, you’ll see spoilers from the story of Carnage in the Marvel Universe. 

Because these plot points could be used in the MCU, we’re putting in a little spoiler alert .

Consider yourself warned. 

The Lead Up to Carnage – Eddie Brock’s Jailbreak

who is carnage in the marvel universe? Image via Marvel Entertainment

Eddie Brock and Venom were insanely popular in the Marvel Comics world. In a famous storyline between Venom and Spider-Man in “The Amazing Spider-Man No. 299,” we see Brock completely bond with Venom. They seem unstoppable, until issues later when the villain Styx nearly kills Brock and the Venom symbiote gives its life to save him. Spider-Man seemingly disposes of the symbiote’s remains, and Brock goes to prison. Eventually, the Venom symbiote survives its near defeat, and returns to Brock. Reunited, and it feels so good. 

Once reunited with Brock, the two escape from prison, but not before the symbiote asexually reproduces a spawn. The offspring bonds to Eddie’s cellmate, the serial killer Cletus Kasady. Because Kasady is essentially insane, the symbiote becomes even stronger than Venom, and emerges through Kasady as Carnage. 

What Powers Does Carnage Have?

Carnage in the Marvel Universe Animated Image via Marvel Entertainment

The comics directly reference Carnage’s physical strength to being more than Venom and Spider-Man combined. If Carnage is going to be a main villain in the MCU moving forward, that’s going to be a huge problem for Peter Parker. The symbiote Carnage features some of the same powers as Spider-Man and Venom. These include web substances that project from any part of Carnage’s body and shape-shifting abilities. The symbiote also allows Kasady to essentially have a Spider-Sense, where the foreign alien can alert him of incoming danger. 

Carnage can also regenerate damaged body parts quickly, and even healed the villain once after being decapitated in “Venom Vol. 2 #27.” There are also some more ambitious displays of Carnage’s seemingly limitless power. For example,  “New Avengers #1–2” show Carnage as being able to feed on victims at a simple touch. Carnage is also seen in a few runs, like “Carnage #1–5” consuming his enemies to grow in size. 

Overall, the limits of Carnage’s power know no defined bounds because Kasady is insane. A serial killer drawn to violence from a young age, Carnage knows no bounds because its host knows no bounds. It’s a terrifying combination. 

Will Carnage in the Marvel Universe Be The Same in the MCU?

Carnage is a force to be reckoned with in the Marvel Comics Universe. His power is strong enough to unite Venom and Spider-Man on multiple occasions, and there’s a chance we’ll see that play out now in the MCU. A set video of Woody Harrelson already shows off Carnage’s power in the MCU. As the hype for Venom 2 amps up amongst rumors of a Tom Holland cameo in the film, Carnage could be a huge villain for the film-side of Marvel’s future. We also have confirmation of Shriek in Venom 2, who plays a large role in the character’s comic narrative. Needless to say, Venom 2 is going to be huge. 

Are the Venom Movies in the MCU? 

Carnage in the Marvel Universe Venom Spider-Man Raimi Image via Sony Pictures

We now from the Morbius trailer that the MCU and Sony Spider-Verse movies are at least adjacent to each other. In the Morbius trailer, Michael Keaton makes an appearance as Adrian Toomes, the man who becomes Vulture as depicted in Spider-Man: Homecoming. If we get a full blown Spider-Man cameo in Venom, then we’ll know for sure. At the moment, it seems like a big reveal is right around the corner. We’ll just have to wait as patiently as possible. 

Are you excited to see Carnage on the big screen in Venom 2? Let us know in the comments! 

Featured Image Credit: Marvel Comics

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Taylor loves to play video games in his spare time. He has two degrees in Political Communication and wrote his thesis on Marxism and the exploitation of college athletes. In his spare time, he loves spending time with his wife and two Toy Australian Shepherds. He’s always got headphones in, and he’s a diehard Cubs fan.

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