Review – Absolute Carnage #2 (Marvel Comics)

Absolute Carnage#2( Marvel Comics) variant cover art(detail) by Ron Lim
Absolute Carnage #2
  • Writing - 8/10
  • Art - 9.8/10
  • Overall - 8.9/10
User Review
0 (0 votes)

Absolute Carnage #2

Writer: Donny Cates
Pencils: Ryan Stegman
Inks: JP Mayer
Colorist: Frank Martin
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Maturity Rating: Teen
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release: August 28, 2019

As Carnage continues to hunt down anyone that has bonded with a symbiote Venom and Spider-Man rush to save the day from the cult of Carnage.

“On the Run” Absolute Carnage #2


It seems things have gone from bad to worse for the team of Venom and Spider-Man in Absolute Carnage #2. It seems the idea to save Norman Osborn from prison has come back to haunt them. As Carnage was already there to meet them. Now trapped in a prison with several hundred infected “cult of carnage” followers on the attack our heroes are in trouble. How will they make it out? If they do how will they protect the other symbiote host Carnage is after? What other Marvel heroes will be dragged into the war against Carnage? No time to rest, nowhere to hide our heroes are on the run.


Absolute Carnage#2( Marvel Comics) cover art by Kyle Hotz
Absolute Carnage#2( Marvel Comics) cover art by Kyle Hotz

Absolute Carnage #2 is another solid entry into this 5 issue event series from Donny Cates. This issue is the normal page count so the pacing is a little quicker from the first issue. It doesn’t have time for the ups and downs, so everything comes out pretty rapid fire. It is good though; Cates is a strong writer and has the story flows well. You are definitely never bored in this issue as Cates keeps the heightened pace throughout.

I like the fast, hectic pace Cates gives Absolute Carnage #2. It heightens the tension throughout the book. It really doesn’t give the reader time to rest much like our heroes on the pages. There is also a strong horror vibe throughout the issue that I love. It is high on action but Cates brings in a strong sense of dread and fear as the story progresses. 

I guess the only slight against the series is maybe I am not 100% invested in the story or characters. I have been reading Cates Venom run and liking it. The stakes are very high in this series. But I don’t really know what it is but I am not just all in emotionally with the story. It is very good don’t get me wrong, it is just not striking me personally.


Man oh man Absolute Carnage #2 has some stunning art throughout. I can’t add much from my previous review but the art is outstanding. Ryan Stegman does this wonderfully creepy thing of making panel borders out of the Carnage symbiote and it adds a delightfully creepy eliminate to the issue. Just some truly stunning detailed work going on throughout the issue. Stegman does a fantastic job of catching the emotion and tone of each and every scene with the characters, while JP Mayer adds some remarkable detail throughout with his inking. These two work so incredibly well together.

Frank Martin’s dark coloring for the series is also a highlight of the issue and brings that “horror” type vibe to the forefront. It adds so much to the issue. The deep red and black pulsing through Carnage with his hollow glowing eyes makes the character look as sinister as he ever has. While the dark backdrops fuel the ominous tone of the series.


Even though I may not be 100% invested in the story Absolute Carnage #2 is still an excellent read. Donny Cates writes the characters of Venom and Spider-Man spectacularly well. He keeps fast-paced storytelling throughout this issue that keeps the tension high and adds a nice dramatic flair to the storytelling. You would be troubled to find a stronger art team that what has been assembled here. If you have read the Venom issues they have been on or the first Absolute Carnage you know what a magnificent team Ryan Stegman, JP Mayer, and Frank Martin make.

Absolute Carnage #2 is a solid entry to the event series. There are a ton of tie-ins to this that you may or may not need to check out. This issue alludes to some of them and they are all pretty solid on their own. Note you may want to read this issue before you check those out if you don’t want some spoilers.

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About the author

Brent Jackson

Brent is happily married and an avid comic book consumer who loves nothing more than the smell of comics in the morning and diving through a long box of back issues. By day he is a nutritionist and has also been training in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for over 10 years. He is probably not the coolest person you have ever met. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @brentjackson30

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