|First appearance||Cameo appearance: New Avengers vol. 3 #8 (Sept. 2013)|
Full appearance: Infinity #1 (Oct. 2013)
|Created by||Jonathan Hickman|
|Team affiliations||Black Order|
Ebony Maw is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. He is a prominent member of the Black Order, a team of aliens who work for Thanos.
The character has made several appearances in media, such as animated television series, the Marvel Cinematic Universe live-action films, Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and Avengers: Endgame (2019), voiced by Tom Vaughan-Lawlor, and video games. Lawlor also voiced alternate timeline versions in the Disney+ animated series What If...? (2021).
Ebony Maw first appears in a one-panel cameo in New Avengers #8 (Sept. 2013) and was created by Jonathan Hickman and Jerome Opeña. His second one-panel appearance came later that month in Infinity #1 (Oct. 2013).
Ebony Maw was a member of Thanos' Black Order. He is not a fighter, but a dangerous thinker of the Black Order. When Thanos targeted Earth as the next planet he would raze during the Infinity storyline, Ebony Maw was dispatched to deal with Doctor Strange.
Ebony Maw used his abilities to control Doctor Strange and force him to summon Shuma-Gorath. Then Ebony Maw used his abilities to have Doctor Strange serve as a double-agent for him when he reunited with the Illuminati. When the Illuminati headed to numerous locations around the world to find Thanos' son Thane, Doctor Strange found the boy in a hidden Inhuman city of Orollan (which is located in Greenland). Ebony remained there and forced Doctor Strange to forget about the discovery and to leave, freeing himself from Maw's control.
When Black Bolt detonated a Terrigen Bomb which unleashed the Terrigen Mists upon the entire face of Earth, Thanos' son Thane underwent Terrigenesis. The manifestation of his powers annihilated the entire town. Posing as an ally following the incident, Ebony Maw offered Thane a suit to control his powers, but also captured him in a containment field followed by Ebony Maw alerting Thanos to the location of his son. When the Avengers arrived in Orollan in order to defeat Thanos, Ebony Maw tested Thane by freeing him. Thane could escape or could fight Thanos and become what he had avoided his entire life. Thane agreed and embraced his true nature as the son of Thanos by fighting his father. Using the power of his right hand, Thane trapped Thanos and his ally Proxima Midnight in an amber construct which left them in a state of "living death." Upon the defeat of Thanos, Ebony Maw started disciplining Thane into becoming something greater than Thanos and greater than any one would.
During the "No Surrender" arc, Ebony Maw appears as a member of Challenger's Black Order where he pits them in a contest against Grandmaster's Lethal Legion.
Ebony Maw has genius-level intellect. He mostly demonstrates his intelligence with his highly skilled abilities of manipulation being described as a "black tongue that spreads mischief and evil wherever he goes." Ebony Maw's skills at manipulation are a result of his superhumanly persuasive voice which allows him to control even the strongest minds such as Doctor Strange. Maw's other abilities includes the ability to use telekinesis and pyrokinesis.
He also uses technology that specializes in teleportation and force field generation.
Ebony Maw appears in media set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, voiced and motion-captured by Tom Vaughan-Lawlor. This version has telekinetic abilities and serves as Thanos' herald, perversely evangelizing to the inhabitants of worlds that Thanos attacks that they are actually being saved and the ones who are dead or dying should "rejoice" in their deaths bringing balance to the universe.