Azn Badger's Blog

What About the Lysine Contingency…?

And Now, Jim Ross Attempting To Be A Heel, And Failing Miserably Due To Sheer Awesomeness.

To this day, Jim Ross remains perhaps the single greatest wrestling commentator of all time.

Gorilla Monsoon was excellent, as was Vince McMahon and, to a lesser degree, Jesse “The Body” Ventura; but for my money Jim Ross remains the best I’ve ever heard.

That being said, his most iconic role has always remained that of the straight laced and technically oriented commentator, though there have been a few instances in his career in which he was tasked with playing a rowdy heel.

The video above serves as a prime example of his demeanor during one of said instances.

The problem with his heel performances however, at least for me anyway, is the fact that he’s just so goddamn awesome on the mic, that even when he’s screaming at the audience, he remains 100% likeable.

Seriously, the man could cuss me out, or condemn me and everyone in my family straight to hell, and I’d still find a way to like him.

That being said, I was never a fan of the heel version of Jim Ross, and I’m happy it’s appearances in wrestling were scarce.

Filed under: Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , ,

And Now, JR Mistaking Chris Benoit For Chris Jericho.

I know they’re both named Chris, and they’re both Canadian, but c’mon JR, you’re better than this…

Props to Triple H for pulling his ass out the fire so casually.

Filed under: Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , ,

Saul Alvarez Is The Real Deal

A word came to mind as I watched Saul Alvarez systematically dismantle journeyman Ryan Rhodes this evening.

Truth be told, many words came to mind as I watched the fight, hence the existence of this article; however the one among them that stood out the most was:

“Poise.”

For a fighter not yet 21 years of age, Saul Alvarez fights with a great deal of poise.

Despite being the larger and more powerful fighter in virtually every contest I’ve seen him in, “Canelo” rarely overextends himself, and never wastes his punches.

With a record of now, 37-0-1 against fair to middling competition, it’s hard to say just how good Alvarez truly is in the grand scheme of things; but in terms of bringing the excitement, and pleasing the fans, I’d be hard pressed to find another fighter that has captured the public’s imagination the way Canelo has the people of Mexico.

While nowhere near his level of polish, it’s impossible to look at Alvarez’ fighting and not see flashes of the great Julio Cesar Chavez.

Moreso than the man’s own son, Canelo’s punches, his stance, even parts of his physical build hold close resemblance to the Chavez of old, transposed onto a flame-haired, 154 lbs. body.

Despite the similarities, Alvarez fights with the poise of a man wise beyond his years, slipping punches at will, and pounding out combinations with alarming fluidity.

In short, he fights like a man who is comfortable in the ring, and has found himself through honing his craft rather than through the influence of past greats.

Saul Alvarez and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. are looked upon as controversial “paper” champions.

Both fighters have bloated records and speculative worth among A-grade competition, but in my eyes; at least one of them could grow into something truly special.

And it's probably not this fatty...

Chavez Jr. has always struck me as a severely limited fighter that spent most of his early years chasing the spectre of his father’s legacy; and only now is starting to come into his own.

Unfortunately, “coming into his own” involved developing a bizarre style that makes absolutely no use of his considerable height and reach, as well as causes him to take an excessive amount of punishment in many of his fights.

He’s got his dad’s left hook to the body, but outside of that he’s a fighter without an inkling of science to his boxing.

He’s like Librado Andrade, only with bigger marquee value and a much wimpier resume.

Pictured: The extent of Librado Andrade's talent.

In that sense, I see Chavez Jr. making a lot of money, making a lot of people *Cough!* Bob Arum! *Cough!* only to have his body give out on him while he’s still relatively young.

Alvarez on the other hand, while not a stranger to walking into a shot or 2 now and again, showed in tonight’s fight against Ryan Rhodes; that he’s got quite a future ahead of him, both as an entertaining prospect; and in terms of longevity.

Rhode’s slipperiness and caginess were supposed to be the sort that could give anyone fits, but Canelo walked him down and took nary a significant punch over 12 rounds, eventually stopping the Brit in the 12th round.

On a side note, if you ask me that stoppage was a very poor call by the ref.

To be fair, Rhodes was very obviously hurt, as he had been for much of the later rounds, but it was the last round and he was still doing well to defend himself.

Anyway, that’s just my 2 cents.

That being said I look forward to what the future brings for Saul Alvarez, as any exciting fighter that puts the asses in the seats like he does is good for boxing, and more importantly; good for my Saturday nights!

Filed under: Boxing, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , ,

Remember When David Arquette Won The WCW Title?

Yeah, that actually happened.

Even during the Monday Night Wars, I always kind of thought of WCW as the AAA to the WWF’s major league.

Don’t get me wrong, my brother and I definitely flipped back and forth between RAW and Nitro during commercial breaks, but in terms of the quality of the storylines and announcing; Vince McMahon’s crew were light years ahead of Turner’s boys.

The one saving grace of WCW, besides the nostalgia factor of seeing the old dogs work the mic and not wrestle except on pay-per-views; was the huge roster of high-flyers and cruiserweights.

It’s easy to forget, what with all the NWO and Raven’s Nest bullshit in between, but Eddie Guerrero, Juventud Guerrera, Rey Mysterio Jr., Psicosis, Jushin Liger, and even Ultimo Dragon put on some awesome matches for WCW.

To this day, I still think back on the cruiserweight matches of WCW as being some of the best displays of athleticism and technical skill I’ve ever seen in wrestling.

It makes me sad that the WWF has decided to make the aging Rey Mysterio their one and only Luchador, likely in an attempt to elevate his status with the fans and make him seem more talented.

How you could ever think having less Lucha Libre guys in your roster would be better for the business is seriously beyond me, but I guess that’s why I’m unemployed and McMahon’s throwing money into making the XFL and getting his wife into the U.S. senate.

Anyway, I seem to have depressed myself.

Time to go watch some Tiger Mask

Filed under: Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Remember That One Time Sid Vicious Apologized On-Air For Being An Idiot?

Filed under: Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Lazy Badger In Olympia


In case you can’t tell, (and I know you can’t) the photo above is of a good buddy of mine wearing my Rey Mysterio Jr. mask that I wore on my trip to Portland awhile back.

Yeah, expect to see photos of that stupid mask every time I go on a vacation/trip.

Not that that’s gonna’ happen all too often or anything…

Anyway, I apologize for the utter craptacular-ness of the picture quality, it was taken on short notice, at night, in poor lighting, with a shitty cellphone camera.

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, I went down to Olympia today, the town I attended college in; to visit friends.

Being as it’s not all too often I get a chance to talk about it, I figure I should mention that the guy in the photo used to be my boss.

Don’t get the wrong idea, we’re good buddies, and likely always will be; but it was he who got me my first “real” job as his assistant at a (now defunct) graphic and web design company that he was a partner in.

Anyway, being as he’s my buddy, I think I’ll take this opportunity to plug his awesome new business/website:

KRAKEN DESIGN

Click the link or die.

That being said, I did my good deed for the day, and as such; I feel it’s only appropriate that I close things by posting another embarrassing photo of my buddy wearing a stupid mask.

Filed under: Comics, Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Andre Berto Vs. Victor Ortiz: A Fight Worth Watching

Damn! THATS a haircut!

This Saturday evening, WBC Welterweight champion Andre Berto will face 140 lbs. Southpaw dynamo Victor Ortiz.

In this day and age, when boxing has long since become an event driven business; it’s not often that non-pay-per-view match ups could be considered “must see” material.

That being said, consider Berto vs. Ortiz as “must see” as it gets.

Both fighters are in the prime of their physical development.

Both are vying for mainstream popularity and success.

Both are exceedingly heavy-handed.

Most importantly though, both are known to be vulnerable in some respect.

Put it all together, and you get an explosive fight that’s liable to put some serious miles on one, if not both fighter’s odometers; regardless of the actual length of the bout.

Pictured: How both fighters are gonna be talkin after the fight...

That being said, who do I think will win?

Well, even though I’m biased towards Andre Berto, ’cause well; I like him, in all fairness I feel Berto is the logical pick as winner.

As mentioned earlier, both fighters are notably heavy-handed, though it’s definitely worth re-iterating the fact that Ortiz will being fighting at 147 lbs. for the first time in his career.

While weight and body size will always be a factor well worth considering when picking a winner in boxing, in the current age of supplements and sports science; it seems be a factor of diminishing importance when dealing with fighters naturally/healthily filling out to a heavier weight class as opposed to gaining extraneous weight or being forced to move up due to a failing body structure.

Pardon me, I appear to be rambling.

The point you were supposed to extract from all that bullshit above, is that I feel the increase in weight won’t be much of a factor for Ortiz, as at a barrel chested 5’9″ he not only seemed big for a Jr. Welterweight; he also seemed big standing next to Andre Berto.

Berto: "Yeah... Hes biggern me."

On that note, as mentioned previously, both fighters have shown signs of vulnerability; Berto due to his porous defense and willingness to trade punches, and Ortiz for his questionable heart.

While his performances have been consistently energetic and well-fought, the main complaint against Berto these days is derived from his controversial split-decision victory over Luis Collazo, as well as the general dearth of big name fighters on his resume.

While there’s no defending Berto for the lack of A or B grade opposition on his record, given that he had at least 2 chances to make a date with the then recent conqueror of the seemingly invincible Antonio Margarito, Shane Mosley; it’s worth mentioning that Collazo, a Southpaw like Ortiz; is just one of “those guys” that can make anyone look bad.

Any opportunity I take to post a picture of Ricky Hatton gettin bopped in the noggin is one worth taking advantage of.

One thing’s for sure though, Berto certainly does take far too many punches in his fights; however to date I have yet to see him actually pay for it.

That is to say, while he may stand toe-to-toe too often with guys; he has yet to lose, and he’s managed to put a lot of guys away in the process.

Moving on, as anyone reading this is probably aware, Victor Ortiz caught the bad end of a vicious back and forth affair with the brick-fisted Marcos Maidana back in 2009.

That fight ended as a TKO due to a cut over Ortiz’ eye, however the general understanding was that he responded in the negative when asked whether he wanted to continue.

This decision cost Ortiz a great deal in the face of the boxing community and his fans, leading to him fighting off of HBO’s telecasts during the early stages of his rebuilding phase.

...During which time he traveled back to 1992 and stole Will Smiths hat.

That being said, similar to Hector Camacho after his brutal encounter with Edwin Rosario; it would seem Victor Ortiz caught a taste of something he didn’t like, and has since made adjustments to his fighting style in hopes of never running into it again.

Once a freight train middle range brawler, Ortiz’ game has recently transformed into that of a more tactile and less volume oriented one.

Make no mistake, he’s still an aggressive fighter; he’s just not as prone to go balls out and leave his chin out in the open.

Anyway, that’s enough Berto/Ortiz 101, let’s get down figuring out what’ll happen when these 2 meet!

While speed is an issue many are speculating about, in my eyes neither guy is a mover, and both fighters seems comparable in terms of handspeed, so until I see them in the ring together I wouldn’t count on that being a determining factor in deciding who will come out ahead.

The real issues I see as being key to determining a winner for this fight, are the one’s that inevitably come up when dealing with left-handed fighters; and that is who gets off first, and who dictates the pace and the range of the fight.

From what I’ve seen of both men, Ortiz is a middle range, in-and-out type fighter, while Berto prefers to step in a little closer and dole out high-low combinations until he’s given a reason to back off.

Pictured: Both fighter

While this logic would suggest Ortiz as being the one most likely to dictate the flow of the fight, given that he’s more likely to step in to engage rather than hang back and rely on his jab; truth be told I think Berto’s aggressiveness will lead to him pulling the trigger earlier and more often.

In addition to that, one must also consider that Ortiz is the taller man by a scant half-inch, however Berto has the reach advantage of 2 inches.

In my mind, this translates to Ortiz’ middle range fighting taking place very much inside of Berto’s comfort zone; leading to prolonged exchanges in the latter’s favor.

Looking at both fighter’s repertoire of punches brings even more evidence in favor of this hypothesis.

Ortiz’ money punches are, like most Southpaws; his right hook and and his straight left hand.

He has a good jab, but in recent days he’s used it more as tool for keeping rhythm or measuring distance as opposed to a combination starter or actual weapon.

Pictured: The vaunted Ortiz jab...

His punches come from some pretty slick angles, however he rarely takes advantage of his Southpaw stance in creating them; preferring to square up with his opponents and step out of range to avoid punches as opposed to slip or block them.

Berto on the other hand, fights from a conventional stance and relies on short hooks with both hands, as well as a magnificent right uppercut.

While the uppercut probably won’t be helping him all that much against Ortiz, given that their opposing stances will force him to reach with it, an inherently double-edged sword of a punch; in order to connect with it, I feel that the speed  and sharpness of his hooks will give Ortiz fits every time he steps in.

While none of this points to either man winning out on paper by a clear margin, the length and frequency of Berto’s jabs and left hooks will likely create some difficulty for Ortiz in countering over the top with right hooks.

Perhaps most important of all though, Berto has recently begun using a straight right hand as a key punch in his arsenal; clearly a product of training for and fighting Southpaws post-Collazo.

BOOSH!

Ask anyone how to fight a Southpaw and they’ll tell you 2 things:

Keep your lead foot outside of his, and feed him straight right hands until he chokes on them.

In the end, I think Berto’s tenacity and combination punching will ultimately win the day.

Make no mistake, both guys are likely going to be sore in the morning after this one…

Prediction:

Both guys “do what they do,” but Berto forces, and ultimately wins the majority of the exchanges.

Berto, TKO stoppage Round 7.

Anyway, I’ve ranted and rambled enough about this one for tonight.

As anyone can tell, I’m uber-excited for this one; so hopefully it turns out to be worth the 1200 word post.

G’night.

"Innnn West Philadelphia, born and raised..."

Filed under: Boxing, Movies, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Azn Badger In Portland: A Story In Pictures

Pictured: The Azn Badger and Portlandia.

As mentioned in the previous few posts on this blog, I took a trip down to Portland few a few days this week.

I’d only been to Portland once before, as a very young child; so in heading down to Oregon, I honestly didn’t know what to expect from the city.

While I’d rather not bog this post down with extraneous details regarding my adventures in Portland, I will say this:

Portland gave me tasty waffles via a window, and for that I give the city a thumbs up.

Anyway, you’re probably wondering what’s up with the photo at the top of this post, so allow me to explain.

A long time ago, when my brother went to live in Japan for awhile, I remember him bringing some lucha libre masks with him.

During his time over there, he ended up taking photos of himself and his friends wearing these masks, seemingly just for shits and giggles.

Anyway, given the fact that I myself happen to own a few luchador masks, I figured I should do my duty as the “little brother” and follow in my brother’s footsteps.

That being said, the photo above, and those that follow represent my trip to Portland… While wearing a Rey Mysterio Jr. mask.

Pictured: The Azn Badger and "Dude Holding Umbrella."

The photo above was the first one I took while wearing the mask.

Not much to say about it, other than the fact that it was taken in the heart of downtown, and I was more than a little nervous about publicly making a fool of myself.

Pictured: The Azn Badger and "Awesome McElephant Face."

This was was also taken downtown, in a really neat part of town that played host to an incredible amount of FREE art galleries.

I had a lot of fun perusing the artwork and photography, however this photo; as well as another that had my buddy Mencius’ cousin striking a pose alongside me, were probably the highlight of my time in that district.

Pictured: The Azn Badger in front of an INFERIOR Uwajimaya.

This photo’s kind of funny because my expression is as much BWAAHHH!!! as it is disappointed.

I suppose it’s also worth noting that this is the only photo I took where I’m wearing my stinky El Santo shirt.

You see, upon setting out to see the Portland Uwajimaya; Mencius and I were under the impression that the store was going to be awesomely massive and far superior to our Seattle store.

Hell, up until we actually stepped inside the place, we were referring to it as the “SUPER Uwajimaya.”

Anyway, let it be known, downtown Seattle Uwajimaya kicks Portland Uwajimaya’s ass any day.

Though I have to say, the Portland Kinokuniya does have the advantage of having cuter employees…

CANDY BUS!!!

This one was just too perfect.

While traveling through Hawthorne, me an’ the Scooby Squad came across a sign pointing down an alley that read “Candy Bus.”

For whatever reason, I don’t have any pictures of said Candy Bus, however I will tell you this:

It is in fact a bus, and does indeed sell candy.

That novelty aside, I think the funniest part of this photo, is the fact that the “Candy Bus” sign is pointing at my cock.

If ever my dick were to have a pet name, I think “Candy Bus” would do pretty nicely…

Pictured: A 60 Second Portrait of The Azn Badger.

In case you’re curious, I got the above portrait done knowing full well that I was going to be using it as the finale to a blog post.

I’m really happy with how this portrait turned out.

I had it done at the Saturday Market in downtown Portland, and while it’s indeed quite well done; effectively capturing my facial structure and character (even with the mask on) pretty much as well as I could’ve hoped, probably the most incredible thing about it is the fact that it was drawn in 60 seconds.

I only paid 3 dollars for this portrait, making me tempted to say it’s the most value I’ve ever gotten for such a fair price.

 

 

Filed under: Uncategorized, Wrestling, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Shane Mosley’s Road to Pacquiao

“On May 7th, 2011, pound-for-pound superstar Manny Pacquiao will face future hall of famer, Sugar Shane Mosley.”

I read this about a week ago, and immediately found myself shaking my head in disapproval.

Despite being an amazing fighter, with a superb track record at that; the thought of Mosley facing Pacquiao now just makes my stomach turn.

Almost 2 years ago, Shane Mosley was on top of the world.

Fighting as a 4-1 underdog, Mosley utterly trounced Antonio Margarito, making use of a cagey and highly tactile gameplan imparted to him by his new trainer, Bernard Hopkins’ old friend Naazim Richardson.

While he looked absolutely brilliant in that performance, effectively turning back the clock on what at that time was a very uncertain era in his career, (loss to Cotto, tough fight with Mayorga) the truth remains that he clinched, rough housed with and clubbed his way to victory against a momentum based slugger with a habit for blocking punches with his face.

With his FACE.

In other words, while I would never take anything away from Mosley for his incredible victory over Margarito, as the timing of the win couldn’t have been more epic; (Cotto had edged a victory over Mosley earlier, and Margarito had just torn Cotto to shreds) but I think it needs to be said that people shouldn’t have been nearly surprised by it as they were.

Now, if Mosley had gotten a shot at Pacquiao then, when everyone was singing his praises and ballyhooing for him to challenge the world’s best; I probably wouldn’t have had a problem with him challenging Floyd Mayweather or Manny Pacquiao.

I would never have believed he could beat either of them, but I could have seen myself entertaining the prospect of him putting up a decent fight.

Instead though, Mosley would miss out on an opportunity to battle the (still) rising prospect Andre Berto due to the Haitian earthquake, and would remain inactive for nearly a year and a half.

A year and a half can make a world of difference when you’re nearly 40 in a young man’s sport.

As fate would have it, Mosley would finally get his shot at Floyd Mayweather, being thoroughly outboxed and, dare I say; brutalized for 12 rounds, despite landing an exciting overhand right that had Mayweather on queer street for a good while.

Outside of that one punch though, deprived of opportunities to clinch with and smother the offense of his fleet-footed opponent, Mosley looked like an old man in that fight.

First and only time I've ever seen him beat up like this.

Even so, it’s easy to look bad when you’re fighting one of the best (semi-active) fighters on the planet.

Following that horrendous loss, Mosley apparently went back to the drawing board and decided to rebuild his career.

How moving up to a weight that brought him nothing but shitty performances and ugly losses, as well as choosing Sergio Mora of Contender fame, an opponent with little to no marquee value or talent, figured into this plan is beyond me; but then again what do I know, I’m just a blog writer.

Anyway, as you can probably tell by now, Mosley’s next and most current fight was fought against Sergio Mora at Jr. Middleweight, in what was one of the sloppiest, boring, and utterly pointless contests in boxing that I can recall in recent memory.

Pictured: Mosley vs. Mora in a nutshell.

Mosley looked tired, bearing an impotent offense with none of the twitchy speed and sharp punching that made us all love him back in the day.

Mora on the other hand, was exactly the same as we all (regretfully) remember him.

Quick of fist and foot, and slippery to boot; Mora was his same boring self, making no use of his speed advantage by throwing too few (pillow fisted) punches.

With neither man able to do much of anything right in the fight, the contest ended in a draw, and rightfully so.

Neither man deserved to walk out of the arena that night feeling like a winner.

I'd have slapped them in the face instead of raising their hands. That's just me though...

And that, my friends; is Shane Mosley’s road to facing the pound-for-pound king of boxing.

A big win against a walking target, a punishing and brutal loss to the “other” best fighter on the planet, and a draw with a slippery tomato can.

That’s what gets you a big-time fight with the best in the world?

Sadly, this match seems to have been constructed, by Bob Arum no less; with the potential of pay-per-view buys in mind more so than it’s significance in regards to the competitive value of the bout.

Mosley’s was and is a great fighter, but it’s clear he’s entered the twilight of his career and should be considering his health more so than his checkbook.

I’ve seen his recent interviews.

I’ve noticed that his speech and mannerisms have begun to slow.

In a young man’s sport, where landing and dodging blows to people’s craniums is the name of the game, one should be wary of how “little things” like this could translate into their in-ring performance.

In other words:

If you’re noticeably slowing down and getting “goofy” in a fucking interview, maybe, just maybe; you’re also slowing down in the ring, probably more than you think.

This fight scares me, as I can’t help but feel that this time, against a far more aggressive and active opponent than his previous conqueror; Mosley will get hurt.

And I don’t mean “hurt” in the “I cut my finger on an envelope” sort of way.

I mean the guy might get knocked stupid.

Truth be told though, for a boxer like Shane Mosley, a pugilist that many proudly refer to as more of a “fighter” than a “boxer,” such an experience might be the only way he’ll ever find it within himself to call it quits.

I just hope the day Sugar Shane finally throws in the towel isn’t the day he finds himself unable to remember his kid’s names.

Filed under: Boxing, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Venom’s New Look

I’ve always liked Venom.

While many comic fans dismiss Venom as a gimmicky, over-exposed, and somewhat one-dimensional element of Spider-Man’s rogue’s gallery; I for one have always enjoyed reading him.

Maybe it’s the 90’s comic fan in me, but the savage, hulk-ed out, part-time anti-hero aspects of Venom’s character have always appealed to me.

I found the original Eddie Brock version of the character to be a menacing and effective counterpoint to the typically colorful antics of most Spider-Man stories.

When Mac Gargan (The Scorpion) took over as the new Venom, I found myself impressed by the pathetic and almost pitiable aspects of the character that was seemingly at the mercy of the symbiote.

Despite the ridiculous amount of hosts that the Venom symbiote has occupied over the years, one thing that I’ve found myself looking forward to with each new iteration, was the artistic design of the character.

The original Todd McFarlane take on the character, is ironically one of my least favorite.

Pictured: Venom showing us his pedo-face.

The bulk of the character’s build was a good design choice, given the more direct and less finesse oriented nature of Eddie Brock compared to Spider-Man at the time; but the teeth and lack of tongue action were something that the character would benefit from immensely in the coming years.

Also, I know it’s nit-picky of me to say; but the small patches of white on top of Venom’s palms were an addition to later iterations of the character that made a huge difference.

Jus’ sayin’ is all…

Anyway, as time moved on, Venom’s appearance became even bulkier, more toned, while his face became considerably more vicious and animalistic in nature.

Also, his coloration became akin to the Batman comics of old, wherein the blue highlights started to take center stage.

Pictured: The Venom I grew up with.

While I preferred the black Venom, I have to admit that the blue did a lot to improve the detail of the character from panel to panel, making his appearance far more dynamic than before.

When the host for Venom changed over to Mac Gargan, we found ourselves faced with a brand new design for the character for a new age of comics.

Pictured: Venom, as brought to you by the UFC.

Bearing a much larger “spider” symbol on his chest, as well as a color scheme that would switch from purple, to black, to even green at times; the Mac Gargan Venom proved to be one of my favorite takes on the character.

With a persona that could be described as “brutish” in nature I.E. dumb and violent, Gargan’s Venom (as well as the Ultimate version) allowed for the artist’s to go wild, often times drawing the character as more alien than anything else.

Not only that, but many writers also found ways to take Gargan’s menacing appearance, and child-like intelligence; and create some truly funny moments for the character.

While not exactly "funny," watching Venom put on a guard's helmet after eating him was just plain silly. I loved it.

It’s this versatility, at least from a design standpoint; that makes Venom so much fun for me.

The Venom symbiote itself has such a wide array of capabilities, that it really just becomes a matter of the writer and artist picking which traits and abilities they find most interesting and running with it.

Depending on the team involved, Venom can be anywhere from 6 to 15 feet tall, can change shape and bulk at will, can shapeshift to some degree, can be colored anywhere from purple to green, and can even exhibit cannibalistic tendencies.

Pictured: One of my favorite moments in Warren Ellis' Thunderbolts.

It all depends on who’s at the helm in the design department.

Which brings me to the point of this post:

While Venom has been rather quiet in the comics these days, I happened upon this article at IGN the other day that made mention of the character’s future.

The story details are still hush hush at the moment, but Marvel was kind enough to release this image of the new look for Venom:

Apparently the story has the Venom symbiote being worn by a new host, for the purpose of black ops missions.

While the government agent angle honestly doesn’t really peak my interest all that much, I must admit; the Venom symbiote is a pretty good tool for military/black ops missions.

Remember the shapeshifting I mentioned?

Well, I’d imagine that, along with the inherent superhuman capabilities of the symbiote; would be quite useful for infiltration or assassinations.

The story arc (beginning in a brand new Venom comic) is going to be written by Rick Remender, and pencilled by Tony Moore; so I expect nothing but good.

That being said, here is impression of Tony Moore’s design for the new Venom:

In keeping with the black ops angle of the story, Moore’s design is subtle and devoid of flash.

Looking very much like the ultra-modern tactical armor that seems to be so popular with the kids these days, the overall package is that of a more streamlined and “practical” Venom.

All the key elements of Venom’s previous designs are retained, with the only significant difference being a lack of a mouth, (suggesting a more internalized, if not level-headed character for the new host) and highlighted outlines for the eye area instead of filled in blotches of white.

Overall, the design is simple and unassuming, making it solid; and very difficult to hate.

I do find it interesting however, that despite the superpowers the Venom symbiote imbues it’s host with; whoever the character is that is going to be wearing it in this story arc seems to have little confidence in it’s capabilities, as he is very clearly still wearing plate armor on portions of his body.

Based on the slim figure of the character, as well as the Venom symbiote’s recently more aggressive demeanor; I’m guessing that the inhibitor that was used to force Mac Gargan’s Venom to appear more Spider-Man-like during Dark Reign is still being used on this version of the character.

Pictured: Dark Reign Venom. Yes, I do have a thing for Mike Deodato...

It’s just a guess, but if I’m right; that could probably serve as a plot device that weakens the symbiote, or specializes it’s capabilities somehow.

In any case, those are my thoughts.

The design is solid, if unexciting; a combination of traits that I hope won’t be used to describe the upcoming comic it’s being used in.

 

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