Venom: Let There Be Carnage is the most homoerotic blockbuster since Top Gun
We imagine the Internet will have a field day when this finally hits the big screen.
We're not sure why it took us so long to figure this out, but the idea of Venom - at least when attached to the character of Eddie Brock - is inherently queer.
The symbiote can only survive when it finds the absolutely perfect partner, and in this case, that partner just so happens to look like Tom Hardy. The homoerotic nature of their relationship is easily looked over in the first movie because Brock spends the majority of the runtime pining over his ex-girlfriend (Michelle Williams).
But when it comes Venom: Let There Be Carnage, the relationship between Brock and Venom is put front-and-centre, as they seem to be going through their seven-year itch period. Also in the mix is Cletus Kasady (Woody Harrelson), who develops an instant and unspecified fixation on Brock.
The elements are in place, but it isn't until specific scenes begin to play out that it becomes clear that the Venom sequel is the most – accidentally? – homoerotic blockbuster since Top Gun.
We actually chatted to the movie's director, Andy Serkis, about this very topic, and you can check out that interview in full right here:
To be fair, sometimes it can be the case that the almost total lack of queer representation in blockbusters means that viewers will find it where the creators claim it doesn't actually exist (see: Poe and Finn in the recent Star Wars movies).
But that is absolutely not the case here, as Venom and Brock reach an impasse in their relationship, which sees them sort of breaking up for a spell. From here, we see Venom actually embodying a vindictive former lover, smashing Brock's stuff, before jumping from body to body all across town; a literal case of rebounding.
From there, while Brock is off with the main plot, Venom finds himself at an underground mask party (!), being complimented by men and women on his appearance (!!), before actually saying the words "This is my coming out party" (!!!), all while covered in rainbow-coloured glow-sticks.
At this point, this isn't subtext anymore. It is text. Emboldened, underlined, italicised text.
And then there's Kasady/Carnage.
Harrelson's character is also given a love interest, Shriek (Naomie Harris), a mutant empowered with an ability that is Carnage's only weakness. What are the odds??
So, while Kasady loves Shriek, Carnage is far more interested in Venom. Kasady is also extremely invested in Brock's life, and while that can be passed off as a Hannibal Lecter-esque character trait, anyone who doesn't pick up on the queer messaging behind Lecter obviously hasn't been paying enough attention.
Throughout the movie, Kasady tells Brock that "he feels like home". He sees something in Brock that he knows is also in himself. On the surface, that would appear to be a side of himself that he must try to hide from the world, fearing it will not be understood by the masses. Read into that however you wish.
Seriously, there is enough fuel in this sequel to drive a thesis on bisexuality, repression and the importance of self-honesty and self-love.
We doubt any of this is accidental, and while some of it is clearly played for laughs, it actually does represent a relationship dynamic not tackled on the big screen before. Are Brock and/or Venom gay or bi or curious? Probably. And to be honest, "probably" is already a million times more interesting than a solid "no".
Venom: Let There Be Carnage is currently scheduled to be released in Irish cinemas on Friday, 15 October.
Clips via Sony Pictures Ireland