Since The Death of Superman in 1992, there has been a slew of high-profile deaths in comics. Characters like as Spider-Man, Batman, Wolverine, Wonder Woman, and Captain America have all died in various acts of valor and glory since then. These fatalities, however, have lost narrative weight in recent years. This is due to the fact that in many circumstances, resurrection is as frequent as death, making it difficult to genuinely mourn the loss of our beloved characters.
Instead, our favorite heroes’ most memorable last stands have been the modest ones. These little, silent deaths occur not as a result of the typical death ray, but rather as a result of something as basic as a gunshot or the shattering of a neck from a sudden jolt. It is this kind of end that Eddie Brock meets in Adam Warren’s Venom: The End #1.
Marvel’s The End series, including Miles Morales: The End, examines the final days of many Marvel heroes. In the context of the immortal symbiote, this implies that Venom: The End examines humanity’s final day rather than Venom’s. According to Warren, while the bulk of Symbiotes are basically killing robots, Venom was a little different. Venom was fascinated by organic living forms, particularly Eddie Brock, whom it adored. There is a critical distinction to be made between Venom and the object of its affections here — Eddie Brock is a this-dimensional muscular man from New York, while Venom is an immortal extra-dimensional shard of a shattered hive-mind.
Desperate to save Eddie, the symbiote strives in vain to preserve his life, scared of losing the being with which it has been attached for so long. As Eddie’s organs degenerate, Venom replaces them with “venomized cellular equivalents,” until Eddie’s internal system is mainly made up of Venom components, even down to his cellular structure. Eddie’s brain begins to degrade and his neurons begin to die after two hundred years. Desperate, the Symbiote replaces them and the data they hold with more of itself. Eddie’s memories continue to fill up with the symbiote standing in for the people in his life until he is unable to recall anybody else. After 500 years and the end of the heroic era, all human life has been exterminated, and Eddie is no longer saveable. Venom withdraws from Eddie’s corpse, which crumbles to dust in Venom’s arms, realizing it’s time to let him go.
What makes this so powerful is that Eddie does not go out and save anyone. It isn’t heroic; rather, it is a failed act of love and heroism. Venom, a figure whose name is rarely associated with either love or heroism, strives fiercely and fails to hold onto someone he loves. While this is a one-shot narrative with no ramifications for future events in the Marvel world, there is something meaningful at that moment, something humanizing and relatable. Venom’s pain is one that many people have felt and will feel, a pain that is part of the human experience but rarely part of the Superhero experience. And, like all of us, Venom is compelled to continue despite the pain it is in.
As the cosmos is being conquered by the artificial super-intelligence colossi known as the Godminds, who are eradicating all biological life, Venom steps in to save it. Venom harnesses the powers of the numerous mutants with whom it has linked to obtaining powers that help it achieve its quest, using the information stored inside itself to generate new life. Venom eventually travels across time, joining with every living entity that has ever been and storing its data into its own cellular structure. When Venom’s ultimate stand comes to an end and the God Brains arrive, Venom rips itself apart and utilizes every power in its arsenal to construct a new reality in which all of the species with which it linked are resurrected and put in their proper timelines. Venom is destroyed, yet its death is a massive act of creation in and of itself. The last thing we see as Venom’s awareness fades is a remembrance of Eddie and the other individuals’ Venom loved and was prepared to sacrifice itself to protect.