Even the deathless gods hate him.
Thanatos, the iron-hearted personification of death, twin brother to Hypnos, the god of sleep. In my middle years I see their faces stretched out, twin sets of eyes staring from the sickening electric glow of the screen. They are wreathes of poppies, painkiller pills of a nation putting itself into opiated sleep, and then death.
Born of Nyx, night in the shape of a woman, who also gave birth to their other siblings: Old Age, Suffering, Doom, Deception, Blame, Strife, Retribution, and the boatman who carries the freshly deceased into the realms beyond. Her first children were Brightness and Day, who continue to shine in spite of their younger siblings complete and total conquest of the 21st century.
Just so everyone’s clear: Chaos came first. Then the Abyss (Tartarus), the Earth (Gaia), and Sexual Attraction (Eros). Hold on to those; you’ll need them to survive.
I haven’t owned a TV in over a decade. I don’t watch shows, and I rarely watch movies. My only real link, in storytelling media, to the current psychology of this culture comes from the Marvel cinematic universe. I figure I don’t need more; the realm of superheroes is and has always been the realm of mythology, deep metaphorical significance, and the avatars of Big Ideas and Big Feelings. So if I want to know what’s up with the “american” mind, the full and fundamental values will be on display in Marvel movies, if you know what to look for.
For example, the real story of the Black Panther film is that negro savages are expected to give up their mineral riches to the EuroIndustrial MegaTech powers that be. Vibranium = rare earths minerals, without which there is no MegaTech; no fancy computer chips, batteries, etc. Though you’d never know it from the vantage point of an artisanal vegan bakery in, say, san francisco, the magical digital hypno-realm is still rooted in tangible, material resources.
“Wakanda needs to share its wonders with the world!” Nobody ever asked Tony Stark to share his secret technologies; who would dare to give a moral challenge to a war-machine manufacturing capitalist? For that matter, nobody asked the Asgardians, either. Only negroes are expected to surrender everything they have and everything they are for the benefits of EuroIndustrial MegaTech. If they are good, noble negroes—and not evil savage Oakland-raised negroes with chips on their shoulders—they will dutifully open up to conquest, er, I mean, progress. Did I mention that it’s the mining and manufacturing of “technology” that is killing the planet? Perhaps that’s too much to think about. Hypnos is waiting to put you back to sleep.
The name of Thanos, the Big Bad who’s been lurking in the background of the entire series of Marvel movies, comes from Thanatos. Thanos is the god and bringer of death.
He’s also the real hero of Infinity War.
It’s Thanos who goes on the Hero’s Journey: acquiring artifacts, making a grand sacrifice, defeating powerful foes, achieving victory, and then transforming from a genocidal conqueror into a genteel man on a porch watching the sunset. He’s the one with a simple yet concise moral philosophy that he’s willing to do anything to achieve. He also has the one emotional moment of any significance in the entire movie, when he decides to chuck his daughter off a cliff to get one of the artifacts. Hero’s Journey = Hero.
I thought I was clever for noticing this until I went on wiki to read about the film and found this quote from producer and Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, about Thanos: “You could almost go so far as to say he is the main character.” Stephen McFeely, one of the hack writers responsible for the screenplay, also described the film as Thanos’s “Hero’s Journey.”
So much for being clever.
By that logic, since all of the Marvel flicks thus far have been one extended build-up to this confrontation with Thanos, it’s not a huge leap to say that Thanos is, therefore, the real hero of the ENTIRE SERIES of Marvel movies. Basically, we got background on how supposedly bad-ass his foes were, before he shows up and trounces the lot of them.
In the first 10 minutes of the movie, Thanos soundly defeats Rage (Hulk), then impales the Gate Opener (Heimdall) and strangles Mischief/Chaos (Loki). In this story, there will be no emotion, no alternate possibilities, and no tricks—only cold, rationalist genocide.
“Euthanasia,” from Greek EU (good) and THANATOS (death).”
Thanos’s goal and moral imperative is to euthanize half the universe, so that all these glorious intergalactic civilizations don’t collapse from “overpopulation,” the way his home planet did.
Whenever some liberoid dolt—say, of the type that permeate Hollywood and Marvel—wants to talk about overpopulation as a threat to the “environment,” I KNOW WHAT POPULATIONS THEY’RE TALKING ABOUT. If only these savages of asia, africa, and the global south would stop having all their savage babies, then we could all still have our Priuses and drive them too. When in truth, the real earth destroyer is the very technology they worship, and its production. It’s this technology that created the circumstances for overpopulation to occur, beginning with agriculture and the earliest civilizations. But nevermind that, we want to see the latest fancy Iron Man nanomechanical armor, complete with new i-phone. OOH! AAH!
I say all that to say, the real story of Infinity War is this: in order for us to continue our magical MegaTech civilization, a whole lot of you savage motherfuckers are gonna have to go.