The last few weeks have been pretty informative when it comes to the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of Thanos. First we got confirmation that he’s being played by Josh Brolin in his on-screen appearances going forward, then we actually saw and heard the Mad Titan during several scenes in Guardians of the Galaxy.
What we don’t know yet is if the MCU Thanos will share his comics counterpart’s primary motivation, which is to win the love of Death — as in, the abstract concept of Death, which often takes physical form in the pages of Marvel comics. Plenty of comics fans think that it would be a little too far-out for the masses to have Thanos committing unspeakable deeds on-screen to woo this most unusual lady, but Brolin told IGN in a recent interview that it’d be fine with him if the movies go that route:
His relationship with Death, who is actually the woman, I love that. You can take Sin City and pump it full of steroids, and then you have Thanos. I like that he’s motivated by that — not just motivated by destruction or death or this or that. He’s motivated by a very identifiable, human trait.
And that’s an excellent point often lost in the “What should Thanos’ motivation be?” debate: everyone can identify with doing some crazy things for love. Just crank that idea up by a billion and you have putting the Infinity Gauntlet together and causing half of the living beings in the universe to vanish from existence.
Another interesting tidbit from the interview is that Brolin doesn’t know all of the movies he’s going to be in just yet. Some things, it seems, are beyond even Thanos’ grasp.