Thanos wrapped up his current comic book series by facing down his greatest enemy.
Warning: this article contains spoilers for Thanos #18!
So far, “Thanos Wins” has pitted the Mad Titan against everyone from Cosmic Ghost Rider (more on this kooky character here) to a Mjolnir-wielding Silver Surfer. But in the end, the only opponent truly worthy of Thanos is Thanos himself. As the young and old versions of the character greet Death in this issue, Thanos realizes that he had one more battle left to fight.
What follows is an epic brawl between two versions of Thanos. Ultimately, the younger Thanos prevails over his aged foe, but he stops short of killing his older self. As he sees it, no version of Thanos who begs for death is worthy of an honorable end. Instead, Thanos activates the shattered Time Stone and travels back to his own time, determined to ensure that this future never comes to pass.
It seems he was successful in that goal. The elder Thanos is just able to enjoy his reunion with Death before his reality is snuffed out forever. Where one Thanos wins, another loses.
This issue marks the end of the current series. The good news is that Thanos will play a major role in Infinity Wars, this summer’s epic crossover event. Fans of the series can also look forward to a Cosmic Ghost Rider spinoff as part of Marvel’s Fresh Start initiative.