Gang, our Thanos#1 review is a little SPOILER-Y, so…check back with us after you’ve read the issue. Oh? Still here? Thank you!
These past few years, since everyone got hooked on a feeling thanks to the Guardians of the Galaxy film, Marvel has been shining a bright light on its cosmic characters. Mostly, this newfound love for everything cosmic has mirrored the tone and rhythms of the Guardians film with swashbuckling fun taking the place of space-based operatic melodrama. But with Thanos #1, writer Jeff Lemire and artist Mike Deodato Jr. go back to the cosmic spark of writers like Jim Starlin and Steve Englehart to create a space saga that grabs one by the throat and won’t let go.
Because Thanos is back in a big bad way and the opening pages of this awesome debut issue makes the reader feel the terrible might of the Mad Titan, Thanos #1 is a primer into the sheer dark majesty of Marvel’s greatest cosmic villain. In this issue, Lemire pays tributes to every part of Thanos’ history. The work of Starlin is ever-present in this issue, with prose-heavy throwback caption boxes that are never overwritten but serve as the reader’s guide through this brutal tale of violence, chaos, and death.
The issue centers on Thanos returning to reclaim some of his old power from his former minions. Lemire brings in some of the cooler concepts from Jonathan Hickman’s Infinity and weaves these newer elements with the Starlin lore of old. Lemire plays with some more Starlin favorites with the Champion of the Universe and Starfox, and every character has the voice and tone established in the Marvel cosmic tales of old. This issue presents intrigue upon intrigue and a last page reveal that is a cosmic game changer.
Artist Mike Deodato has been in a very dark place these past few years as he was the artist on Marvel’s Darth Vader. Can you imagine a book darker than a monthly starring Darth freakin’ Vader? Well, Thanos #1 is exactly that as the direst of Marvel’s pantheon of evil takes center stage in a cosmic fantasy that will appeal to new fans, and fans who fell in love with the darker realms of the Marvel cosmos years ago.
Thanos #1 is a triumph both awesome and terrible to behold.