Complete show notes EP 3
Imagine with me for a moment anything you wish to be you are… anything you wish is…nothing
in this universe dares challenge that claim, there can be only one word to describe you GOD
That’s what I want to talk about today is marvels Infinity Gauntlet
This topic has been slowly brewing for the last few years because of the MCU movies and the
underlying thread of the infinity gems and Thanos. Where and when did all these stories and
characters come from? That’s what I want to explore today.
Specifically the 1990’s iterations of the gems and Thanos, yes he had gathered 5 of the six
gems previously, but this is the first time he obtained all 6 and this is where Disney/Marvel got
there inspiration for the MCU.
This was the start of the decade’s long Infinity saga that we are still exploring today in the MCU
Thanos quest: 1990 didn’t have the Comics Code Authority (CCA) Marvel abandoned in 2001
The story has a few swear words and a blood. It’s a bit more gritty especially for Marvel in 1990.
Writer Jim Starlin and penciler Ron Lim, both well known for their strong leaning to “cosmic
Called Soul gems not infinity gems
Because of the population imbalance in the universe Death charged Thanos with bringing out
the death of half of the universes population, because of his love for death he was more than
willing to complete the task.
Thanos has an insane love for Death. His infatuation with death is alluded to in the Avengers
Movie when is said “To challenge them is to court death.” [Thanos rises and smiles]
To complete her crusade Death resurrects Thanos and increases his powers compared to his
Thanos says the first time he acquired the infinity gems he said
"I did not perceive the true nature of these gems. I utilized them as a hammer when in reality,
they are a surgeon’s scalpel."
He learned of the gems true power by staring into deaths infinity well which an individual can
attain all knowledge by asking the right question or gazing long enough into.
The gems come from before all recorded time, they were one sentient entity in all realities.
Because of extreme loneliness it decided to end its own existence. However the core of this
beings might was reincarnated into the infinity gems.
Powers and capabilities
Allows the user to steal, control, manipulate, and alter souls,
living or dead, It also has the ability to steal the powers and
abilities of others. At full potential, the Gem grants control
over all life in the universe.
Allows the user total control over the past, present and future.
It grants its user the ability to see into the past and the future;
the ability to stop, slow down, speed up or reverse the flow of
de-age beings; and trap people or entire universes in
unending loops of time. At full potential, the gem grants Omniscience.
Allows the user to exist in any or all locations, move any
object anywhere throughout reality, and warp or rearrange
space. The gem allows its user to teleport oneself and others
any place the user can imagine regardless of distance or
preventive measures such as walls or spells. It can increase the
speed of the gem user and also enables its user to alter the
distance between objects contrary to the laws of physics. At full
potential, the gem grants Omnipresence.
Allows the user to greatly strengthen and enhance mental and
psionic power and access the thoughts and dreams of other
beings. Backed by the Power Gem, the Mind Gem can access
all minds in existence simultaneously.
Allows the user to fulfill wishes, even if the wish is in direct
contradiction with scientific laws, and do things that would normally
be impossible. The gem can also be used to create any type
of alternate reality one wishes and when backed by the other
stones it allows one to alter reality on a universal scale.
Occasionally stated to be the most powerful of the Gems.
Accesses all power and energy that ever has or will exist, and
can boost the other gems' effects. Allows the user to duplicate
almost any physical superhuman ability and grants them Omnipotence.
It also grants the possessor the potential to manipulate all forms
of energy for virtually any effect.
We see here 3 major terms used Omnipotence all powerful, Omnipresence all present and
Omniscience all knowing. The user of all six gems combined it truly God or God like.
In betweener soul gem
The Elder known as Champion power gem after Thanos gets the power gem Thanos renames
them Infinity gems
The Elder called the Gardner Time gem
The Collector Reality Gem
The elder known as The Runner Space Gem
The elder known as The Grand master Mind Gem
In the beginning the gems were one being
At the end of the Thanos Quest Thanos gains all the gems he admits it was a hollow victory and
sheds a tear because death doesn’t return his affections because he has now become her
superior not her equal. These last few panels Starlin shows how strongly Thanos love though
insane is passionate. However she does allow him to sit by her side. I thought this was odd, but
maybe she gives him a seat beside her, because she can’t prevent him from doing it anyway.
Even though Thanos was jilted by Death he still wants to win her affection.
Death perceives an imbalance in the universe because there are more beings alive than have
ever died. She wants to return the balance in the universe by having Thanos kill half the
population of the universe.
Thanos said “my every moment is spent in either dealing out death or worshiping it.”
Initially he does kill off half the universes population but still she scorns him. Next he tries to impress Death by taking on earths heroes. Obviously this would be easy in his Godlike state Thanos unlinks from all the gems except the power gem. He has all the enhanced power the other gems give to the power gem, without the benefits of the other gems. He nearly loses the gauntlet. In the end he kills all the heroes.
Thanos repowers and takes out all the cosmic beings including eternity.
In the end Adam Warlock ends up with the gauntlet, and disperses the gems to four other heroes. Giving the reality gem to Thanos.
Thanos says in issue six of infinity Gauntlet “power is such an ephemeral commodity hard to gain easy to lose.”
I think the reason Thanos and the gems are so enticing is the concept of unlimited power it exciting to imagine. The idea of getting whatever you want is fun to imagine. Like the 3 wishes from the genie. Because that’s essential what he is trying to do. He wants to impress death, the one entity he can’t seem to motivate to his side. Adam Warlock forces him to realize Thanos is unworthy of ultimate power. Thanos is forced to admit he subconsciously loses the power he is trying to attain. He has to admit he subconsciously knows he’s not worthy of the power he seeks.
Great story and Great art, I can guarantee you the writers, directors produces of the MCU read these two story arcs when they were young.
Quick shout out to the Rad year’s podcast radyears.com or the Rad Years on Instagram