YMMV: Guardians of the Galaxy


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    The Comics 
  • Base Breaker: Angela, who is either a badass Action Girl who complements Gamora, or a bland character and a pointless addition to The Team because she fills the same role as Gamora.
  • Broken Base: A rift seems to have developed between fans of the most recent team led by Star-Lord and fans of the original team. Especially when the 2014 film was merely being talked about, and was set to include Star-Lord's team; which eventually turned out to be the case.
  • Complete Monster: Adam Magus is a sick and twisted maniac, who runs a full-blown Religion of Evil, which routinely wipes out whole planets and civilisations (like Gamora's), kills his own worshippers if he feels like it, commits psychological and physical torture on the Guardians he captures, and his ultimate endgame? Summoning a universe filled with Eldritch Abominations for the heck of it. It says something when Thanos is more pleasant than he.
  • Dork Age: Guardians of the Galaxy, in the eyes of most fans, got stuck in one. Many have lambasted the book for blatant Critical Research Failure on the part of writer Brian Michael Bendis, as well as largely missing the point of what made the book appealing to begin with by shifting the book's focus from "scrappy unknown underdogs going up against impossible odds" to "Avengers IN SPACE." Even James Gunn seems to agree; the 2014 film, in terms of costume design, tone, and casting, draws far more heavily from all the comics except the Bendis run. The most that fans seem to agree on is that at least you have Sara Pichelli's art... She then left and was replaced by Ed Mc Guinness, who is deemed a poor fit for the series. There are also a few other problems:
    • Trying to expand the roster of the Guardians (which itself was limited to the movie team to begin with) not with Got G or cosmic characters but with big name characters like Iron Man, Angela, Captain Marvel or Venom. The big issue here isn't that he decided to put those characters in the team but the fact that they more times than not end up hijacking the plot and the poor Guardians usually end up becoming the guest stars. It doesn't help that these team rotations occur in between arcs (which means more or less every six issues) so there's very little time to develop any kind of realistic bond between the new members and the old Guardians.
    • Bendis refusal to create big cosmic stories and instead trying to focus on small stories about how they are always protecting Earth (despite Earth having a ton of heroes already, this even being a plot point in Infinity) from intergalactic attacks. Of course, they always play second fiddle to another big group and their participation is anecdotic at best.
    • The constant reuse of Peter's father J'son and the Spartax empire to the point of stagnation. In three years he has been the only enemy The Guardians have faced and so far only 2 arcs exist where he is not the enemy or participates in an important role. This got to extremely ridiculous levels when the first cosmic event since Bendis took over, "The Black Vortex", was slated to finally have a new villain for the Guardians to fight, yet two months before the event even started, it was hijacked by J'son in another book and now he is slated to be the main villain.
    • Rocket became a psychopath in a failed attempt to emulate his movie persona. This sometimes clash with his supposedly hero status as people wonders why isn't he being treated as a common criminal if he goes killing all the time like it was normal. Also Bendis introduced the "Not a Raccoon" idea, an idea that has since trascended beyond the comic and is now, sadly, part of Rocket's personality in every media. Keep in mind, he's previously referred to himself as Rocket Raccoon so it makes no sense.
    • Changing Drax the Destroyer from his popular Deadpan Snarker personality from the previous volume back to his 90's "Space Hulk" personality, turning a surprisingly funny and interesting character into Dumb Muscle.
  • Fandom Berserk Button: For Dn A fans, people demanding Venom, Iron Man, or any other instance of Wolverine Publicity in the Bendis run, for the next movie.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: The Cancerverse arc is considered to be the ultimate low point of Bendis's run, with many fans wanting to forget it.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • In one issue of vol 2., the Guardians fight an alien invasion in New York. Sound familiar? Even better, they're fighting in the exact place the Avengers gathered. History never repeats, but sometimes it rhymes, indeed.
    • In the Rocket and Groot back-up story from Annihilators: Earthfall, Mojo sends "action figure variants" of Rocket into combat, identified with toy ads boasting a "Build-A-Groot" collectible figure. Sure enough, the Marvel Legends series for Guardians of the Galaxy has such a figure included in pieces with each toy.
  • Informed Wrongness: Aleta is apparently wrong to be angry at Starhawk, despite the fact that due to his origins he could have done something to prevent the deaths of their children, never mind the fact that he never took the time to try and allow them to exist as separate beings before the Stark attack.
  • Les Yay: The 2013 series has quite a few of these moments between Angela and Gamora.
    Intercom: Will you marry me?
    Angela: You're too short, Rocket.
    Intercom: This is Gamora.
    Angela: I'll consider it.
  • Memetic Badass: "I AM GROOT!"
  • Narm: The first enemy the team faces in the 90s series is a terrifying foe by the name of... Taserface. It's narm in-universe as well.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Thanos managing to kill an entire planet in only a few hours.
    • The opening of issue 7 of vol 2, where a version of the original Guardians of the Galaxy just die one by one.
    • Everything to do with the Badoon and their Zoms. Not to mention the Monsters.
    • Everything about the Cancerverse.
    • Moondragon being pregnant with a monster from the Cancerverse. And how it got into her, forcing its way in through her mouth and nose. It's also this In-universe, because they have to hear the noises it makes.
    • Groot, possessed by the gone-rogue Venom symbiote. Later, Rocket. And then, Drax.
  • Older Than They Think: The five original members of Earth-616 Guardians have debuted far before the team is established for Marvel Universe in 2008 (real-life).
    • Groot debuted in Tales to Astonish Vol. 1 #13 (1960).
    • Drax debuted in Iron Man Vol. 1 #55 (1973).
    • Gamora debuted in Strange Tales Vol. 1 #180 (1975).
    • Star-Lord debuted in Marvel Preview Vol. 1 #4 (1976).
    • Rocket debuted in Marvel Preview Vol. 1 #7 (1976).
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • Volume 2 not featuring the same team who were in the original series.
    • Before volume 3 had been released, some fans were not 'pleased' with Star-Lord's retro inspired redesign nor Gamora's costume changes, and let's not even start about the inclusion of Iron Man to the cast.
    • Rocket Raccoon:
      • In volume 3, he's not as well liked as he was in volume 2, mainly because of how he gleefully shouts about murdering enemies, and because he now seems to have a disdain for Earth, both traits that had not been there before. On top of that, his origins being changed from a mutated raccoon to a member of a race of aliens that look like raccoons.
      • As of issues 7 and 8, both complaints about Rocket Raccoon seem to have been addressed, as Rocket referenced his original origin and other characters have discouraged Rocket from using his new catchphrase as they find it "annoying and disturbing."
      • Rocket's origin and species seems to constantly flip-flop from issue to issue.
    • Bring back DnA (Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning) has pretty much become the fandom's catchphrase. Sadly Abnett and Lanning no longer work together, but did do two final Guardian's comics before their split.
    • The 2013 series being more Earth-focused than either previous series, with the inclusions of Iron Man, Captain Marvel and Agent Venom being commonly pointed to.
    • April 2014 solicitations revealing that Star-Lord will be undergoing another makeover, this time to his costume from the film set to be released later in the summer. Though many fans seemed to prefer this change to his last 2 costume changes.
    • Drax suddenly talking like his Space Hulk persona from the 90's despite his character development given by Keith Giffen, Abnett and Lanning.
    • The Planet of the Symbiotes storyline mainly for how Bendis, based on interviews, seems to be ignoring the pre-existing stories explaining Venom and Carnage's homeworld and culture so that he can take the credit for himself with his own story.
    • Star-Lord dating Kitty Pryde, of all people.
  • Wangst: Yondu's heartbroken reaction to being separated from Photon, and acts like he's lost the love of his life. Except he's only known her for ten minutes, and she spent those ten minutes trying to kill him, and expounding how much she hated her species, and its culture, and was honestly glad the Badoon had tried to wipe them out.

    The Film 
  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • Did Yondu know he'd been given a fake orb? There's certainly an argument to be made that it was in his best interest. He couldn't admit to not wanting it, but he likewise knew that selling it to anyone he'd be likely to do business with could only bring disaster, and it would be much safer with the Nova Corps. Likewise, did he not deliver Peter to his father because he really was "a jackass" as claimed, or because Yondu would much rather steal the kid for his own purposes?
    • Additionally, did Yondu ever really intend to kill Peter at any point in the film, or was he just putting on a tough act in front of his men whilst also using it to get Peter to cooperate with him? The idea that he'd been telling Peter the story of the Ravagers wanting to eat him when they picked him up over and over again for years, one of his men claiming he'd always been soft on Peter, as well as Yondu being something of a Troll lend some favour to the latter idea. Then there's Yondu's reaction being him grinning widely and warmly when he finds Peter tricked him and switched the orb.
    • At the end when Rocket attacks Ronan, is it because he blames the Kree for Groot's death and wants to punish him for it? Or is it because he knows the Dark Aster crashed because he flew his own ship into it in a failed attempt to kill Ronan, and, knowing he can't possibly win, no longer cares what happens to him because he blames himself for Groot's death?
    • Was Quill trying to talk Ronan out of destroying Xandar? Trying to reason with him near the end? Quill was pretty good at mediating between the other Guardians, so maybe his challenge to a dance-off, as disarming as it was, was also an attempt to get Ronan to stand down without killing him, since shooting him with the Hadron Enforcer and crashing his ship didn't work...
    • These two items of interest list off that Drax displays many signs of autism.
    • Despite having only a brief appearance Thanos has generated two opposing first impressions. Is he an all-powerful master schemer that the loss of the stones and the betrayals and failures of his underlings is beneath his attention, or an overconfident, out-of-touch fool who cannot keep his underlings from betraying him?
    • Ronan. Is he really a renegade of the Kree... or is he their agent, but acting as if he went rogue? The Kree Ambassador clearly didn't give a rat's ass about what Ronan is doing, and there are riots going on in the Kree Empire over the treaty. It WOULD be in the Kree Empire's best interest that Xandar be destroyed, and there's a distinct lack of Kree acting against Ronan or helping Xandar.
    • Did Ronan really remember killing Drax's family in their second encounter, or was he merely pretending to as a way to taunt Drax and Kick the Dog?
    • Rocket's replying Gamora's "You must be joking" with "No, I really heard they find you attractive", is he really missing the point or is he just being his usual Deadpan Snarker?
  • Americans Hate Tingle: The movie did rather poorly in China, mostly due to the atrocious translation job done with the Chinese subtitles.
  • And You Thought It Would Fail: Many people were claiming the film would do so, especially because it has bizarre little known comic book characters, like a Badass Adorable humanoid Rascally Raccoon. Of course, after the film became a mega-hit, Rocket is now credited as a big reason for its success.
  • Angst Aversion: The Downer Beginning, what with the mother dying and young Quill's unnerving screaming, not to mention him being too scared to hold her hand before her dying. You'd be forgiven if you want to leave the room when this happens.
  • Anti-Climax Boss: Subverted twice with Nebula and Ronan. The former starts ranting in what sounds like the opening taunts of a climactic duel, only to be hilariously swiftly shot with a rocket by Drax. To have it both ways, though, the film lets her survive and put herself back together in time for the real duel. The latter too is shot by a rocket, but anyone who's seen the "Ex-Wife" scene of Iron Man 2 knows it has no chance of working.
  • Award Snub: The movie lost the Academy Award for Best Makeup and Hairstyling to The Grand Budapest Hotel, which had substantially less makeup work.
  • Awesome Ego: Star-Lord, so much. Not quite the level of Tony Stark, but it's there.
  • Base Breaker: Ronan the Accuser. Either he was an entertaining Large Ham with a clear motivation and a clear goal in comparison to Malekith or he was a boring villain who is dragged down by having none of the Anti-Villainous traits carried by his comic book counterpart.
  • Bizarro Episode: Until a greater focus on the cosmic aspects of the Marvel Cinematic Universe are explored, along with the inevitable Avengers-VS-Thanos storyline, this movie will seem to be an out-there installment due to having minimal ties to the previous movies. However, it's been argued that this ultimately helps the film.
  • Broken Base:
    • The involvement of James Gunn at all, after some internet bloggers uncovered his year-old "50 Superheroes people want to sleep with" list, which was filled with controversial comments. Gunn has since apologized for the comments, stating that he no longer thinks such things are funny, but people are genuinely split on it, either making him a horrible person who shouldn't be directing, or thinking it's just some jokes that got taken out of proportion.
    • Even ignoring that, however, the fact that his past credits include writing for Troma and the loathed Scooby-Doo movies, as well as the mixed reception to Super (and the horrendous reception to Movie 43), led some people to question his worthiness to be directing for Marvel. Conversely, there are plenty of people who loved Super as well as his earlier film Slither who are looking forward to the film primarily because of his involvement.
    • There are those who love the sense of humor showcased in the trailer, whereas others are less enthusiastic.
    • Peter's "dance off" distraction to keep Ronan confused for a brief moment during the film's climax is either very funny or awkward and displaced.
  • Complete Monster: Ronan the Accuser is a genocidal Kree terrorist and renegade wholly devoted to the destruction of the planet of Xandar. Disgusted by his people signing a peace treaty, Ronan is introduced to the audience by confronting a captive member of Xandar's Nova Corps, crushing the helpless man's skull with his Universal Weapon, and bathing in his blood. Beginning the film as a henchman of the Mad Titan Thanos, Ronan seeks to gather an item for Thanos so that he will destroy Xandar for him. Under Thanos, Ronan has committed multiple murders, including the deaths of Drax the Destroyer's wife and daughter. He later pursues the film's motley band of heroes to the space prison The Kyln, and orders a full massacre of every prisoner to leave no witnesses. When he realizes the power of the Infinity Stone he has been sent to retrieve, Ronan double-crosses Thanos and vows to kill him after he's finished with Xandar. Assaulting the planet, he even orders his own men to become suicide bombers by flying their ships into Xandar, injuring and killing numerous civilians. After mocking Drax about finally remembering murdering his family, he declares Xandar "guilty" by his psychotic philosophy and attempts to purge it of all life. Brutal, violent, relentless, and unforgiving, Ronan stands as an example of rage, fanaticism, unchecked hatred, and utter cruelty, and really stands out in such a relatively light-hearted movie.
  • Counterpart Comparison:
  • Crazy Awesome: Rocket Raccoon is a Trigger Happy Heroic Comedic Sociopath who believes in More Dakka, hoards bombs in a shoebox, can mastermind a Prison Break in twenty minutes flat and hangs out with a talking tree. No wonder he's so popular.
  • Cuteness Overload: The fandom's overwhelming reaction to dancing baby Groot. Admit it, you want one.
  • Ear Worm: The playlist is filled with popular songs from the '70s, including works from the likes of David Bowie and The Jackson Five.
    • Ooga chaka, ooga ooga! Ooga chaka, ooga ooga!
    • "When I lay me down to die, Goin' up to the spirit in the sky..."
    • "Hello, Daddy! Hello, Mom! I'm ya ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-cherry bomb!"
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Yondu is gaining some popularity due to his badassery and fun lines.
    • Korath is quite well-liked, despite his lack of screentime compared to Ronan or Nebula.
    • Howard the Duck due to his hilarious cameo at the end. Marvel predicted this would happen and took full advantage of by digitally re-releasing his original comic series the same week as the movie's launch. He's also getting a new series in 2015 which likely wouldn't have happened without the film.
  • Epileptic Trees: A wild theory is that the scene of the Collector showing the Guardians footage of Eson The Searcher destroying a planet with the Power Stone actually teases Kang The Conqueror in a Freeze-Frame Bonus Early-Bird Cameo.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Nebula. It helps that she's played by Karen Gillan, who's known for her legs.
  • Friendly Fandoms:
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: All the hilarious moments involving the prisoners and guards on the Kyln become somewhat grimmer on subsequent viewings, since we know that Ronan is going to have all of them killed once he gets to the station.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Ronan's introduction scene became this after ISIS began similar tactics against their prisoners later into the month of this film's release.
  • He Really Can Act:
    • Dave Bautista as Drax. As a professional wrestler, Bautista had acted in some minor roles before (always in roles where they were looking for a wrestler), but nothing this big. His timing as the Comically Serious Literal-Minded Drax was hilarious, but he was also able to effectively portray his character's grief over the loss of his family and later the guilt he felt over alerting the villains to the Guardians' whereabouts. Most critics praised his performance. Even the New York Times critic referred to him in passing as "the terrific Dave Bautista".
    • Although he'd proven himself to many with his collaborations with David O. Russell, some were worried about the effectiveness that Bradley Cooper would have as Rocket, given his relative inexperience as a voice actor. However, he proved to be popular in the film, expertly delivering the Raccoon's snark and conveying his self-doubt and care for Groot very well.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • In the third installment of The Scorpion King, Dave Bautista plays a (shirtless) resurrected warrior who's Dual Wielding curved daggers.
    • In Star Trek, Zoe Saldana's roommate at Starfleet Academy was a Green-Skinned Space Babe. Here, she is one. Not only that, Zoe, Idris Elba and Chris Evans were in The Losers, a DC Comics property. Fast forward four years and they're all now in the Marvel universe.
    • You know who else was from a DC comics property? Dave Batista (Drax) in Smallville! Specifically, he played the spine-tearing, bone-munching Monster of the Week Aldar. The part where Drax asks Rhomann if removing someone's spine is illegal sounds even more ironic now.
    • As noted below, Brett White was quick to make a post about the audacity of this film and its characters, whilst Wonder Woman's movie debut had been continuously postponed. Not long after, Wonder Woman was announced to be making an appearance in the sequel to Man of Steel.
    • The comic book version of Drax has been revisioned a few times with the most recent version (a slimmer but strong body, a dark mood, and dual daggers) leading many fans to compare him to Riddick. This movie uses this version of Drax while also starring Vin Diesel as a separate character. Made even funnier when you take into account that Dave Batista starred alongside Diesel in the above mentioned film.
    • Josh Brolin being cast as Thanos, the universe's Big Bad, after playing a special agent defending the earth against extraterrestrial threats in Men In Black 3.
    • Peter Quill's line about having "part of a plan!", considering he was previously Idiot Hero Emmet who was over-reliant on instructions and plans. Also, Emmett learned that his "friends" don't even know him by name. Peter has almost the same problem with his Star-Lord moniker.
    • Kevin Bacon being considered an inspiring hero to all by Star-Lord when he played the mutant supremacist Sebastian Shaw in X-Men: First Class.
    • For fans of Professional Wrestling, Drax's failure to understand the throat slash gesture. Drax's actor, of course, is Batista of WWE fame. Batista at one point had a longstanding feud with The Undertaker, who uses a throat slash as a signature taunt.
    • When Peter is ambushed by Korath and his thugs on Morag, he snaps at one of them, "Ninja Turtle, you better stop poking me!" Guess which new film knocked Guardians of the Galaxy off of No. 1 at the box office? It becomes even more hilarious a few weeks later when Guardians actually retakes the No. 1 spot at the box office from TMNT.
    • The Memetic Mutation of Korath's reaction to hearing Quill call himself "Star-Lord". Guess who's the first character in the film to use Quill's "outlaw name" seriously.
    • The casting of Chris Pratt in the MCU as Star-Lord is hilarious to some Everwood fans as on that show, he was Emily VanCamp's brother. In other words, Star-Lord and Sharon Carter were siblings.
    • In the comics, Bug often complains about not being in the team's first line-up. He was originally included in the film line-up, before being dropped from the script.
    • This fan-made mashup trailer spliced scenes from the Star Wars original trilogy to the style of this movie's trailer. This is hilarious because of Howard the Duck's appearance in The Stinger, who had a movie back in '86 produced by...George Lucas. Even more so hilarious now that Disney owns both Marvel and Star Wars.
    • In an amusing coincidence, When the film was released, it opened opposite to Get On Up starring Chadwick Boseman. Just a handful of months later, he was announced as being chosen to play the Black Panther in future Marvel films.
    • Yondu describes Peter's father as "a jackass". Recent events in the comics have shown that J'Son of Spartax (Peter's dad in the comics) actually is a bit of a jackass.
  • Hype Backlash:
    • Some people were displeased with the treatment of some of the characters (The Nova Corps in particular) and quick to point out the flaws of the movie.
    • Some Star Wars fans are very quick to point out that as good as GotG is, it's got ways to go in order to reach the same level as Star Wars.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Nebula. Like Gamora, she's another one of Thanos's experiments, except she has far more cybernetic implants and is The Unfavorite. The only reason she followed Ronan was in the hopes that he could kill Thanos.
    • Rocket as well. His gruff, don't-take-crap-from-anyone personality makes him a fairly abrasive and somewhat misanthropic character early on, but it hides a lot of resentment and pain over his origins. His breakdown post-alcohol shows the audience where he's coming from.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Quite a few people watched the movie just for Rocket Raccoon.
  • Like You Would Really Do It: Groot's "death".
  • Magnum Opus: For James Gunn. The film is already on track to becoming his highest grossing film and has received substantially positive reviews.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "What a bunch of a-holes."Explanation 
    • The various gifs of Rocket Raccoon shooting his guns.
    • This summer, it's time to give a shit.
    • From this tweet: "DC/WB is all like 'Wonder Woman's too confusing for a movie!' and Marvel/Disney is all like 'Here's a raccoon with a machine gun.'"
    • [OOGA CHAKA INTENSIFIES] Explanation 
    • "I am Groot." Relatedly, "We are Groot."Explanation 
    • Dancing Baby Groot. Who doesn't like Dancing Baby Groot?
    • Rocket laughing at Star-Lord's 12% of a plan, and the subsequent argument between Quill & Rocket.
    • Thanks to The Stinger, the film has been deemed by many as the best Howard the Duck film ever made... Which isn't surprising.
    • Responding to pictures/clips of Andy (Chris Pratt's goofy Man Child character from Parks and Recreation) with "I'm glad he's guarding our galaxy".
    • "I'm gonna need his X" Explanation  Soon, people took notice of a particular character who had a metal arm. Utter hilarity ensued.
    • "Who?" Explanation 
    • "Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't know how this machine worked."Explanation 
    • "Oh... yeah."Explanation 
    • To a lesser extent: "YOU STAND ACCUSED!"Explanation 
    • Pelvic sorcery.Explanation 
    • "Nothing goes over my head. My reflexes are too fast. I would catch it." note 
    • "What are you doing? ....What are you doing?" note 
    • "We're just like Kevin Bacon!" Explanation 
    • "They got my dick message!"Explanation 
    • This series makes no sense
  • Moral Event Horizon: Ronan's first scene becomes this after Fridge Horror kicks in. Initially, he's introduced as coming out of a very large liquid chamber that the audience is led to believe is some sort of water. However, when he murders his Xandarian captive, the blood from his corpse is used to fill a slight amount of the liquid chamber. To put it bluntly, he murdered dozens of innocent Xandarians to bathe in their blood, and it's implied he does this regularly.
  • Narm:
    • "Your politics bore me", a line coming from Thanos, comes across as unintentionally hammy and almost straight out of something you would hear in a Golden Age comic book. Though it helps a bit that this mirrors the reaction of a lot of the audience towards Ronan. He also refers to Ronan as having the demeanor of "a pouting child", something that would be outright silly if Ronan wasn't indeed pouting like a sullen little boy upon his departure.
    • The fact that nearly all of Groot's lines are followed up by Rocket Repeating so the Audience Can Hear. It kind of ruins Groot's mystique and makes Rocket's dialogue sound really forced. It occasionally works - "I know they're the only friends we've ever had!" is a fairly powerful line - but mostly it comes across as lame.
  • Narm Charm: Drax's dialogue at points can reach Narmic levels, but during the team's Darkest Hour you can really feel his pain.
  • Never Live It Down: Similarly to Iron Man 3's reveal that the Mandarin is only an actornote , many people joke that other upcoming superhero movies will end on the note of the hero challenging the villain to a dance-off.
  • Newer Than They Think: Between the pulp-sounding name (including Rocket Raccoon), '70s soundtrack, and Raygun Gothic elements, most people are surprised that the movie is based on an incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy from a 2008 series.
  • No Problem with Licensed Games: The Universal Weapon mobile video game is a decent, although a bit repetitive, one.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • Thanos has only two brief appearances, but he makes a hell of a first impression.
    • Howard the Duck totally steals the show in The Stinger.
    • Despite press releases making a bigger deal out of Benicio Del Toro's involvement than Glenn Close's, The Collector is only present in one scene for an Info Dump and in the stinger. But hell if he didn't milk his scenes for all they were worth!
    • Cosmo the Space-Dog, in the Collector's archive.
  • Rewatch Bonus: There are certain things you can pick up on upon your third or fourth viewing. Highlights include:
    • Yondu's chest glows red when he activates his arrow.
    • In the movie, the prisoner line-up says "Space-Lord" instead of "Star-Lord", keeping in line with the idea that nobody knows who he is. Also from the line-up, a scan of Peter's DNA has a warning sign flashing over it, a hint that he isn't fully human.
    • Rocket's voice cracks as he pretends he needs a prisoner's artificial leg.
    • You can actually see Howard the Duck for a brief moment in the Collector exposition scene.
    • A huge cocoon which was also in Thor: The Dark World can be seen open in the after-credits scene. According to James Gunn, this is Adam Warlock's cocoon as per the comics, meaning that the After-Credits scene isn't just a gag for Howard.
    • The twig that Rocket holds in the climax glows purple. It's a hint that Groot is still alive.
  • Signature Scene: The opening with Star-Lord dancing to "Come And Get Your Love".
  • Spiritual Licensee:
    • To people not as well-versed in comic books, the film is drawing a lot of comparisons to Farscape, due to its lineup including a gentle plant-person character who's not to be messed with (Zhaan/Groot), a snarky white leader guy who is an Earth-human Trapped in Another World (Star-Lord/John Crichton), a small, sociopathic, anthropomorphic talking thing (Rocket Raccoon/Rygel), a big, intimidating guy with a dead wife and an oddly innocent hidden side (Drax/D'Argo), and a repressed, deadly, formerly-evil woman who acts as "the sensible one" (Gamora/Aeryn) who do battle with a deranged rogue alien warlord (Ronan/Crais). A notable number of the changes to the characters from the comic took them in the direction of being closer to the Farscape ones. Ironically, an actual Farscape movie was announced shortly after the original teaser trailer was released.
    • It's also getting a lot of comparisons to Firefly in terms of tone, character archetypes, and visual style. The fact that the creator of Firefly, Joss Whedon, is the director of both of the Avengers movies (and a large creative force in the MCU) definitely helps.
    • It has been compared to Schlock Mercenary, another comedic space opera about a group of heroic ruffians from diverse, morally ambiguous backgrounds. Howard Tayler has himself noted the similarities.
    • Some also consider it to be a great Star Wars movie, up there with the original trilogy.
    • Some fans consider the film a suitable Spiritual Sequel to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
    • And yet another camp consider it the next-best thing to an adaptation of Transformers: More than Meets the Eye, in terms of tone and style. Even the writer of MTMTE has commented that the film is probably the closest there will ever be to a live-action adaption of the comic.
    • Despite being in a completely different genre, the movie's rapid-fire comedy, ensemble cast of underdog criminals and memorable 1970's pop soundtrack also make it an unlikely successor to Reservoir Dogs. Both movies even prominently feature Blue Swede's "Hooked on a Feeling" — a song that Reservoir Dogs helped re-popularize after it had been largely forgotten — in pivotal scenes.
    • Given that it's a reasonably family-friendly supernatural buddy comedy with enough large-scale action and subtle bawdy humor to appeal to adults, many people have called it a successor to Ghostbusters.
    • It's pretty much the best Mass Effect 2 movie we'll ever get. The Kyln is Purgatory, Knowhere is Omega, and the fully suited-up Nova Corpsmen could pretty easily fit in amongst the mercenaries of the Mass Effect universe.
  • Spoiled by the Format: Averted with The Stinger. The creators of the character that appears in the stinger (Howard the Duck) aren't credited until after the stinger itself is shown, as opposed to in the main credits themselves.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • Complaints were leveled at Gamora for several changes that were done to her character, such as making her more empathetic, compared to a fairly amoral Deadpan Snarker she was in the comics, as well as the reduction in her power level (which numerous other characters also experienced).
    • Some people reacted this way when James Gunn switched Drax's archenemy from Thanos to Ronan. However, Drax vows that he will kill Thanos after avenging his family's deaths with Ronan's death, reasoning that whilst Ronan killed them, he was working for Thanos at the time.
    • Rocket Raccoon not having the Cockney accent Greg Ellis chose for him in Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes. The comics never indicated that he had one, though.
    • Korath being black instead of blue like in the comics.
    • The fact that all members of the Nova Corps are humans or Human Aliens.
    • The design of the Nova Corps suits are considered bland and generic by some, whilst others are displeased about the members of the Nova Corps not having the Nova Force which gives them superpowers. James Gunn is on record that there was stuff cut from the film because the end of the film was already Nova Corps heavy, and there's some stuff in the MCU lore that make them more like the Nova Corps of the comics, such as the Nova Force.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • The Collector was built up as being important to this movie in Thor: The Dark World, but he only appears a few minor scenes and in one scene where he serves as Mr. Exposition, along with The Stinger, which unfortunately isn't plot-relevant so much as it is a throwaway gag. It's especially surprising considering that he was implied to be a servant of Thanos in that movie. Nonetheless, he does leave an impact with his charismatic performance, and since the character wasn't killed off, he will likely appear in other movies.
    • Like the Collector, the Nova Corps can seem underused to many fans. The bulk of their forces serve primarily as Red Shirt Army and unlike Nebula and Yondu, the named members lack any deep close relationships with the Guardians until the end when the surviving members repair the Milano. Fortunately, some named members like Irani Rael and Rhomann Dey survive and can be explored in further installments.
    • Ronan. In the comics he has received some great character development and become a complex Anti-Villain who often works as an ally of the heroes. In the film he is portrayed as a standard pure evil villain, which wouldn't be so bad if he wasn't incinerated by the Power Stone at the end of the film without developing any Anti-Villainous traits.
  • Too Cool to Live: Subverted with Groot.
  • Tough Act to Follow: This film had the dubious honor of following the critically-acclaimed Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Remarkably, it more than lived up to the hype, earning a worldwide box office gross that surpassed that of The Winter Soldier. Now, both pictures serve as this alongside The Avengers to the final film of Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Avengers: Age of Ultron.
  • Trailer Joke Decay: "What a bunch of A-Holes," was in nearly every single promotional thing about the movie. Some who liked the joke didn't like it by the time the film came out. Quill's "mechanical middle finger" is also uncensored in the film, which ends up looking pretty awkward, especially since the trailer's "Obscene Gesture Imminent" bit was a pretty good joke on its own.
  • Ugly Cute: Groot and Nebula.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: All over the place, but on the commentary James Gunn points out an easily missed one: many people assumed Rocket's facial expressions were done with motion capture, but this actually wasn't possible because of how different human and racoon faces are. So all that emotion comes directly from the animators.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: The film has a 12+ rating in Britain, despite numerous usages of the word "shit", and Peter flipping off the camera.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: Word of God has admitted that Ronan may indeed have been an extreme caricature of terrorists, but didn't mean for the movie to be a true political commentary on the subject.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Badass?: Gamora. Detractors dislike the fact that she's not a god-level murder machine that kills everyone and everything the group comes across in two seconds flat (which she isn't in the comics they champion as an example of her badassery, either), and exaggerate her into being "borderline incompetent and constantly needing to be rescued" despite her being anything but.
  • Win the Crowd: The first trailer seemed to many like a standard space swashbuckler; but when the guard plays Star Lord's walkman and you hear "Hooked on a Feeling"'s "Ooga chaka!" chant coming through followed by the full chorus of that 1970s pop ballad roaring out, people learned this film has a wacky flavor all its own.
  • WTH, Casting Agency?: The casting of Vin Diesel as Groot was met with this, but not because the role doesn't fit like most examples, but because most people expected him to appear in a different role in the MCU (such as The Punisher). Of course, there's still the possibility that he could play a different character as well as Groot, given that Groot is only a motion-capture character anyway. However, he has since teased the possibility that he could be in a movie based on The Inhumans. Another common complaint is "Why would they hire a big-name actor to only say one line over and over?" (Of course, he milks the heck out of that line and gives a very meaningful tweak to it near the end.)
  • The Woobie:
    • The entire main cast, but especially Rocket. He's the only one of his kind that he knows of and he constantly has feelings of loneliness and inferiority because of his species, not to mention the pain he probably went through during his creation.
    • Carina, who was abused and threatened by the Collector. No wonder she wanted the Infinity Stone the second she understood what it was. Even worse if you know that, in the comics, she's his daughter.