VENOM: FIRST HOST # 4 BY MIKE COSTA, MARK BAGLEY, PACO DIAZ, RON LIM, ANDREW HENNESSY, SCOTT HANNA, DONO SANCHEZ-ALMARA
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
VENOM: FIRST HOST # 4 Eddie Brock and the Venom symbiote have been SEPARATED, but Brock isn't giving up without a fight! With a pair of unlikely allies, Brock takes the fight to his symbiote's home turf…outer space!
99 %
A GREAT SPACE ODYSSEY
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What do you get when you cross Eddie Brock with a Venom symbiote spawn? You get an epic space tale that’s straight out of this world, literally. In VENOM: FIRST HOST #3, Eddie bonded with the Venom symbiote offspring to become, Sleeper. Sleeper and the Skrull war bride M’Lanz have joined forces to save Venom, Skrull warriors, and perhaps the entire galaxy. VENOM: FIRST HOST #4 picks up right where the last issue left off with the two looking for Tel-Kar before he releases the Skrull weapon of last resort, a plague that can wipe out the entire Skrull race.

So far, this new addition to the Venom legacy has brought us the first VENOM host, a symbiote known as Sleeper, and an epic space saga that has made multiple worlds collide. Although I might be the only one still not convinced that Tel-Kar is indeed the first host, I really have enjoyed this series thus far. Writer Mike Costa has really taken us on a cosmic journey and each issue has been a blast to read.

venom: first host #4
Image courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

A Race Against Time

VENOM: FIRST HOST #4 begins with M’lanz flying her Skrull ship speedily through space. She is headed for the D’karr Nebula to stop Tel-Kar from releasing a horrible bioweapon that will kill her Skrull warriors. Sleeper, the new Venom spawn creation, accompanies her on the journey to help defeat Tel-Kar with the hope of also reuniting with the Venom symbiote. Upon their arrival, Eddie senses there may be trouble ahead and thus uses the power of Sleeper to render M’Lanz asleep to keep her out of harm’s way. Sleeper enters the Skrull ship to discover that Tel-Kar has already released the bioweapon and he finds a trail of dead Skrull soldiers to prove it.

venom: first host #4
Image courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

Seconds later, he warns M’Lanz of the contaminated atmosphere as the weapon only harms Skrulls. Surprised and frustrated, Tel-Kar sees Sleeper on a computer monitor and engages some of the ships defense systems in an effort to try to kill him. But Sleeper’s abilities prove very effective and he’s able to warn Eddie before the combustible elements blow him to smithereens. Tel-Kar enters the corridor where Sleeper is and the real fight begins. I love the traditional villain trash talk Tel-Kar does as he tries to destroy Sleeper.

venom: first host #4
Image courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

Definitely the Best Story So Far

VENOM: FIRST HOST #4 is hands down one of my favorites of the series, although I do wish the fight between Tel-Kar and Sleeper had been a tad bit longer. With such a great set up for an epic battle, I thought they were going to trade blows back and forth. I was expecting them to try and tear each other apart. Nonetheless, Costa does a great job raising the stakes and pumping us up for the last issue. I hope the last book has Sleeper and Tel-Kar battle it out at least one more time.

This series has had a lot of emotional points connected to it. One of my favorite moments of this issue is the emotional connection between the Venom spawn and the Venom symbiote. This issue makes everything feel ten times bigger than it is. Tel-Kar’s been a great villain to get to know. I hope Costa keeps him alive in the end for future stories.

Sleeper

From the very beginning, I was in love with the new symbiote, Sleeper.  He’s cool, laid back, has a great sense of humor, and doesn’t seem to worry too much about anything. I also think it’s a bit ironic that his costume design includes the color green, which is the same as the Skrulls. Although the Venom spawn is still premature, we’ve watched him do a lot with the arsenal of powers he possesses already. His ability to manipulate people and go undetected are just a sample of things to come. It’s going to be quite interesting to see what happens when his abilities are at full strength.

venom: first host #4
Image courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

With one issue left I’m already wondering what the future holds for this new symbiote. Who will bond with the symbiote once Eddie and the Venom symbiote reunite? I guess we’ll have to wait until the last issue to find out.

The Many Hues of VENOM: FIRST HOST #4

Artist Mark Bagley, Paco Diaz, and Ron Lim make it look like putting VENOM: FIRST HOST #4 together was a breeze. The panels, characters, and action are just fantastic. My only problem is how short the fight scene between the two symbiotes is, I wanted it to be a lot longer. It’s an epic setup with a minimal bout. It seemed like a wasted opportunity where Costa could have shined a bit more. The placement of the splash pages was on point as well.

My favorite involves the Sleeper standing in a corridor surrounded by Skrulls. The colors by Dono Sanchez- Almara are phenomenal and make everything pop brilliantly.

Grand Finale

VENOM: FIRST HOST #4 is everything you want to see in a space odyssey. Costa has built a series that has multiple races of characters, good action, splashes of romance, comedy, and drama. It’s been able to maintain great pace and answer questions without giving away too much of the story right away. I like Tel-Kar as well. Part of me even hopes he gets away in the end. Tel-Kar has definitely been a great antagonist in this series. He’s managed to go from humble and kind to ruthless and maniacal.

VENOM: FIRST HOST HOST #4 raises the stacks for this series. My only hope is that the finale isn’t predictable but I have confidence that it won’t be. I can’t wait to see how everything ties together in the last issue. VENOM: FIRST HOST #4 has brought us to the edge of our seats. I’m sure Mike Costa has another ace up his sleeve for the grand finale.

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