While Tom Holland's Peter Parker is busy fighting titans and hanging out with wizards, billionaires and aliens in the MCU, Sony is putting together a Spider-Man-less Spider-verse using the Web Slinger's extensive and iconic rogues gallery. The villain/anti-hero Eddie Brock gets his own movie Venom later this year, but that's just the beginning of Sony's plans. There is also a Black Cat and Silver Sable movie in the works, a rumored Nightwatch movie from Spike Lee and even a movie about Morbius the Living Vampire. As far as that last one is concerned, we may now have a better idea of what the potential Morbius spinoff movie may be about. A supposed working logline for the film reads as follows:
Horror action story of a scientist who, in trying to find a cure for a rare blood disease, accidentally transformed himself into a living vampire who, though disgusted by his own bloodlust, chooses to prey upon criminals he deems unworthy of life.
This logline from That Hashtag Show reads pretty much as you would want a movie about Morbius to read and indicates that this adaptation may be staying true to the character's comic book origins of his vampirism being scientific and not supernatural. It seems that the Morbius spinoff may be going the anti-hero route, finding the living vampire choosing to sustain himself on the blood of the wicked. Michael Morbius is a Spider-Man villain, but he has also been an anti-hero, fighting alongside the Midnight Sons, a group that has boasted Iron Fist, Ghost Rider and Doctor Strange among its members. This will be an interesting approach, especially if Morbius comes across a hero, like Spider-Man, who doesn't agree with his lethal brand of justice.
While Morbius doesn't have nearly the name recognition that a character like Venom does, he actually works well as an anti-hero because that his villainy isn't being retconned to make him misunderstood; this isn't Maleficent. Morbius is a genuinely tragic character that is both a villain, but also similar to The Punisher in that he believes he is doing good, even if he loses himself to the brutality of his methods.
The other thing that is noteworthy is that it is described as a horror action story. Up until this point, none of the superhero cinematic universes have leaned into the horror elements that make up a compelling corner of the comic books. But that is starting to change, as The New Mutants will be doing this for Fox. It looks like Venom will also be including some horror elements, and along with Morbius, it could be that Sony sees an opportunity to provide something different with its Spider-verse that isn't prevalent elsewhere.
As always, there are several questions concerning these Spider-Man spinoffs. Can a Spider-verse led by the villains work without a connection to the Web-Head? And what connection, if any, is there to the Marvel Cinematic Universe? Is this completely separate or adjacent or in the same universe without any crossover, a la the Marvel Netflix shows? We've heard rumblings that Peter Parker might make an appearance in Venom, and I imagine that after that movie hits theaters we'll have a much better idea about what Sony is going for with its Spider-verse. Venom slobbers his way into theaters on October 5.