In the run-up to Infinity War, Avengers and audiences alike are majorly concerned with the potential destruction that could be wrought if Thanos were to get his hands on the Infinity Stones - but how strong is Thanos without the Infinity Gauntlet in the first place? While the Gauntlet may make Thanos a threat to all existence, the “Thanos strength scale” was already off-the-charts long before he picked up any magical space rocks. Readers of Marvel Comics have seen enough matchups like Thanos vs. Hulk to know in the Marvel Universe, it’s always wise to bet on the Mad Titan.
A list of Thanos’s greatest feats reads like the most impressive resume any comic book character could ever put together. He’s taken on opponents like Thor, Odin, and Galactus, and he has come out the winner on each occasion. The real answer to the question of “Just how strong is Thanos, really?” is actually a rather simple one - stronger than pretty much everyone.
Some are born with a silver spoon in their mouths, but Thanos was born with a set of superpowers instead. As a member of the race of Eternals that colonized Titan, one of Saturn’s moons, Thanos naturally has strength, speed, and durability that far surpass human levels.
In fact, Thanos is a rare “deviant” member of the Eternals, meaning he was born with abilities even greater than the average Eternal. Not satisfied with simply being the most powerful member of a super-powered people, Thanos spends a number of his formative years augmenting himself through cybernetics and other methods, and the results are rather terrifying.
The Incredible Hulk likes to stylize himself as “the strongest there is,” but Thanos of Titan would beg to differ. Although technically the Hulk’s strength has no upper limit - the angrier he gets, the stronger he gets - he would have to be madder than ever before to even approach the base strength of Thanos.
The two face off on a number of occasions, and most end with Thanos tossing the Hulk around like a ragdoll. In essence, Thanos is as strong as it gets in the Marvel Universe.
A number of Marvel characters have the brute power to destroy entire planets, but few have the temperament to actually follow through with such a horrific act. Thanos is one of the rare individuals who falls into both categories, and he smashes his share of ecosystems.
Thanos is so powerful that he has a number of options when it comes to planet-wrecking - he can break a planet apart with his raw strength, with his energy projections, or by throwing his opponent through the planet’s core, which he does on numerous occasions.
Thanos is most famous for his quest to collect the Infinity Stones and complete the Infinity Gauntlet, and there’s good reason for his obsession. The Infinity Gauntlet is one of the few items in the universe that actually carries more power than the Mad Titan himself.
While the individual Infinity Stones may offer an enormous upgrade to the average mortal being, they’re rather inconsequential from Thanos’s perspective. On one memorable occasion, Thor takes possession of the Power Stone and goes mad with, well, power, but Thanos is still able to easily defeat him.