As I type this, the first screenings for Marvel’s deep space adventure Guardians of the Galaxy are getting underway all across the world. It’s been coming for a long, long time, and now we can finally sit back in a dark theater and watch it for ourselves. (And it is totally awesome.) The film is tracking to be a hit, and breaking box office records already, but the comic book giant isn’t wasting any time planning the future of the franchise. They’ve already announced Guardians of the Galaxy 2, scheduled it for July 28, 2017, and now we’re hearing the first rumblings of what the story could be, and the expanded role of some key players.
Be warned, there are some mild SPOILERS if you haven’t seen Guardians of the Galaxy yet, and if you haven’t, shame on you, you should be watching it right now.
The plot of Guardians revolves around a mismatched crew of outlaws including Peter Jason Quill, aka Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), Rocket Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper), and Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel). And while their the core, there are tons of fantastic supporting players all over the place, and from what we’ve heard, some of them will get even more time to shine in part two.
Talking to Film Divider, writer/director James Gunn said:
I have a lot of ideas for stories and characters that are going to appear, and there are documents written up, that some people have, about Peter Quill’s father and his relationship, a lot of stuff about Yondu, and a lot of stuff about Drax that nobody knows.
I wrote up a lot. [Marvel President Kevin Feige] knows all the stuff, and if I died tomorrow they could go make a movie. They could write the story of Peter Quill’s father and it would all be there. I think Yondu is a very important character, a really important character in this universe, and I think Nebula is really important too and so I think we’ll see more of both of those characters.
While it’s good to know that the Guardians are in good hands should Gunn unexpectedly meet his demise, this is a lot to take in.
Drax is, of course, part of the main group, but aside from the fact that his family died at the hands of the film’s villains, there’s not much in the way of background information on him. That leaves a ton of room to add details and history to his story and to further develop him as a character.
Nebula (Karen Gillan) is, admittedly, a bit underused in the movie. She and Gamora are the adopted daughters of the Mad Titan Thanos (Josh Brolin), and were raised as sisters. When Gamora attempts to branch out on her own, there are hurt feelings and desire for retribution. And as many of us know first hand, no one fights like siblings. Nebula is a total badass, but beyond that, there’s not much to her, which, again, provides ample opportunity to do some character work.
Perhaps the most intriguing part of all of this is the stuff about Yondu and Peter Quill’s father. This is where things are going to get more SPOILER heavy. Just a warning.
Michael Rooker’s Yondu is the leader of a gang of smugglers and thieves called the Ravagers. In 1988, they pick up young Peter Quill on Earth. It comes out over the course of the movie that they were being paid to abduct the child. In the opening scene, Quill watches his mother die of cancer, and on her deathbed, she asserts that his father was “an angel,” which is your first hint that daddy may not be from this world. Instead of handing the child over, however, Yondu and the Ravagers keep Quill and raise him as one of their own. In that sense, Yondu is essentially his surrogate father, or at least father figure—you’ll see this when you see the movie—and the idea of all three of these characters, two fathers and their son, is full of potential.
But more importantly than all of this: get off the computer and go see Guardians of the Galaxy as soon as you possibly can. We have almost two years to speculate and wonder about Guardians 2, we’ll get to that at a more appropriate time.