Now that we’ve finally seen the trailer for Avengers: Infinity War and geeked out about the sheer number of heroes we’ll be seeing on the big screen, it’s time to step back and see where the plot comes from. The Infinity War comic was a six-issue series published by Marvel in 1992. So the movie is based on that series, right? Well no, not really.
The prequel to The Infinity War series was The Infinity Gauntlet, another six-part series, which came out a year earlier. And it’s that series that the upcoming movie takes its cues from, with the plot starting before the comic storyline (essentially covering the Gauntlet‘s two-part prequel The Thanos Quest), when Thanos is still searching for all of the Infinity Gems (or Stones, as the MCU prefers to call them). In Gauntlet, he already has the stones, mounts them in the gauntlet (the massive gold glove, in case you haven’t been following that point) and becomes all powerful. And it looks like that’s where the comic and movie will deviate entirely.
The Infinity Gauntlet is sort of a love story, as Thanos seeks to win the affections of Death by erasing half the sentient life in the universe. Ultimately, he kills or imprisons not only pretty much all of the known heroes, but also the cosmic entities, eventually abandoning his body to become the universe. Of course, with his body floating around, the gauntlet is up for grabs, everything gets reversed and, obviously, Thanos is defeated.
So basically, Avengers: Infinity War and its sequel (remember, two movies were announced for this storyline) are inspired by a few Thanos books. It will be interesting to see just how much they actually use from those stories and how they tie all the cosmic elements into the current MCU. It seems a given that the love story won’t happen, especially as Death hasn’t even been introduced as a character in the MCU. The massive number of deaths is also unlikely, but we could get a surprise with that – everyone does get brought back, after all. Regardless, the source material is worth a read to get a bit of background and become more familiar with Thanos.