CARRIONmain image

Real Name: Malcolm McBride

Identity/Class: Human mutate

Occupation: Graduate student

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Carnage (Cletus Kasady), Demogoblin, Doppelganger, Hobgoblin (Jason Macendale), Dr. Ashley Kafka, Shriek (Frances Barrison), Edward Whelan

Enemies: Black Cat (Felicia Hardy), Captain America (Steve Rogers), Cloak (Tyrone Johnson), Dagger (Tandy Bowen), Deathlok (Michael Collins), Extreme Emergency Team, Firestar (Angelica Jones), Guardsmen, High Evolutionary (Herbert Wyndham), Iron Fist (Danny Rand), Mister Fantastic (Reed Richards), Morbius (Michael Morbius), Nightwatch (Kevin Trench), Spider-Man (Peter Parker), Judas Traveller, Venom (Eddie Brock)

Known Relatives: Beatrice Martha McBride (mother), unidentified father (deceased)

Aliases: None

Place of Birth: Queens, New York

Base of Operations: Ravencroft Institute;
    formerly the Statue of Liberty;
    formerly a hideout in the New York sewers;
    formerly Empire State University, New York;
    formerly Astoria, Queens

First Appearance: Spectacular Spider-Man II#149 (April, 1989)

Powers/Abilities: Before the Carrion virus was eliminated from McBride's system, it transformed him into an aged, decayed duplicate of Miles Warren with sickly yellow skin and a persistent reek of decomposition. He could teleport over short distances (leaving behind a residue of sulfur), manipulate and rot organic matter, project repelling energy beams, levitate and become intangible. Carrion's touch could ignite fires or kill living beings. He possesses superhuman strength, enabling him to lift up to ten tons, and can also regenerate rapidly (although his body is highly fragile). Carrion had keen senses, which occasionally gave him the appearance of telepathy; other Carrions were telepathic, but McBride claimed not to be. As Carrion, McBride wielded the Red Dust of Death, an organic powder that could, in increasing doses, cause pain, unconsciousness, or an agonizing flesh-eating death. McBride is a gifted scientist; he formerly possessed some of Miles Warren's knowledge and memories, including his vast expertise in cloning and genetics.

Height: 5'10"
Weight: 175 lbs.
Eyes: (McBride) Blue; (Carrion) yellow
Hair: (McBride) Blond; (Carrion) none

History: (Amazing Spider-Man I#393 (fb) ) - Malcolm McBride's father died when he was four, and his mother struggled to support the both of them.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#149 (fb) ) - Now an Empire State University grad student, Malcolm McBride lost out on a small research grant to returning student Peter Parker.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#149 / (Spider-Man: Dead Man's Hand (fb) ) - When Parker fell asleep in class, McBride suggested he'd lost his touch. Parker responded by suggesting that he'd been experiencing real life instead. Later, McBride followed Parker into Miles Warren's abandoned ESU laboratory, hoping to prove that Parker had engaged in conduct that would rescind his grant. Instead, after Parker left, he found a vial of Warren's Carrion virus (which had actually been planted by the High Evolutionary to obfuscate the truth about Warren). Later, in his dorm, he examined the virus and was infected with it, transforming into Carrion. Gaining Warren's memories, he returned to the lab, where he found Spider-Man. Carrion was surprised that Spider-Man knew him, and instinctively attacked him, eventually knocking him out with his Red Dust of Death. Carrion took Spider-Man to a graveyard; when he woke, Carrion asked him how he knew about the Carrion virus. Once Spider-Man explained that he'd read Warren's journals, Carrion stated that his purpose was to avenge Gwen Stacy's death, and had to kill Spider-Man to do so. As they fought, Spider-Man lured him across the cemetery until Carrion was confronted with Warren's headstone. Unwilling to believe that his creator was dead, Carrion became confused, and Spider-Man easily beat him into submission.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#162 (fb) ) - Carrion was taken to the Vault.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#162) - While en route to a court appearance, the prison van containing Carrion was attacked by the Hobgoblin, causing it to crash. The Hobgoblin tore the door off the van, but while he was distracted by the cold air coming out of the holding area, a surviving Guardsman grabbed him in a headlock. Carrion, however, found a gap in the Guardsman's damaged armor, and killed him with his death-touch. The grateful Hobgoblin told Carrion he'd come to free him, but Carrion rejected the offer of freedom, as his very existence was a purposeless mockery of life. Before Carrion could kill his liberator, Hobgoblin offered him the prospect of revenge against Spider-Man. Deeming revenge to be "the one thing in death worth living for", Carrion accepted, and the Hobgoblin flew off to New York with Carrion in tow.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#162 (fb) ) - Carrion and Hobgoblin ransacked Mister Fantastic's lab at Four Freedoms Plaza, where Spider-Man had left a sample of the Carrion virus. They stole the virus and Richards' notes on Miles Warren.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#162) - In the Hobgoblin's sewer hideout, Carrior read the notes, learning that he was truly Malcolm McBride, and tore them up in rage. He recalled dim memories of his mother, and demanded that Hobgoblin tell him where she is. Hobgoblin taunted him about his alleged telepathy, which Carrion claimed not to possess. To threaten Hobgoblin, he killed a rat with his red dust. Unimpressed, the Hobgoblin took him through the sewers to the McBride home in Astoria, Queens. He gazed at his mother through the window before burning through it. He remembered enough about her to convince her that he was Malcolm, but before she could touch his outstretched hand, Spider-Man pulled him away from her. The two fought on the front lawn; Spider-Man offered to help cure his condition, but Carrion, having Warren's knowledge, knew it was hopeless. He allowed Hobgoblin to sneak up behind Spider-Man and knock him out. Together, they dragged him down to the sewers...

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#163) - Hobgoblin shackled Spider-Man to the sewer wall with ectoplasm, then departed to find a buyer for his corpse, leaving Carrion to guard him. As Spider-Man watched, Carrion gazed forlornly at a photograph of his mother, only to discard it, feeling the memories of his past life fading. Picking up on this, Spider-Man taunted Carrion about being a monster; enraged, Carrion tossed a handful of Red Dust at him - which missed and dissolved Spider-Man's shackles instead. Freed, Spider-Man used his webbing to pull down the crumbling sewer ceiling on Carrion. Carrion dug himself out, finding Spider-Man and the returned Hobgoblin had returned to the Astoria manhole outside of the McBride house. Carrion drifted out of the manhole, towards his mother and the recently-arrived Mary Jane Watson, but Spider-Man swung them both to safety. The Hobgoblin pulled out a pumpkin bomb, intending to kill Spider-Man and the two civilians, but Carrion, motivated by his returning feelings of love towards his mother, blocked it; they were both engulfed in flames and plunged into the sewer, where they ignited a gas leak and seemingly both perished in a massive explosion.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#201) - As the rampaging Carnage, Shriek, Demogoblin, and Doppelganger walked by, Carrion, having survived the explosion, crawled out of a manhole.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#379) - As Carnage and his allies battled the NYPD's Extreme Emergency Team, Carrion joined them, killing an officer with his death touch. Carnage gladly welcomed him into his "family", seeing him as a "son" to himself and Shriek, and a "brother" to Demogoblin and Doppelganger. They rampaged through Manhattan until Deathlok intervened; Carrion tried to use his death touch on the cyborg, but could find precious little organic matter on him. Deathlok's threat was soon nullified when Shriek blasted him into an electric sign.

(Spider-Man #36) - Carrion and the others gathered at the ruins of the Brooklyn orphanage where Cletus Kasady was raised. As Carnage related his origins, even Carrion was interested - but soon Spider-Man and his allies Black Cat, Venom, Firestar, and Cloak arrived to take them down. The battle eventually spilled to Central Park.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#202) - Carrion continued to battle Spider-Man and his allies in Central Park; eventually, Carrion and the others defeated Venom and took him prisoner.

(Web of Spider-Man I#103) - Carrion, Demogoblin, and Doppelganger ambushed Venom, Cloak, and Black Cat in Lower Manhattan. In the ensuing fight, Carrion redirected the Cat's grappling hook into Cloak, and wounded Morbius with his death touch. When Nightwatch's arrival evened the odds, Cloak tried to trap Carrion in his cloak, but he escaped with his brethren back to the Statue of Liberty.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#380) - Nightwatch, Cloak, and Morbius followed Carrion and his allies to Liberty's torch, where Carrion tried to use his death touch on Nightwatch's living cape and was denied; however, the heroes soon fled.

(Spider-Man #37) - Carrion joined Demogoblin and Doppelganger in aiding Shriek against Spider-Man and his allies. Carnage soon arrived on the scene; angered at Shriek operating without him, he seemingly killed Doppelganger as Carrion and the others watched.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#203) - When Shriek panicked at the apparent resurrection of Dagger, who she had seemingly killed earlier, Carrion tried to comfort her; she instead lashed out at him. Soon,Carrion and the others took on Spider-Man alone, unaware that he was buying time for his allies to activate their Alpha Magni-Illuminozor. The device blasted McBride, sending the Carrion virus into remission and reverting him to human form.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#390 (fb) ) - McBride was taken to the Ravencroft Institute, where he was treated by Dr. Ashley Kafka. She let his mother stay with him as he recovered; although his physical recovery was successful, his mental recovery was still shaky, as he was haunted by horrific nightmares that prevented him from sleeping.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#390) - Malcolm recounted his dreams to Dr. Kafka; while she insisted that Carrion's actions weren't his fault, he was certain that Carrion's evil was derived from something inside him. To show him what true insanity was, she took him to see Shriek in her cell; however, upon seeing her "son", Shriek went berserk and blasted out of containment. She attacked Kafka, enraged that she'd returned McBride to human form, then flew off with a terrified Malcolm in tow.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#391) - Shriek flew Malcolm to a suburban house; she he tried to flee, she attacked him. He tried to warn the house's occupant to flee, but before he could do so, Shriek flung the homeowner out a window. McBride insisted that he get back to Ravencroft, but Shriek refused, claiming that Carrion was real and Malcolm was a facade - and that she was his real mother, all the while physically abusing him and claiming to love him. Soon, Spider-Man arrived, but Shriek overwhelmed him. As she felt the encroaching darkness in Spider-Man's soul, she was inspired; she used her psionic abilities to draw out the darkness in the depths of McBride's psyche and draw out Carrion, prompting him to transform, physically and mentally, into Carrion again. Carrion was grateful, and repaid Shriek by using his death-touch on Spider-Man...

(Amazing Spider-Man I#392) - Shriek ordered Carrion to stop, as she believed Spider-Man would eventually join the two of them as Carrion's new "father". He relented, and the two flew off, leaving Spider-Man unconscious in the abandoned house. They robbed a leather shop in Greenwich Village, where they acquired new costumes; however, it triggered a memory of abuse in Shriek, who had a violent psychic breakdown. It awakened a fragment of Malcolm, who claimed that Shriek wasn't his mother, and demanded to be taken home. Shriek complied, taking him to his mother's house and demanding that she kill him. Carrion was torn between his two mothers, paralyzed with indecision - only for Shriek to break the deadlock by vowing to kill the woman herself. Before she could do so, however, Spider-Man arrived, his heart full of cold rage...

(Amazing Spider-Man I#393) - Carrion watched as Spider-Man brutally attacked Shriek; he leapt to attack the wall-crawler, but Beatrice told him to stop, wracking him with indecision again. However, he sensed Beatrice's fear of the newly-intense Spider-Man, and attacked him, only for Spider-Man to overpower him and beat him senseless until Beatrice begged him to stop. Distracted, a recovered Shriek knocked him out, and once more asked Carrion to choose his true mother. Unable to do so, he instead turned his death touch on himself.Beatrice tried to sacrifice herself to save him, but Shriek restrained her; realizing that Beatrice truly did love Malcolm, she used her psionic powers to draw the Carrion virus out of Malcolm's body and into her own. Reunited with her son, Beatrice took him back to Ravencroft.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#403) - When the mad illusionist Judas Traveller put Spider-Man on trial at Ravencroft, he had the inmates, including McBride, serve as his jury. Carnage, who was serving as the prosecutor, called McBride as a witness, and made him admit that it was his jealousy towards Peter Parker that made him tamper with Warren's virus, transforming him into Carrion - before Carnage dramatically revealed that Peter Parker was Spider-Man! The other members of the jury pronounced Spider-Man guilty, save for McBride and fellow Ravencroft patient Edward Whelan; however, they soon reverted back onto Carrion and Vermin, respectively, and leaped forward to carry out Spider-Man's death sentence. However, Traveller soon halted the proceedings, and returned the occupants of Ravencroft to their proper places and states; he also erased the knowledge of Parker's true identity from their minds.

Comments: Created by Gerry Conway and Sal Buscema.

Carrion seems to have been created as part of Gerry Conway's attempt to retcon out part of his original '70s Clone Saga - as per this story and Spectacular Annual #, Miles Warren never created actual human clones, just a genetic virus that transformed living subjects into a genetic duplicate of another person. This was then re-retconned in the '90s Clone Saga, in which it was revealed that Warren did make clones after all, and the evidence that he hadn't was all planted by the High Evolutionary, who wanted to cover up his own involvement in Warren's history.

The Carrion Virus has since been passed on to Dr. William Allen, so McBride is probably not due fro a relapse any time soon.

McBride has joint entries with the other Carrions in the OHotMU Master Edition, the Spider-Man 2005 Handbook and in the All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Hardcover volume 2.

McBride's mother is named Martha in Spectacular Spider-Man II#162, but Beatrice in ASM #390-393; the Handbooks thus deemed her to be Beatrice Martha McBride. Her hair also went from red to white between appearances, but that's pretty understandable.

Profile by Minor Irritant.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Malcolm McBride, alias Carrion, should be distinguished from:


Beatrice Martha McBride

(Amazing Spider-Man I#393 (fb) ) - Beatrice McBride's husband died when their son, Malcolm, was four; she struggled to support the both of them, but did so with her iron will and deep religious faith.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#162 (fb) ) - Malcolm, now an Empire State University grad student, mysteriously disappeared, leaving Beatrice distraught. Unbeknownst to her, he had been transformed into the macabre Carrion.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#162) - While washing dishes, Beatrice saw Carrion through the window; he broke into the house, and she recoiled in terror. However, he mentioned her "nerves of stainless steel", convincing her that he was Malcolm. She reached out her hand to his, but before he could touch her, Spider-Man pulled him away. She watched the two battle on her front lawn.

(Spectacular Spider-Man II#163) - Mary Jane Watson came to see Beatrice, hoping to save both her son and Spider-Man. Hearing an explosion, they rushed outside, where they were nearly attacked by Carrion; Spider-Man swung them both to safety at the last minute. When Hobgoblin threatened them with a pumpkin bomb, Carrion, feeling a renewed love for his mother, attacked him, and they seemingly both perished in an explosion.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#390 (fb) ) - Malcolm survived, and was eventually restored to human form; he was taken to the Ravencroft Institute, where Beatrice stayed with him to help him recover.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#390) - When Dr. Kafka came to see Malcolm, Beatrice thanked her again for letting her stay with her son.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#391) - After Shriek abducted Malcolm from Ravencroft, Beatrice drove through the city, searching for him.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#392) - Back at home, Beatrice called Ravencroft security director John Jameson to see if he had any news. He had none, but she promised to say a prayer for Dr. Kafka. Before long, Carrion came to her - with Shriek, who claimed that she was Carrion's real mother and demanded that he kill her. Beatrice pleaded for her life, hoping to reach her son - and succeeded. He was torn - until Shriek decided to kill Beatrice herself. Luckily, Spider-Man arrived before she could carry it out.

(Amazing Spider-Man I#393) - Beatrice witnessed a brutal battle between Shriek, Carrion, and Spider-Man; when Spider-Man lay defeated, Shriek made Carrion choose between his two mothers. He chose instead to turn his death touch on himself; Beatrice tried to grab her son's hands to save him, knowing that it would mean her own death. Shriek restrained her, and realized that Beatrice truly did love her son, prompting her to use her powers to draw the Carrion virus out of Malcolm, leaving him human again. While Spider-Man took Shriek to a hospital, Beatrice took Malcolm back to Ravencroft.

--Spectacular Spider-Man II#162


images: (without ads)
Amazing Spider-Man #393, cover (main image)
Spectacular Spider-Man II#149, p6, pan6 (McBride headshot)

Spectacular Spider-Man II#149, p13, pan6 (original Carrion costume)
Amazing Spider-Man I#379, p7, pan5 (death touch)
Spectacular Spider-Man II#163, p17, pan5 (Beatrice, red hair)
Amazing Spider-Man I#393, p3, pan4 (Beatrice, grey hair)


Appearances:
Spectacular Spider-Man II#149 (April, 1989) - Gerry Conway (writer), Sal Buscema (art), Jim Salicrup (editor)
Spectacular Spider-Man II#162-163 (March-April, 1990) - Gerry Conway (writer), Sal Buscema (art), Jim Salicrup (editor)
Spectacular Spider-Man II#201 (June, 1993) - J. M. DeMatteis (writer),Sal Buscema (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man I#379 (July, 1993) - David Michelinie (writer),Mark Bagley (pencils), Randy Emberlin (inker), Danny Fingeroth (editor)
Spider-Man #36 (July, 1993) - Terry Kavanagh (writer), Tom Lyle (pencils), Scott Hanna (inker), Danny Fingeroth (editor)
Spectacular Spider-Man II#202 (July, 1993) - J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Sal Buscema (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Web of Spider-Man I#103 (August, 1993) - Terry Kavanagh (writer), Alex Saviuk (pencils), Don Hudson (inker), Rob Tokar (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man I#380 (August, 1993) - David Michelinie (writer), Mark Bagley (pencils), Randy Emberlin (inker), Danny Fingeroth (editor)
Spider-Man #37 (August, 1993) - J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Tom Lyle (pencils), Scott Hanna and Al Milgrom (inkers), Danny Fingeroth (editor)
Spectacular Spider-Man II#203 (August, 1993) - J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Sal Buscema (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man I#390-393 (June-September, 1994) - J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Mark Bagley (pencils), Randy Emberlin (inker), Danny Fingeroth (editor)
Amazing Spider-Man I#403 (July, 1995) - J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Mark Bagley (pencils), Larry Mahlstedt and Sam DeLaRosa (inkers), Danny Fingeroth (editor)
Spider-Man: Dead Man's Hand (April, 1997), Roger Stern (plot), Joe Edkin (script), Darick Robertson & Dan Lawlis (pencils), Keith Aiken (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)


First Posted: 10/27/2018
Last updated: 10/27/2018

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