The other night just as I was going to bed (10/05/2018 around 12:30 AM), on Free-to-air television in Australia on 7Mate (Channel 63) there was a program called Jabba's Avengers Special where they were talking about the Avengers, The Infinity Stones, Thanos etc.

There was a part where 2 people, a man and a woman (don't know their roles but they weren't actors, might have been part of the production team) were being interviewed about Thanos where the guy said that Thanos was a Mutant so that he was super strong and had super tough skin.

Now I would assume when the guy said Mutant he can't be using the terms that's described the X-Men and other characters with the X-Gene because it was my understanding that because of movie licensing Marvel Studios can't have Mutants (and thus why Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch are Enhanced Humans rather that being Mutants and children of Magneto).

So assuming that the guy is using the more generic form of the word, is Thanos a Mutant among Titans? If so what made him different from other Titans?


5 Answers 5


From Wikipedia:

Thanos is a mutant member of the race of superhumans known as the Titanian Eternals. The character possesses abilities common to the Eternals, but amplified to a higher degree through a combination of his mutant–Eternal heritage, bionic amplification, mysticism, and power bestowed by the abstract entity, Death.

From Marvel Wikia:

He was born with purple, hide-like skin and a massive body due to his Deviant Syndrome. The very first time his mother laid her eyes on the baby, she was driven mad and tried to kill him.

More from Marvel Wikia:

There exists a genetic predisposition among the Eternals known as Deviant Syndrome. That syndrome is considered a mutation, and those affected mutants and deviants.

It is unknown whether it exists among all Eternals or only those of Titan. An individual afflicted with the Deviant Syndrome more closely resembles the Deviants than the Eternals.

The only known individual afflicted with the Deviant Syndrome is the Titanian Thanos.

So, yes he's a mutant. But no he's not a Mutant.

  • 10
    That's from the comics though. The MCU Thanos is different, similarly to how the MCU Titan is different
    – Möoz
    May 10, 2018 at 0:25

In the comics:

The Earth-616 (comics) version of Thanos has been described as a "mutant" Eternal within the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe.

Source of superhuman powers: Thanos is a mutant member of the race of superhumans known as Eternals, who has augmented his innate abilities through bionic and mystical techniques

Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Master Edition #10

enter image description here

More precisely, he was born with a genetic disposition known as "Deviant Syndrome", giving him an abnormal appearance and skin tone compared to other Eternals, including his own family, whose physical appearance closely resembles that of humans.

THANOS: Alars, the Mentor, and his wife, Sui-san, were wise and just rulers. They had high hopes for their two sons. My younger brother, Eros, never let them down. But I was an outcast from the start. Born with the genetic disposition known as Deviant Syndrome, I would never be accepted among the Titans as normal, let alone one day replace my father as their leading citizen.

Thanos Vol. 1 #1

enter image description here

To avoid any confusion, despite Thanos having Deviant Syndrome, the text in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe (quoted above) still classifies him as an Eternal (homo immortalis) -- albeit a mutant one -- rather than a Deviant (homo descendus).

In the comics, Eternals, Deviants, and humans (homo sapiens) are sister races to one another, all three having been created by the Celestials, via the genetic manipulation of early hominids.

IKARIS: It began with the coming of the gods to Earth when it was populated only by the beasts of the field! Still, it was the presence of life which drew these cosmic beings to this planet. Their huge space-vessel surveyed the land -- and descended... it was then that the gods proceeded with their mission... they chose to change the destiny of a life-form new to the evolutionary chain -- the ape! A specimen was trapped and taken alive. Only the instruments of the gods could do what was done in that momentous time! To the ape was given the cosmic chemistry that would father races to come! In this manner, the dawn ape became the common ancestor of three powerful new species... the Deviant! An ever-changing and destructive failure. Structurally unstable, each new generation of Deviant appeared in new and monstrous ways. His lot was constant war. The human! This species bred with true balance of structure and disposition. Although he was a destroyer, the human was capable of building for peace. His kind was destined to inherit the Earth. He belonged to it. The Eternal! He was more a child of the gods than of the Earth... for he reached for the universe! The Eternals bred few in number and were immune to time and death! They lived apart from all other living beings.

Eternals Vol. 1 #1

enter image description here

Also, as a mutant Eternal rather than a mutant human, Thanos definitely isn't the X-Men variety of mutant (homo sapiens superior).

In the MCU:

In The Art of Avengers: Endgame, Ryan Meinerding says there was a point during the development of the "script" -- likely meaning the script for Avengers: Infinity War -- where they were planning to show more of Thanos' backstory, including him as a baby, and his looking "malformed compared to the rest of his family".

"There was a period of time when they were writing the script where you were going to see Thanos' backstory," Meinerding says. "You were going to see him as a baby, you were going to see him born to a family where he looked malformed compared to the rest of his family, and then you were going to see him on a planet that's crazy overpopulated. And he's walking through, and he's having an actual teen moment of being that seven-foot-tall awkward teenager and everyone's looking at him like, 'Who is this? Who is this awkward kid?' We were also going to see him make an appeal to the government of his world and say, 'We are overpopulated. We're going to end up destroying ourselves. We have to kill half the population, or do something else with them.' And of course, they tell him he's crazy and send him to a prison on a nearby moon. And then he was going to see his whole planet go up in flames because it destroyed itself, and he had seen it happen. So that was the journey, and we were trying to reverse engineer Thanos' design to younger and younger."

The Art of Avengers: Endgame

enter image description here

Another page from that book features concept art of Thanos standing next to what is presumably his immediate family, similar to the page I posted showing the comics version of Thanos standing next to his parents and younger brother. While the other people in this image all look similar to one another, Thanos has a very different skin tone, somewhat different facial features (particularly around the chin area), and is larger in height and build than the others.

enter image description here

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Josh Brolin stated that Thanos' "apparent insanity" stemmed in part from the fact that other Titans, including his own family, all looked similar, while he was born "deformed"; a "freak".

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What is it that damaged Thanos? Where does this pain and anger come from?

JOSH BROLIN: He’s different from his family. They’re all Titans and they all look similar, but he was born deformed. You see how he grew up, you see he was like the Quasimodo of this time, or if you’ve ever read Perfume [Patrick Süskind ‘s 1985 novel about a serial killer who craves beautiful scenes but is disgusted by the smell of humanity], it’s a great parallel to Thanos. He stuck out. He was an anomaly. He was a freak. And that lent to this apparent insanity.

Josh Brolin says there is heart within the murderous Thanos of Avengers: Infinity War

Spoilers below for Eternals (2021):

During a mid-credits scene in Eternals (2021), Eros/Starfox shows up, and is introduced by Pip the Troll as "the royal prince of Titan" and "brother of Thanos". Eros also addresses Thena, Makkari, and Druig as "my fellow Eternals", and is shown to be in possession of a Celestial Communication Sphere, like the one by possessed by Ajak and Sersi.

All of which seems to confirm that the MCU version of Thanos was both an Eternal and a former prince of Titan, as he is in the comics. The fact that every other Eternal in the film, including his brother, is depicted with a human-like appearance also reaffirms the notion that Thanos' physical characteristics were malformed by the standards of his race.

enter image description here


Thanos certainly doesn't look like the rest of his people, at least according to his depiction of his home planet in Infinity War. They're as tall as him, but not deep purple, nor as evidently muscular.

enter image description here

That being said, he might just be insanely swole.

Thanos' upbringing was explored in the prose novel Marvel's Avengers: Infinity War - Thanos: Titan Consumed.*

It's noted that he is not normal among Titans, as a result of genetic mutation. He is, however, not a Mutant (capital M) as far as we're aware.

His skin color, along with a series of vertical ridges—furrows that made his flesh look as though it had been raked—widened his expansive jaw. These traits marked him a deviant, a mutated thing. Had his father been anyone but A’Lars, his mother anyone but Sui-San, he most likely would have been consigned to a medical facility somewhere. Poked and prodded his whole life, quarantined from polite society.


But just then, a girl named Gwinth approached him. “We have a question for you,” she said. And before he could say anything, she went ahead and asked it: “Why are you purple?”

Thanos blinked with something like confusion. No one had ever asked that simple question before. She seemed more curious than frightened or disgusted. Perhaps his father had overestimated people’s reaction to his appearance.

“I’m not entirely sure,” he admitted. “It’s a mutation.”

“A what?”

As they spoke, the other children gathered around them. Thanos tried to figure out the best way to explain it, but the truth was that he only partly understood it himself. There were things called genes that made people who and what they were. Something had gone wrong with one of his.

*For the record, the author of this book wrote it in full cooperation with Marvel Studios. At the very last minute (within days of the publishing date) they declared the events non-canon but I think we can assume that surface details like this are still accurate.


Thanos is not a titan, his race is called the Eternals.

The Celestials created three races, the Eternal ones, the humans, and the deviants.

The eternal are a race much more powerful than the human race. They were powerful, they had slender bodies, they lived for a long time, they were 'perfect'. Chronos, Zeus and Mentor(Thanos's father) were some of these eternals.

When Zeus took over the government of the Olympus, Mentor was exiled and he went to live on the titan moon.

Thanos is an eternal, son of Mentor.
But it is not a normal eternal, it is an eternal mutated. So Thanos is a Mutant among Eternals. That's why Thanos is so powerful, cause he has the capabilities of an eternal and also to be a mutant has extra capabilities.


He is sort of a mutant among his kind. Thanos is an eternal, all of which have superpowers, he just was more powerful than every other eternal. He was also a scientific genius and sorcerer. Not to mention his own numerous attempts to enhance himself with science and magic, often with great success. When he was resurrected by Death, he was granted even greater power. I say a sort of mutant because eternals are the source of all mutant powers.

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