SPOILER ALERT: Warning, this article contains spoilers from Avengers: Infinity War. Proceed at your own risk.
Before Avengers: Infinity War hit screens, we had a feeling it would draw heavily from Jim Starlin’s The Infinity Gauntlet, even claiming that the comic book run might show the Avengers how to defeat Thanos. That wasn’t the case, but with Thanos still very much in play, the theory could yet play out onscreen. But there are many more ways in which the film draws inspiration from the pages of Infinity Gauntlet. With the following our five favourite times the book inspired moments in the movie.
Thanos is Coming!
In the book, Silver Surfer crash-lands in Doctor Strange’s Sanctum Sanctorum with a dire warning of great danger heading earth’s way. “His arrival could herald the end of the universe,” he claims, adding: “Thanos is coming.”
Disney doesn’t own the rights to Silver Surfer. Yet. So for the purposes of the movie, Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner fulfils much the same role. Crash-landing in the Sanctum Santorum direct from space. And ominously warning: “Thanos is coming!”
In the book, Thanos tries to impress Mistress Death by introducing her to his greatest creation, Nebula, whom he has sculpted into “walking death” by twisting her limbs and burning her flesh. “She exists on a fine line between life and death,” he proudly proclaims.
In the movie, Thanos endeavours to tease information out of Gamora by showing her what he has done to Nebula. Who is suspended in mid-air, her body torn apart. Effectively marooning her between life and death.
The Power of Thanos
In the book, Thanos again tries to impress Mistress Death, this time via “improvisation.” He turns Nebula into one long, curly strip, and transforms Eros of Titan into what appears to be a bunch of interconnected boxes.
In the movie, as a show of strength to the Guardians of the Galaxy on Knowhere, Thanos uses the Reality Stone to turn Drax and Mantis into similarly indescribable shapes. That look quite a lot like the above.
As you’ve probably fathomed by now, lots of what Thanos does in the book is designed to impress Mistress Death, whose heart he is trying to win. Early in proceedings, she asks him to “extinguish the light of half the universe’s populace.” And with a snap of his gauntleted fingers, he does just that, with half the galaxy — superheroes and all — gone.
In the movie, Thanos wishes to bring balance to the universe by killing half of all life. And when he finally obtains the six Infinity Stones, he succeeds, with the likes of Black Panther, Spider-Man, and Groot disintegrating before our startled eyes.
The Fate of Thanos
At the end of the book, Thanos is defeated, and Adam Warlock sends him to an unnamed planet that’s filled with lush greenery. He scrapes out a living from the soil. The final panel featuring the big bad sitting on the steps of his house, surveying the scene, and thinking: “In the long run, Thanos of Titan came out ahead in this particular deal.”
At the end of the film, Thanos appears on a lush green planet — which may or may not be inside the Soul Stone — and sits on the porch of a farmhouse. Having just wiped out half of humanity, the film’s final moment finds him surveying the scene. And smiling.