We’ve discussed Thanos’ parentage many times here in Comic Basics. We have some established facts, like the fact that he is an offspring of two Eternals, A’Lars and Sui-San. We also know that despite being unable to biologically reproduce (Thanos being a costly exception), all Eternals have “familiar” relationships. While Thanos’ maternal grandfather is unknown, we do know that A’Lars was the son of Kronos, one of the most ancient and powerful Eternals. This is why we decided to explore his character in a bit more detail. Let’s see who Kronos is and what kind of powers he has.
Kronos was one of the three Patriarchs among the Eternals and grandfather to Thanos. He was a brother to Uranos and Oceanus and a father to Zuras and A’Lars. Kronos went to war against his brother Uranos when he rose up against the Machine, and following his victory in the Eternal Civil War, he accidentally turned himself into a cosmic being when his physical body was annihilated. Kronos was an extremely powerful Eternal, having incredible intelligence and mastery over souls. He eventually gained the ultimate control over time.
Now that we’ve summarized who exactly Kronos is, without background info, this doesn’t make all that much sense. If Eternals can’t reproduce, how exactly can Kronos be Thanos’ grandfather? This and many more questions we’re going to answer within this post, so if you’re interested, stay with us and keep reading!
Thanos’ family tree explained
When Deviants and Eternals were created, there were several differences between them, one major difference being that only 100 Eternals were created, and they weren’t given the ability to reproduce naturally, something that A’Lars and Sui-San managed to avoid by using Cosmic Bands, resulting in Thanos’ birth.
But, before Thanos and Eros, no true Eternals were born. Still, they were divided into family structures, three kinds, to be more specific.
- 3-Gen Eternals were Parents and children who, in turn, have children – the so-called “dynasties” (this is the family structure that Thanos belongs to.)
- 2-Gen Eternals that consisted of only parents and children – the so-called “atomic families.”
- 1-Gen Eternals, those were singular eternals with no families. They were also called the singularities.
Eternals were later also divided into three dynasties led by Uranos, Oceanus, and Kronos, three brothers. This is why Uranos, Oceanus, and Kronos are also known as the three patriarchs. Since they led their own dynasties, they were literally the leaders of the Eternal race at that time.
While we’re not interested in the structure of Uranos’ and Oceanus’ families, we are interested in Kronos’ family.
Kronos had two sons, Zuras and A’Lars. Zuras, in turn, had one daughter – Thena and A’Lars went on to have two biological children, Eros and Thanos. A’Lars, being Thanos’ father, makes Kronos his grandfather, Zuras his uncle, and Thena, his cousin.
Sadly, as far as Thanos’ maternal family tree goes, we have no information. Now that we’ve covered how Thanos and Kronos are related, it’s time to see what happened to Kronos.
Kronos was involved in the Civil War, started by his brother Uranos
One of the most important abilities that Eternal Patriarchs had was the ability to rule as a triad by dominating the Uni-Mind. They were able to control the votes of their entire dynasties. This made sense at the beginning but proved to be disastrous when Uranos decided to rise up against the Machine.
The Machine is, in the most simple terms, a machine that organizes the lives of Eternals. Eternals had very little choice as far as their duties and individual characters go. They were guided by a set of principles imposed by the Machine. All Eternals had a very specific role and duty within the Eternal society (imposed by the Machine), and if any of the Eternals were to make a mister, they were punished by the Machine.
For smaller mistakes, a specific Eternal would be mindwiped and would be granted permission to rejoin the Eternal society. For large transgressions, no such redemption was available. If the sin against the Machine was great enough, the individual Eternal would be sentenced to imprisonment in the Exclusion.
All Eternals basically have one purpose, and that is to serve the Celestials, and Celestials ordered them to watch over life on Earth and to basically clean up after Deviants, their rival kind. Uranos was tired of cleaning up after Deviants and wanted to suggest changing the principles of the Machine a bit in order to gain a modicum of free will. Such a proposition was scandalous. It was forbidden to tamper with Deviants, and a large-scale Civil War erupted. Kronos and Oceanus rose up against Uranos, and following his defeat, he was imprisoned.
It’s ironic because sometime later, Kronos’ son A’Lars would be banished to Titan because he wanted to change the rules of the Machine in order to let Eternals reproduce naturally. His own brother Zuras rose up against him.
Following the Uranite Heresy, Kronos ruled alone until the next great crisis in Eternal history came the so-called “Ascension of Kronos.”
Kronos experimented with cosmic energy in order to attempt “auto-deification.” Following his experiments, the seat of Eternal power Titanos was destroyed along with his physical body. Kronos transcended his Eternal form and became a cosmic being.
However, the Machine wasn’t about to give up so lightly, despite the fact that Kronos’ mind survived in a different form, his Eternal body was resurrected, and he was punished with Exlusion for his crimes against the Machine. He currently remains alive and imprisoned both as an Eternal and as a Cosmic being.
So, how powerful was Kronos?
In ‘Thanos Annual’ #1, Thanos himself implied that Kronos is at the power level of Galactus, Zeus, and Odin, who are known to be among the most powerful characters in the Marvel Universe.
Even in his Eternal body, Kronos was known to be among the most powerful Eternals with intelligence that surpass by far the limitations of even his own kind. He was able to manipulate the souls of deceased mortals and create artificial bodies from inanimate matter.
Following his auto-deification, Kronos transcended the bounds of his usual powers and became one with time, gaining all sorts of controls over it, the extent of which remains unknown.
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