With Avengers: Infinity War about to take over theaters on April 27, 2018, let’s relax our armies, put down our vibranium toys, and take a few minutes to get to know the literal looming big bad, Thanos. Over the past decade, we’ve been introduced to many Marvel villains, but Thanos is no ordinary foe and here is why we should all be afraid.
Who is Thanos?
Born on Saturn’s moon, Titan, this lent itself to his own crude nickname the “Mad Titan”. Since he is from a race of Eternals (not to be confused with the Celestials as seen in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2) Thanos is larger than life, both literally and figuratively. His immense stature and strength allow moons to fly off him like ping pong balls and his grandiose verbiage makes him sound like a galactic philosopher. Thanos destroys planets, enslaves races, kidnaps children for his own, and most importantly, does this all in the name of his love, known as Lady (or Mistress) Death. Who says chivalry is dead?
What Are His Powers?
Enhanced agility and reflexes come as a shock for a guy this big. Not much stands in his way that he can’t physically move. Even his skin is as tough as the man looks! Nearly impenetrable, this poses a challenge for a group of heroes who mainly shoot energy blasters, lightning bolts, and the occasional arrow at enemy invaders. If it seems like the only way in to take the big guy down is through some form of psychic attack… not happening. Thanos’ mind is invulnerable to such means of attack. The scariest thing about this dude is how his real superpower seems to be the fact he exists.
Where Have We Met Thanos?
Back at the end of Marvel’s: The Avengers (2012) once the failed Chitauri invasion was brought to his attention, saying that to challenge the people of Earth is to “court death.” We see the Mad Titan slowly spin around in his looming hover chair with a maniacal grin on his face as if he was bursting for an opportunity to prove himself to Lady Death. It goes without saying this brief introduction was enough to leave a lasting impression.
From there, we saw Thanos bide his time, teaming up with the Kree fanatic Ronan the Accuser in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014). Lending Ronan his two favorite adoptive daughters, Gamora and Nebula, to retrieve an orb containing the power stone in exchange for Thanos destroying the planet Xandar once the orb is given to him by Ronan. Sounds a bit exhausting, right?
Now, one can ask the question, why does Thanos bother to make deals with species like Chitauri or Kree or even Loki for that matter, when he is perfectly capable of scooping up these stones himself? A logical explanation is he, like the Marvel Cinematic Universe, is playing the long game. If you’re the biggest and the baddest at the table, why not hold on to your cards a while longer? Also, these tactics have allowed others to seize the glory (or the blame, based on where you stand) and still provide the same end result for Thanos: obtaining a stone. If an ally fails, well, it’s a big universe with plenty of takers.
Who Are The Black Order?
By now it’s clear that Thanos really loves collecting things. Children… stones… allies… you name it! He may be a Mad Titan, but he’s not above delegating. As the newest film installment approaches, we get to meet the Black Order, loyal followers of Thanos who come with their own sadistic aspirations of making their leader proud. The starting lineup includes:
- Black Dwarf: massive stature, super-strength, enhanced density, and impenetrable skin
- Proxima Midnight: lethal with a spear, super strength, super speed, super endurance and some invulnerability
- Corvus Glaive: enhanced strength, speed, durability, endurance and uses a bladed pike which can cut through anything (or anyone)
- Ebony Maw: genius-level intellect, specializes in persuasion and teleportation
- Supergiant: parasitic mind control abilities, telepathic abilities
These are no mere foot soldiers. If you can’t think of half a dozen ways each member of the Black Order can personally maul, maim, and mind-f**k the Avengers, I envy your wide-eyed optimism.
Now that we know more about what Earth’s Mightiest Heroes are up against, it begs the question can the Mad Titan be stopped and if so, at what cost? The stakes have never been higher and it seems our heroes are going to have to cover the planet on all fronts to stop this war from becoming a massacre.
Check out the new trailer and see for yourself!