Web of Venom: Wraith #1 Review

by Harlan Ivester on September 09, 2020

Writer: Donny Cates
Artist: Guiu Villanova
Color Artist: Dean White
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Publisher: Marvel Comics

            Web of Venom: Wraith #1 is perhaps the most important of the spin-off one-shots overflowing from Donny Cates’s Venom. I certainly expected this to be big, but this is really big. Fans might want to check it out for that reason alone. I’m not sure how I feel about the implications of the reveal in this issue. Without getting into spoilers, I’m worried that it may lead to a run of the mill confrontation in The King in Black. There’s a lot that can happen between now and then, though, and there’s a really good chance that Cates has anticipated this. As for the overall plot, this is a very lonely, somber kind of tale. Through dialogue and pacing, Cates nails the tone that he’s working towards.

            The tone is also greatly enhanced by the visual team, of course. Guiu Villanova’s characters very vividly communicate the range of emotions including disdain, despair, rage, and even the brief instance of wonder and relief. His Venom looks just a little wonky to me, but his characters generally stuck out to me in a good way. Dean White’s colors make this a moody story, as well. With how much of it involves symbiotes and outer space, it would be easy for it to feel excessively dark. Thankfully, that’s not the case here, and when the scene does call for an especially dark palette, he uses one or two opposing colors to create a strong contrast on the page. This, along with well done shading, makes otherwise dull pages feel weirdly full of life.

            Venom fans will want to check out Web of Venom: Wraith #1, if only for the lore. That said, I don’t think they’ll be disappointed with the story they’re getting. It successfully creates a narrative that is desolate and builds tension subtly. At any rate, be sure to give this a read one way or another before King in Black comes out in December.

Our Score:


A Look Inside