Extreme Carnage: Alpha # 1 pits Carnage against an epic speedster


Carnage’s murderous threat is reinvented in Extreme Carnage: Alpha # 1, an issue that triggers on all cylinders and keeps the blood flowing.

From the supervillain who stars in a blood-soaked anthology comic series to being the main antagonist in the next film. Poison: Let there be slaughterNow is the perfect time to be a Carnage fan. The supervillain returns to the center of attention in Marvel Comics’ Extreme carnage, a series of interconnected one-shots that reinvents the Carnage and Venom family afterKing in black Cross. Extreme Carnage: Alpha Issue # 1 is filled with gory thrills with the promise of more to come if the series continues to build on the gory strongholds of its premise.

Written by Phillip Kennedy Johnson, drawn by Manuel García and with colors by Guru-eFX, Extreme Carnage: Alpha # 1 starts with the immediate consequences of King in black. As a politician capitalizes on the fear and paranoia generated by the collective trauma of the incidents to launch a campaign based on xenophobia towards aliens, Carnage begins a new killing spree that puts the supervillain on a collision course with Flash Thompson. Just as Flash acclimates to life after the resurrection, he discovers that Carnage has become even more deadly. Flash soon finds himself caught in the crosshairs of the serial killer and in the middle of the looming symbiote war.

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Johnson, who previously delivered chilling horror to great effect at Marvel’s Alien comic book series, continues to excel in creating gory horror here. Johnson’s script quickly builds tension before punctuating it with a sinister staccato just as the violence inevitably begins. While Johnson has a strong grip on Flash Thompson’s voice, his protagonist is largely reactionary at this point, cut off from the political campaign subplot and left at the mercy of Carnage. This debut number shoots full blast when Carnage is front and center and noticeably slows down each time his presence is removed from proceedings.

García and Guru-eFX are joined on the subject by a trio of inkers: Cam Smith, Marc Deering and Roberto Poggi. Even with so many inkers present, the artwork is consistently and appropriately moody. This is a horror comic and the art team knows how to live up to that visceral expectation that accompanies the territory. The initial confrontation between Flash and Carnage is visually disorienting; given the sense of confusion felt by the Flash himself, this is almost certainly intentional. However, it constitutes a slightly jarring part of the book.

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Still, there are many promises in Extreme carnageopening number, even though the prospect of choosing eight one-shots to experience the full story can be a bit daunting for those who aren’t particular fans of the sadistic supervillain. The required gory mayhem is more than accomplished and with more tension and restraint than previous Carnage creative teams have employed in the past. Overall this is a good outlet for the enemy powered by a symbiote. As the scope of Extreme carnage is about to explode into the next few issues, hopefully the creative team here will be able to maintain their sense of rhythm and focus to deliver something truly special in their celebration of the murderous macabre.

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