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Old December 10 2012, 03:44 PM   #181
Satyrquaze
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

Christopher wrote: View Post
I think that's misusing the word "avatar," though. An avatar isn't a separate being acting as an agent of a deity -- it's the actual deity incarnated in a corporeal form. So you can't become the avatar a god if you had a previous existence as a mortal. At best, I suppose the deity could possess you, but that's still fudging the definition.
I agree with you, but it's comics, we usually let them slide in areas such as this. Marvel has been misusing the word 'avatar' since the early-1980s, or at least retconning their usage of it back to the 1970s. The intent of the usage remains the same.

Becoming an avatar (by Marvel's standards) usually means that some all-powerful cosmic entity invests some of its power into a mortal, perhaps this counts as 'possession' in their books.

That's how Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning used the word throughout their run in Nova and Guardians of the Galaxy, that's how Jim Starlin and the late Mark Gruenwald used it throughout their various series'. I'm sure there are other examples...

Adam Warlock has been repeatedly described as an avatar of life. Martyr was an avatar of Death/Oblivion. Drax the Destroyer, an avatar of life. Maelstrom is an avatar of Oblivion, Quasar was/is an avatar of Infinity. Thanos now counts as an avatar of Death. It is now 'cannon' as they say.
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Old December 10 2012, 04:52 PM   #182
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

^The word is "canon." A cannon is a weapon -- although too many fans use "canon" as a conceptual weapon.

Even if Marvel does use the word that way, the meaning is clearly distinct. We mustn't mistake a label for the thing itself. Thanos is not an embodiment of Death in the same way that Starlin's Mistress Death or Gaiman's goth girl are. They actually are that entity made flesh, manifestations of it in a form we can perceive and comprehend, not merely agents empowered by it. There's just no comparison.
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Old December 10 2012, 06:10 PM   #183
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

Christopher wrote: View Post
^The word is "canon." A cannon is a weapon -- although too many fans use "canon" as a conceptual weapon.

Even if Marvel does use the word that way, the meaning is clearly distinct. We mustn't mistake a label for the thing itself. Thanos is not an embodiment of Death in the same way that Starlin's Mistress Death or Gaiman's goth girl are. They actually are that entity made flesh, manifestations of it in a form we can perceive and comprehend, not merely agents empowered by it. There's just no comparison.
You're right, and I know the difference. I just wasn't paying enough attention to check my work for typos at the end. My apologies.

Anyway.

That's something you may want to take up with Marvel.

I mean, are you suggesting that we ignore such references within the context that they are used? I suppose, since there are Trek fans that completely ignore certain aspects of canon Trek if not most of it. That's their choice.

But, the usage of the word 'avatar' is apparently correct as far as they are concerned for their purposes in their universe. In fairness, I think being an 'embodiment' of an entity is a seperate condition than being an 'avatar' in Marvel's cosmology.

I recall when Quasar was first declared the 'Avatar of Infinity' (back in '93?), I looked up the meaning because I had never heard the word before, and I recall wondering why Gruenwald was using the term that way if it clearly meant something else. In the end I let it go, because 'it's just comics'.

I tend to think certain aforementioned writers at Marvel wanted to have a title carrying similar weight as "Herald of Galactus", but distinctive within the cosmic scheme of things within their universe.

Last I checked, The NEW GODS are really gods in any sense of the descriptor.
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Old December 10 2012, 06:22 PM   #184
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

The most interesting thing about a DC and Marvel merge would be Batman vs/with Iron Man. Two billionaires fighting bad guys with two entirely different philosophies and lifestyles.
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Old December 10 2012, 08:42 PM   #185
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

Solsticequaze wrote: View Post
I mean, are you suggesting that we ignore such references within the context that they are used?
No, I'm saying we should understand that words can have different meanings and not lose sight of what we're actually talking about. The issue under discussion here was not whether Thanos was labeled an avatar of Death. The issue is whether he actually was the same kind of embodiment of Death as the two female characters named Death that we were talking about. And clearly he isn't, and isn't meant to be, no matter what label is used to describe him. Fixating too much on the labels for things gets in the way of understanding their true nature.
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Old December 10 2012, 09:29 PM   #186
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

I suppose they could have come up with a better label for descibing that a specific character given a bit of power and was supported by one of the cosmological entities of the universe - in much the same way that Galactus powers and supports the Silver Surfer for example.

Let me put it to you. You're a known and respected writer, what would you have labeled such an character instead of 'avatar'?
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Old December 10 2012, 10:03 PM   #187
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

^I don't care what you label it! Labels are not the topic we were discussing here, they're a distraction from it! We were talking about the difference between actual incarnations of Death -- the goth girl from DC and the lady Skeletor from Marvel -- and Thanos, who's just a guy who has a crush on/is employed by Death. The point is, those are not the same thing. Thanos is a distinct entity/personality from Death. I mean, obviously he is. How could he be obsessively in love with Death and driven to unite with her if he already were her? The whole obsession that defines his personality is predicated on him being a separate entity from Death. And that's the point. I don't give a flying Forbush whether you call it an avatar or an abyss or a terminator or a titanic. I'm not talking about what he's called, I'm talking about who he is and who he isn't.
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Old December 10 2012, 10:47 PM   #188
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

^I understand that Thanos isn't a manifestation or embodiment of Death. I understand his history and his motivations are hinged upon his obsession with Death. The unfortuate truth is Marvel's misuse of a word can make it sound as though he is an embodiment thereof. But, I don't think anyone should be under the mistaken impression that he is indeed any sort of manifestion of Death.

Thanos is an empowered agent (for lack of a better word) of Misteress Death, immortal and indestructable (who still longs to be with his Misteress) as per the most recent update of the character.

My apologies (again), I had no intention of turning this thread into any sort of heated argument.
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Old December 10 2012, 10:47 PM   #189
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

Sorry I brought up Death, guys.
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Old December 10 2012, 11:04 PM   #190
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

^Could have been worse you could have brought up the Shaper of Worlds.
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Old December 10 2012, 11:43 PM   #191
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

^Or Axel Asher.
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Old December 11 2012, 04:05 AM   #192
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

Solsticequaze wrote: View Post
^I understand that Thanos isn't a manifestation or embodiment of Death. I understand his history and his motivations are hinged upon his obsession with Death. The unfortuate truth is Marvel's misuse of a word can make it sound as though he is an embodiment thereof. But, I don't think anyone should be under the mistaken impression that he is indeed any sort of manifestion of Death.
Actually he is a manifestation of Death as we saw in the Cancerverse, a universe without death, where his presence was able to cause the Mar-vell and his masters to succumb to death.
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Old December 11 2012, 04:34 PM   #193
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Re: Let's say Marvel and DC were to merge universes.

Actually, it was Thanos' presense in the Cancerverse as Death's 'agent' that allowed Misteress Death herself (from the 616 universe) to manifest and bring Lord Mar-Vell to his long overdue death and by extension his masters, the 'Many Angled Ones'.

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