Marvel aims to out-Thanos Thanos with a revamped Eternals villain from the 70s

With the Eternals film now in theaters, Marvel Comics is ratcheting up the stakes of the immortal race in comics. In November 10’s Eternals #7 (opens in new tab), Thanos forcibly took over leadership of the Eternals, but in February 2022 the company is shining a light on a forgotten ’70s villain named Uranos , casting him as an inspiration for Thanos, and possibly even a crueler villain than the Mad Titan.

In February 2022’s Eternals: The Undying comic book one-shot, Marvel Comics’ current Eternals writer Kieron Gillen partners with Ryan Bodenheim for something the writer calls “particularly bleak” – framing Uranos as Marvel’s version of Logan Roy from the hit show Succession (opens in new tab).

Eternals: The Undying #1 cover by Andrea Sorrentino

Eternals: The Undying #1 cover by Andrea Sorrentino (Image credit: Marvel Comics)

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“In my earliest notes, I described him as taking the place that Morgoth does in Middle-Earth’s mythology,” Gillen writes in his newsletter (opens in new tab). “Having finally started watching Succession recently, I smiled, as I got another comparison. He’s the Marvel Universe’s Logan Roy.”

Those are big comparisons for a character that since 1973 has only appeared in six Marvel Comics – with four of them being alternate reality stories as part of What If?. Gillen, ever the research-heavy writer, knows the character well and has been planning to give him the spotlight for some time now.

“I’ve been teasing Uranos for the whole run in the main series, so getting a chance to properly introduce him is really exciting. Uranos is one of the characters who most intrigued me when researching Eternals – clearly hugely important to their mythology, but with only a handful of pages he’s even on,” Gillen writes. “Trying to give a philosophical grounding to this void in the heart of the Eternals is absolutely my jam.”

According to Gillen, Bodenheim has designed Uranos ahead of his first story with him as the lead character. While they’re not revealing what he looks like just yet, the writer says it’s “really smart” and “hugely inspiring for me in turn.”

Gillen calls Uranos the “omnigenocidal great uncle” to Thanos, and in a way they share another relation – they were both created by the iconic comic book writer/artist Jim Starlin.

“This is a story about some of the darkest periods in the Eternals saga, as two of the worst people in the Marvel Universe get to know each other,” says Gillen. “Less Meet Cute, more Meet Execute.”

Although Thanos didn’t appear in the Eternals film, there’s a theory that the film proves the Mad Titan accidentally saved Earth.

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