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‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’ Mid-Credits Scene Ties up That Weird ‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage’ End Credits Scene




‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’ Mid-Credits Scene Ties up That Weird ‘Venom: Let There Be Carnage’ End Credits Scene

Back when Venom: Let There Be Carnage debuted in theaters on October 1, fans were treated to a game-changing — but also extremely confusing — end credits sequence that seemed to thrust Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) and Venom (also Hardy) into the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). And now, thanks to Spider-Man: No Way Home‘s mid-credits sequence, we finally have an explanation of what was going on there, as well as a (mostly) tidy wrap-up that still leaves things open for the future.

Spoilers past this point, but in Let There Be Carnage, Eddie is relaxing on a bed in a dumpy hotel in Mexico, after finishing his epic/really weird battle with Carnage (Woody Harrelson). The Venom symbiote explains to Eddie that he’s connected to a hive mind, with a vast array of knowledge that includes the multiverse; and if he gave Eddie full access, it would melt his brain. So instead, he offers to give him a glimpse of that knowledge…

…Only instead, they got zapped into another universe. Same position, different hotel room, with the Venom symbiote insisting he didn’t do this. And on the TV is the footage of J. Jonah Jameson (J.K. Simmons) revealing Spider-Man (Tom Holland) as Peter Parker to the entire world, from the end of Spider-Man: Far From Home. Eddie Venoms up, and the symbiote licks the TV screen, saying, “That guy.”

There’s a little bit more to the scene where Eddie finds out he’s in someone else’s hotel room, but beyond seemingly throwing Venom into the MCU, there’s that confusing bit about accessing the hive mind which implied that perhaps this was a vision Eddie was having, even if Venom said it wasn’t. Turns out, it wasn’t a vision at all… In fact, Eddie did bloop into the MCU, albeit briefly.

In the Spider-Man: No Way Home mid-credits scene, we cut in on Eddie, drunk at the hotel bar. He’s harassing a poor bartender to try to explain the MCU to him, because he comes from a universe where there are no superheroes. Confusing, right? The simple, real world explanation of that is while the Venom movies are produced by Sony, Spider-Man: No Way Home is produced by Marvel and Sony, so they’re two different universes. Spider-Man, the character, has been shared with Marvel and Disney since Captain America: Civil War, and potentially will continue past No Way Home. Meaning Holland’s Spidey will continue to be in the MCU. As for Venom? We’ll get to that in a second.

After asking about the big purple alien who likes stones (that would be Thanos, by the way), Eddie clarifies that aliens don’t like stones, “aliens love eating brains.”

The bartender, angrily, explains to Eddie that Thanos made his family disappear for five years, referring to the event in the MCU that’s been called “The Blip,” which seems to sober Eddie up slightly. And it also helps him set up a big showdown, when he says, “Maybe I should go to New York and speak to this… Spider-Man.”

It’s not meant to be, though. Just as the Venom symbiote is trying to convince Eddie to go skinny-dipping instead, a glowing light surrounds him and sends him back to his own universe. This very simply explains how Venom got there in the first place… Sort of. In No Way Home, Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) casts a spell that accidentally sucks villains from the previous Spider-Man movies into the MCU. The condition is, they need to know that Peter Parker is Spider-Man, which means we got an array of baddies from both the Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield movies.

Faithful fans of the comics might have noted, though, that only five of them were in the bulk of the movie: Doc Ock (Alfred Molina), Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe), Electro (Jamie Foxx), Lizard (Rhys Ifans) and Sandman (Thomas Haden Church). In the books, they’re five/sixths of a group called The Sinister Six. Turns out there was a sixth villain sucked through, and that was Venom… He just didn’t make it to New York in time to tangle with the wall-crawler.

As to how Venom knew who Peter Parker was, you can probably wiggle room that in by saying that the symbiote had knowledge of the multiverse, so had that info from his hive mind. And in particular, there’s the fact that Spider-Man 3 included Venom (Topher Grace), which gets dropped in casually during the movie proper by Tobey Maguire’s Peter. So if that symbiote was part of the multiversal hive mind, and knew Peter Parker was Spider-Man, then so does Tom Hardy’s version of the Venom symbiote.

Anyway, Eddie/Venom are gone from the MCU and back to, I don’t know, tangle with Morbius (Jared Leto) or whatever. But he does leave something behind: a little bit of the symbiote on the bar, which extends one tiny tentacle before the screen cuts to black. What does that mean? TBD, but short version is the Venom symbiote is now officially in the MCU, meaning that Sony can have their Venom movies, and the MCU can have a little Venom too, as a treat. Whether that symbiote will attach to Holland’s Spider-Man, or if Tom Hardy will pick up the role in the MCU, or if someone else will get their own goop suit remains to be seen.

At the very least, we now know what that nonsense at the end of Let There Be Carnage was about. Now if someone could explain the nonsense that happened in the preceding 90 minutes of Let There Be Carnage, that would be great.

Where to watch Venom: Let There Be Carnage


Sports world reacts to John Madden’s death




Sports world reacts to John Madden’s death

Legendary NFL coach and broadcaster John Madden died Tuesday morning at 85, the NFL announced. News of the football icon’s passing hit Twitter on Tuesday evening, and athletes, coaches and broadcasters from across the sports world reacted.

Fellow broadcasting legend Dick Vitale, who is currently battling cancer, called Madden “the greatest analyst of all time of any sport” in his Twitter tribute.

Former Yankees pitcher and notable Raiders fan CC Sabathia said “your legacy will live forever.” Madden coached the then-Oakland Raiders from 1969-78, a couple of years before Sabathia, a Vallejo, California native, was born. Lakers star LeBron James had similar words about Madden’s lasting legacy, adding an infinity emoji.

Former tennis star and social justice activist Billie Jean King recalled meeting Madden as a “privilege.”

Radio voice of the Rangers Kenny Albert, a five-sport broadcaster who’s been with FOX Sports since its inception in 1994, shared a photo circa 26 years ago to remember Madden.

ESPN’s Bomani Jones took a bit of a shot at current color commentators, noting that Madden “set an unreachable standard.”

Frank Caliendo, who’s made a career out of impersonations, including one for Madden, said he was surprised how emotional he felt.

Several football players, and others, including Saints running back Mark Ingram II and former Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant, credited Madden with being part of the reason why they love football.

Rams wide receiver and NFL MVP contender Cooper Kupp quote the late coach in his tribute: “The road to Easy Street goes through the sewer.”

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Miles McBride’s Knicks role will lessen with Kemba Walker’s resurgence




Miles McBride’s Knicks role will lessen with Kemba Walker’s resurgence

MINNEAPOLIS — The Knicks got back another body in rookie point guard Miles McBride, who was cleared from protocols Tuesday and rejoined the team in Minnesota.

But there is no longer any hype for the rookie’s return. Kemba Walker is back as the starting point guard and coming off winning Eastern Conference Player of the Week honors with four standout games, including his Christmas Day spectacular. The Knicks have gone 2-2 since Walker regained the starting job.

“It’s great,’’ coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He had a great week. He’s playing great basketball. The team winning helps him get recognized and he was a big part of driving that winning. It’s great for the team.’’

McBride was also spectacular in his last outing before getting COVID-19, when he played the entire second half Dec. 16 in Houston and seemingly earned a spot in the rotation. In fact, McBride had strung together two decent outings before he was ruled out. But things have changed since his emergence and McBride is likely back to being a bit player.

Without a practice, McBride wasn’t even expected to see time when the Knicks faced the Timberwolves to kick off a four-game road trip.

Miles McBride
NBAE via Getty Images

Of course, with Walker’s arthritic knee, anything is possible. The Knicks play Detroit on Wednesday in a back-to-back, so it’s uncertain whether Walker will complete both contests. In addition, Immanuel Quickley is out of COVID-19 protocols but Thibodeau wasn’t sure he was ready for meaningful minutes.

That left Walker against the depleted Timberwolves, who were missing their three top players (Anthony Edwards, Karl-Anthony Towns, D’Angelo Russell), all because of COVID-19 .

Kemba Walker
Kemba Walker

When McBride got sidelined by the virus and Derrick Rose needed ankle surgery, Walker was resurrected by Thibodeau and it’s been a stunning comeback story.

Though Thibodeau has clear reservations about Walker based on his nine-game banishment due to his defensive malaise as an undersized point guard, he admitted after the Christmas Day triple-double against Atlanta that Walker is playing “much more aggressive.”

Walker’s triple-double that featured 10 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds was a lot different than his prior outing, when he scored 44 points against Washington.

“I thought his passing was terrific,’’ Thibodeau said before the Knicks resumed their schedule.

“Kemba had control of the game. The game tells you what to do. That’s what I loved about the way he played. I don’t think he forced anything. They puts size on him and were aggressive in their pick-and-roll coverage. He didn’t fight it. He attacked pressure the way you like to attack pressure. You don’t fight pressure with pressure. Don’t try to split it. Get rid of it, go to the backside. Let the game tell you what to do.’’

The Knicks coach is finally seeing all the elements of what Walker can do. Before his demotion, Walker was nothing more than a no-defense, 3-point shooter whose plus-minus was an abysmal minus-122.

Thibodeau was also concerned about his durability in sitting out two of the three back-to-back sets. The last load management game in Atlanta in late November triggered Thibodeau’s decision.

But now it’s only superlatives from Thibodeau in judging the last four games.

“Sometimes it’s going to be his shooting, sometimes it’s his penetration and getting in the paint to force a collapse and sometimes they’re being aggressive with their traps get rid of the ball quickly,’’ Thibodeau said. “The overall play, his rebounding. When your guards rebound, those are key to fast breaks. The more guard rebounding we get the better we can be. ‘’

The Knicks still have three players in protocols — centers Nerlens Noel and Jericho Sims and the newly infected Wayne Selden. Quickley and Kevin Knox were cleared on Christmas but were held out for conditioning.

No matter. The Knicks go as Kemba goes.

“He’s much more aggressive,’’ Thibodeau said. “That was the challenge. At the beginning of the year he and Evan were two new starters. Sometimes guys are trying to fit in. he’s being very aggressive which is the way we want him to play. Not deferring at all. When he and Julius [Randle] are aggressive like that our team is different.’’

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Bar raises dramatically for Zach Wilson in matchup with Tom Brady, Buccaneers




Zach Wilson and Tom Brady

When Zach Wilson stares across the MetLife Stadium field at the opposite sideline this Sunday, it won’t be Trevor Lawrence he’ll be looking at as his game-day counterpart.

Lawrence, drafted by Jacksonville one spot before the Jets selected Wilson at No. 2 overall last April, is a contemporary.

This Sunday at MetLife, the Jets rookie quarterback won’t be staring at a contemporary on the other sideline. He’ll be staring at the GOAT.

Tom Brady.

The bar raises dramatically for Wilson and the Jets, who are coming off of their feel-good, get-well win over the woeful Jaguars and Lawrence this past Sunday.

Brady and Buccaneers, who are 11-4, NFC South division champions and seeking to repeat as Super Bowl champions, play the Jets, who are 4-11 and seeking more signs of development from their rookie quarterback.

To say this is a step up in competition for Wilson and the Jets going from Lawrence and the Jags to Brady and the Bucs is as obvious as pointing out that Tampa Bay receiver Antonio Brown has had a few off-the-field incidents during his otherwise stellar NFL career.

There hasn’t been a lot to keep the interest of the Jets fan this season — other than watching Wilson’s development. That took an unfortunate pause for the four games Wilson missed with a knee injury, but he’s been back for five games and has looked like a better quarterback, throwing only two interceptions in those games (none in the last three) since returning from his injury.

The problem, though, is that Wilson hasn’t been producing enough touchdowns, throwing for three of them and rushing for four others in the past five games.

Zach Wilson and Tom Brady
Zach Wilson and Tom Brady
N.Y. Post: Charles Wenzelberg; AP

Baby steps, though.

Wilson was the better quarterback this past Sunday when matched up with Lawrence, who threw for more yards than Wilson did, but Wilson ran for 91 yards, including his electric 52-yard scoring jaunt, and made key throws when he needed them.

Wilson will not win Sunday’s game against Brady and the Bucs throwing for the 102 yards he had against the Jaguars. He and the Jets will need more.

Consider this: Brady enters the game having thrown 37 TD passes and for 4,580 yards this season and averages a league-high 305.2 passing yards per game.

Then this: The Buccaneers average 29.5 points per game this season, second most in the NFL.

And this: Wilson doesn’t have a single 300-yard passing game, averages 183 passing yards per game and has thrown seven TD passes in 11 games.

Seven TD passes is a pedestrian two-game total for Brady.

Wilson and the Jets are playing with house money anyway in what always has been a developmental season, so Sunday against Brady should, at its very least, be a great measuring-stick learning experience for Wilson, who’s studied Brady on tape.

Wilson revealed this month that he watched film of Brady before the Jets played the Eagles on Dec. 5 in an effort to pick up tips on how Brady worked against the Eagles defense when he played them earlier in the season.

“I thought it was really cool to see kind of how he went through his whole process, how he navigated the pocket, different things like that,” Wilson said at the time.

On Sunday, Wilson gets to see that process up close as Brady tries to dissect a Jets defense that has yielded 29.9 points per game this season, the most in the NFL.

That puts an added onus on Wilson to produce on the other side of the ball, because he knows Brady is going to get his. Wilson will likely need to produce four TDs — any way he can — for the Jets to simply remain competitive with the Super Bowl champs.

That’s a lot to ask of a 22-year-old kid who’s produced just 11 TDs in his 11 starts, up against Brady, who’s thrown 618 TD passes and for 83,784 yards in his remarkable career.

It, too, is a lot to ask playing against an aggressive Tampa Bay defense that’s ranked No. 9 in the NFL in points allowed (20.8 per game) and is led by former Jets head coach Todd Bowles, who’d surely like to send a holiday message to his former employer.

If you don’t think Bowles will be blitzing the bejesus out of Wilson, then you probably think Antonio Brown is a living saint.

The good news for the Jets is that Wilson has shown incremental improvements, particularly when it comes to his decision-making and quicker releases on his throws.

“He’s coming along, he’s getting more comfortable, he’s calmer back there,’’ Jets coach Robert Saleh said Monday. “He’s in a great headspace and it’s going to be fun to watch him grow, continue to grow.’’

A big part of that growth will take place this Sunday as he watches the GOAT operate from the opposite sideline at MetLife.

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