We’re all still recovering from the epic first trailer for Avengers: Infinity War. The first part of the final phase of this first era of the Marvel Cinematic Universe brings together Iron Man, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, Black Panther, Blonde Widow, One-Eyed Thor, Punished “Venom” Captain America, and who knows who else. And of course the evil force pulling them together is famous new internet meme Thanos.
Given the sheer scale of his threat, hopefully Josh Brolin and the Infinity Gauntlet can reverse Marvel’s trend of bad villains before it’s too late. But as far as purple rocky space tyrants go, my main man is still Darkseid, perhaps my favorite comic book villain this side of Black Manta. Yes the recent Justice League movie made of mockery of Darkseid’s uncle Steppenwolf and his Parademon army. But Darkseid and the surrounding Fourth World mythos dreamed up for DC by comic book god Jack Kirby is still some of the most incredible cosmic work the medium has ever produced.
If you want to get caught up on Darkseid, The New Gods, Apokolips, and all of that business you can buy the massive, comprehensive Jack Kirby Fourth World omnibus this holiday. I know I will. But that’s a lot of comics to read. The people need to know why Darkseid is better than Thanos right the Hell now. So we’re here to help.
1. His Eyes
Darkseid is a giant craggly god who shoots homing lasers, Omega beams, out of his dang eyes.
2. His Name
Darkseid spells his name “Darkseid” and rules the planet Apokolips, spelled like “Apokolips.”
3. His Goals
As opposed to being in Death’s friend zone, Darkseid is obsessed with something called the “Anti-Life Equation,” which might be one of the coolest series of words.
4. His Role
Darkseid is the final boss of Justice League Unlimited and the magnificent DC Animated Universe.
5. His Voice
Darkseid has been voiced by everyone from Michael Ironside to Andre Braugher to Weird Al Yankovic.
6. His Tactics
Despite being jacked, Darkseid prefers to manipulate his enemies, even if it’s by turning into a dumb cloud in Smallville.
7. His Ruthlessness
Darkseid once tricked Superman into making a sex tape with another superhero’s wife.
8. His Swagger
Darkseid walks with his hands behind his back in Injustice 2.
9. His Imitators
Jim Starlin, the creator of Thanos, has even admitted that Thanos began as a rip-off of Darkseid, since he was the coolest New God.
So yeah, those are some very objective, factual reasons why Darkseid is better than Thanos. Nothing more to see here. But in the spirit of bipartisanship we can at least agree that both are better than similar bald beefy baddies like Mongul and “Thanoseid,” the Darkseid/Thanos fusion from Marvel/DC’s Amalgam universe. Apocalypse from X-Men is up there, but then the last X-Men movie proved it is possible to screw up a premise as great as “Oscar Isaac is the original mutant mummy.”
I have no doubt that Avengers: Infinity War will be awesome given the cast, writers, directors, and importance of the film to Marvel. And I’m looking forward to seeing Josh Brolin actually get to act as Thanos in something longer than a glorified cameo. He’s going to be a space thug fighting half of Hollywood with a magic glove!
But if Thanos does become an iconic villain in larger pop culture, I can’t lie and say I won’t be slightly bummed out. Even if DC does eventually get its act together, and that’s a big if, a fantastic cinematic interpretation of Darkseid will still inevitably be compared to Thanos. In reality, it should be the other way around. Oh well. If I need cheering up, I’ll just go watch Justice League (the cartoon) again.
Buy Fourth World by Jack Kirby Omnibus
Buy Infinity Gauntlet Graphic Novel
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