Updated: Jan 25, 2020
Writer: Tini Howard
Artist: Ariel Olivetti
In the aftermath of 2018’s INFINTY WARS event, we are given the first installment of the new Thanos miniseries. In a story written by Tini Howard and depicted with the art of Ariel Olivetti, which I consider to be a continuation of Jason Aaron’s THANOS RISING. I highly recommend reading that prior to this mini in order to grasp certain aspects of where I think Howard is trying to go with this.
The issue starts with Gamora dictating a final message to someone before this person becomes “too dangerous.” From there we get glimpses of Thanos as a ship Captain to a crew of young army, including Proxima Midnight and Ebony Maw, who have grown tired and bored of razing planets inhabited by pacifists and weak opponents, stating that their bloodlust hasn’t been satiated in a long time. So in response to that, Thanos targets the Magus and his Universal Church Of Truth. But rather than attacking them directly, Thanos plots to destroy Magus’ potential converts, which leads the Titan to Gamora’s home planet of Zen-Whoberi. After a good deal of spilled blood and short confrontation with the Magus, Thanos stumbles upon a hut inhabited by a young Gamora. Very few words were shared between them until the conclusion, which leads us to Thanos noticing that Gamora could also see his one true love, Death.
Much to my own annoyance, the thought of this origin story being retold seems used, but I went in to it knowing what to expect. I kept an open mind in hopes this would be a better retelling. Now, unlike their MCU counterparts, their paths crossing wasn’t as easy as Thanos coming to her home-world and basically adopting her while half her planet is turned to ash. Instead there is an actual bond of Death there, which makes more sense then the origin told in the MCU. This adds more depth to their relationship as teacher/mentor/father/daughter and actually gives them something legit to have in common. Given the attitude and aggression of their first encounter, this isn’t a helpless little girl looking for a father figure, but rather a Titan finding a new member of his ship’s crew. There are no daddy issues here, abandonment, yes, but it seemed as though these issues stem from both Titan and child being abandoned by Death. From here, one can speculate that it’ll be a rocky road to get from her recollections to where she’s currently standing in the Marvel Universe after killing Thanos and the events of the INFINITY WARS.
Going in to this I didn’t think I would like it, but I’m actually really intrigued by it. A fresh perspective of two characters at different stages in their lives, prior to becoming the powerhouses they eventually become. Personally, I love it when writers go in the grey areas of relationships, especially with family and friends. The idea of love and companionship is turned into something you don’t see in RomComs or Father/Daughter stories. Add that with blood, body parts, and sense of Nihilism that only a Thanos story can bring, and we have the potential makings of a great miniseries.
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