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Guardians of the Galaxy: A Primer

Written by Christian Hoffer on Friday, June 29 2012 and posted in Features

Everything you need to know about the team that (may) be appearing in an upcoming Marvel film

With rumors swirling about Guardians of the Galaxy being the next big Marvel movie (you know, besides Captain America 2, Thor 2 and Iron Man 3), a lot of people are wondering exactly who or what the Guardians of the Galaxy are. Luckily, the Outhouse is here to help! Here's a few fun facts about the Marvel franchise along with our best bets about what exactly the movie will entail.

Who are the Guardians of the Galaxy?

The Guardians of the Galaxy were initially a team of heroes fighting in the 31st Century against the villainous Badoon. The original Guardians had a mix of alien species along with Vance Astro, an older version of the New Warriors hero Justice. The team also made several trips to the past and teamed up with the Avengers at least twice. The team was popular enough to get its own series, which ran for 62 issues from 1990 to 1995.

In 2008, Marvel rebooted the franchise with a collection of "modern" cosmic characters, many of whom appeared in major space franchises such as The Infinity Gauntlet and Annihilation. The team was led by Star-Lord, a former astronaut turned galactic strategist. While the book was a low seller, it had a cult-following and picked up acclaim during much of its two year run. A version of the modern team recently appeared in Avengers Assemble, a series featuring the movie line-up of the Avengers with Thanos, the character who made a brief cameo at the end of the Avengers movie, as the main villain.

No matter what iteration Marvel goes with, both involve space heroes and a motley crew of weird and fantastical looking aliens. You're basically guaranteed to get that, no matter what.

So which version of the team will be appearing in the Guardians of the Galaxy?

If we had to make a bet, we'd guess the modern team. That version of the team has already made an appearance on the Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes cartoon. In addition, Nova, a character that's currently appearing in Ultimate Spider-Man, is also linked to the modern team.

Who will the Guardians be fighting?

ThanosThe obvious answer is Thanos, the alien who briefly appeared at the end of the Avengers. Thanos, the mad Titan, is in love with a personification of death and wishes to court her favor by destroying most, if not all, of the universe. He's got a past with most of the modern incarnation of the team.

So who all is on the Guardians team? Anyone I would recognize?

The modern cast of the Guardians of the Galaxy is a large one. Just about every major space hero has appeared in the Guardians of the Galaxy's line-up, at least briefly. Let's cover some of the major players:

starlordStar-Lord: Team leader and master strategist. Peter Quill was originally an astronaut who gained the mantle of Star-Lord (an interplanetary lawman of sorts) after an alien visited the space station he was training on. He was given an Element Gun, a sentient ship and a fancy suit, all of which was destroyed in a battle against the Fallen One, former herald of the Fantastic Four villain Galactus. Star-Lord was imprisoned after this battle, but was eventually freed and formed the Guardians of the Galaxy after participating in two universe-threatening events. Chance of appearing in the movie: 95%

Adam Warlock: One of the more recognizable characters on the team, Warlock was a Lee/Kirby creation that originally appeared in Fantastic Four. Warlock is a messiah-like character with quantum magic abilities and has often appeared in opposition against Thanos and has died and been reborn several times. Most notably, Warlock led the Avengers and other Marvel heroes against Thanos in The Infinity Gauntlet, which is rumored to be the basis of the next Avengers movie. Chance of appearing in the movie: 75%

novaNova: Human Rocket. Nova is a member of the Nova Corps, which basically fills the role of Green Lantern Corps in the Marvel Universe, and is best recognized for his distinctive helmet. Nova Corps members are given access to the Nova Force, a powerful energy that can be used to propel themselves at high speeds or projected as a blast of energy. There's a few possibilities of who could be under the helmet. Richard Rider is the classic Earth Nova who eventually led a galactic army in addition to the Nova Corps. However, Sam Alexander, a new character, recently appeared in both the comics and Ultimate Spider-Man. Chance of appearing in the movie: 95%

Rocket_RaccoonRocket Raccoon: A talking raccoon with big guns. The character, which derives its name from the Beatles song Rocky Raccoon, comes from a colony for the mental ill which is run and guarded by various anthropomorphic animal characters. Rocket teamed up with both the Hulk and She-Hulk before joining the Guardians of the Galaxy as a wise-cracking, but smart, member of the team. Rocket serves as a second in command to Star-Lord and has led the Guardians of the Galaxy when Star-Lord is unable to. Chance of appearing in the movie: 95%

Groot: A walking, talking tree. The Monarch of Planet X, Groot originally came to Earth to study and capture humans, but was defeated by termites. Eventually, the character joined up with the Guardians of the Galaxy and has formed a friendship with Rocket Raccoon, forming the most obvious partnership in the history of comics. Groot has immense strength and can regrow himself from a single sprout if necessary. Groot can only speak one sentence "I am Groot", but is considerably more intelligent than his limited vocabulary suggests. Chances of appearing in the movie: 95%

Gamora: The deadliest woman in the universe. Gamora is Thanos's adopted daughter, who was raised specifically to kill the Magus, a corrupted, alternate version of Adam Warlock. Gamora is skilled with swords, knives, guns as well as martial arts. She's been romantically linked to both Warlock and Nova. Chance of appearing in the movie: 60%

DraxDrax the Destroyer: Originally a human killed by Thanos, Drax was reborn with the sole purpose of killing the mad Titan. Long a stupid brute like character, Drax was associated with Adam Warlock before he was eventually redesigned and turned into a tough, smart absolute badass. Drax eventually teamed up with Nova and killed Thanos during Annihilation. Chance of appearing in the movie: 75%

Quasar: Wielder of the Quantum Bands. The Quantum Bands are powerful artifacts that can be used to project quantum energy (much like a Green Lantern ring can project green energy). Two Quasars have been linked to the Guardians of the Galaxy. The first was Wendell Vaughan, an Avenger and friend to Richard Rider. The second is Phyla-Vell, offspring of the Kree hero Captain Marvel, whose partner, the heroine Moondragon, has her own past with Thanos. Richard Rider also briefly held the role of Quasar. Chance of appearing in the movie: 25%

Cosmo: A talking Soviet dog. Cosmo is the security chief of Knowwhere, the base where the Guardians are stationed. He has telekinetic powers and speaks with a Russian accent via telepathy. He has a rivalry with Rocket Raccoon and is one of Star-Lord's more loyal allies. Chance of appearing in the film: 25%

Bug: Bug was originally created as a character of Micronauts, a comic tie-in to the 1970s toys. However, Marvel retained the rights to the character and he eventually became a wisecracking and lothario-esque member of the Guardians of the Galaxy. Chance of appearing in the movie: 30%

Mantis: Mantis is a former Avenger with immense martial art skills as well as telepathic/precognitive abilities. She serves mainly as support staff and was one of Star-Lord's more loyal allies, even going so far as to mentally manipulate the team to stay together. Also known as the Celestial Madonna, she has a complicated past, but appeared in the Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes as the lover of Kang the Conqueror. Chance of appearing in the movie: 25%

So that's a brief rundown of the Guardians of the Galaxy. Hopefully, we'll find out more about the film in a few weeks!

Written or Contributed by: Christian Hoffer

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About the Author - Christian

Christian is the exasperated Abbott to the Outhouse's Costello. When he's not yelling at the Newsroom for upsetting readers or complaining to his wife about why the Internet is stupid, he sits in his dingy business office trying to find new ways to make the site earn money. Christian is also the only person in history stupid enough to moderate two comic book forums at once.


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