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'Cult of Carnage: Misery' #1 introduces a new and unique Symbiote
Marvel

Comic Books

‘Cult of Carnage: Misery’ #1 introduces a new and unique Symbiote

An excellent start to what could be a unique new Symbiote in a sea of Symbiotes.

Marvel has consistently supported new Symbiote series for a few years now, and Cult of Carnage: Misery is next up on the docket. Written by Sabir Pirzada with art by Francesco Mortarino, the series aims to flesh out Harry Osborn’s wife, Liz Allen, who is trying to hold the family together in the shadow of Osborn’s evil acts and name.

If you haven’t heard, Marvel’s going all-in on Symbiotes this summer with their Summer of Symbiotes celebration. Venom is celebrating his 35th anniversary, so why not celebrate all that spun out the idea of a black-suit Spider-Man who’s big and evil? This series aims to add to the Symbiote legacy by creating a new Symbiote with a unique take on how it all works with Liz.

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Now a kind of collector of Symbiotes, thanks to her ties to Alchemax, a new Symbiote is introduced this week and it’s a pretty neat concept. Given how many are running around, one might think it’s one too many, but Pirzada does a good amount of work to explain why and how a new Symbiote would sprout from the events of this issue. I won’t spoil it here, but it has a yin and yang root to its creation, with the requirement of the human host to be strong enough to keep things at bay.

'Cult of Carnage: Misery' #1 review

Why not open a Symbiote zoo while you’re at it?
Credit: Marvel

Things start slowly as we are reminded of Liz’s love for Harry and how things turned out. She’s a caretaker of two Osborn kids while keeping the business afloat. We get to see Liz as a mother and a badass boss lady reminiscent of shows like Succession. In a few short pages, Pirzada proves Liz is a strong character worth rooting for.

That’s very important in making this narrative work since Liz isn’t necessarily a fan favorite character. There is some familiarity if you enjoyed Spider-Man comics in the ’90s since the Guardsmen played a big role in the story. They’re meant to protect Liz, but a rogue agent may be upending all her protections.

Mortarino does a good job with art, giving everything a nice detailed look. Things can sometimes look stiff, but in general, it tells the story well. A stand-out moment involves a chimp who is wearing a Symbiote, and it’s a chilling concept. Alchemax is cool with testing on animals, it appears. This leads to some Symbiote tendril fighting that looks cool.

One hiccup is what appears to be a double-page scene introducing an erratic Guardsmen member. The writing is good, but the way the page is layout, it’s a little confusing how to read it. The use of film strips to convey we’re looking at footage is an exciting idea, but the way it’s laid out makes it looks like you’re supposed to read it left to right when it’s really two separate pages. It also flows a little unnaturally.

Cult of Carnage: Misery #1 is an excellent start to what could be a unique new Symbiote in a sea of Symbiotes who are mostly the same, save for their color. The creators set things up beautifully, making you care about a C-list character while establishing the need for a mother to rise up and protect her kids, even if it takes a Symbiote to do it.

'Cult of Carnage: Misery' #1 introduces a new and unique Symbiote
‘Cult of Carnage: Misery’ #1 introduces a new and unique Symbiote
Cult of Carnage: Misery #1
Cult of Carnage: Misery #1 is an excellent start to what could be a unique new Symbiote in a sea of Symbiotes who are mostly the same, save for their color. The creators set things up beautifully, making you care about a C-List character while establishing the need for a mother to rise up and protect her kids, even if it takes a Symbiote to do it.
Reader Rating0 Votes
0
Well written from cover to cover, establishing Liz Allen's place at Marvel right now
Does the work to establish a unique take on a new Symbiote
Art tells the story well...
...though it can look a little stiff at times
9
Great
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