The real problem that I had with Venom 2: Let There Be Carnage was that I just rewatched the original the day before I went to the theaters to see the sequel. If you watch my original, right out of the theater review of Venom I mentioned that I had very low expectations that it would be worthy of any of the Spider-Verse films that preceded it. Luckily for me and a lot of skeptics, I was wrong. The original was exceptionally entertaining and had so much heart. Walking out of the theater I was revitalized with new hope for the franchise and the possibilities for the future.
Fast forward to October 1, 2021, and the feelings that I had walking out of the theaters for LTBC matched my expectations for the original Venom film. It was exactly how I expected to feel with the first movie and was pleasantly surprised. I went into Venom 2 with my expectations raised and was surprisingly underwhelmed. What happened? At this point, I haven’t really gone into details about the film with anyone. I did not do nor have I really watched many reviews of the film because I wanted to keep my feelings and thoughts to myself for the most part till I really had some time to absorb what I saw and try to pick apart the things I loved and work through the parts that did not work.
Right off the bat, it was the relationship between Eddie Brock and Venom. Everything that I did not want to see happens with the original did not happen and they shoved it right into the sequel. It's exactly what happened with Andrew Garfield’s Amazing Spider-Man 2. The only difference is that Venom will survive because of the timing of Tom Holland. What do I mean by this? Well, the reason why Sam Rami’s franchise went off the rails was that Sony wanted to feed our need for Spider-man to fight against Venom, even though the timing wasn’t right. It was force-fed and Sam did not execute it as well as he did his first two films. It caused Sony to stall so much and worry about Spider-man 4 that they decided to reboot instead and enter the Amazing Spider-Man franchise.
With ASM2 the issue was the film was completely all over the place. It did not seem to know what audience it was playing for. Some parts were purposely cheesy others extremely dark. It was a mess. So They reboot again this time with Marvel.
Now that the Marvel/Sony merger is coming to an end, it looks like the great start with Tom Hollands version, and the success of the spin-offs is giving us an extremely powerful Spider-verse that can sustain a mountain of success with and without Marvel Studios help. Why did Venom 2 gunk up the works for me? You have Venom but a better version than from Spider-man 3. It stuck the landing unlink Rami’s version. Then you have a successful sequel that was all over the place just like the successful sequel (financially) of Amazing Spider-man 2 but this time there is no chance that they will not continue the story either in No Way Home or SPOILER ALERT if you haven’t seen Venom 2 yet. ARE YOU READY? HERE IT COMES. STOP READING NOW IF YOU DON’T WANT SPOILERS. With Eddie now merging into the MCU based on the mid-credit scene showing Eddie being brought in either by the events from Loki or the symbiont doing something, it did not know it had the power to do or both. We’re all but guaranteed at least one or two continuations. Like I said the timing is benefiting Venom. We got the weird, all-over-the-place sequel like with Garfield’s version and the desire to see Spider-man meeting Venom perfect timing to guarantee that more is to come despite how well Venom 2 does or does not do.
What did I like about Venom 2? Carnage. That’s it. Everything with Woody Harrison as Carnage was amazing. It was gritty and brutal. It was pitch-perfect. Whatever magic or chemistry that was there with Eddie and Venom or with Eddie and Anne played by Michelle Williams was lost. None of it was working. It wasn’t just the directing, it was the storyline. But if the chemistry that was perfectly displayed in part was wasn’t here in the sequel then the only thing that can be blamed on it is in fact the director because all of the same parts were available in this vehicle. The driver (Andy Serkis) is the only factor that was different. I did not like the way Eddie and Venom spoke, agreed, disagreed, bicker, vibe or interacted overall in this film. The ironic thing is that those things were exactly what made part one so great. I loved every scene that Venom was in for the first one and loved every scene that he was not in for the sequel. Everything that was going on around Venom was more entertaining that was Venom themselves were doing. The only scene that felt like the same franchise was when Anne confessed to liking having the symbiont and getting Venom and Eddie on the same page again. Other than that scene everything else was just a cheesy pickup line from an awkward kid while the first film felt like smooth game from a confident man that knows how to engage with any and everyone.
Overall, the movie was decent. Ranks are better than Amazing Spider-Man 2, possibly less fun than Spider-Man 3. It was just a vehicle to get us to the next Spider-man film which so far looks spectacular and here’s hoping that when Venom (Tom Hardy) and Spiderman (Tom Holland) do meet. We will have our minds blown away.
I’m looking forward to knowing how Mobius is and all of the other Spiderman villains will be taken away from the MCU and put in a separate universe to deal with our current spider-man and see when and if more crossovers with the MCU will happen. Hulk/Venom anyone?
I’m confident Venom 3 will be better. With things happening the way it is and how things are sorta mirroring the previous franchises having Spider-man featured in Venom 3 the way Venom was originally introduced in Spider-Man 3 would be poetic. If Tobey McGuire makes an appearance in No Way Home, I’m betting money that it is what will happen. I’m looking forward to seeing Venom betray Eddie because he finds Peter Parker superior. Copying the webs and then putting the iconic logo on his chest just to be rejected and come running back to Brock.
Elephant in the room. Did Shriek just give Marvel the opening it needs for mutants since she confirmed that she is in fact a mutant?