Josh Brolin is going to have one hell of a summer at the box office. He stars as Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War (April 27), followed quickly by a turn as Cable in Deadpool 2 (May 18). Those roles will intersect not only due to their proximity on the release calendar and their shared basis in Marvel Comics, but also because that’s just what the Deadpool franchise does.

Fans have wondered and mostly assumed that Brolin’s other Marvel job would come up as soon as he was cast in Deadpool 2. The most recent trailer has a couple quick Thanos jokes, but that bit isn’t part of the actual film. Brolin tells Entertainment Weekly, however, that the final film will have some Thanos-inspired humor.

I can’t imagine there’s not going to be any. [Laughs] I’ll put it that way. I’m up here right now in snowy Vancouver doing reshoots for Deadpool. Given that it’s a satire of all superhero movies, especially Marvel movies, how can you not?

A little comic relief might be needed, as Thanos’ goals and backstory in Avengers: Infinity War are no laughing matter. As Kevin Feige shared with EW, Thanos is the last of his kind after his home world, Titan, was wiped out by a tragedy Thanos saw coming and tried to prevent. That is why he wants to destroy half of all life in the universe, so that the other half may live.

Brolin also explains that Thanos’ troubles, which will be shown in flashbacks, began long before Titan was destroyed. He was always an outcast, even among his own people.

He’s different from his family. They’re all Titans and they all look similar, but he was born deformed. You see how he grew up, you see he was like the Quasimodo of this time, or if you’ve ever read Perfume [Patrick Süskind ‘s 1985 novel about a serial killer who craves beautiful scenes but is disgusted by the smell of humanity], it’s a great parallel to Thanos. He stuck out. He was an anomaly. He was a freak. And that lent to this apparent insanity.

In the comics, Thanos is the one who destroys Titan, or at least wipes out the vast majority of its population. It was an act of retaliation against a planet full of people who’d mistreated him and saw him as evil from the very beginning. Everyone on Titan looks a lot more like the humans on Earth while Thanos, born with the Deviant Syndrome, is the only one with a hulking purple figure.

Thanos’ own mother, Sui-San, thought he was evil the moment she looked in his eyes right after he was born. She tried to kill him, but was stopped and institutionalized before one day Thanos took his revenge and killed her.

So far, nothing about Infinity War sounds like Thanos will be murdering anyone on Titan, though I suppose he still could, especially after the tragedy that takes the planet out (if there are any initial survivors). The Mad Titan seems to have been driven that way by events for which was not responsible.

This could run the risk of making Thanos too sympathetic, but I think directors Joe and Anthony Russo will strike the right balance. Thanos needs to be a multidimensional character if he is to hold moviegoers’ interest for all of Infinity War and Avengers 4.

Besides, as sad as his backstory may be, sympathy tends to run out quickly when someone is trying to kill half of the universe and still finds cause for a smile.

SOURCE: Entertainment Weekly