This is a very unique tale of Batman, with this story we get to creatively see what would happen to Batman if he was addicted to drugs. Despite the title of the story being called venom, the drugs in development are not named throughout the story. However as the drugs alter the user’s strength, are developed into a liquid form and the finale of the story takes place in Santa Prisca, it is safe to assume that this story illustrates the origin of the venom formula that grants Bane his superhuman strength. It also indicates that Batman contributed towards the creation of Bane in a small way.
Due to Batman’s lack of strength, he is unable to save a young girl named sissy. Annoyed by this event as well as it happening early in his career when he struggled to accept failure, he is manipulated into taking the drug to enhance his strength and prevent him from ever being too weak again. At first, the drug helps but he soon becomes more aggressive and has trouble using his mind to focus on detective work. It’s not long before Batman realizes that he has become dependant on the drugs and is asked to kill for his next fix.
One of the greatest aspects of this story is Batman’s character. His self-critique of failure and personally taking the blame for the child’s death illustrates how determined he is to save everybody in Gotham. It’s also an unreasonable goal and shows how dedicated Batman is to the cause. This is a man who genuinely doesn’t want any casualties on his watch. Later in the story, we witness his inner strength towards detoxing. This gives the reader insight into the strength and discipline of Batman. He is willing to do what is necessary for the greater good.
Some people dislike this story as it shows Batman in a more vulnerable state as well being an addict which is unlikely of Batman who has always been an incredibly disciplined character. However, Batman does make mistakes especially in the earlier years of his career but it all contributes towards him becoming a force to be reckoned with. This is a very daring story but some people who don’t want to see a weaker and vulnerable Batman may wish to skip this one.