Saturday, 9 April 2016

Thanos: A God Up There Listening Review (Rob Williams, Jim Starlin)


Set in the wake of Infinity, A God Up There Listening follows Thanos’ son Thane as he learns about his mad father with the help of one of his Cull Obsidian, the Ebony Maw, and comes to terms with his heritage. And what better way than to hear about the time Thanos fought Ego the Living Planet?! Also, in the closing issue, Jim Starlin takes the reins of his creation once again and sends Thanos on a bonkers journey through time and space where he meets and fights different versions of himself and Mephisto. 

This miniseries sucked! I thought it was weird that in a Thanos book we’d be focusing on his son Thane until the narrative basically became a flashback about Thanos and then it made more sense. I guess Ebony Maw thought recounting Thanos’ fight with Ego the Living Planet highlighted his craziness and hubris (and wasn’t The Infinity Gauntlet, which is a separate, better book)? Shame it’s not a very interesting story, full of ‘splosions and pointless fighting that leads nowhere. 

This is apparently Thane’s lead-in to The Black Vortex storyline but not a whole lot happens to him here. He learns about Thanos’ brutality/madness and is shocked… and that’s about it! I suppose on the last page he suddenly changes his appearance but that could’ve easily been done as a prologue for Black Vortex rather than as its own unnecessary book but I guess Marvel’s a business first and foremost. 

You’d think for a short four issue miniseries there’d be artistic consistency but three different artists contribute work, some of it decent, some of it not. The variations add to the feeling that this book was thrown together in a slapdash style. 

The Jim Starlin Annual is as nutty as you’d expect: plenty of cosmic bullshit, none of it easy to follow unless you remember Starlin’s entire Thanos sequence (who does??), and most of it drearily forgettable. I suppose Starlin’s art is ok. 

Infinity fans looking to see what happens next to Thanos’ progeny will be disappointed by this weak story and if you’re going to read The Black Vortex, you really don’t need to bother with this one either. Even Thanos fans will be bored with Rob Williams’ dull writing and Jim Starlin’s nonsense. A God Up There Listening is definitely worth skipping.

Thanos: A God Up There Listening

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