There's no denying that Thanos is a titan within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Played with conviction by Josh Brolin in Avengers: Infinity War, the purple, pained, planet-destroying and Avenger-killing bad guy certainly made an impression, and the havoc he wreaked in this summer's blockbuster will be followed in next year's forthcoming Avengers sequel. However, as fans continue to speculate on if and how everyone's favorite characters will save the world after that devastating snap left the universe in tatters, Thanos has also impacted fossil science. Now, there is a dinosaur named after him.
As it was reported by Taylor & Francis Online, the remains of a previously-undiscovered dinosaur were discovered in 2014 by Sérgio Luis Simonatto and his group of scientists. Upon doing further research, the team confirmed earlier this year that the fossils were a brachyrostran abelisaurid. While the dinosaur wasn't believed to be an apex predator, the scientists decided to name the dinosaur Thanos Simonattoi, seemingly after the popular Marvel villain who first made his appearance in the comics in 1973 before becoming known worldwide in Avengers: Infinity War.
Unfortunately, beyond becoming a household name after the mega-popular movie that came out earlier this year, it doesn't sound like this prehistoric finding shared any particular connection to the galaxy-crossing nemesis. In fact, if the dinosaur were still around today -- and multiple Jurassic Park movies have told us that dinosaurs walking around today would be a very bad thing -- it doesn't sound like the Thanos Simonattoi could carry the imposing gauntlet containing all the Infinity Stones since its arms would be tiny and weak.
It should be noted that the Thanos Simonattoi isn't the first dinosaur to be named after a comic book character. In 2015, there was a dinosaur who was later discovered to be a cousin of the triceratops was named -- or, at least, nicknamed -- after Hellboy due to his horned appearance. (Even though, ironically, Hellboy doesn't have horns. Not anymore, at least. But hey, that didn't stop them then and we don't think that's going to stop them now.)
It's not confirmed when the dinosaur existed and where he lived during its time on this planet. But it is believed that the fossil was from the late Cretaceous Period, which is where Brazil is currently located. And though it wasn't the biggest and mighteous dinosaur in all the land, Thanos Simonattoi was still a carnivore, so you wouldn't want to mess with it. Lest you end up its dinner for the evening. In that sense, it makes sense to name the dinosaur after the Marvel villain that (SPOILERS) seemingly led more than a few Marvel characters to their demise. At least, until the next Avengers.
Meanwhile, for more updates in the world of pop culture -- Marvel-related, dinosaur-related, or otherwise -- you can be sure to check back in with CinemaBlend for the latest news and developments.
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Will is an entertainment writer based in Pittsburgh, PA. His writing can also be found in The Playlist, Cut Print Film, We Got This Covered, The Young Folks, Slate and other outlets. He also co-hosts the weekly film/TV podcast Cinemaholics with Jon Negroni and he likes to think he's a professional Garfield enthusiast.
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