Thanos is not only one of the most important, but also one of the most interesting Marvel characters. Often depicted as the “big bad” of the Marvel Comics universe, Thanos has become one of the most popular supervillains in the history of American comic books. In most iterations, he is portrayed as being the most powerful or one of the most powerful characters. In this article, we are going to examine one aspect of that power.
Thanos, himself an Eternal, possesses a mutation (the Deviants gene) that makes him powerful than almost all of the other Eternals. The only exception is his grandfather Kronos, the only Eternal more powerful than Thanos.
Marvel Comics is a comic book publishing company founded in 1939 under the name Timely Comics. Timely Comics changed its name to Marvel Comics in 1961. Along with its chief rival, DC Comics, Marvel Comics is the biggest and most important mainstream comic book publisher in the United States.
Marvel has, along with DC Comics, contributed to the development of American comics, specializing in the superhero genre. Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, and Jack Kirby are just some of the pivotal writers who’ve helped shape the style and universes of Marvel Comics. Throughout the years, Marvel has created several pivotal superhero characters and has launched successful franchises such as the Avengers, X-Men, and Guardians of the Galaxy, all of which have been adapted into movies, TV shows, and video games. Some of the most famous Marvel Comics heroes are Spider-Man, Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Black Widow, Wolverine, Professor X, Storm, Cyclops, Jean Grey; but, the franchise also includes famous supervillains such as Thanos, Apocalypse, Galactus, Loki, Magneto, the Mandarin, Doctor Octopus, the Green Goblin, Venom, and others.
Now that we’ve given you a short introduction, let us discuss the topic of this article in more detail.
Who is Thanos?
Thanos is a fictional character appearing in comic books published by Marvel Comics. Thanos was created by Jim Starlin and made his debut in The Invincible Iron Man #55 (1973) and has since become one of the best-known villains in the Marvel universe, but also comic books in general. Although Starlin himself admitted he was inspired by DC Comics’ supervillain Darkseid, Thanos has gained popularity as a stand-alone character and a cornerstone of Marvel’s Multiverse.
Thanos’s birth and childhood
Thanos was inspired by the Freudian concept of “Thanatos”, just like his brother, Eros, was inspired by the Freudian concept of the same name. He is the son of two Eternals, but also a carrier of the Deviants gene, which explains his physical experience. Believing him to be a danger to the universe, his mother wanted to kill him, but his father stopped her. As a child, he was a pacifist and would only play with his brother and their pets. Later on, he became fascinated with nihilism and the concept of death, eventually falling in love with Mistress Death, the embodiment of Death in the Marvel universe.
Thanos as a supervillain
Soon after that, Thanos became a supervillain, initially a pirate, but soon had more grandiose plans. He was not satisfied with mere piracy; he wanted more. He wanted ultimate power, to rule over the whole universe and to become the most powerful being alive. This is why he wanted to collect the Infinity Stones, so he could shape reality according to his own will. A lot of his works are motivated by his love for Mistress Death, for whom he has killed on several occasions. He is a very powerful cosmic entity and has fought practically every major superhero group in the Marvel universe, including the Avengers, the X-Men and the Guardians of the Galaxy. Thanos even fought an alternative version of himself, King Thanos, after the latter had killed everyone on the universe; King Thanos knew that it was only Thanos (i.e., a younger version of himself) that could kill him, which is why he used the Time Stone to bring him to the alternative future.
Thanos has appeared in a lot of derivative material, including TV shows, video games and the MCU, where he was the main villain of the first large narrative. He was played by Josh Brolin.
Before we actually answer our question, we have to briefly explain the origin of Marvel’s Mad Titan.
Thanos was born on Titan, one of Saturn’s moons as a member of the Eternals. He is the son of A’lars and Sui-San. The Eternals are a fictional race from the Marvel universe. They are humanoid in appearance and are an offspring of the evolutionary processes that created humans on Earth. The creation of the Eternals has been initiated by the alien Celestials and they have been designated as the cosmic defenders of Earth. Compared to humans, they have several different superhuman abilities, which makes them humanoid in shape, but far more powerful. This is Thanos’ base designation.
But, Thanos is significantly different from his Eternals counterparts in that he carries the Deviants gene, which accounts for his appearance and additional powers. The Deviants (or Changing People) are likewise a fictional race in the Marvel universe. They are also humanoid in appearance and are relatives of the Eternals. The Deviants are far more destructive than the Eternals, which is why the two races often clash with each other (this is very similar to the relationship of the good New Gods of New Genesis and the evil New Gods led by Darkseid of Apokolips in the DC Universe). Since Thanos carries the Deviants gene, he is far more powerful than regular Eternals and can achieve much more than them.
Now, let us give you some information on the Eternals themselves.
Who are the Eternals?
As stated above, the Eternals are a fictional race from the Marvel Universe. They are an essential part of Marvel’s cosmic stories and are part of the large cosmic narrative developed by Jack Kirby. Their debut was in the comic book The Eternals #1 (1976).
The creation and nature of the Eternals
The Eternals are the “children” of the Celestials, who visited Earth one million years ago and conducted experiments on proto-humanity. Using these experiments, the Celestials would later create the humanoid Eternals and their monstrous counterparts, the Deviants.
Although humanoid, the Eternals are not human and have much more powers than them. They are also long-living – although not essentially immortal – and have a variety of different superpowers that make them non-human. Despite their superiority, the Eternals are generally good guys and have protected humanity on several occasions, especially against the destructive Deviants.
The Deviants and Thanos
The Eternals also fought among themselves, with the two major conflicts being the internal war led by Kronos and the conflict against Thanos. The first civil was was actually fought over whether the Eternals should conquer other races, with Kronos’ pacifistic fraction prevailing over Uranus’ side, which was in favor of war. Uranus and his fraction then left and founded a separate colony. Later on, an experiment of Kronos’ backfired and destroyed the Eternals’ home, Titanos, but also created a new generation of Eternals by activating some of their latent genes. Later on, Thanos of Titan, an Eternal with the Deviant gene, almost destroyed the Eternals’ colony, but they managed to rebuild it and assisted other heroes in their fights against Thanos on several occasions.
The Eternals haven’t been featured in derivative material as a group, although some individual members have. The group is set to appear in The Eternals movie, thereby being integrated into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Is Thanos stronger than the Eternals?
This question is really about whether Thanos is stronger than his peers, since he is an Eternal like the rest of them.
Thanos is a very powerful Eternal and has proven himself more powerful than most characters, even without external enhancements such as the Infinity Stones.
He has superhuman strength, speed, and durability, he is practically invulnerable, can teleport and regenerate, he can manipulate matter, use telepathic abilities, manipulate energy and even fly; he also has superhuman intelligence.
What makes him so powerful is the Deviants gene and his years of training and preparation. On the other hand, most Eternals are likewise very powerful, but since their abilities vary from individual to individual, we won’t be listing each of them separately.
Despite all their powers, the Eternals are generally weaker than Thanos, because they don’t have the enhancements he does through the Deviants gene.
In that aspect, Thanos is to an Eternal what the X-Men are to regular humans. Sure, they’re not that different but are – due to their mutation – much stronger. That is what Thanos is compared to the rest of the Eternals.
The only Eternal that was more powerful than Thanos was his grandfather Kronos. Kronos was and – technically, since he’s not dead – is the strongest Eternal and is the master of Time itself. Kronos’ body disappeared after the failed experiment, but his spirit remained.
Kronos is definitely stronger than Thanos, despite the fact that his grandson actually beat him using a Cosmic Cube, but that was a one-off situation where Thanos had enough time to prepare for a fight with Kronos.
So there you have it – Thanos is more powerful than all the Eternals, except Kronos, although he can even beat him under the right conditions.
And that’s it for today. We hope you had fun reading this and that we helped solve this dilemma for you. See you next time and don’t forget to follow us!