Yeah I'm glad that they are allowing Bane to branch away from the Bat family. I wish they would lose the tubes on him, and showcase his smarts and mma skill more as well.
The thing is, the venom makes him the inverse of Batman in a key way. Both are characters who combine brilliance with animal ferocity. However, Batman favors the brilliance, favors the Man, via having a utility belt. The utility belt being a set of tools best used by a man. He is batMAN, on a certain level.
Bane, on the other hand, favors the beast, and his choice of a weapon that enhances the beast symbolizes this. Where Wayne is a beast-MAN, Bane is a BEAST-man.
Bane is someone who believes that favoring the beast is better than favoring the man. You lose that if you drop the venom. What is Batman vs Bane symbolic of without the venom? If you want someone who symbolizes Batman's fanatical crusader tendencies without his morality, Red Hood and Ra's Al Ghul are already better designed at their core for that role.