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Why Did Thanos Activate the Infinity Stones to Kill Tony Stark in INFINITY WAR?

Why Did Thanos Activate the Infinity Stones to Kill Tony Stark in INFINITY WAR?

Alright, don’t freak out, but even though Thanos used the collective power of the Stones for his final snap, he was prepared to unleash that same power on Tony Stark earlier. 

During the battle on Titan, after knocking Tony to the ground, Thanos aimed his Gauntlet at him, the Stones glowing, until Doctor Strange intervened and surrendered. 

At that point, possessing only four Infinity Stones, Thanos was still capable of launching a devastating attack to eliminate Iron Man. 

But the question remains: why would he choose to do this when Tony was already kneeling before him? What might have happened if Thanos had activated the Stones instead? 

Let’s find out!

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Avengers: Infinity War (2018) - "Endgame" | Movie Clip

The Compound Effect of The Infinity Stones 

In the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), the six Infinity Stones are pivotal, originating from singularities before the Big Bang. 

Each Stone controls one aspect of the universe: Power, Space, Reality, Time, Soul, and Mind. However, they are too potent for most beings to handle directly, and thus, are typically contained within specific artifacts or vessels.

This is not purely ambitious: despite the varying powers of each stone, together they can unleash the mightiest power at the universal level through a compound effect.

Given the extraordinary power of each stone, a device capable of merging their abilities is required. The Infinity Gauntlet serves this purpose perfectly. 

Forged in Nidavellir from the core of a neutron star, it not only allows the bearer to withstand the stones’ immense power but also to harness the combined might of all six.

With Thanos’ movement to equitably eliminate half of all life, the collective might of all the Stones was indispensable. Specifically:

  • The Power Stone amplifies the Snap’s energy, facilitating the process rather than directly causing destruction.
  • The Space Stone eliminates distance constraints, ensuring the Snap’s universal effect.
  • The Soul Stone possesses unique wisdom to manipulate the spiritual representation, which can help the wielder’s intent to find and execute someone’s existence.
  • The Reality Stone is responsible for the actual disappearance of beings, turning them to dust, hence why half of all life simply vanished.
  • The Mind Stone undertakes the colossal task of determining the fate of each being, akin to a cosmic coin flip, requiring extensive computational power to manage the universe’s vast populace.
  • Finally, the Time Stone ensures the Snap’s effects are lasting, cementing Thanos’s action as the unalterable reality.
How Thanos Really Got All Of The Infinity Stones

By breaking down every aspect of the Infinity Snap like this, it becomes clear how the Stones could work together to create a compound effect in their attack. 

Moreover, the Infinity Snap might not be the only instance of this. On Titan, Thanos was about to do something similar to execute Tony Stark.

What Happens To Tony Stark With Such An Infinity Gauntlet Attack

When Thanos arrives on Titan to confront Iron Man, Doctor Strange, and the Guardians of the Galaxy, his Gauntlet is already equipped with the Power, Reality, Soul, and Space Stones. 

The showdown between both sides was then brought out. Despite initially being at a disadvantage, Thanos quickly (and luckily) regained control, activating each Stone to counter their attacks one by one. 

And during the clash with Iron Man, when Tony attempted to strike Thanos with a blade, Thanos not only broke the blade but also retaliated by stabbing Tony.

However, instead of finishing him off immediately, Thanos stepped back, reactivated all the collected Infinity Stones, and aimed them at Tony. 

Avengers: Infinity War (2018) - "Endgame" | Movie Clip

This raises a question: Did Thanos intend to eliminate Tony using the Infinity Stones?

Given the compound effect of the power harnessed by the Stones we have known, along with the visible glowing of the Stones (the sign indicates that a Stone is activated), the answer appears to be yes. 

Indeed, this was perhaps the only method to ensure Tony Stark’s death while preventing Doctor Strange, who still possessed and hid the Time Stone, from intervening. 

Had Thanos merely captured Iron Man, Doctor Strange might have used the Time Stone to revive Tony. 

To carry out his plan, Thanos uses the Power Stone to essentially scatter Stark’s remains, which could be seen as much more severe than when the Mad Titan tortured Thor.

After overpowering Stark, he uses the Reality Stone to either minimize Tony’s pain or turn him directly into dust. 

And to ensure his execution is carried out properly, the Space Stone can ensure that Thanos gets his own playground without any interference.  

Most importantly, to deal with Doctor Strange and his Time Stone and ensure Stark’s death, he has to activate the Soul Stone

If Thanos allowed Stark’s physical remains or showed any gap, Doctor Strange might take the chance and be able to revive Tony using the Time Stone. 

Dr. Strange Opens The Eye of Agamotto Scene | Doctor Strange (2016) IMAX Movie Clip HD 4K

To prevent any attempts at resurrection, after executing Iron Man, Thanos should use the Soul Stone to ensure that his life is completely eliminated and his soul is obliterated. 

Consequently, even if Doctor Strange tried to revive Tony Stark from any of his remains, his life could not be restored, leaving Iron Man as nothing more than an empty suit of armor.

These actions explain why Thanos could not simply execute Iron Man in an ordinary way, even though he had already knocked Tony to the ground.

Last Words: “Fatal Coup de Grâce” 

“Fatal Coup de Grâce” describes a lethal finishing move executed with a sense of respect toward the opponent. This was precisely what Thanos intended. 

Believe it or not, unlike those who opposed and were then defeated cruelly under his hands, Thanos eliminated Tony in a quick, decisive, painless way. On the battlefield, this act serves as a respectful end for the enemy.

Furthermore, the Mad Titan upheld his promises. For instance, he vowed to spare Thor upon receiving the Space Stone, and he fulfilled this promise.

On this occasion, after obtaining the Time Stone, Thanos remained true to his word. He allowed Tony, Strange, and the others to face their fate through the Infinity Snap, a passive acceptance of death. 

While it is true that Thanos changed significantly after losing his daughter, Gamora, he remains the Mad Titan—albeit in a different form.

What do you guys think? How much worse could it have been if Thanos had executed Iron Man in that manner? Share your thoughts!

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