Absolute Carnage: Symbiote Spider-Man #1
Written by Peter David
Art by Francesco Mobili
Colors by Java Tartaglia and Rain Beredo
Letters by Travis Lanham
The Rundown: A chance encounter with the Venom symbiote will lead an unsuspecting man on a journey of darkness and regret.
When Judge Leonard Elkhart decided to take a vacation in New York City, he never knew that he would be connected to one of the darkest moments in Spider-Man’s history and how that moment would culminate in the resurgence of Carnage.
Elkhart seemingly returns to his quiet life as a Criminal Court judge, but after witnessing an incident involving the White Rabbit, Elkhart’s life takes a downward spiral filled with pain, death and violence. All of it culminating in an act that will land the judge in prison. When his parole hearing comes up, Elkhart recalls the story of how he got where he is and as he contemplates what happens next, Elkhart will receive a pair of visitors that will change everything in his tragic life.
The Story: This was an incredibly fun side story for a really intense storyline. Peter David infuses this story with a potent mix of tragedy, comedy and horror. David turns a forgettable side character into an interesting person with hopes, dreams and aspirations. Elkhart’s story is one that makes you forget the fact that the main character of the story doesn’t show up anywhere in it. That’s a testament to good storytelling when you can become so immersed in the story of a character that the inevitable end of that characters existence makes you wish for more.
The Art: Francesco Mobili delivers some stunning art in this issue. The art style is perfect for the dark tone of this story and Mobili delivers some genuine anxiety with the depiction of Carnage.