The floral colossus confronts his past and fights for the future!

Celebrate this incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s tenth anniversary while also prepping for the May 5 release of their new film with these gems from Marvel Unlimited!

Everyone loves Groot. Whether he’s blasting away bad guys with his Guardians pals or dancing in a coffee mug, only the coldest of hearts refuse to melt for this benevolent warrior. So it came as no surprise when the Flora colossi scored his own series in 2015. Written by Jeff Loveness and drawn by Brian Kesinger, the six issue run featured Groot doing everything in his power to save his pal Rocket from the clutches of the evil space pirate Eris.

In issues #25, Groot remembered meeting his raccoon-like friend in a prison, then met up with Silver Surfer and his companion Dawn, saved a planet from a cosmic storm and befriended a new group of friends including three inept Skrulls, a 90s-created robot named Mantron, and Numinus, the cosmic embodiment of chance and fate. Even without the toughest folks backing him, Groot still inspired confidence in this crew to take on Eris and save Rocket!

Groot (2015) #1

Groot (2015) #1

  • Published: June 03, 2015
  • Added to Marvel Unlimited: December 07, 2015
  • Rating: Rated T
  • Writer: Jeff Loveness
  • Cover Artist: Declan Shalvey
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With that whole mess cleaned up, Rocket finally agreed to take Groot to Earth. After marking some things off of a To Do list recommended by fellow Guardians, they got down to the real business of the trip: finding an acquaintance of Groot’s. As we discover through a mental conversation between our hero and young Jean Grey, once upon a time the people of Planet X started abducting people to study. Groot knew this was wrong and helped a young girl named Hannah escape. He succeeded, but soon found himself banished from his home leading him down the path to eventually hook up with the Guardians of the Galaxy!

The series closed with Groot sitting with Hannah and a beautiful message about friendship: “Because of her, I learned the greatest truth I know. One I live be every day…Life is not about the shadow you cast on your enemies…But the shade you provide to your friends.”

Transmissions from Knowhere

Groot first appeared in 1960’s TALES TO ASTONISH #13 and only showed up a few other times between that and ANNIHILATION CONQUEST: STAR-LORD. In MARVEL MONSTERS: MONSTERS ON THE PROWL, The Collector held Groot and a variety of other creatures in his secret Canadian facility before they broke out. Later, Groot again fell into captivity, this time by the supernatural-themed team in NICK FURY’S HOWLING COMMANDOES. Sometime between the end of that series—in which he helped defeat Merlin—and STAR-LORD #1, Groot became captured again for unspecified crimes against the Kree. Since then, he’s done a pretty good job of staying out of incarceration.

Next time, Groot and his new teammates test themselves in the fires of intergalactic war in the pages of ANNIHILATION: CONQUEST.

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The team meets Angela, battles Thanos once again, and much more!

Celebrate this incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s tenth anniversary while also prepping for the May 5 release of their new film with these gems from Marvel Unlimited!

Writer Brian Michael Bendis’ first arc on GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY may have dropped the team in the middle of intergalactic politics, but the second—issues #410, specifically—introduced them to a brand new lifeform and mixed them up with another Thanos plot to destroy the Earth. The legendary Neil Gaiman also helped work on some of these stories, drawn by Sara Pichelli, Olivier Coipel, Valerio Schiti, Francesco Francavilla, and Kevin Maguire.

As the team celebrates a victory, Iron Man and Gamora sneak off to get friendly, after which Tony calls Pepper Potts and the deadliest woman in the galaxy finds herself targeted by Maxilin the Accuser. She gets back on her feet and gives him trouble, but he proves formidable enough to nearly kill her until the Guardians appear and Rocket takes him out.

After that, Peter meets up with former Guardian Mantis to talk about a vision he received that revealed the past and future to him all at once. She couldn’t help, but did suggest he talk to an old foe. Meanwhile, Angela—who debuted at the end of AGE OF ULTRON #10—hits the scene and immediately goes toe-to-toe with Gamora.

As that battle rages, Star-Lord meets with the previously alluded to individual: Thanos. He’d also seen a vision, but knew the truth behind it: “The Earth is doomed.” Why? Because they messed with time and space way too many times. Peter, as you might expect, doesn’t like this revelation.

Eventually, the Guardians get the drop on Angela and lock her up. Peter returns, hears her story and releases her from captivity so she could head to Earth and see it for herself.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2013) #4

Guardians of the Galaxy (2013) #4

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Back in the vicinity of Quill and Stark’s home planet, the Guardians answer a distress call from Abigail Brand, head of S.W.O.R.D., who has been overtaken by Thanos’ forces in the pages of INFINITY. Even Angela gets in the action.

Finally, in the last issue of this batch, Gamora and Angela bury the hatchet and team up to blast the Brotherhood of the Badoon on their home planet of Moord in an attempt to find the missing Thanos. They even learn the truth that he’s on Earth, but don’t believe the source and head back into space towards their next adventure!

Transmissions from Knowhere

Between issues #9 and #10, the Guardians got involved in Jonathan Hickman’s Infinity, which saw the Avengers teaming with all kinds of alien races to defeat Thanos and the Builders. However, our heroes only popped up after saving Abigail Brand in the sixth and final issue of the event’s core limited series. The Guardians played an important part in the overall battle that ended with Thanos frozen in a statue-like state. That didn’t last long as Namor freed the Mad Titan in NEW AVENGERS, but even the being who’s nearly destroyed reality more times than we can count fell quickly to Emperor God Doom in the pages of SECRET WARS. Of course, he returned along with everyone else in the All-New, All-Different Marvel Universe in books like THE ULTIMATES and CIVIL WAR II.

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Brian Michael Bendis lists his favorite moments from nearly five years with the team!

Stuck on Earth and scattered across the planet, if there’s one thing that can bring the Guardians of the Galaxy back together, it’s a common enemy. On April 12, “Grounded” reaches its conclusion with the final issue by writer Brian Michael Bendis in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #19!

After close to five years of wandering around the universe and sometimes saving the day, it’s time for the Guardians to part ways with one of Marvel’s most prolific writers. An era of Guardians history comes to a close in this special doubled-sized issue, featuring work from Valerio Schiti and an all-star team of guest artists.

To celebrate the achievement, Brian gave us a retrospective look at his favorite moments alongside the most dysfunctional super group in the galaxy.

Marvel.com: Let’s start with the best of the worst: favorite villain?

Brian Michael Bendis: Peter’s father. It was one of the reasons I wanted to write this book, having done the research working with the Marvel Cinematic Creative Committee. They were debating whether or not Guardians was a movie franchise—this was when Guardians was as cult as it gets. They sent me some material and some things they were thinking about and I started reading—and I had read it as a fan—but to read it considering its global potential was an interesting thing to do. And then reading Peter’s origin story was so exciting to me because, if you read it, it’s as good as Spider-Man or Superman, it’s just not as well known. The purity of narrative is beautiful. This king crash-lands on Earth in the middle of a space war, falls in love with an Earth person, knocks her up, goes back to his space war, and she’s left on Earth with a half-alien baby—and the boy will never know. This is phenomenal stuff. And then he grows up to find out who he is and “Oh my god, your father’s an a-hole across the galaxy!” Most kings of anything are not known for their warmth. So, to dive into that and cover that for almost the first entire volume was very fun and something I was dying to write.

Marvel.com: Favorite guest star?

Brian Michael Bendis: Just last night, I wrote my goodbye to Guardians, so it’s all fresh on my mind. I think having Tony Stark up in space for as long as we did in the middle of golden run as a movie star was pretty exciting. Also, we had a lot of fun with him—what a great field trip for Tony to go on. And then, hilariously, him and Gamora hooking up, which shows up on my Tumblr feed every three days. It’s going down well as one of the great super hero hookups.

Marvel.com: Favorite event or tie-in?

Brian Michael Bendis: I’m very, very fond of “The Trial of Jean Grey,” even though that was a self-executed mini-crossover. I love when the X-Men go off into space, I love the weird X-Men stories. And the idea of bringing Jean Grey into the present and Jean Grey being a gigantic cosmic serial killer, as far as most people are concerned, a genocidal maniac. To put her on trial and be actively writing both books, making sure the trial happened organically in both books, was very exciting. It was like, “Ooo, you know what’s never been told before, this story. And I’m writing both books!? And, oh my god, Kitty and Peter fall in love in the process!” So everything about that, I really enjoyed and I hear from a lot of people about that. That’s probably everyone’s favorite story from my run? That’s the one I hear about the most.

But the one I think is my favorite tie-in stuff is probably the Black Vortex stuff, which is Sam Humphries’ storyline, but I thought it spoke well to what we, as a group of writers and artists, added to the galactic books over the course of the last couple years. There were interesting interactions between all the characters. We were just way into it.

But I also gotta say, for as weird as it is, the Guardians were always kind of in their own little world, and I know people like that about them as well. One of my mandates was to bring them more to a centered position in the Marvel Universe, so I added them into Infinity, which was the first time they crossed over in one of my books. Just having them show up in the event was so surprising because they’d never shown up in anything before. So that moment was really exciting for me.

Marvel.com: Favorite fight?

Brian Michael Bendis: Kevin Maguire is one of my favorite comic book artists of all time and we got him to do a couple of issues. And it was an issue with a Gamora and Angela team-up, [GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #10], I thought he did an outstanding job with that issue. It was a big, big fight, breaking into a planet, and I thought he did an exceptional job.

Marvel.com: Favorite Groot quote?

Brian Michael Bendis: I actually have a very funny story about that. We were making the “Powers” TV show last year and I was on set, because I wrote episodes. And I’d be in the video village and I had a little desk where I’d sit and literally write Marvel comics while they were setting up the lights and stuff. There were sometimes hours where I literally had nothing to do, so I’d sit and type. So I was sitting in the corner, typing. And one of the actors, whose name is Sharlto Copley, he’s in the show—he keeps looking over, thinking I’m writing the TV show. And I’m writing GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. Sharlto comes up behind me and just out of nowhere, reads what he sees on my screen, and yells “I am Groot!?” And it turns out, Sharlto has no idea who the Guardians of the Galaxy are, he never saw the movie, he has no idea what “I am Groot” means. And it was one of the pages where Groot keeps interrupting, that’s the joke, he’s just saying “I am Groot, I am Groot,” so Sharlto looks at it and thinks I’m crazy. He yells, “I am Groot,” everyone else in the video village jumps because they’re like, “Why is he yelling ‘I am Groot,’” because they get the reference. It was a totally unique, once-in-a-lifetime, hilarious moment where he’s yelling “I am Groot, I am Groot” and has no idea why people are laughing.

But one of my favorite moments of writing the entire series was the variant cover that Dale Keown did where the joke is that Jean Grey is talking to him and she can translate “I am Groot” into his actual words and his words are very poetic—and I probably worked harder on those words than anything I worked on that year. You got a little taste of what goes on in Groot’s head for real and I heard from a lot of people on that, so that went well.

Marvel.com: And favorite Guardian?

Brian Michael Bendis: Ahh! See, having written other team books, it’s never about “favorite Guardian,” it’s really “favorite relationship.” We knew that Rocket and Groot are the relationship. But when you discover friendships, or antagonisms, or a new type of relationship within the group of friends, that’s always my favorite stuff. So when something like Angela and Gamora—they really like each other. I think Angela just adores Gamora, and they fight well together and are happy to know each other—that kind of stuff I really like. And I liked writing Tony and Rocket, because Tony is sometimes like Rocket, but in the Avengers. He’s kind of caustic and like “I know everything and everyone’s gonna do what I say.” So for him to [be] faced with this little animal version of his own ego, on a ship—it’s really fun to write. On Avengers, it was discovering that Luke Cage and Spider-Man were hilarious together. That was a surprise, it wasn’t planned. The same thing happens here, where the characters start to gravitate towards each other or away from each other, and the towards each other is always the most fun stuff. And you can’t force it.

I also like this—and I know people really like this and it’s the thing that I’m [guiltiest] of—but, if Kitty Pryde’s not busy, I will grab her and put her in my book. And the most outlandish incident of me doing this is putting her in outer space for a while. I thought Kitty’s no-nonsense, once-a-teacher, strong-Jewish-woman-up-in-space was a ton of fun. And her juxtaposition to Gamora was a great bit of fun. I think her presence on the team, with Tony’s, was very different. What I wanted, and liked, was adding this element that wasn’t in the movies. Just to see what shakes out differently—and with Tony and with Carol [Danvers] and with Kitty and Venom and Ben Grimm, I thought we were able to do that every time.

Marvel.com: What about the team dynamic did you enjoy writing most? How did you approach the characters differently as time went on?

Brian Michael Bendis: I kind of got it in my head that they’re kind of on a road trip that never ends. They’re in a big RV, or on a tour bus, and the tour never ends—the dynamic of a tour. Traveling with family or traveling with friends—you ever go on a long trip with friends? It’s unique. So I wanted that dynamic to be constant, fighting over food and chairs and where we’re gonna stop and where we’re gonna eat. Just making sure that the life seemed like it was being lived inside that ship in a way that most people can relate to—you get on each other’s nerves, you laugh at stupid stuff, you get the giggles. Just normal traveling stuff. I also like that they all go away from each other for a while too.

It’s a very unique book in how they interact with each other. They are as close to family as anything in comics, but they also have their adventures. Always making sure that it felt like they were living together. There’s a lot of detail in the scripts about what’s in their rooms; Peter’s room is messy, Gamora’s room is perfect—how their lives interact with their environment. It’s a fun part for me.

Marvel.com: And finally, what are your overall thoughts looking back on nearly five years with the Guardians of the Galaxy?

Brian Michael Bendis: When I got the job, I originally came into comics as a crime fiction writer, and the things I was most known for, Daredevil or Jessica Jones, real-world crime fiction, that is what’s been my additive element to comics—my love of this and where my strengths are. So I found myself, just a few years later, writing a talking raccoon book—and dying to do it. That’s the other thing: I wasn’t doing it just to see if I could; I really wanted to do it. And when I got the call to do it, I was so excited because the challenge is enormous. Because, we haven’t mentioned, when I got the book, the book hadn’t been produced for a while. The last volume [before] was considered one of the great standards of Marvel Comics and one of the great runs of all time. The reason that there’s a movie is because of them. Stepping into a book that was already so well-loved among the core fanbase, no matter what I had accomplished in comics, I knew I was going to have to prove myself over time. So I was grateful that I was allowed the chance to do so.

The other thing that has to be mentioned is that there wasn’t one issue of any Guardians book that I had my name on that wasn’t drawn by one of the great talents of this generation of comics. From Steve McNiven, to Sara [Pichelli], to Frank Cho, to Kevin Maguire, and finally with Valerio Schiti—every annual, every special, every tie-in, everything we did had these great artists, including our finale, which is packed full of these awesome artists that I love so much. People just love these characters so much and they love drawing them, so every time you call up anybody in comics and say “Hey, you wanna draw raccoons and trees and spaceships for an issue?” the answer is “Yes I do!” So I was, and will forever be grateful, that the book was so beautiful, and exciting, and poppy on every single page. This book was gorgeous.

I also became very aware, of all the books that I write—and I write some very mainstream books that people have heard of—from the moment that I took the book, all the way through to this weekend at a sleepover that my kids had, if you tell kids that you’re the writer of Guardians of the Galaxy, they crap their pants. And I write Spider-Man and Avengers and Iron Man, but Guardians—my children’s friends stare at me like Rocket Raccoon actually just walked in the door. So, of all the books that are out there right now, I think Guardians is the one that has the most gateway potential. Kids are going to be seeing this and I’m so proud that when they see our stuff, they’re going to be seeing such beautiful comics—because on top of the characters, that’s how people fall in love with the medium. And I hope, when people see Valerio’s work or Steve’s work—and how exciting a visual and inspiring for the imagination it is—that people will find a way to stay with us. So my takeaway is that I’m very happy that the movie took off and that I bet right—because I bet on this a year before the movie came out and I was very happy that it did. But I’m also immensely proud to have put my name on such beautifully illustrated books.

Witness the end of an era with GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #19, by Brian Michael Bendis and artist Valerio Schiti, on April 12!

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Earth’s Mightiest Heroes aid our spacefaring friends against Thanos!

Celebrate this incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s tenth anniversary while also prepping for the May 5 release of their new film with these gems from Marvel Unlimited!

Earth’s Mightiest Heroes found themselves in quite the predicament as writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Mark Bagley’s AVENGERS ASSEMBLE series launched in 2012. The newly minted Zodiac seemed far more powerful than ever, but that made more sense by the end of the third installment when Thanos revealed himself as their mysterious benefactor. Luckily for the team, the Guardians of the Galaxy flew in to help out at the end of the next issue.

Star-Lord, Rocket, Groot, Gamora, Drax, and Bug accompanied the Avengers into space where they battled the Badoon and then a powered-up Thanos who had gotten his hands on an experimental Cosmic Cube created by the U.S. Government. Thanks to the collective experience of both teams and a trip to the Cancerverse where they met up with the Elders of the Universe, all present succeeded in saving existence.

Avengers Assemble (2012) #4

Avengers Assemble (2012) #4

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This, of course, led into the Bendis-written GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY series that launched in 2013 with art by Steve McNiven and Sara Pichelli. Without yet getting into how Peter or Thanos escaped the Cancerverse as seen at the end of THE THANOS IMPERATIVE, the new book kicked off with a .1 issue that showcased Quill’s origin as the half-human, half-Spartax prince supposed to act as Star-Lord for his planet, but who wanted nothing to do with their war-mongering empire-building past.

Speaking of which, his dad, King J-Son of Spartax, worked with a council of galactic empires that included the Kree Supreme Intelligence, the Brood Queen, Gladiator of the Shi’ar, Annihilus of the Negative Zone, Freyja of Asgard, and Y-Gaaar of the Brood Brotherhood. They decided that, since Earth looked to jump into the cosmic fray as a legit power in the next few generations, they should all just avoid it. Making it official, they declared Earth off limits to any and all space-faring people.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2013) #0.1

Guardians of the Galaxy (2013) #0.1

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The Badoon Sisterhood, however, had other ideas in mind as they immediately attacked Earth which brought about some defense from the Guardians who had been joined by Iron Man after their previous space adventure. Even after being captured by J-Son’s soldiers for breaking the new edict, the Guardians used their cunning to escape from prison and send a message to the people of the Spartoi conclave about how their leader sentenced his own son to essentially die in prison. As you can imagine, the king did not take kindly to that action and it will have consequences ringing throughout the series.

Transmissions from Knowhere

Before we lose track of him again, let’s talk about the sometimes-Guardian known as Bug! The insectoid alien first appeared in the licensed Micronauts comics of the 80’s. As part of the deal back then, existing characters based on toys reverted to the licensees while new creations remained as part of Marvel’s stable. Since Bill Mantlo and Michael Golden made him for the comic, we still get to enjoy Bug’s adventures to this day!

Aside from an appearance in CABLE #39 and his own one-shot in 1997, Bug lay dormant for a while until getting captured by the Kree and becoming part of the proto-Guardians as seen in ANNIHILATION CONQUEST: STAR-LORD. For unknown reasons, he didn’t make the cut when Star-Lord formed the actual Guardians, but came back into the fold after the team broke up following the first arc and Rocket needed warriors he could trust. Bug then appeared in the AVENGERS ASSEMBLE run, but not the soon-to-follow relaunch, both written by Bendis.

Next, in addition to meeting Angela, the team faces off against Thanos once again in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #4-10.

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The Collector presents his newest items: the Guardians of the Galaxy!

Mysterious forces are converging upon Disney California Adventure park as The Collector’s arrival is imminent. Throughout the coming months, changes are underway as Taneleer Tivan, The Collector, prepares to welcome guests to view the newest acquisitions in his extensive collection: the Guardians of the Galaxy.

One of the first signs of The Collector’s arrival appeared recently, which we’ve caught this glimpse at, flying at the site of his emerging fortress. This shining flag bears the Tivan symbol and signifies his arrival. We hope to hear more from the Tivan Group throughout the coming months, as The Collector’s Fortress continues to emerge.

Explore this mysterious collection yourself when “Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!” opens May 27 at Disney California Adventure park.

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Cosmic legends Jim Starlin and Alan Davis team for a new adventure!

GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: MOTHER ENTROPY, the upcoming five-issue limited series not only re-teams writer Jim Starlin and artist Alan Davis, but offers up a new villainous entity along with some old favorites from the Starlin cosmic catalog. We spoke with the writer in advance of the project’s debut this May.

Marvel.com: Jim, what do you love most about the current Guardians of the Galaxy line-up?

Jim Starlin: What do I like best about the new Guardians? That’s easy: Groot. To tell the truth, I wasn’t a big fan of the original Guardians. Didn’t dislike them, just didn’t care one way or the other about them. I was out of comics during the time [Marvel] rebooted the title and, so, only became aware of the revised group once the movie was announced. Then I went back to catch up on the changes and was more than pleasantly surprised by what I discovered.

Marvel.com: What’s the origin of this story of yours?

Jim Starlin: The MOTHER ENTROPY series came about in a strange sort of way. I’d finished writing the last of the Thanos graphic novel trilogy and wasn’t sure I was going to do any more Thanos stories. But an unexpected hole appeared in my schedule and [editor] Tom Brevoort suggested writing a different kind of Guardians story.

Apparently the regular on-going Guardians series was coming to an end and Tom decided to do a bit of experimenting. My instructions were to come up with a Guardians story that could be read by fans of the movie Guardians or the Marvel Comics Guardians. So I jettisoned Gamora’s armor—always envisioned her more ninja than storm trooper—and changed a few other little things here and there. Alan did the same in the drawing—when did Star-Lord grow a van dyke?—and MOTHER ENTROPY came to be.

Marvel.com: We hear that Pip the Troll returns in this! What’s it like to be working with him again?

Jim Starlin: Always fun revisiting Pip, like hanging out with an ol’ degenerate friend you know you should be avoiding but don’t. My original idea for the story involved a switch around, which required an even number of characters, so Pip was enlisted to round the cast off to a half-dozen. Kind of surprised Pip didn’t have more contact with the Guardians over the years. They seem like such a natural fit for each other.

Writing a comedic tale is so much harder than writing straight-up drama. Not only do you have to carefully craft the storytelling aspects but then you need to go back and fine tune the funny side of the tale: readjusting lines and rethinking visuals. Worked twice as long on scripting MOTHER ENTROPY than I did any of the individual Thanos graphic novels.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Mother Entropy by Alan Davis

Guardians of the Galaxy: Mother Entropy by Alan Davis

Marvel.com: What can you say about Mother Entropy herself? What are her motivations? Why does she test people?

Jim Starlin: From Mother Entropy’s perspective, she’d say her chief motivation is love. All she wants is for everyone to get together and be one big harmonious family. Of course most would disagree with what Ma Entropy sees as a harmonious family. The Guardians certainly do. Why does she test folks? She wants the best to lead her family within our reality, of course. But, again, her definition of “best” is open to debate.

Marvel.com: We hear that Thanos is going to be sticking his head in here…

Jim Starlin: Thanos’ role in this tale is very peripheral, determined more by his relationship with Drax and Gamora than by any personal motivation.

Marvel.com: Okay, so, will MOTHER ENTROPY connect with any of your past and future Marvel stories?

Jim Starlin: No, this is pretty much a stand-alone story. The Guardians and Pip encounter a lot of Marvel Universe characters along the way, but a new reader should be able to come in cold and easily get what’s going on, even if they don’t know who Gladiator or Galactus is.

Marvel.com: What’s it like working with Alan on this? How much input will you have art-wise, especially on a new character like Mother Entropy?

Jim Starlin: Working with Alan is a real pleasure. I put down a few words and a few weeks later these beautifully drawn pages arrive in an e-mail gorgeously illustrating the tale. My input on the visuals is minimal and hardly needed. Mr. Davis is one of the best around and doesn’t require any micromanaging.

As for Mother Entropy, I asked for mossy, gross and a bit pregnant and Alan delivered big time.

Explore the cosmos with Jim Starlin and Alan Davis this May in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: MOTHER ENTROPY!

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The cosmic heroes must team with the Mad Titan to fend off the Cancerverse!

Celebrate this incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s tenth anniversary while also prepping for the May 5 release of their new film with these gems from Marvel Unlimited!

Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning brought their sprawling space epic to a close with THE THANOS IMPERATIVE in 2010. Up to that point they’d written the ongoing series’ GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY and NOVA as well as a variety of tie-in limited series and one-shots to bolster events like War of Kings and Realm of Kings. It all came to a close—mostly—in the pages of THE THANOS IMPERATIVE.

Kicking off with a one shot called THE THANOS IMPERATIVE: IGNITION, the writers worked with artist Brad Walker to set the event’s stage as the Guardians still struggled to keep a hold on the recently returned Thanos. At the same time, the Shi’Ar, Kree, Inhumans, Quasar, and even Blastaar joined forces to hold back any attacks coming from The Fault. Good thing too, because, as Nova discovered, the Cancerverse’s number one baddie revealed himself as Lord Mar-Vell.

The series then got under way with art from Miguel Sepulveda as ships burst out through The Fault with Mar-Vell sending the Revengers—evil versions of the Avengers—out to find this reality’s avatar of death in order to kill it. Their gods, the ones they serve, needed an absence of death—like the one in their reality—in order to thrive. With Thanos, the new avatar of death, the Guardians headed into the Cancerverse to figure out what they can do to stop Mar-Vell and company. Meanwhile, Galactus and the other cosmic concepts joined the fight along with Silver Surfer.

Back in the Cancerverse, Thanos and company follow Vision to the android stronghold of Titan where they discover that this version of Earth’s heroes decided to make a deal with the Many Angled Ones to save Captain Marvel’s life. They effectively killed Death which lead to the rampant growth of life on their end that required moving into a fresh new dimension.

Meanwhile, Nova put together a team of wildly powerful cosmic individuals including himself, Quasar, Beta Rey Bill, Ronan, Silver Surfer, and Gladiator to go on a quick strike mission to get back kidnapped folks like Namorita and Major Victory who had been taken by Mar-Vell to test their anomalous nature in hopes of finding the avatar. Eventually, the Guardians got Thanos to the place where he could square off against Mar-Vell, but the Mad Titan pulled a fast one and offered his own death because he never wanted to return to life in the first place.

Mar-Vell agreed, attempted to kill Thanos, and in the process brought Death to her devotee’s side. With a touch, she killed Mar-Vell, but left Thanos alive without another word. Enraged, the Titan rampaged once again. Nova had joined the fray at this point, but Star-Lord teleported his Guardians teammates away so only the two of them would face the consequences.

Three days later, The Fault had completely shut and the assembled cosmic warriors gathered on Attilan to honor the dead including Peter Quill and Richard Rider. Quasar and Rocket took a moment to talk about their departed friends, positing that even if Star-Lord and Nova survived, they’re stuck in a closed-off universe with Thanos. And with that, the Guardians of the Galaxy died…for a while.

Transmissions from Knowhere

Like many stories revolving around Thanos, this one also featured a great deal of input from Drax. As touched on when discussing Moondragon’s origins, Thanos’ dad Mentor used Arthur Douglas’ soul to create Drax the Destroyer, a wildly powerful being whose sole reason revolved around killing Thanos, who had killed Arthur in the first place. The hulking brute got a makeover in the pages of Keith Giffen and Mitch Breitweiser’s DRAX THE DESTROYER limited series. This sleeker and smarter version succeeded in his life’s mission in the pages of ANNIHILATION #4 when Drax punched a hole through Thanos’ chest and came out the other side with his heart.

Drax the Destroyer (2005) #1

Drax the Destroyer (2005) #1

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So, when faced with his prey’s return in THE THANOS IMPERATIVE, Drax prepared himself by arming heavily and putting on a uniform more reminiscent of his earlier appearances. Drax even seemingly killed Thanos at the end of the third issue, but the Titan revived and returned actions in kind with Drax who did not come back from his encounter.

Next, find out what Rocket Raccoon and Groot got up to after the Guardians disbanded.

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Step into blockbuster super hero stories at Disney California Adventure Park!

Last month, we shared details from a private tour of Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! at Disney California Adventure park.

Get your calendars out because we finally have a date! Disney California Adventure park will soon be the destination for adventure, intrigue and triumph as recruits from around the world – like you – join forces with legendary Super Heroes in an ever-expanding universe of stories that will grow even bigger over time. This summer, we are kicking off the action with the May 27 grand opening of the thrilling, rocking attraction, Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!

This new adventure blasts you straight into the “Guardians of the Galaxy” story for the first time ever, alongside characters from the blockbuster films and comics. As you help Rocket bust his pals out of the Collector’s Fortress, you will experience randomized ride experiences complete with all-new visual and audio effects and music inspired by the popular film soundtracks. You never know which adventure you will get!

There will be even more ways to step into Super Hero stories with Summer of Heroes, May 27 through September 10. Answer the call for this limited-time celebration as you join the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy for all-new epic experiences.

Summer of Heroes will launch these new, year-round experiences:

  • Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Dance Off! – Don’t be surprised if you run into the Guardians of the Galaxy on their way to the Milano, with Star-Lord firing up his old-school boom box to get the party started. Gamora may prefer to stand back and observe, but everyone else is bound to get in the groove and show off their moves during this awesome rock ‘n’ roll bash!
  • Super Hero Encounters – For the first time, citizens of Earth will come face-to-face with Groot, one of the Guardians of the Galaxy! You can also step up to meet the First Avenger, Captain America, along with everyone’s favorite web slinger, your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

And for a limited time, step up to the challenge with new adventures during Summer of Heroes:

  • Avengers Training Initiative – Black Widow and Hawkeye assemble young recruits for a series of tests to see if they have what it takes to join the ranks of the Avengers.
  • Heroic Encounter: Black Widow – Black Widow will arrive on the scene several times throughout the day in an armored Avengers vehicle for her heroic encounter with park guests.
  • Grab a Piece (or Bite) of the Action – All that heroism making you hungry? Want a token as proof of your adventures when you get home? Special themed merchandise and food will be available throughout Hollywood Land.

The summer brings even more to get excited about over at Disneyland park as classic favorites return with the reopening of the Disneyland Railroad and Rivers of America attractions, with the “Fantasmic!” nighttime spectacular returning later in the summer. We’ll have opening dates to share soon for these attractions. And don’t miss your chance to see the classic Main Street Electrical Parade during its limited-time run at Disneyland park through June 18.

#HeroUp at Disney California Adventure park with Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! and Summer of Heroes, beginning May 27!

Entertainment and attractions are subject to change and cancellation without notice. Please check the show guide for days and times.

Stay tuned to Marvel.com as we bring more details as the attraction develops.

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All roads lead to Thanos as several threads come to a chaotic conclusion!

Celebrate this incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s tenth anniversary while also prepping for the May 5 release of their new film with these gems from Marvel Unlimited!

The final issues of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY by Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, Brad Walker, and Wes Craig not only tied in with the larger Realm of Kings story, but also offered a satisfying conclusion to this iteration of the team. Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, Drax, Jack Flag, Bug, Groot, and Moondragon attempted to move on after the deaths of Phyla-Vell, Cosmo, Major Victory, Mantis, and Gamora at the hands of their former teammate Adam Warlock-turned-Magus. The Fault, created by Black Bolt at the end of War of Kings, offered more than enough distraction as it threatened the very existence of reality.

Upon exploring the Fault, Knowhere’s other super group the Luminals brought back a dangerous entity that the Universal Church of Truth wanted to turn into their new god. In the middle of a chaotic situation, as the entity looked for a new host, Moondragon absorbed it into herself. The pregnant-looking warrior used all of her telepathic ability to keep the beast contained. While playing host, Moondragon glimpsed exactly what stood on the other side of the Fault: the Cancerverse.

Moondragon’s concentration came under fire after Luminal leader Cynosure attached herself to the Guardian with cuffs that would kill both if tampered with. Making matters worse, members of the Church then burst in and kidnapped them, taking the women to a converted planet called Orison. Once there, the Matriarch intended for Moondragon to give birth to their new god.

As you might expect, the Guardians didn’t feel like following that plan and jumped in to smash it up, going so far as to fly Knowhere directly through the Church’s fleet. Between that and the combined efforts of the Guardians and Luminals, they freed Moondragon, contained the god in a tube, and shot it back into the Fault.

With all that out of the way, Moondragon wanted to find Phyla who actually still remained in the land of the living along with Cosmo, Mantis, Major Victory, and Gamora, but at the hands of the also-not-dead Adam Magus. That group worked to free itself from confines on Sacrosanct while the others defended the new Galactic Council from a Fault attack.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008) #20

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008) #20

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The victory of escape came with knowledge of something even worse, though as Phyla witnessed the rebirth of Thanos! Enraged, the Mad Titan destroyed her with a quick eye-blast. The whole team reunited on Sacrosanct in time to face off against the rampaging Thanos.

Star-Lord pulled out one of his biggest trump cards and used it to calm the Titan down when he used his Cosmic Cube to subdue Thanos. With the villain contained, the group gathered to gather in Starlin’s once again to toast the return of their comrades, but also the death of Martyr.

Transmissions from Knowhere

Well, if you couldn’t tell so far, that Adam Warlock can be one complicated character! His first real appearance as the cocooned “Him” came in FANTASTIC FOUR #67, but THOR #166 unleashed the gold-skinned godling onto the reading public. Before long, he began traveling the spaceways where The High Evolutionary partially named him Warlock and gave him the Soul Gem. Later he teamed up with Gamora, Pip the Troll, and Thanos to take on Magus and the Universal Church of Truth. Magus turned out to be a future version of Adam that had been driven mad by the Soul Gem. Later, Adam Warlock helped defeat Thanos in the pages of INFINITY GAUNTLET and walked away with the title weapon himself.Adam_Warlock_HD

Instead of keeping the Gauntlet, Warlock distributed the Gems to Gamora, Drax, Moondragon, Pip, a then-reformed Thanos and himself. The team, Infinity Watch, fought together many times, but eventually lost the Gems. Warlock continued fighting cosmic threats, but required rehabilitation, which explains why Phyla and Moondragon found him in his cocoon in ANNHILATION: CONQUEST – QUASAR. As he explained in Annihilation: Conquest, Adam holed up because he felt so many souls screaming as Annihilus’ forces wreaked havoc during Annihilation, but Phyla and Moondragon awoke him too soon. Not fully healed, this new Adam Warlock differed from previous versions, but still did everything he could to keep the galaxy safe.

If the Mad Titan stands as the universe’s only hope, what chance do the Guardians have of surviving? Find out in THANOS IMPERATIVE!

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The Guardians intervene in a war between the Shi’Ar and Kree and travel through time!

Celebrate this incarnation of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s tenth anniversary while also prepping for the May 5 release of their new film with these gems from Marvel Unlimited!

If you only judged the Guardians of the Galaxy’s involvement in War of Kings by the main book, you’d miss a whole lot of behind-the-scenes adventures with the team trying to not only stop the conflict before it began, but also stop the battles from tearing apart reality! Luckily, Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning, Brad Walker, and Wes Craig chronicled those very adventures in the pages of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #1319.

Everything kicked off with the team enjoying some spirits in Knowhere’s bar, Starlin’s, just before a fight erupted. Adam Warlock appeared to stop the fisticuffs and he soon patched things up with Peter Quill in an effort to focus their attentions on stopping the growing conflict between Vulcan’s Shi’Ar and the Inhuman-led Kree. They hatched a relatively revolutionary idea to actually send two groups to each side and just talk it out. Quill lead Jack Flag, Gamora, Bug and Phyla—now going by Martyr—to visit Black Bolt and company while Rocket, Groot, Adam Warlock, Drax, and Major Victory ported to chat with Vulcan.

Rocket’s squad immediately fell into conflict with Vulcan and the Imperial Guard leading directly into an adventure with the Starjammers to save Lilandra, as seen in WAR OF KINGS. The diplomatic trip to the Inhumans also met with disinterest from the home team, but tempers only flared when Martyr drew her blade and threatened Crystal. Having failed on all fronts, both squads returned to Knowhere only to find their new adversaries hot on their tails, leading to a huge brawl that dissipated as soon as it started after Black Bolt freed Crystal.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008) #13

Guardians of the Galaxy (2008) #13

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What came next got more complicated thanks to time travel and alternate realities, but essentially Star-Lord, Bug, Cosmo, Mantis, and Jack Flag saw what could happen if Black Bolt’s T-Bomb went off and tried to stop it by sending a message through the Celestial’s linked quantum telepathy. The group back in the present jumped into action, sending Adam Warlock down a dangerous path.

In order to secure the present reality, Adam attached it to a future that hadn’t been in use. Unfortunately, that reality happened to be the one where he turned into the evil Adam Magus. Even with the reappearance of the time-traveling Guardians, they were able to stop him from going full-on world breaker. Sadly, the fight did result in the apparent deaths of Martyr, Cosmo, Mantis, Gamora, and Major Victory. At the end of the day, to save existence, Peter Quill even shot his friend Adam Warlock, winning the day—but at what cost?

Transmissions from Knowhere

You might have noticed something interesting about everyone’s favorite talking tree as we’ve gone along: he said more than the ubiquitous “I am Groot” for a while. However, once he regrew, he stuck to the famous phrase. What’s the deal? Well, Maximus the Mad of all people explained it in the pages of GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #17: “The mature dendritic form of King Groot’s people is robust and heavyweight. Often, the organs of acoustic generation become stiff and inflexible. It may sound as if he is simply repeating his name, but that is simply due to the hardened formation of his larynx. You must listen to the sigh of breeze beneath it. The nuance of meaning.” Apparently in those early appearances when his vocabulary seemed wider, it just meant he hadn’t fully matured yet!

Next, Nova, Quasar, the Shi’Ar, and Inhumans all deal with the Fault in their own way in the Realm of Kings crossover!

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