We travel back to when the Venom symbiote was first discovered and taken from its planet. Later, we find its first host caught in a war between two alien species (not spoiling who here). Finally, we return to the present, where Venom as Eddie Brock is stopping a robbery. He then returns to Alchemax to check on the symbiote's recent offspring. He isn't happy with how it's being treated.
Venom: First Host #1 lives up to its name and focuses upon the first host the symbiote ever took. Between that and the focus on the symbiote's offspring, it comes off like the story Mike Costa would have written as the continuation to his run on the Venom series.
As such, it's a solid story competently told. We go back to stories about Eddie terrorizing smalltime lowlifes. Costa was a consistently solid Venom writer, and it shows here. The actual story of the first host is steeped in Marvel history, which is a nice touch. It supports that feeling of an interconnected universe.
That referenced Marvel history gives the story a vibe of being a special tale, and that helps. It's also nice seeing some of these storylines that were dropped when Donny Cates and Ryan Stegman took up the title with their admittedly amazing run.
Mark Bagley does his Mark Bagley thing, making this book look amazing and classic. The action beats look great and have a lot of impact, he knows how to play with emotional expression. Of course, the big inky beast himself looks awesome. Dono Sanchez-Almara on colors and Andrew Hennessy on inks support Bagley's work well and round out the visuals excellently.
Venom: First Host #1 is a solid continuation of Costa's story of Eddie Brock and his symbiote. The titular first host is based in a cool bit of Marvel history, the artwork of Bagley, Sanchez-Almara, and Hennesy is good, and the book is some good fun on the whole. This one earns a recommendation. Check it out this Wednesday.