“The End” were a bunch of Marvel comics that told stories about the last days of their heroes like Hulk: The End or today’s comic, Marvel: The End. The story begins with Thanos narrating to an unseen character about how he destroyed the universe. The next few issues are Thanos telling this story about an ancient Egyptian pharaoh named Akhenaten who had gained the power of the Heart of the Universe and went crazy with it. He killed almost all of the world’s heroes so the only ones who were left to stop him were Doctor Doom, the Defenders, and Thanos. After the battle the whole universe was eventually destroyed so now Thanos is left with only one person because they were outside of the universe when it was destroyed.
Was surprisingly difficult to write a short plot summary because the plot of this six issue miniseries is wafer thin. The beginning sets the story up to be about Thanos fighting Akhenaten but it switches towards the end to be an Infinity Gauntlet retread. Thanos gains omnipotent power and fights against the cosmic forces of the universe and easily defeats them again. Akhenaten is another lame villain from Starlin that has no personality and just wants to take over and destroy stuff. He’s taken out pretty easily after the first half and then completely forgotten. Once again the main heroes are useless here and are just pawns for Thanos to use.
There are some positives here though. Again, Jim Starlin did the art here and I’m a fan of his style. There’s a lot of impressive splash pages with all the heroes and some of the cosmic beings. While most of the issues of this comic I thought were just ok, the last issue is actually very good. Starlin injects in this criticism of Marvel and their constant deaths and revivals. Thanos sees a flaw in the universe and it traces all the way back to the first revival of Wonder Man. It then has a very good ending for the Thanos character and I think it should have been the canon ending for him as this comic is just a What If style story.
So while the last issue and art are good the rest is just not that great and the fact that the story isn’t canon means it’s not that important even. I’d just recommend the final issue and think of that as Thanos’s last appearance.
Writer: Jim Starlin
Artists: Jim Starlin, Al Milgrom
Rating: Borrow from a Mate