It has long since become a signature of Marvel movies that there’s at least one bonus scene in store at the end of the credits for patient viewers – but the studio’s latest release, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2,’ has upped the ante by quite some margin.
Writer-director James Gunn’s sequel to 2014’s surprise smash hit boasts a grand total of five bonus scenes throughout the end credits, as well as some endearing looks at various cast members getting on down to disco music on the peripheries of the screen while the credits roll.
Some of these scenes are just a bit of fun – but others, as is often the case, drop significant hints as to where the Marvel Cinematic Universe may go from here. Let’s take a look at each tag scene in turn, and consider what it might mean for the future of the MCU.
This should really go without saying, but there will be MAJOR spoilers for ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ ahead, so please don’t read on unless you’ve already seen the film, or if you’re happy to see its secrets spilled.
Yondu’s arrow gets a new owner
Following the emotional funeral of Michael Rooker’s Yondu, the blue-skinned Ravager and father figure to Chris Pratt’s Peter ‘Star-Lord’ Quill, his fellow Ravager Kraglin (Sean Gunn) finds himself the custodian of Yondu’s signature weapon: a mechanised arrow, psychically controlled via whistling. However, where Yondu was an expert at controlling this device, Kraglin clearly needs a lot of practice, as he inadvertently sends it hurtling into Dave Bautista’s Drax (an ample target, admittedly).
Not too much to be taken from this one, beyond a good belly laugh – although it might imply that Kraglin, just about the only member of Yondu’s crew left alive by the end credits, could stay on board the Milano as a new addition to the Guardians.
Trivia time: actor Sean Gunn is writer-director James Gunn’s younger brother, and as well as playing Kraglin, he also dons a green screen suit to play Rocket Raccoon on set, with Bradley Cooper overdubbing the dialogue later on. (And, of course, a CGI raccoon is added in as well.)
The New/Old Guardians?
For viewers of a certain age, the key sales point of ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2’ was the prospect of a ‘Tango and Cash’ reunion, as both Sylvester Stallone and Kurt Russell appear in the movie. Alas, the two elder action men share no scenes – but instead, we have a ‘Cliffhanger’ reunion between Stallone and Michael Rooker early on, which takes on a greater emotional resonance following Yondu’s sacrifice in the climax.
Those same elder viewers were no doubt hyperventilating at the finale’s unexpected reveal of two more beloved elder actors, Ving Rhames (‘Pulp Fiction,’ ‘Mission: Impossible’) and Michelle Yeoh (‘Tomorrow Never Dies,’ ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’) – and, as the second tag scene reveals, these were former team mates of Yondu, who, under Stallone’s suggestion, are getting the band back together.
So what does any of this mean? Well, this ensemble – along with Yondu – are the original line-up of the Guardians of the Galaxy, introduced in the pages of Marvel Comics way back in 1969; the team we’re more familiar with didn’t show up until comparatively recently. Stallone’s Stakar Ogord was originally the lead Guardian, Starhawk, whilst Rhames is Charlie-27 and Yeoh is Starhawk’s adopted sister Aleta Ogord.
The idea of this bunch of oldies taking over as the new Guardians of the Galaxy might seem a little unlikely, but Gunn has stated that, beyond the third film in series, the line-up will change; plus it has been reported that Marvel have big plans for Stallone’s Stakar. It might also explain why Stallone has walked away from the ‘Expendables’ franchise, as this new team looks so much cooler.
This one’s a real crowd-pleaser, as we see that Groot has grown out of his adorable Baby phase and become a textbook moody adolescent, constantly playing a video game, refusing to tidy up his room, and saying “I am Groot!” with heavy sarcasm.
Can we expect Groot to remain in this incarnation when he returns alongside Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax and Rocket in ‘Avengers: Infinity War?’ This writer for one certainly hopes so. Can’t you just picture him slouching in the corner alongside Tom Holland’s Spider-Man, as the two of them complain about how the others treat them like kids all the time?
“I shall call him Adam”
Now, this one may be a very big deal. One character that a lot of fans were anticipating would make an appearance in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2’ was Adam Warlock, a genetically engineered superhuman who becomes one of the mightiest Marvel characters of all. Most notably, he’s a pivotal figure in the original ‘Infinity Gauntlet’ storyline which the upcoming ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ is expected to be largely based upon.
Alas, Adam Warlock was not part of the sequel after all – until this tag scene reveals his creation at the hands of golden-skinned villainess Ayesha (Elizabeth Debicki). And James Gunn has confirmed the character will in some way come into play in future Marvel movies – although, as he tells The Independent, “it’s not [happening in] ‘Infinity War,’ that’s for sure.”
Stan Lee and the Watchers
Having a bit of fun, Gunn and Marvel boss Kevin Feige decided to make a fan theory about the recurring cameos of Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee part of the official MCU canon – more on which here.
‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2’ is in cinemas now.