Name: The Symbiote
Other Names: Venom; Venom Symbiote; Spider-Venom; the alien symbiote; the black costume; symbiote; Spider-Man's alien costume
First Appearance: The Amazing Spider-Man (vol. 1) #252 (May 1984): "Homecoming!"
First Appearance (Additional Details): (as black costume) The Amazing Spider-Man (vol. 1) #252 (May 1984): "Homecoming!"; (MC-2) Spider-Girl (vol. 1) #5 (Feb. 1999): "A Touch of Venom!"
Super? (Has Super Powers/Special Abilities/Technology): Yes
Number of Appearances: 16
Gender: not applicable
Note: sentient black costume Spider-Man obtained on Battleworld
Chronologically, the alien symbiote which posed as Spider-Man's new black costume was first encountered by Spider-Man in Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars #8 (Dec. 1984). But Spider-Man first appeared in the costume in the issue of his own comic book series in which he returned from the "Secret Wars" on Battleworld: in Amazing Spideman #252 (May 1984), which was published a few months before.
The "appearances" numbered for this record are those appearances in which the alien symbiote that posed as Spider-Man's costume acted independently, as a distinct character, and not as Spider-Man's costume completely under his control or when it was merged with a human host to form "Venom." There are probably more appearances of the symbiote in this independent form than counted in the "number of appearances" figure displayed for this record.
In the MC2 timeline the Symbiote was known alternatively as "Venom" and "Spider-Venom." It hated Spider-Man and his daughter Spider-Girl and was regarded as a "seeker of vengeance."
BELOW: Eddie Brock ("Venom") was moved by Mel Gibson's "Passion of the Christ" to renounce villainy, sell The Symbiote, and donate the money to charity: The Terrible Tinkerer conducts an auction for super-villains in which Eddie Brock is auctioning off the alien symbiote that transforms him into Venom - selling the symbiote to the highest bidder. Note how Mysterio questions whether Eddie Brock's actions are truly "Christ-like." It is not every day you see a super-villain question whether somebody's actions are "Christ-like." But Eddie Brock's spiritual motivations in this case are very sincere, and hearken back to the earliest beginnings of this Catholic character, who first merged with The Symbiote after a sincere prayer in a Catholic church. Note how the Tinkerer refers to Eddie Brock's "crisis of faith." This term is usually used to describe as a period of doubt that causes one to question one's beliefs. In this case, Eddie Brock has come to doubt his life as a villain, and is actually turning back to his religious faith.
Source: Marvel Knights Spider-Man #6 (Nov. 2004): "Venomous: Part Two", pg. 23, panels 2-4. Written by Mark Millar. Art by Rachel Dodson, Terry Dodson. See also: charity; Christ-like; faith; repentance; crisis of faith; Catholic; Venom (Eddie Brock); Jesus Christ (Jesus of Nazareth); Tinkerer (Phineas T. Mason); The Symbiote; Mysterio (Daniel Berkhart); Mel Gibson
Suggested links for further research about this character and the character's religious affiliation: