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Eddie Brock is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by David Michelinie and Todd McFarlane, and his earliest appearance was a cameo in Web of Spider-Man #18 (September 1986), before making his first full appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man #300 (May 1988) as the original and most well-known incarnation of Venom. The character has since appeared in many Marvel Comics publications, including his own series Venom. Introduced as a villain of Spider-Man, the character becomes an anti-hero, working with and against superheroes. In the original version of the story, Eddie Brock is a journalist who exposes the identity of a serial killer only for the real killer to be caught by Spider-Man, thus he accused the wrong man. Disgraced and suicidal, he comes into contact with an alien Symbiote, rejected by Peter Parker. The Symbiote bonds with him and they become Venom, together seeking out revenge against their mutual enemy. Though he repeatedly comes into conflict with Spider-Man, he also attempts to operate as a hero, albeit a violent one, seeking to save those he deems "innocent". In 2008, after being separated from the Venom Symbiote, he gains a new Symbiote to be the anti-hero Anti-Venom until that symbiote is sacrificed to help cure the "Spider-Island" epidemic during the 2011 storyline. In 2012, he was bonded to the Toxin symbiote. Though he is a human with no powers, the Venom Symbiote suit bestows upon him a range of abilities including many of the powers belonging to Spider-Man, the Symbiote's original host. Debuting in the Modern Age of Comic Books, the character has featured in other Marvel-endorsed products such as animated television series; video games; merchandise such as action figures, and trading cards; and feature films in which he is played by Topher Grace in Spider-Man 3 and by Tom Hardy in the 2018 film Venom. This incarnation of Venom was rated 33rd on Empire's 50 Greatest Comic Book Characters, and was the 22nd Greatest Villain on IGN's 100 Greatest Comic Villains of All Time. Comics journalist and historian Mike Conroy writes of the character: "What started out as a replacement costume for Spider-Man turned into one of the Marvel web-slinger's greatest nightmares."

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