Thanos Could (But Probably Shouldn’t) Be in ‘The Eternals’: Here’s Why

Thanos — the most successful villain to ever appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) — currently ranks as the Avengers’ most formidable foe, as he managed to beat the elite team of supers once (one more time than most can claim rights to). Thus, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him appear in The Eternals, as such a presence would elicit a positive fan reaction and augment the hype surrounding an already highly-anticipated saga. 

Thanos Infinity Gauntlet
Thanos’ Infinity Gauntlet on display at the Marvel Studios’s ‘Avengers: Endgame’ | Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

Not to mention, Thanos is narratively connected to The Eternals. He is a Deviant: a mutated subspecies of The Eternals, and one of many shunned by his people for his disfigurement. 

The above point is a significant element in Thanos’ backstory, as We Got This Covered notes, and one that may seek to provide some underlying foundation for his behaviors, beliefs, and actions (yet, by no means making them excusable). While a possible sub-plot for Thanos is easily accessible and imaginable in The Eternals, it likely won’t come to be; or, as a matter of fact, probably shouldn’t come to be. 

Marvel President Kevin Feige talks Thanos and ‘The Eternals’

Marvel President Kevin Feige recently spoke about the upcoming movie The Eternals, acknowledging that Thanos’ backstory connects him to the all-knowing beings, yet that doesn’t mean now is the right time to bring that tale to the forefront. Feige noted:

Thanos in the comics was an Eternal on Titan, so there may be connections. But really this is about introducing those ten new characters that are played by an incredibly eclectic amazing group of actors that we’re focusing on.

We Got This Covered

Kevin Feige makes it clear that he is aware of Thanos’ status concerning The Eternals; however, he remains focused on introducing new actors and new characters to carry the MCU torch forward. 

Unlike most other Phase 4 installments, The Eternals will feature a whole new set of faces; meaning, Feige and Co. have to win everyone over again. New heroes equal a new story and the cementing of new expectations. Relying on nostalgia and a Phase 3 big bad to build hype seems a bit cheap, as it would minimize the freshness that should be inherent to this project. The Eternals would become about Thanos’ backstory, stripping the attention Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Kit Harington, etc. all deserve. 

‘The Eternals’ cannot become a Thanos origin tale, nor should it present the opportunity for one

If Thanos is in The Eternals, viewers will remain fixated on the character, as he is familiar. Did someone say more Thanos? Did someone allude to a Thanos origin story? Placing Thanos in the movie will easily divert attention away from the main ensemble, bringing the iconic villain — no matter how little his screen time is — into the limelight. 

The Eternals will be huge in Phase 4, and their introduction should not be muddied by a villain who has already been taken care of. The Eternals deserve to be the focus, and a Thanos appearance will only minimize their value to the continuing saga, proving that Thanos is still the name and face to be worried about.

Is this the MCU goal? Shouldn’t we let Iron Man and Captain America go down having finished him once and for all; should he outlive the heroes (even in a former time period)?