Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A pre-emptive non-review of Guardians of the Galaxy #1

The Guardians of the Galaxy first appeared in Marvel Super-Heroes #18 (vol.1, Jan. 1969) and then made numerous guest appearances throughout the Marvel Universe before enjoying a ten issue run of their own in Marvel Presents.

20th century astronaut, Major Vance Astro spends a thousand years travelling to Alpha Centauri in
suspended animation, arriving in the 31st century only to discover that mankind has colonized the stars during his long sleep and that the Earth’s solar system has been conquered by the alien race known as the Badoon. Vance joins up with three other displaced persons: Martinex T’Naga, a crystalline being from Pluto, Captain Charlie-27, a dense-gravity soldier from Jupiter and Yondu Udonta, a noble, blue-skinned savage from Beta Centauri IV.

They are bound by the fact that each is apparently the last of their kind due to the Badoon invasion, later during the course of the war against the Badoon, two other members are recruited – Starhawk and Nikki. The Guardians fight alongside Captain America, the Thing, the Defenders, Thor and the Avengers through a series of time-traveling adventures.

Now some dim-bulb currently at the top of the Marvel food chain has tossed together (sorta like a weird space salad) an eclectic grouping of cosmic-spawned characters in the wake of the company’s Annihilation: Conquest event. Sadly, somebody there also gets paid way too much money to approve crap like this, so we are getting: Adam Warlock, Drax the Destroyer, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, Groot, Star-Lord and a new female Quasar as – you guessed it – “The Guardians of the Galaxy”. None of whom would be recognizable to long-time readers (except Rocket; it's pretty hard to mess up a raccoon). Detailing the visual changes that have gone on with the other characters would prove exhausting.

Yes. It does sound like a bogus reunion of the old Infinity Watch, with a few extras. Yes. Marvel has fallen very far from the tree yet again. No. This doesn’t make Jim Valentino’s god-awful 1990’s Guardians series look any better. Yes. Bullshit like this really is bad for you.


Nathan Fairbairn said...

Geez. Why all the hating? Have you even read the book?

Chuck Wells said...

"Haters" and "hating" is basically a bullshit term that is too easily bandied about these days, Nathan.

I am a HUGE fan of the Guardians of the Galaxy, but the point of my "non-review" is that readers of the upcoming series aren't actually going to be getting the Guardians. They are being spoon-fed something else entirely, and what's the point of that?

This new group of characters, many of whom were previous members of the Infinity Watch, could be called anything really, but the Guardians of the Galaxy has a specific history, just like the Fantastic Four, or the Avengers, or the X-Men, etc.

Shoe-horning something onto an established property is disrespectful. It's like in Cinderella, no matter how many feet the glass slipper is crammed onto, it's really only gonna fit on one person.

So, no, I've not read the new "Guardians" and I'm not gonna, but this type of latter-day tactic is bullshit. And it's bad for you!

As a suggestion, I would encourage you to look up the definition of the word lemming. Sadly, lots of current comics fans fall into that mode from time-to-time.