For Spider-Man fans of the '90s, Carnage was the greatest single force of evil and horror. As a monstrous serial killer with alien powers who pried spines from flesh, Carnage posed the ultimate threat. While he wasn't as emotionally dangerous as Green Goblin, as intertwined with Parker's life as Doc Ock, or as morally ambiguous as Venom, Carnage was portrayed as the ultimate adversary of Spider-Man.
Unsurprisingly, Spider-Man has bonded with the Carnage symbiote on a few different occasions. While the Marvel Universe's Peter Parker hasn't become Carnage yet, some other versions of Peter Parker and another Marvel Universe Spider-Man found themselves bonded with this vicious symbiote.
SPIDER-CARNAGE (BEN REILLY)
In the comics, Spider-Carnage first appears in "Web of Carnage," a four issue event that featured the Carnage symbiote escaping Ravencroft prison, leaving its host Kletus Cassady behind. Instead, it latches onto Ben Reilly, the Scarlet Spider in the middle of Spider-Man's infamous Clone Saga.
The Carnage symbiote is a monstrous entity, made twisted and deranged by Cassidy's murderous instinct. When the symbiote begins to overtake Reilly's mind, he begins to resist but struggles to maintain control over himself until he can remove the symbiote from his body.
Eventually, John Jameson helps bring Reilly to a cell designed to contain Carnage. Once inside, he is bombarded with enough microwave radiation to kill the clone. But Reily, barely, survives. The intense heat manages to draw the Carnage symbiote off of him. It returns to its original host, so more carnage can be spread throughout the land.
SPIDER-CARNAGE IN SPIDER-MAN THE ANIMATED SERIES
Spider-Man: The Animated Series was another staple of the '90s. It adapted a lot of Spider-Man lore for the first -- and only -- time on screen thus far, and Spider-Carnage is one of those concepts.
In the show, Carnage is cast into Dormammu's realm by Venom in the middle of Season 3, and struggles to free itself from its interdimensional prison. However, the symbiote abandons its host, Cletus Kasady and tumbles through dimensions into an alternate reality (Earth-98311). In this reality, Peter Parker is in a dark place following his discovery of Ben Reilly. Neither is sure which is the clone and which isn't, but while Ben is able to adapt, Peter is driven into existential madness. After that and Aunt May's death pushes him over the edge, the Carnage symbiote, now drawn to Peter's rage, allows Peter an opportunity to exact revenge.
While the Ben Reilly of Earth-616 resisted Carnage, the Peter Parker of Earth-98311 embraced it. Uncovering the means to travel between the multiverse, Spider-Carnage concocted a plan to inflict his pain on the whole world. Manipulating the multiverses' various villains, he creates a machine to open a portal to every reality, along with a bomb that, when exploded in the nexus between worlds, would obliterate all universes across all the multiverse.
Several Spider-Men from across the multiverse are gathered by Madame Web and the Beyonder in order to stop Spider-Carnage, but, in the end, another reality's version of Uncle Ben snaps Spider-Carnage out of his plot revenge. He ends up closing a portal upon himself, killing himself and destroying the technology that could end all existence.
In the 2000s, Exiles featured a team made up of versions of characters from different alternate realities, which frequently offered outlandish interpretations of established heroes.
One o fthese Exiles worlds, Earth-15, is the home of the most vicious of Spider-Carnages, the Spider. Here, Peter Parker has merged with the Carnage symbiote to become the world's most brutal serial killer. He is sentenced to 67 consecutive life sentences for his crimes. Insane and with a dark, Deadpool-esque sense of humor, he enjoys causing pain and, oddly, looked no older than 14, despite being over 40.
This sadistic Peter Parker ended up being recruited for Weapon X, another team of aggressive alternate reality characters who were ordered to fix and "correct" the various problems throughout the multiverse. Some of their "corrections" included killing the Morlocks of one reality and inciting a war between Atlantis and the Inhumans.
The Spider replaced Daredevil, an agent of Kingpin, after the former was killed in action. The Spider proved to be a ruthless member of Weapon X, but, he was ultimately killed by an alternate reality's version of Firestar, whose microwave radiation divided Carnage from the Spider. However, unlike the Ben Reily of Earth-616, who was bombarded with lethal doses of radiation and lived, this dark, twisted Peter Parker died.