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Venom is the official leader of the Insecticons, but he's so paranoid about one of the others trying to usurp his position that he does more damage to his own standing among them than most of the plots they might hatch against him. He trusts none of them and suspects everyone of being after his place. He won't hesitate to utilize his manipulative and destructive psychological warfare techniques on those under him to stay in power.
Marvel Comics continuity
Venom and his teammates in the elite Mayhem Attack Squad were sent to aid the Wreckers against the team-up of Megatron and Galvatron. Despite the Mayhems' reputation, however, they were no match for their opponents, and Venom was slain by Galvatron shortly after the battle began. Twice.
Dreamwave comics continuity
8.2 million years ago, Venom participated in Shockwave's assault on Iacon. He presumably retreated with the rest of the Decepticons when Starscream activated the planetary engines, devastating the city.
After the fragmentation of the Decepticon forces following Megatron's seeming destruction in a space bridge accident, Venom joined Ratbat's Ultracons. He accompanied Ratbat and fellow Ultracons Chop Shop and Ransack on a mission to the Tagan Heights, where they unleashed the deadly Devastator on the Wreckers. Capturing the Wreckers' leader Springer, the Ultracons were prevented from executing him when Devastator's battle with Defensor raged out of control. In the chaos that ensued, Venom and his allies escaped, leaving Devastator behind.
Venom, along with Barrage, Chop Shop, and Ransack, remained on Cybertron following the departure of the Ark and the Nemesis. The planet's chronic energon shortage reduced them to a vampiric existence, forcing them to capture Micromasters and drain them of their fuel. While pursuing Falcon and Flanker in the Wastelands, they ran into the middle of a conflict between the Hot Rod Patrol and Race Track Patrol.
After devouring Falcon they soon set upon the other Micromasters, but were driven back by the timely arrival of Groundshaker, who left with the Hot Rod Patrol. The subsequent arrival of Shockwave prevented them from devouring the Race Track Patrol, but Shockwave did surreptitiously toss them Flanker as a snack once the others had left. The Insecticons subsequently abducted the Race Track Patrol and several other Micromasters from Little Iacon, in an attempt to ferret out the Hot Rod Patrol and gain some new recruits in the process. He berated Chop Shop after he accidentally snatched Road Hugger, accusing him of trying to undermine the mission. As he attempted to persuade his captives to join the Decepticons, he ordered Barrage to blast Blaze Master as a show of force. Taking his captives and recruits back to Decepticon HQ, Venom passed along a communique from Shockwave (actually a disguised Skystalker) to Barricade and his team-mates, summoning them to his quarters. While attempting to stop an invasion force of Micromasters from freeing their comrades, Venom was skewered by a revived Blaze Master.
Devil's Due G.I. Joe vs the Transformers comics continuity
As part of Serpent O.R.'s forces, Venom defended the newly unified Decepticon army's base against a combined Autobot/G.I. Joe strike force. During the battle, he and Barrage were pounded on by Snarl and Storm Shadow.
- Venom (Deluxe Insecticon, 1985)
- Venom transforms into a robotic cicada. He comes with a small blaster and an axe, and is one of the few Deluxe Insecticons whose arms actually let him aim either in any useful manner.
- Venom, like all of the Deluxe Insecticons, was originally designed by Takatoku Toys for the Armored Insect Battalion Beetras toyline (Nihongo: 機甲虫隊ビートラス). Takatoku Toys went out of business before the end of the Beetras line and their assets were purchased by fellow Japanese toymaker Bandai. Bandai licensed Takatoku's Beetras molds (alongside toys from Special Armored Battalion Dorvack and Super Dimensional Fortress Macross) to Hasbro in 1985 to make the Deluxe Insecticons.
- Venom's mold was originally released as the Beetras toy named Beet Zeguna.
- Neither Venom nor the rest of the Deluxe Insecticons ever appeared in an episode of the original Transformers cartoon series. As none of the Deluxe Insecticons were based on toys owned by Takara, there is little likelihood that they will ever be reissued by TakaraTomy or Hasbro.
- In the cartoon, where Venom did not appear, the Insecticons appeared to be rather communal in leadership, though Shrapnel was often shown in a leadership position. Venom has been keeping an eye on Shrapnel ever since.
- Real cicadas have no venom. They don't even bite or sting. They're just noisy.