Venom converses with Eddie Brock in the 'Venom' movie.

How do you explain Venom’s powers without connecting them directly to Spider-Man? A new story from Marvel Comics helps shed light on the true nature of the Symbiote in a way that makes the upcoming Venom movie without Spider-Man seem much more practical — and frightening. As it turns out, Venom doesn’t need to mooch Spider-Man’s powers because the Symbiote’s been a horrifying space dragon all along.

Venom #5 hits shelves this Wednesday, but early previews revealed a startling new power for the Symbiote. In this storyline, Venom teams up with Miles Morales’ Spider-Man to fight a Symbiote dragon in New York. After the two web-slingers are left falling from an incredible height, Venom just grows a huge pair of dragon-like wings to save them both like it’s no big deal.

'Venom #5'
Venom and Miles Morales' Spider-Man fall back towards Earth, and Venom saves them by growing a pair of wings.

Venom’s species is also known as the Klyntar, and for the most part, all of his powers involve the black Symbiote goop assuming different shapes, but the ability to actually form wings is totally different. And it would seem this is something Venom has been able to do all this time without realizing it until now.

So in a sense, Venom’s specific white chest insignia just got a huge double meaning as both spider and dragon.

Venom’s white chest symbol was first revealed back in the ‘80s for the Secret Wars storyline as part of the black Symbiote Costume worn by Spider-Man. In almost every iteration of the character, the Venom Symbiote first infects Peter Parker, and then, when it goes on to infect Eddie Brock, it gives Brock all of Spider-Man’s powers. As such, Venom becomes the “wicked web-slinger” and a dark foil to Spider-Man, which is why the white insignia always looks a bit like a spider. But these days, it also kind of looks like a white dragon spreading its wings.

When you consider this, Venom becomes less of an evil Spider-Man counterpart and instead more of a unique, horrifying, shapeshifting alien. So telling a Venom origin story in the Venom movie without Spider-Man is starting to look a little bit more doable.

Will Tom Hardy’s Eddie Brock be able to sprout huge wings in the Venom movie? Probably not, but it’s about time we all get a little more afraid of what this alien creature is capable of.

Venom #5 hits comic book shelves on August 22 and the Venom movie will be released on October 5, 2018.

Check out the second trailer for Venom:

Photos via Marvel Comics, Sony Pictures