Glow-In-The-Dark, Holofoil, Chromium and Die-Cut – Comics In The Nineties Weren’t All Bad – The Infinity Gauntlet

GameStop, Inc.

by Carl R. Jansson
Senior Correspondent
[email protected]

 

The nineties get a lot of flack nowadays from comic fans, and some of it is very well deserved. Many things happened in the nineties that made it a very dark decade for the comic industry, many things we would like to forget happened at all, and some things we just can’t seem to let go of. And pouches, so very many pouches. Each Tuesday I discuss the many things that made that decade truly a great time to be a fan. This week, I bring you another reason the nineties weren’t all bad.
The Infinity Gauntlet.
These days comic events seem to be created through editorial mandate just to set up the next big event storyline. When was the last time Marvel or DC went a month without some sort of line wide, status quo changing, world breaking event? When was the last time any of the continuity changes really stuck for that long? Not to bag on any of these more recent event story lines, as I have found quite a few of them very enjoyable. But, how many of them are as well remembered and revered as The Infinity Gauntlet?
For some reason, this story still resonates with the fans, and so remains in print to this day, acquiring new fans in specialty shops, big box book stores, and through websites such as amazon.com. It has been a big inspiration to, and influence on, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, appearing in both Thor and Thor: The Dark World, and I have a feeling it’s presence will be felt in future films as well. Hell, it has even appeared on The Super Hero Squad animated series, becoming the main focus during its second season.
The Infinity Gauntlet spun out of the third volume of The Silver Surfer and the miniseries The Thanos Quest, where Thanos acquired the six Infinity Gems: Time, Space, Mind, Soul, Reality, and Power. With Thanos now all powerful and desperately trying to impress Death and win her affections by killing off half of the sentient life in the universe, how could or heroes possibly save the day? This series truly made Thanos a threat, as he defeated most of the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, Galactus, The Stranger, Eternity, and many more, before leaving his body behind to become the living embodiment of the universe.
 
It was a truly universe spanning series that touched almost every nook and cranny of the Marvel U. The series had many spin-offs and sequels, including Adam Strange and the Infinity Watch, The Infinity War, and The Infinity Crusade. At the time anything even remotely related to The Infinity Gauntlet was pure gold, but none of the others could top it for sheer epic-ness. Written by Jim Starlin, the master of cosmic comics, with always stunning art by George Perez and Ron Lim, The Infinity Gauntlet could not have been anything BUT hugely successful.
It had an exciting story line, one that was both accessible to new readers, and full of Easter eggs for those long time fans. It starred most of the iconic characters in the Marvel universe, most of them of course dying in the process. And it finally gave Starlin the chance to make Thanos the truly terrifying super-villain he was always meant to be, possibly the most powerful in the Marvel universe. Those six issues showed how an event crossover should be done, and are one of the reasons it was awesome being a comic fan in the nineties. Next week I’ll bring you another.

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