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Series Spider-Man
Release Date November 2, 1996
Episode Number 37
Writer John Semper, Jr.
Len Wein
Stan Berkowitz
11 images
For the 2017 Spider-Man episode, see "Venom Returns, Part Two".

At long last Eddie Brock is reunited with the Venom symbiote. But he is not alone in his quest for revenge as his "son" helps him.


Return of Venom


The New York Police Department have trapped dangerous criminal Cletus Kasady in his home but Kasady uses grenades and metal doors over the windows to keep them at bay. The police use a helicopter as a distraction while Detective Terri Lee and several cops enters through the back. The group splits up and Kasady traps Lee in a room with him. Spider-Man knocks the door down but Kasady reveals a powerful bomb strapped to his chest set to go off in thirty seconds. With no other option Spider-Man throws the bomb into the air, the only place in New York City away from people. The bomb goes off without hurting anyone and Spider-Man climbs out from under the rubble.


In Central Park, a young couple watches as a meteorite crashes nearby. The young man pokes it with a stick when black goo ensnares both people.


Spider-Man watches as Kasady is taken away when Madame Web appears. Madame Web warns the wallcrawler that his next enemy will be unstoppable unless he conquers fear and relies on unlikely allies. "A warrior keeps his friends close and his enemies closer."


At Ravencroft Asylum for the Criminally Insane, Eddie Brock is telling his shrink, Dr. Ashley Kafka that he only wanted to help people, fight for the innocent, which is why he became a journalist. Then the alien symbiote gave him the power to do anything but first he had to destroy Spider-Man for all that he did to both Brock and the symbiote. But Kafka tells Brock that the symbiote was only a stress induced delusion. Kafka ends their session when Kasady arrives and is put in the cell next to Brock's. Kasady "flirts" with Kafka causing he and Brock to get into an argument.

Deep beneath the ground Dormammu calls for his assistant, Baron Mordo. Dormammu tells Mordo that the symbiote is back and it is time for Eddie Brock to play his part. Using his astral form Mordo comes to Brock to tell him that Dormammu can give him back the symbiote. Kasady overhears and begs Mordo to give him the symbiote and he'll do whatever Dormammu wants him to. Brock agrees and Dormammu tells Mordo that the last piece of the puzzle is at Stark Enterprises.



Peter Parker and Debra Whitman head to Stark Enterprises because they have a presentation on interdimensional portals. The two meet up with Dr. Curt Connors who introduces them to Jim Rhodes of Stark Enterprises. Dr. Connors also points out Arden Broom who owns an electronic company that supplies Stark. Peter recognizes him as Baron Mordo. Tony Stark comes on a large screen and introduces the presentation. They plan to use an interdimensional portal to transport matter from the building in New York to Los Angeles.


Back in his cell, Brock gets a visit from a young woman he doesn't recognize but "they" recognize him. The Venom symbiote suddenly comes off her and back onto Brock, forming the vicious Venom once again. Kafka arrives and realizes that Brock was telling the truth all along. Kasady watches as Venom escapes and says that he deserves the symbiote.

Dormammu tells Venom that only Brock's rage and frustration could make Venom, that he is unique. Dormammu tells him that Mordo got into the controls for the John Jameson Space Probe in Stark Enterprises and guided it back to Earth. Now Venom must get something very important for Dormammu.


At Stark Enterprises the test begins and the interdimensional portal opens. However, Peter's Spider-Sense goes off and the portal begins to malfunction. Peter sees some security footage of Venom attacking Stark Enterprises. Venom enters the presentation room and Rhodes tries to stop him but without success. Spider-Man arrives but Venom quickly overpowers him.


Venom is about to destroy Spider-Man when War Machine knocks him away. Venom begins fighting both heroes. Mordo worries that Venom will be too occupied with Spider-Man and War Machine to grab the probe that makes the interdimensional portals. Dormammu reassures him that he leaves nothing to chance. The Venom symbiote reproduced and there is now another symbiote in need of a host.


Kasady sits quietly in his cell when the young man from the park arrives. His "jacket" is able to knock the guards away and he enters the cell. The symbiote falls off the young man and stands before Kasady. Mordo appears and tell him that he must agree to serve Dormammu before accepting the symbiote. He will get to be similar to Venom but different, just as Kasady is similar to Brock but different. The new symbiote and Kasady bond and they introduce themselves as Carnage.


Back at Stark Enterprises, Spider-Man tells War Machine that Venom reacts to sound. War Machine has the perfect thing and it works until Carnage arrives and disables it. Carnage reveals to Spider-Man his former identity. Carnage and Venom team up to stop Spider-Man and War Machine until Dr. Kafka arrives and distracts Venom. Carnage defeats both the heroes and is about to destroy the wallcrawler.



Physical Therapy.jpg
Boy, is that all you got?
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Robert Hays and James Avery reprise their roles as Tony Stark/Iron Man and James Rhodes/War Machine from Iron Man. Avery was replaced on the show by Dorian Harewood partway through season one. Harewood already played Tombstone on Spider-Man.


"Amazing Spidey" of Marvel Animation Age said that the story was good but was sidetracked for "the dull Dormammu and boring Bordo." Without Dr. Strange the two villains seem out of place on this series. The show's slower pace allowed the audience to see what a monster Kasady is before he bonds with the symbiote. War Machine looked great on the show, perhaps better than on Iron Man. The episode was generally good but surpassed by its conclusion.

Comic Book Resources ranked this episode and its follow-up together as the thirteenth top episode of the series. They lauded the epic battle between Carnage, Venom, Spider-Man, Iron Man, and Baron Mordo. They claimed it was a perfect example of how the series could deal with deep themes like death, self-worth, and virtue while also getting around censorship restrictions. They liked that Kasady was still monstrous, Eddie had understandable mental anguish, and Spider-Man was hesitant to work with Venom. They enjoyed how mature the episode was for a kid's show.[1]

The episode has a 9.1 Superb rating at

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