So, did you see The Avengers yet? Please tell me you stayed to see both bonus scenes inserted into the end credits. If you did, you are probably asking two things: what is shawarma and who was that guy in the first bonus scene. Well, shawarma is a type of food popular in Arabic countries that is very similar to gyros. And that guy? That guy was Thanos.
Who is Thanos? Well, let me tell you.
Thanos first appeared in Iron Man #55, created by writer/artist Jim Starlin. In comics, he resides on Titan, one of the moon’s of Saturn. He is portrayed as a power-hungry despot who has an unhealthy attraction to death. Unhealthy in the sense that he wants to mate with the physical embodiement of death, and his way of pitching woo with the cosmic being is to kill as many living beings as he can (his name is a bastardization of the Thanatos, the personification of death in Greek Mythology).
While Thanos did have some run ins with the Avengers in the comic books, his main opponents were primarily Marvel’s space-faring heroes, Adam Warlock, Silver Surfer and Captain Marvel.
Thanos’ pursuit in the film of the powerful Tesseract mirrors his first appearance in the comic books, as he comes to earth to try and acquire the comic book version of the Tessaract, which is called the Cosmic Cube, in order to make himself all-powerful.
The unaltered Thanos typically has superhuman strength, invulnerability, and the ability to manipulate energy. Add to this his desire to become omnipotent in order to kill all living things, it makes him more than a match for the Avengers.
So, Thanos is going to appear in The Avengers 2 next, right? Well, that’s what it looks like, but I’d put my money on him making an appearance in Thor 2 first. I say this for a number of reasons. First, there is one scene in The Avengers where the Chituari leader tells Loki that if the Asgardian does not deliver the Tesseract to his master (Thanos), Thanos will hunt down the Tesseract and Loki wherever they are. Since both are taken to Asgard at the end of The Avengers, it seems logical Thanos will make good in his promise the the Thor sequel.
Another reason why I think that he will appear in Thor 2 first is that lovely glove you see on the left. That festive handware appears in Thor in the Asgardian armory and resembles an immensely powerful comic book weapon called the Infinity Gauntlet. Who wore the Infinity Gauntlet in the comics? Thanos. He made it to hold six powerful jewels called “Soul Gems” or “Infinity Gems”(those ovals on the gauntlet’s knuckles? That’s where the gems were held). With all the gems together, Thanos gained almost limitless power. How much power? He could kill half the universe instantaneously by just thinking about it. Yep. While the weapon probably will not be used that way in the films, I doubt the powers that be would introduce the Infinity Gauntlet AND Thanos into film continuity and not put them together. Again, since the Gauntlet is in Asgard, Thanos would have to go there and get it. Most likely in Thor 2.
While Thanos might not be the Avengers villain comic fans would want the film team face off against next (my pick would have been Ultron), he is more than a match for the current line up.