Radioactive Lions? Kraven's New Origin Story Seems Extremely Dumb, Fans Say
It seems that the way the character got his powers has changed quite a bit, judging by the new trailer.
The first trailer for Kraven the Hunter has finally been officially released after it was shown to a limited audience at CinemaCon and left fans with mixed feelings.
While it did deliver some bloody R-rated action and an absolutely gorgeous Aaron Taylor-Johnson as the titular Marvel villain (or, in this case, more of an anti-hero), it still gave many fans eerily familiar Morbius vibes.
But perhaps the most controversial scene in the entire 3-minute trailer was the one that showed the moment Kraven acquired his superhuman abilities, making him one of Spider-Man's most dangerous adversaries (at least in the comics).
The trailer shows Sergei Kravinoff, the character's real name, being mauled by a lion during a hunting trip with his brother and father, after which the latter leaves his son to die because "he is weak."
But a drop of blood or saliva (or some other possible fluid, more on that later) falls from the predator's mouth and gets directly into the young man's fresh wounds, granting him animal-like powers of enhanced strength, agility, and reflexes.
Fans immediately began making jokes about Kraven being bitten by a radioactive lion and being transformed into "The Amazing Lion-Man" because it looks incredibly silly.
Another theory is that he had a superhuman serum in his backpack (a vial of which is briefly seen at the end of the trailer being held by Rhino) and the lion simply damaged it, causing it to later mix with blood and saliva and drip from his mouth, which, while a bit closer to Kraven's canonical origins, is still incredibly far-fetched.
In any case, this whole business is quite different from what we have seen in comics and other media depicting the character's origins.
Sergei is a descendant of Russian immigrants who fled the country after the February Revolution, and he was already a skilled big-game hunter when he drank a mystical serum made from various jungle herbs and plants.
It gave him essentially the same abilities we see in the movie, along with drastically slowing his aging process.
Bored with hunting dangerous animals, he decided to switch to hunting humans, both normal and enhanced, which led to him clashing with Spider-Man on more than one occasion.
Fans will have to wait a little longer to see if the latest addition to Sony's Spider-Man universe will end up being as embarrassing a flop as Morbius, or if the creators have actually learned from past mistakes.
At least the movie is R-rated, something fans have been asking for since the first Venom movie, so that's some progress.
Kraven the Hunter will be released on October 6, 2023.