Marvel Studios has provided our first look at Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. It comes by way of a brilliant piece of concept art by the remarkably talented Andy Park. A veteran of Marvel’s visual development team, Park has put together what looks like a new lineup for the team.
Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista), Rocket (Bradley Cooper), and baby Groot (Vin Diesel) are all back and sporting slightly modified looks. Groot has gone through the biggest (or is it smallest?) change while everyone else seems to have wardrobe add-ons.
This is concept art, so the final looks for the film could vary. What matters even more are the other characters included in this piece. The original Guardians are flanked by familiar faces Yondu (Michael Rooker) and Nebula (Karen Gillan) and newcomer Mantis (Pom Klementieff).
Mantis has pretty much already been confirmed to be a member of the team. She was a Guardian in the 2008 comic book run from which most of the roster was taken for Guardians of the Galaxy in 2014. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, which got the exclusive for this concept art, executive producer Jonathan Schwartz described the movie version of Mantis.
She has never really experienced social interaction. Everything she learns about dealing with people, she learns from the Guardians of the Galaxy, which is a very weird group to learn your social intricacies from.
Yondu and Nebula have also been suggested as new members, so this art is confirmation of their membership or at least an uneasy alliance.
When last we saw Yondu, he was allowing himself to be swindled out of the Power Stone by Peter Quill (Star-Lord). He may threaten Quill all the time, but since when has that disqualified someone from being a Guardian? It was Yondu’s job to bring Quill to the latter’s father. With the mystery of Papa Star-Lord being a big part of the second film, it’s easy to see Yondu having reason to team up with his former Ravager protégé.
Our time with Nebula ended in the last film with her chopping off her own hand instead of taking Gamora’s to help the Guardians in the Battle of Xandar. Having betrayed her father, Thanos (Josh Brolin, not in GotG Vol. 2), and lost her boss, Ronan (Lee Pace), Nebula has quickly run out of friends. Perhaps that and other events in the new film will cause her to reconsider her anti-Guardians stance.
There will be more fuel for speculation when director James Gunn and the cast premiere the first footage from the film during Marvel Studios’ presentation at San Diego Comic-Con next Saturday, July 23. Until then, let me know what you’re taking away from this art in the comments section!
Marcel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 will be released on May 5, 2017.