The following contains major spoilers for Venom: Let There be Carnage.
The first Venom movie was a massive hit, even if, on paper, it wasn’t quite everything fans of the Marvel Comics character had been hoping for. It was such a big hit that the sequel was given a green light in short order. While the movie was delayed along with every other 2021 movie, it is here, Tom Hardy and Woody Harrelson are back, and the Venom: Let There Be Carnage ending is almost certainly going to give fans plenty to talk about.
The mid-credits scene of Venom: Let There Be Carnage is a story unto itself that has significant implications for the future of the character, but the actual ending to the film tells us that Venom as a franchise is making plans to continue its own story. Here’s how the movie proper ends and what it could mean for the future.
How Venom: Let There Be Carnage Ends
Venom: Let There Be Carnage moves a lot faster than most modern comic book movies and so after barely an hour we find ourselves in the final battle between Venom and Carnage. Cletus Kasady, his girlfriend Shriek, and Carnage, are together to kill Eddie Brock, Venom, and Detective Mulligan, the latter of which nearly killed Shriek when she was young.
The showdown happens in a cathedral, which ends up helping, and hurting, a great deal as the sound from the bells damages both symbiotes. Shriek mostly focuses on killing Detective Mulligan while Brock/Venom and Kasady/Carnage attempt to tear each other apart. Meanwhile, Eddie’s former love Anne and her fiancé Dan mostly just try to stay alive.
However, Cletus Kasady and Carnage are not in sync the way Eddie Brock and Venom are. Carnage hates Shriek, the fact that she herself is capable of making loud noises causes Carnage to want to kill her, which doesn’t sit right with Kasady.
Shriek gets knocked from the top of the cathedral bell tower, causing her to let out a final massive scream that is enough to separate both symbiotes from their hosts entirely. She crashes to the ground, and a massive bell lands on her, seemingly killing her. Brock and Kasady both fall toward the ground as well. Venom is able to use Anne and Dan’s bodies to essentially catch Eddie and break his fall. Cletus Kasady is not so lucky.
Venom is able to devour a weakened Carnage, and following some final words from Kasady, Venom finally gets what he’s been waiting an entire movie for. He gets to bite somebody’s head off.
Eddie and Venom go on the run, knowing the police will be after them both. One police officer will likely be especially interested. While injured, Detective Mulligan has survived. He now knows that “monsters” exist, and there’s something different about him.
Venom: Lethal Protector
In the final scene of Venom: Let There Be Carnage we see Eddie Brock and Venom sitting on a beach. They’re enjoying the sunset but unsure what their next move should be. Venom, however, has a plan. He’s ready to become a superhero, and Eddie, while hesitant earlier in the movie to go off and be a vigilante, finally agrees. Eddie and Venom have become the Lethal Protectors. Venom even wants to wear a cape and a mask. He is really into this idea.
The name is not a coincidence. Venom: Lethal Protector was the name of the original comic book miniseries that turned Venom from straight villain to antihero, and it’s the story that was the basis for many of the plot elements in 2018’s Venom.
But there were a lot of other story elements and characters from the comic version that did not appear in that first Venom movie or this one, so there’s always the possibility that we could see those things show up in the next movie. Venom will need something to lethally protect people from, after all.
Whether or not we’ll see other elements from the Lethal Protector comic come into play in a potential third film is less important than the general idea that Venom is now going to actively play the hero.
Or at least he’s going to try. Venom has always sort of oscillated back and forth between hero and villain and so there’s no guarantee that he’s going to be perfectly successful. If nothing else, law enforcement agencies may very well have a problem with Venom trying to help them.
How Stephen Graham’s Detective Mulligan Could Factor Into Venom 3
And speaking of cops, one cop who is probably going to have a serious bone to pick with Eddie Brock and Venom is Detective Patrick Mulligan. Mulligan is basically a punching bag throughout the final battle, so exactly what he saw and what he thinks he knows is unclear. However, his final word “monsters” seems to make it known that he knows the symbiotes are real.
Detective Mulligan also doesn’t really look himself in that final moment. Whether or not he’s actually been infected with a symbiote at this point we don't know for certain, but that could very likely be the future.
In the comics, Detective Mulligan is the host for the symbiote known as Toxin, which was born from Carnage. That may very well be what’s already happened here. Monsters are real, and now the detective may already be one.
If Toxin does appear in a theoretical Venom 3 he may or may not become the film’s main antagonist. The relationship between Mulligan and Toxin is interesting because, as a cop, and a decent person, Mulligan wants to do good, though the symbiote’s natural tendencies go the other way. As such, there’s a conflict between the two. Maybe Toxin and Venom will become Lethal Protectors together. Probably not.
What seems absolutely clear from the final moments with the detective in Venom: Let There Be Carnage is that there is something there being set up. While the mid-credits scene of Venom 2 certainly sets up a lot more in Eddie Brock and Venom’s future, it seems likely that the plan is to come back to this universe and deal with these characters. Of course, when and if they do that, who knows what they’ll find?
- Read all about the Venom: Let There Be Carnage end-credits scene.
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