The Avengers Comics to Read Now

Get the essential backstory with these classic comics from Marvel Unlimited.

The third Avengers movie will introduce the Infinity War, but the tension has been mounting since the introduction of Thanos 50 years ago. These comics will give you essential backstory about the cosmic villain, his quest to dismantle the Avengers, and what exactly an Infinity Stone is (it’s complicated).

Infinity Gauntlet

(1991) #1–6

Wearing the all-powerful Infinity Gauntlet, Thanos extinguishes half the sentient life in the universe with a snap of his fingers. This leads to the ultimate showdown—and the ultimate conundrum: How can the Avengers defeat an omnipotent enemy? Jim Starlin writes an unforgettable tale, brought to life by the bold artwork of George Perez and Ron Lim.

Thanos Quest

(1990) #1–2

This two-part prelude to Infinity Gauntlet follows Thanos as he travels the universe seizing the all-important gems that power the Gauntlet. Movie fans will recognize a few characters, including the Collector (played in the Marvel Cinematic Universe by Benicio del Toro) and the Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum). This is one quest you won’t want to miss.

Thanos Begins

Iron Man (1968) #55

Even supervillains can have humble origins. This hilariously retro comic features Thanos’ first appearance—as well as Drax the Destroyer (Guardians of the Galaxy) in his most alarmingly dated cape. The breezy pace and goofy henchmen (oversize grunts called the Blood Brothers!) make for a highly enjoyable tale.

Meet the Black Order

New Avengers (2013) #24

Thanos may be devastatingly powerful, but he still relies on a ruthless team of minions. In this issue, you meet the fearsome alien death squad Black Order, including the terrifying general Corvus Glaive and his wife, Proxima Midnight. The journey takes you from a fallen Wakanda (home of the Black Panther) to a parallel Earth—and shows just what the Avengers are up against.

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