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She-Venom’s origin is an oddly traumatic twist in Marvel symbiote history

Anne Weying, played by Michelle Williams in the Venom movie, has has occasionally stolen the spotlight

Anne Weying/She-Venom on the cover of Venom: Sinner Takes All #3, Marvel Comics (1995). Greg Luzniak, Scott Koblish/Marvel Comics
Susana Polo is an entertainment editor at Polygon, specializing in pop culture and genre fare, with a primary expertise in comic books. Previously, she founded The Mary Sue.

Sony’s Venom, out this weekend, doesn’t just introduce wide audiences to Eddie Brock and his symbiotic partner, but to another supporting member of the anti-hero’s cast, Anne Weying, played by Michelle Williams.

Just like in the movie, the comic book version of Anne Weying is a successful lawyer, and used to be romantically involved with Eddie Brock. But she’s also got another big claim to fame.

[Ed. note: This post will contain spoilers for Venom.]

In the comics, Anne has also bonded with Eddie’s symbiote, forming the composite being known as She-Venom. (The ‘90s were a special time in Marvel history.)

Anne and Eddie were already divorced when the journalist first encountered the Venom symbiote, which had just been callously discarded by Spider-Man. She was pulled back into his world when Spider-Man began investigating Venom, and became a key piece of convincing Eddie to give up his vendetta against Spider-Man.

She got quite a bit more involved during her brief stint as the being known as She-Venom. After she was shot by the supervillain Sin-Eater, the symbiote bonded with her in order to save her life. Of course, once the were bonded, svelter symbiote slaughtered her attackers. Later, Eddie Brock sent the symbiote to Anne to help her escape imprisonment (she’d been arrested by the NYPD in the hopes that she’d serve as bait for Venom.)

But unlike Eddie, Anne found her stints as She-Venom pretty traumatic. She didn’t like how the symbiote convinced its host to maim and kill. Eventually, seven years after she was introduced, a story arc featured her being driven to suicide in response to the sight of Eddie Brock transforming into Venom.

So, that’s ... not the happiest comic book story.

In Venom, the Symbiote bonds to Anne in order to go rescue Eddie (Tom Hardy) from some of Carlton Drake (Rez Ahmed)’s henchmen. As She-Venom, she kills the henchmen and then makes out with Tom Hardy to give him the symbiote back, and later explains that it was the symbiote’s idea, not hers.

So in Venom, at least, Anne seems none the worse for wear after her transformation into She-Venom. Venom 2 could be a different story.

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