25 of Marvel’s best spacefaring characters

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Thanos (Image via Marvel)

3. Thanos

If Corsair seemed like a so-so dad, then let’s take a look at Thanos. He’s the wrinkly purple guy that keeps showing up in the after-credits sequences of your favorite Marvel films (and mid-way through The Avengers). What’s his deal, anyway, and why are we supposed to be so afraid of him?

First of all, Thanos is a formidable supervillain. I know, the comics world likes to throw around the word “supervillain” like it’s candy, but the term really applies in this case. Cosmic-level supervillains are especially serious, after all.

Thanos did not have an especially easy childhood. He was born on Titan, the moon of Saturn, to a pair of Eternals, a superhuman race (man, those are really becoming a dime a dozen, right?). However, he manages to look an awful lot like the Deviants, who are the enemies of the Eternals. This does not exactly endear him to his society; his mom, in fact, tries to kill him at birth. While young Thanos starts out as a pacifist, he soon turns to nihilism and becomes an evil, power-hungry jerk.

He’s also the adoptive father of the assassins Gamora and Nebula. They both experience intense training and emotionally difficult childhoods. Though Gamora does have impressive training and some very cool cybernetic implants courtesy of Thanos, it’s unlikely that he is going to win “Father of the Year” anytime soon.