Practice English Speaking&Listening with: We Found the LOST Venom Suit! [Spider-Man]

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So the Venom symbiote suit is an iconic part of comic book history, but how it came about

was alot more complicated than you might think.

This black and red costume is how it originally looked, but it finally came to comics thirty

seven years later!

Buckle yourselves in, guys, because we're going to take a deep dive into the history

of the lost Spider-Man suit.

So back in the 80s, Marvel ran a contest for aspiring comic writers to pitch their ideas

to the company.

One such participant was a dude from Chicago named Randy Schueller and he actually told

his story to CBR back in 2007 which I am going to be pulling a lot of information from.

Schueller pitched a story that would upgrade Spider-Mans powers and looks and he would

kill two birds with one stone by having a high tech costume designed as a gift by Reed

Richards of the Fantastic Four and fashionista extraordinaire, Janet Van Dyne.

This new costume would be a stealth oriented suit that was entirely black save for a blood

red spider emblem.

It was to be made out of the same unstable molecules as the Fantastic Fours uniforms

and would allow Spider-Man to cling to walls a lot better.

It was also going to feature under arm glider webbing much like the original Spidey costume,

but this was actually going to extend to be practically the length of his entire body.

Kind of like one of those skydiving wingsuits.

Plus, the new costume would also have cybernetic web-shooters that responded to mental commands.

As a trade off though, this cybernetic system did block Parkers Spider-Sense.

Included in the letter to CBR was an image of the response that Schueller received from

Marvels then Editor in Chief, Jim Shooter.

Cutting right to the point, Shooter saidI want to buy it." and offered to pay $220 (about

$580 when adjusted for inflation) for the concept and gave Schueller the opportunity

to write the story himself.

Schueller accepted the deal, wrote a second draft, and had a couple of phone calls with

editor Tom DeFalco to develop the script.

In an interview with Back Issues magazine, DeFalco mentioned that the story was supposed

to take place over the course of a single issue with Spider-Man getting the new costume,

using it for a little bit, and then getting rid of it entirely at the end of the issue.

While Schueller doesnt remember the exact reasoning of why this never came to fruition,

DeFalco claims that after months of working with the novice writer, it was clear that

they werent going to end up with a quality story and the deal fell apart as a result.

However, Randy Schueller said he has no regrets about this and that this entire thing was

a very cool moment in his life.

Still, even though the issue didnt go anywhere, Marvel still owned theideaof the black

suit and the concept would see new life in the iconic 1984 event, Secret Wars.

Admittedly, this event mostly existed so that the toy company, Mattel, could release a line

of action figures in order to go up against DCs toy line which was being handled by

rival company, Kenner.

Written by Jim Shooter and edited by Tom DeFalco, the Secret Wars event would also be the catalyst

for many changes to Marvels status quo.

She-Hulk replaced The Thing on the Fantastic Four, there was a new Spider-Woman in town,

The Hulk had a broken leg, and of course, Spider-Man had a new costume.

However, news about the black suit leaked before it was introduced and the fans hated

the idea despite not really knowing anything.

While the outrage of fanboys getting mad about something that they havent even read seems

like a modern day problem, the Marvel staff received an absolute flood of angry letters

about this in 1984.

Because of this, many writers did not want to be on the receiving end of criticism when

the outfit was finally going to be introduced in the Amazing Spider-Man series, prompting

DeFalco to take over the writing duties.

In the meantime, the Marvel staff tried to calm their audience down by releasing concept

art of the new costume design in issue twelve of their official news magazine, Marvel Age.

What we saw was very much in line with Schuellers original idea save for the glider webbing

being absent and the addition of these little patches on the hands where webs would fire


A note on the concept art asks if these web-shooters would be mechanical or organic which we now

know would end up as the latter.

Still, the backlash was scathing and Jim Shooter wanted to ditch the new design after only

one issue, but there was a slight problem to this plan.

See, although Spidey got the black suit in the Secret Wars eventit wasnt actually

going to be released when the costume itself was going to make its first appearance in

the Amazing Spider-Man series

Yeah, so Secret Wars is all about multiple heroes and villains being transported to a

strange planet called Battleworld.

To help hype up the event, the heroes would disappear at the end of an issue in their

own book and return from Battleworld at the beginning of the next with these new changes

in tow.

If curious readers wanted to know what happened, then they were going to need to pick up Secret

Wars which would release soon after.

This created an awkward situation where Jim Shooter wanted to get rid of the new Spider-Man

costume before they actually even introduced its origins.

Despite the fan outcry, the team was going to have to let it ride.

While all of this frustration was going on at Marvel, Mattel on the other hand was super

excited for the black suit since it now means that they could sell two versions of their

new Spider-Man action figure.

When Amazing Spider-Man #252 was finally released and the world was introduced to the wall crawlers

new look

The fans actually loved it!

The issue was selling out left and right with one scalper even charging fifty bucks for

it which is about $124 today when adjusted for inflation.

Oh, would you look at that.

Whiny fanboys yelling about Marvel stuff that theyve never seen ended up doing nothing

to harm the success of a controversial new release.

Gotta love how history repeats itself.

Now obviously, the red accents on the suit were changed to white, but Secret Wars #8

finally rolled around and introduced the outfits origin.

In the book, Spider-Man tried using a machine to make him a new costume and this black goo

kind of just popped out of it.

The explanation for the design change was that Peter must have subconsciously been influenced

by the costume of the brand new Spider-Woman that he met on Battleworld.

Yeah, this whole origin was clearly VERY different from the original idea that Schueller sent

in a couple of years prior, which he said was both thrilling and saddening.

It also hurts to hear a bit that Schueller admitted that he was never really a fan of

Venom, the character that the black suit would eventually evolve into.

Ordinarily, this is where the story ends and Im not going to pretend like Im the

first comic book historian to talk about this online, but what got me interested in making

this video is that the original red and black suit is back thirty seven years later and

its actually really cool how it came about!

So in honor of Marvels 80th anniversary, they released several Spider-Man one-shots.

Most notably for this video is the Sensational Spider-Man: Self improvement which contains

two stories.

The first one is actually an adaptation of Randy Schuellers original pitch from all

the way back in 1982!

This new adaptation, titledBurn Job”, had Spider-Man going up against a minor villain

named Firebrand who burned through the web heads costume.

Thankfully, the Human Torch was in the area, helped out, and brought Spider-Man back to

the Baxter Building for Mr. Fantastic to patch up.

With Parkers costume out of commission, Mr. Fantastic kind of just threw together

an insanely powerful new black and red outfit for Spidey to wear.

Its made out of unstable molecules and while it doesnt increase Spider-Mans

sticking ability, it facilitated a completely original upgrade in that it is completely

fireproof down to the webbing.

Not to mention that Richards improved on Spider-Mans web-shooter design, having them built right

into the costume and activated via a cybernetic link.

Unlike the concept art for the Secret Wars suit, this new adaptation features the under

arm webbing, albeit not as dramatic as the wingsuit that Schueller originally pitched.

Additionally, while the adaptations costume doesnt seem to interfere with the Spider-Sense,

the new web-shooters were too wonky for Peter to use effectively.

Despite the difficulties using the new suit, Spider-Man was able to defeat Firebrand and

save the day, but he ultimately decided to return the costume to the Fantastic Four since

he didnt like how evil it made him look.

Obviously, this story is still pretty different from the one that Randy Schueller pitched,

but its honestly great to see that he got credit for the idea, especially since he lamented

in the letter to CBR that he never received any kind of credit for the costume inspiration

in the old school comics.

Up until this point, the only real credit that Randy got was a very quick reference

in the 2018 Venom movie.

I got him!

Hes in the alley behind the Schueller Building!”

The rest of the Self Improvement one-shot was pretty neat as a fan of Marvel history

since it included pictures and transcriptions of the first two drafts of the original storyline

that Schueller wrote out along with the notes that editor Tom DeFalco added on the latter.

Now Im sure that many of you guys are probably wondering if the red and black suit in canon

to the main comic book universe.

And look, as much as I love the Marvel Wiki, one of my biggest complaints about it is that

they label pretty much any comic that doesnt explicitly say that its in an alternate

universe as canon to the main continuity.

In my personal opinion, I think that the Self Improvement one-shot doesnt count because

of two important key factors.

The first one is that this Firebrand is a character named Russell Broxtel who didnt

appear in the comic books until 1991.

If this was meant to take place around 1982 when the pitch was sent in and as the adaptation

implies, then the Firebrand character would need to be Gary Gilbert who was first introduced

in 1970.

Second, when Reed Richards eventually discovers that Spider-Mans black suit is a symbiote,

he helps get it off of him.

Since Peter was mostly naked and he still needed to protect his identity, Johnny Storm

let him borrow a spare Fantastic Four uniform and a bag for his head.

Although this is hilarious, it would be entirely unnecessary if Reed still had the red and

black suit laying around and its unlikely that he would ever throw it away.

So yeah, I know its a bit disappointing that the red and black suit is most likely

not canon, but I hope this video at least better explains why I think that the Self

Improvement one-shot is just really cool from a Marvel history perspective and hopefully

now that you know this story, you can go, like, impress your friends or something.

But uh

Yeah, if you cant tell, Im dressed up as emo Tobey Maguire and I did promise you

guys that if I got to 250,000 subscribers which I did that I would do the dance.

I went and bought a new blazer for this so lets que the royalty free jazz since I

would get copyright claimed for James Brown and uh, yeah.

Heres the dance.

The Description of We Found the LOST Venom Suit! [Spider-Man]