Coming into the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise during DNA’s incredible run on the Marvel cosmic corner I’ve become a big fan of the team. Seeing the Guardians of the Galaxy’s popularity explode thanks to the movie has been a true joy as these are characters that deserve the attention they weren’t previously given. Now while the movies have made the team more popular than ever the Guardians of the Galaxy comic books haven’t reached the same height. Though they are now selling better the series hasn’t reached the height of the Avengers comic sales. With that said Gerry Duggan, who has had a very enjoyable run on Deadpool, is the exact writer I want handling the franchise and have high hopes for All-New Guardians of the Galaxy. Will it meet expectations? Let’s find out with All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #1.
Writer: Gerry Duggan
Artist: Aaron Kuder
Colorist: Ive Svorcina
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 7 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 7.5 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: Some insurance “salesmen” offer the planet unprecedented safety and security under their protection for a small fee outside a vault. As they continue to talk Galactus shows up and freaks the entire planet out, including the ships trying to get inside the vault.
Galactus’ head splits in half revealing that it is just a Trojan Horse with the Guardians of the Galaxy inside. Star-Lord compliments Rocket Raccoon on his plan working, though Gamora brings up the fact Star-Lord thought the plan would fail.
The Guardians head inside the vault and find an alien trying to run away after being left behind. The alien sees the the Guardians, understands that Galactus was a fake and starts firing at the Guardians. The Guardians take cover.
Rocket takes out Baby Groot and rolls him towards their attacker. The alien gets distracted by Baby Groot, giving Gamora the opening to knock him out.
Star-Lord tries to work quickly to take down the wall guardian the vault before the ships return. Star-Lord asks Drax if his new pacifism is keeping him from doing his part. Drax says breaking the wall will most likely have untold consequences that they’ll about to find out about as he breaks the wall with his fist.
Star-Lord gets the box their buyer is looking for and they all make a run for it. Star-Lord stops running. Gamora asks Star-Lord why he stopped and head over to where he is. The team then see a pair having sex in one of the vaults.
The Guardians head back inside their Galactus mech and take off quickly, though Rocket doesn’t prepare the team for take off.
The team finally arrives at the Milano. Star-Lord wonders what is inside the box they got but Rocket doesn’t care as long as they become rich. Star-Lord tells the team they did well and heads to his room. In his room, Star-Lord starts playing music as they head to their buyer.
Sometime later the Guardians “patiently” wait for their buyer to get to their agreed upon location. Suddenly some giant creature appears out of nowhere and swallows the Milano with the Guardians inside.
The Guardians get out of the Milano and explore the creature that swallowed them and end up finding the Grandmaster welcoming them to his private collection hall. Grandmaster takes the box and reveals inside it is a Tachyon Bubble holding an young universe that if broken would destroy where they currently are.
Grandmaster then says it is time for the Guardians to face their real challenge. The Guardians just want their payment. Grandmaster says their challenge is to infiltrate the Collector’s collection and retrieve the Hijahdarian Monarch egg. The Guardians aren’t up for a suicide mission.
Grandmaster reveals that they have already stolen from the Collector’s collection and they would not want him to learn what they just did. The Guardians all complain for being double crossed by the Grandmaster. Gamora is the first to try to attack the Grandmaster but she just phases through him. Grandmaster shows off some of his powers by hurting Gamora. He then tells the team that they will accomplish the task in return for two prizes.
The team head inside the Milano hoping that the mission will be successful and they can still become rich.
After taking off while Rocket walks through the Milano complaining to Baby Groot about the bad deal Star-Lord got them in we see Drax and Gamora doing their own training.
Elsewhere on an unknown planet some mysterious person has planted various Groot branches across a piece of land. End of issue.
The Good: All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #1 does exactly what it needs to do to bring in new and old fans into the series. Gerry Duggan waste no time in establishing who the Guardians of the Galaxy are and why we should care about their current adventures. By giving us a familiar core cast Duggan is able to
What Duggan does best with All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #1 is not wasting time in establishing that this series will be all about having fun with the core cast we all know and love. With so much of the Marvel Universe deep in the realm of serious storytelling, especially with Secret Empire taking over, it is a welcome break to get a comic like All-New Guardians of the Galaxy. It almost felt like we were getting something fresh even though the Guardians of the Galaxy comics have been more lighthearted since DNA’s run.
The enjoyable light-hearted tone that Duggan takes stands out even more thanks to how he keeps the issue moving. There is never a wasted moment as the story of the Guardians breaking into a vault and then meeting Grandmaster move with a purpose. Even when we see the Guardians getting some downtime at two points in this issue it was done so to add to who these characters are and their dynamic together.
It is the dynamic that they share that is so unique. Duggan is able to drive home through the banter they share together and in various pairings that this group are friends. Unlike the Avengers who have gone down the route of now being a team of Earth’s Greatest Heroes, the Guardians of the Galaxy feel like they are friends who are working together for a common goal. Even when the rest of the team don’t appreciate Star-Lord’s approach or banter it is done in way in which they are giving each other crap rather than being mad at each other.
I particularly enjoyed the back-and-forth between Star-Lord and Drax. Even though I have no idea when Drax decided to become a pacifist Duggan was smart to use Star-Lord get over how silly Drax’s current choice is. It was especially enjoyable to see how Drax used his new mentality to add his own brand of humor to things. It made the moments when Drax thought about breaking his pacifist nature even better.
The Grandmaster is a great choice for the first antagonist that the Guardians have to go up against. Having the Grandmaster in such a role also helped to get over how the Guardians are more like a group of bounty hunters rather than a normal superhero team like the Avengers. Having the Grandmaster double cross the team and force them to possibly get even more on the Collector’s bad side is a great thing for the team to overcome. It will at least give Duggan the opportunity to give the team more of a chance to show how creative they can be when trying to get the job done.
Aaron Kuder delivers artwork that matches the light-hearted tone that Duggan is shooting for with this Guardians of the Galaxy series. Kuder style invokes the cartoonish banter that the Guardians get into with one another. At the same time Kuder is able to use his style to go all out showing how different the rest of the galaxy is compared to Earth. I especially enjoyed how Kuder drew Grandmaster to have a wicked larger than life look when he was floating over the Guardians.
The Bad: The one thing that would’ve made All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #1 better is if we saw more members on the team than the core cast. It did feel like we’ve been seeing the same core cast of Guardians since the movie came out. Having characters like Mantis or Cosmo on the Milano ship would’ve helped show how we aren’t just going to see the same core cast. Even if these characters aren’t part of the field team they would add an interesting dynamic whenever the Guardians are on the ship or interacting with their buyers. This isn’t a deal breaker but I would like to see Duggan tap into the Guardians history with other members joining in some capacity.
Overall: All-New Guardians of the Galaxy #1 is a great start to a new series. Gerry Duggan showcased his strong understanding of the Guardians of the Galaxy by highlighting the team’s strong dynamic. That dynamic is furthered by Aaron Kuder’s energetic artwork that only helps to add to the must buy factor for any fan of the Guardians of the Galaxy.