The Avengers Never Had a Good Answer For Why Thanos Shouldn’t Kill People
The problem isn’t that Thanos’ plan was bad. It’s that the heroes didn’t have a better one.
If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a thousand times. “Thanos’ plan makes no sense! If you kill half of everyone, the population would just double again soon! Why not just double the resources instead?!”
All good points. Well, actually not really that good. We only really know how fast humans reproduce, but Thanos is wiping out half of all species. And doubling resources doesn’t really solve distribution problems — we have more than enough food to feed all humans already, for example — but the overall point is taken just the same: Thanos’ plan to wipe out half of all life is not a good one.
But, let’s just say for the sake of argument, that it was true. Let’s assume the following things that Thanos believes are indisputable facts (they are not, but we will come back to that):
- There are too many people alive to comfortably feed them all without causing excess starvation and death.
- Without intervention, this will eventually lead to all life being extinguished due to mass starvation and consumption.
- The only effective solution to this problem is to reduce the number of people doing the consuming, by killing some of them.
Now, these things are not true in our real world, and it’s safe to assume they are not true on the fictional worlds of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which seem to skew largely human but with some pretty rad skin color and pattern choices.
Still, assuming those things are true…the Avengers never really offer a very good rebuttal to Thanos’ claim that wiping out half of all life is a good thing. And it seems like it should be really easy, right? Like, come on, your solution to universal hunger is…kill hungry people? And not one hero has a defiant, triumphant speech about why people being alive is good, actually?
They do try, though. There are three major “arguments” that occur throughout the movie, two directly to Thanos, another is more of a narrative contrast, but I think they all ultimately fall flat. And worse yet, they also…