The Greek god Thanatos (死を司る神 タナトス, Shi wo Tsukasadoru Kami Tanatosu, lit. meaning "God who rules over Death") is one of the antagonist deities featured in Saint Seiya. As in Greek mythology, he is the personification of mortality and death, and the twin brother of Hypnos, the Greek god of sleep. In Kurumada's mythos, although he is a subordinate of Hades, the Emperor of the Darkness and ruler of the Underworld, he is a deity with all attributes, and as his lord, he is a sworn enemy of the protector goddess of the Earth, Athena.
Kurumada introduced Thanatos in the final parts of the Hades arc of his manga, specifically in vol. 27, and he is portrayed as very cruel, merciless, hateful towards humans, haughty, and non-hesitant to whimsically inflict death. He was sealed along with his brother by Athena after being defeated in her last battle against Hades, in 18th century. Thanatos spent 243 years sealed in a box marked with the Seal of Athena, and only regained his freedom after the box was opened by a curiosity-driven 3 year-old Pandora, to whom he announced that the resurrection of Hades was near, and that she would serve them henceforth.
As described by the Pegasus Saint Pegasus Seiya when they first encountered, he is identical to his brother Hypnos, the only differences being Thanatos' silver colored eyes and hair, as opposed to Hypnos' golden. A strange looking star is placed in his forehead. Unlike his brother Hypnos, who is more calm and calculating, Thanatos is prone to lose his temper and act without any regard for consequences when influenced by rage.
His dwelling place is the Elysion, and he spends most of his time there accompanied by scores of Nymphs, and his twin brother Hypnos, waiting to fulfill their lord Hades's bidding. Thanatos offered fierce opposition to the Saints of Athena, when they tried to rescue their goddess from certain death and stop Hades's Greatest Eclipse, which was meant to eradicate mankind.
Thanatos duty is to impart death on all living beings when their time has come, or as divine retribution. Before his formal introduction in the anime adaptation, he was featured in the opening of the Inferno stage of the Hades arc episodes (episode 128 and on), standing next to his brother Hypnos, and overshadowed by Hades. His full appearance in the anime adaptation occurred in 2008, in the final episodes that adapt the last two volumes of the manga, in which his participation is contained (vols. 27 and 28), 16 years after Kurumada introduced him in the manga. From episode 142 and on, his silhouette in the opening of the anime adaptation revealed his features fully.
Powers and Stats
Name: Thanatos - God of Death
Origin: Saint Seiya
Age: Unknown, at least thousands of years old
Classification: Deity, God of Death
Powers and abilities: Superhuman Strength, Speed, Durability and Stamina, 7th And 8th Sense User, Divine Cosmos, Atomic Creation, Manipulation, Destruction and Restoration, Immortality (Types 1, 2 and 4), Matter Manipulation, Mind Manipulation, Soul Manipulation, Life Manipulation & Death Manipulation/Death Inducement, Psychokinesis (Telepathy and Telekinesis), Energy Manipulation and Waves, Forcefields, Enhanced Senses, Flight/Levitation, Acausality, Resistance to Mind Manipulation, Soul Manipulation, Matter Manipulation, Illusions, Dream Manipulation, Life Manipulation & Death Manipulation, Space-Time Manipulation, and Existence Erasure.
Attack Potency: Multi-Galaxy level (Atomized Gold Cloths, who are often shown capable of enduring Galaxian Explosions, with ease. Absurdly above Saints with full control of the 8th sense)
Lifting Strength: Class Z+ via power-scaling
Striking Strength: At least Galactic Class
Durability: Multi-Galaxy level
Stamina: Nearly limitless, if not limitless
Standard Equipment: Surplice armor
Weaknesses: Thanatos is extremely overconfident, prone to lose his temper and act without any regard for consequences
As the god of death, Thanatos is able to cause death to any kind of living creature, no matter the distance with nothing but a mere thought as shown when he killed Pandora.
He is able to find his intended target, and attack him/her without the need of physical contact, using powerful blasts of energy. He is able to inflict excruciating pain on his victim, and cause instant death. Being a wielder of the "Big Will", the divine Cosmo of the Gods, Thanatos was able to completely smash five Gold Cloths with a single attack, an unprecedented feat.
He is seemingly capable of psychokinesis, as stated by Ophiuchus Shaina, when she, along the Bronze Saints, Eagle Marin and Aries Mu's apprentice Kiki were attacked by the god, and were unable to detect the origin of the attack. The only one capable of detecting his energy blasts was Kiki, because he is skilled at psychokinesis. However, this may be only due to the fact that Thanatos' shots are invisible to mere mortals, as death itself has no visible form.
- Terrible Providence (テリブルプロビデンス, Teriburu Purobidensu, the English "Terrible Providence"): Thanatos concentrates his cosmos releasing it into the hands against the opponent as a dense ball of energy capable of breaking the dimensional planes. Taking the form of an energy wave of gigantic proportions and explodes to the touch in a devastating attack that is easily able to shatter even Gold Cloths. This attack was able to completely shatter five gold cloths at the same time.This attack disables the five senses at once and shows illusions of your body being torn apart which can cause insanity.
- Gate of Hell (Shigen-Shiki):Thanatos opens a crack that leads to a dimension uninhabited by humans or any life, any life not of divine origin or possessing divine protection has its existence instantly rejected by the dimension. The Death God uses this attack in The Lost Canvas against Cancer Manigoldo and Grand Pope Sage.
- Phobia of Tartarus (タルタロズフォビア, Tarutarozu Phobia, the English "Tartaros' Phobia"): Thanatos is capable of summoning souls from the deepest layer of hell, where only the most vile and evil souls are cast after death. These souls are capable of being a significant enough threat to a gold saint as Cancer Manigoldo resorted to igniting them with his flames rather than face them head on.