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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.
  • 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.
    • Some Spawn fans are not happy about the appearance of Angela in the current series.
  • Dork Age: Many fans of the Abnett and Lanning's run sees the Bendis run as this due to frequent out of character moments and ignoring the events from previous stories.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • For the original team, Starhawk and Aleta.
    • On the 2008 team, Rocket Raccoon. He was chosen to represent the team in Marvel vs. Capcom 3 after all.
  • 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.
  • Les Yay: The 2013 series has quite a few of these moments between Angela & 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.
  • 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.
    • Drax suddenly talking like his Space Hulk persona from the 90's despite his character development given by Keith Giffen, Abnett and Lanning.

     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 Corp. 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 interests?
    • 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...
  • 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.
  • Anticlimax 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.
  • Awesome Music: Do you like The Sixties? Do you really like The Seventies? Then, holy crap, you'll love this!
  • 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:
    • Fans are split by the decision of having Rocket Raccoon and Groot in the cast for stretching the Willing Suspension of Disbelief a bit too much.
    • There's also 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.
    • Fans of the original lineup wanted the movie to focus on them or at least feature more of them (only one member is from the original series).
    • The casting of Djimon Hounsou as Korath, as some fans had hoped he'd get to play Black Panther in his upcoming film. (Including Hounsou himself, who still wants to.)
    • There are those who love the sense of humor showcased in the trailer, whereas others are less enthusiastic.
    • The Stinger, as some people were expecting the introduction of a new important character like Adam Warlock or Richard Rider instead of a cameo by Howard the Duck also because it's pretty unlikely Marvel Studios is gonna make a Howard The Duck movie. Adding to this is that this is the last stinger before the second Avengers film, making it quite a letdown to those who were expecting another teaser like in Captain America: The First Avenger.
    • Some have felt the villains aren't as good in comparison to the likes of Loki, while others felt that setting up all five Guardians was more important than the villains.
  • 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 and crushing the helpless man's skull with his Universal Weapon. 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: Drax's specific design and back-story (while iconic with the character) has led to many comparisons with Kratos.
  • 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: From the footage showed at the D23 expo, Ooga chaka ooga ooga ooga chaka ooga ooga. Goes Up to Eleven in the full-length trailer.
    • "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!"
    • The playlist is filled with popular songs from the 70's and 80's, including works from the likes of David Bowie and The Jackson Five.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Nebula and her Sexy Walk is very hot.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Yondu is gaining some popularity due to his badassery and fun lines.
    • Howard the Duck due to his hilarious cameo at the end.
  • Friendly Fandoms:
  • He Really Can Act:
    • In spite of playing The Comically Serious character, and being a wrestler that took up acting (which typically doesn't work out, with a couple of famous exceptions), Dave Bautista has moments in the film where his portrayal of Drax movingly comes across as an individual that has lost everything and suffered for it. Critics took notice.
    • 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 an Ensemble Darkhorse 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!
    • 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 duel 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.
    • 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?
    • 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.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Nebula. Like Gamora she is another one of Thanos's experiments, except she has far more cybernetic implants. The only reason she is following 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.
  • 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'm hooked on a feeling!
    • "I am 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 
    • That hilarious inflection Korath puts on "Who?"
  • To a lesser extent: "YOU STAND ACCUSED!"Explanation 
  • Pelvic sorcery.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Ronan's first scene becomes this after Fridge Horror kicks in. Initially, he is 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/Narm Charm: "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.
  • No Problem with Licensed Games: The Universal Weapon mobile videogame 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!
  • 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."
    • 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. This is widely believed to be Adam Warlock's cocoon as per the comics, showing 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.
  • 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). 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.
  • 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:
    • Gamora's gone from "The Most Dangerous Woman in the Galaxy" to The Chick. She's got little or none of her powers from the comics, and her personality has been shifted from the mostly amoral badass of the comics to essentially the team's most empathic character (barring maybe Groot). She's also significantly more emotionally vulnerable. This all came as something of a disappointment to the handful of fans the character had from her days fighting Thanos in Infinity Watch or kicking the crap out of Ronan in Annihilation.
    • 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 a Cockney accent, even though the comics have never once indicated this was the case.
    • 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.
  • Too Cool to Live: Korath. Epically 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, and now functions to serve as this alongside The Winter Soldier and The Avengers to the final film of Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: The 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. Nebula.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: The film has a 12 rating in Britain. This is despite numerous usages of the word "shit", and Peter flipping off the camera.
  • What The Hell, 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.
  • 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.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: Word of God has admitted that Ronan may indeed have been an extreme caricature of Osama bin Laden but did not mean for the movie to be a true political commentary on the subject.
  • 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.
    • The pink servant girl, abused and threatened by the Collector. No wonder she wanted the power stone the second she understood what it was.
      • Even worse if you know that, in the comics, she's his daughter.

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