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Batman: Venom by Dennis J. O'Neil

Batman: Venom (original 1993; edition 2012)

by Dennis J. O'Neil (Writer), Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez (Illustrator)

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874138,736 (3.46)None
Title:Batman: Venom
Authors:Dennis J. O'Neil
Other authors:Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez (Illustrator)
Info:DC Comics (2012), Paperback, 144 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Batman, Comic, Series

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Batman: Venom by Dennis O'Neil (Writer) (1993)



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My memory of this one is already pretty foggy. Batman decides that fighting crime is too hard, Batman decides to take Venom to make it easier (in the future, this will be more famous as the drug that fuels Bane), things sort of spiral out of control from there thanks to a somewhat weird plot by the bad guys. Like in a lot of Dennis O'Neil stories, Batman wears some weird disguises, and Alfred engages in some over-the-top physical action. The story covers an awful long period of time, too; a timeline pedant would probably discover that there's just not enough time in the early years of Batman for this to have "actually happened." Anyway, my overall impression was of something decent but not great, and not terribly Batmanish.

Batman "Year One" Stories: « Previous in sequence | Next in sequence »
  Stevil2001 | Oct 2, 2015 |
Wow. Dennis O'Neil knows how to write a Batman story. Venom is about responding to failure and the consequence of taking drugs for the "easy out." Rarely is Batman depicted with such emotional depth (or as a psychopath for that matter), and it makes the character very engaging.

The art doesn't seem particularly striking on first glance, but is actually quite excellent. It enhances the text rather than distract from it. And man is it eerie when the Dark Knight cackles! My only nitpick is a scene where Bruce Wayne goes from clean cut to caveman in one month. What, is there Rogaine in those pills?

It should be noted that DC Comics advertises this as an origin for Bane. Well, only kind of. The villain of the Chris Nolan flick is nowhere to be found, but the guy is addicted to the same strength-enhancing venom introduced here.

But even if DC's marketing for this book is a bit misleading, this is a great comic. Trust me: You'll be happy to be misled. ( )
  wethewatched | Sep 24, 2013 |
Reissue of a 1991 comic series in which Batman, having been hooked on performance enhancing pills by an evil duo, battles his drug addiction and faces his inner demons in the solitude of the Batcave. ( )
  kivarson | Jul 23, 2012 |
Venom starts off very well, but the authors could not keep the pace up in the second half. The premise is very interesting: Batman (early in his career, not long after the Year One storyline) fails to save an innocent life simply because he wasn't physically strong enough to do it. Unable to cope with the fact that he has no superpowers, Batman turns to a new drug that's just hit the market: 'Venom'.

Spoiler alert: Yeah, it's the same Venom that creates Bane a number of years later.

Once Batman is hooked on the drug, he's a crime fighting machine, putting down thugs and hoods like never before. Unfortunately, it's not long before he's completely addicted to the stuff. Alfred, loyal butler and surrogate father, steps in, and helps Bruce cope with the horrible side effects after he goes cold turkey on the junk. There's a very powerful anti-drug message (and it's not preachy) running throughout this graphic novel, and I can really appreciate that. It's especially cool because hey, it's Batman, and I'm sure a lot of kids have read it and understood the message.

Once Bats kicks his habit, it becomes a story of revenge, as the Dark Knight goes after the drug lords. This part of the story should have been better, but there's this silly subplot where the baddies kidnap Alfred and Batman has to swim out into the ocean to save him from getting eaten by sharks. And, no... I did not make that up.

Still, for the premise, the message, and another glimpse into Batman's early days, Venom is worth ten bucks for a comic fan. ( )
  OrkCaptain | Feb 11, 2009 |
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
O'Neil, DennisWriterprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Braun, RussellIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Eeden, Trevor VonIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Garcia-Lopez, Jose LuisIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Oliff, SteveColoristsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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After Batman fails to save a young girl, he begins taking the drug in order to lift his limitations; however, when the Dark Knight becomes addicted to the substance, his entire life begins to spiral out of control.

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