SPOILERS: GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 - 7 Things That Worked And 3 That Didn't

<font color=red>SPOILERS:</font> GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 - 7 Things That Worked And 3 That Didn't

We know Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is one of those rare sequels which actually delivers, but what did the movie get right and drop the ball on? Here's an in-depth look at exactly that...



Guardians of the Galaxy exceeded expectations back in 2014, so the sequel being just as good - if not better - was clearly a must. Luckily, Marvel Studios and James Gunn have succeeded in delivering a winning follow-up with Vol. 2, but that's not to say the movie is completely perfect. Like pretty much every comic book adaptation, there's a lot that works really well, but some things which simply do not.

What you'll find here then is an in-depth look at Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. From the moments and story decisions which worked to the characters and scenes which did not, this is your ultimate guide to pretty much everything that's both right and wrong about the highly anticipated sequel.

It goes without saying that we're delving into some MAJOR SPOILERS here then, but fear not as not every major plot point is touched on here, so you'll still find plenty of surprises in the movie itself if you're just curious about finding out what you should expect before it reaches your country...


Didn't Work: Another Wasted Marvel Villain



Kurt Russell's Ego the Living Planet is definitely a great bad guy in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, though it's obvious from the start that there's more to him than meets the eye, so the big reveal that he wants to use Star-Lord to wipe out life and replace it with himself is easy to see coming.

It's also a goal which could have done with a little more explanation beyond the fact that he was disappointed by what he found when he ventured away from his home, but I'm nitpicking now and Ego is overall a really good addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, the reason I say he was wasted is because Ego can now be added to the list of Marvel villains killed off in the final act even when it's obvious that there's so much more which could have been done with him. It feels like a waste and somewhat sours an otherwise strong character.


Did Work: Baby Groot



When James Gunn decided to include a mid-credits scene in Guardians of the Galaxy featuring the adorable Baby Groot having a dance, it's obvious that no one realised just how positively moviegoers would respond to the tiny, sentient tree. That's why Marvel and Disney took so long to get merchandise featuring the character's likeness out there, but many have suggested that Baby Groot only exists in Vol. 2 so the studio can get as many toys as possible out there.

There may or may not be some truth in that, but make no mistake about it, the beloved hero is downright incredible here. From his opening dance number set to ELO's "Mr. Blue Sky" to a hilarious sequence featuring him trying and failing to retrieve Yondu's finn, he steals the show from start to finish and is even more brilliant than the trailers promised.


Did Work: Star-Lord Gets Superpowers



When Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 first revealed that Peter Quill is half Celestial and can wield the same cosmic power as his father, I began to worry for the future of the character. Was he about to ditch his helmet, guns, and repulsor boots to become an overpowered superhero along the lines of the original Captain Marvel? Thankfully not, as Ego's destruction brings his newfound abilities to a quick end, but his brief stint as a powered up character is a hell of a lot of fun.

Seeing him wield those abilities in the emotional battle with his father is downright awesome, especially as he makes such inventive use of them (the nod to Pac-Man is hilariously brilliant). By the time all is said and done, Star-Lord is back to being a regular old human and that leaves him in an interesting place for Avengers: Infinity War now he can presumably no longer hold an Infinity Stone.


Didn't Work: The Humour



90% of the time, the jokes in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 land perfectly, but there's some in here which don't work at all. Drax is a perfect example of this. An unexpected highlight of the first instalment, I'm beginning to think that was something of an unexpected coincidence as it's clear in places that Gunn is attempting to deliver the same dry sort of lines which made him such a hit last time around.

This time, however, they just don't work that well and often make Dave Bautista come off as something of a bad actor. To be fair, a lot of the cast get some terrible lines (just look at Rocket's turd talk from the trailers), but humour is subjective, so something which lands with a thud for some will be hilarious to others. As I said, most of it works fantastically - Drax's interactions with Mantis are great - but you will probably cringe at least a few times!


Did Work: Yondu's Sacrifice



Michael Rooker's Yondu was a great part of Guardians of the Galaxy, but his role here is even more satisfying. After refusing to deliver the team to Ayesha, his men turn on him and he's forced to watch those loyal to him thrown out of an airlock into the vastness of space. Watching the Ravager interact with Rocket and Groot alone would have been cool, but the fact Gunn later delves into his love for Peter as a son takes things to another level.

So too does Yondu's decision to ultimately sacrifice himself to save Star-Lord's life in a scene which will almost certainly make you shed a tear. The way that he too dies in space almost feels like he was trying to make things even after what happened to his men, but it's his relationship with Peter which really brings some heart to this sequel. Sean Gunn's Kraglin also deserves a mention as his work here was excellent.


Did Work: The Soundtrack



The soundtrack for Guardians of the Galaxy was downright amazing, so expectations were high on this sequel providing us with some more great songs. Thankfully, the movie delivers in that respect and you'll almost certainly be hunting these down for the ride home after visiting the theater. From ELO's "Mr. Blue Sky" to Cat Stevens' "Father and Son" and Silver's catchy "Wham Bam Shang-A-Lang," Vol. 2 is packed with awesome tunes which should ensure this album is as big a hit as the movie itself.

It's also easy to see that Gunn did indeed write these scenes with specific songs in mind, something that gives the follow-up an advantage over the likes of Suicide Squad (which clearly just looked for some decent tunes to add later in the game and edited the scenes around them). Tyler Bates' score is also really strong here so the movie is a winner all round in this respect.


Didn't Work: The Original Guardians



I was really excited to see Sylvester Stallone join the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but I came out of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 unable to give a single damn about him or the rest of the "original" Guardians (who are the respective leaders of various factions of the Ravagers here, a group we learn are pretty heroic and actually cast Yondu out for delivering Ego's children to him).

His brief scene with Yondu is mostly forgettable, and while it was pretty cool to see that character given a proper send off by them, I wasn't at all excited to see the team standing side by side. They're just a random bunch of heroes played mostly by familiar faces - good luck spotting Michael Rosenbaum, though - and while I'm not against them returning in Vol. 3, I currently have zero interest in seeing this lot take on a larger role in the MCU from this point forward. They just all seem a bit...pointless.


Did Work (Mostly): The Post Credits Scenes



Did I expect more from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2's five after-credits scenes? Definitely. That's not to say they were bad, I'm just disappointed that there was little in the way of set up for Thor: Ragnarok and Avengers: Infinity War as this movie would have been the perfect place for that. The first is pretty funny as Kraglin inadvertently stabs Drax through the chest with Yondu's dart and we see him then sneak off as the tough guy Guardian screams in the background.

Next up is Teenage Groot as the no longer adorable sentient tree enters a new phase of his life, while that's followed by the aforementioned original Guardians (something fans of theirs will probably love) and the promise that Adam Warlock is on the way. Unfortunately, it seems like we'll be waiting until Vol. 3 rather than Infinity War due to Ayesha's involvement. Last up is Stan Lee and The Watcher's, a fun scene, but somewhat unnecessary after his earlier cameo.


Did Work: World Building



Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 may not set up the events of Avengers: Infinity War beyond giving Star-Lord a reason for wanting to return home, but it does expand on the cosmic side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in some fun ways. Regardless of my feelings on the original Guardians, they could potentially bring a lot to the table, while Ayesha - who initially seems to have been wasted - creating "Adam" sets the stage for that character to step forward in a big way in this world.

Despite my above complaint, the sequel also deserves some credit for not doing an Iron Man 2 and spending half of its running times setting up another movie. Thanos could have easily been placed centre stage here, but Gunn wisely decides to instead focus on the impact the Mad Titan's actions had on his daughters. It would have been nice to see the Nova Corps again, though.


Did Work: Family Theme



I mentioned Gamora and Nebula in the previous slide and the relationship between those two is one of many family themed highlights in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Rocket coming to terms with Star-Lord is also very interesting, especially as they come across as bickering brothers who ultimately put their differences aside and come out stronger as a result (the same can be said for Gamora and Nebula as they come on leaps and bounds here).

I've already mentioned that Peter and Ego's relationship was great to watch and the way the latter manipulates and later abuses his son to get what he wants is handled excellently, especially as it leads to Peter seeing he had a father all along in Yondu. Finally, Drax's father/daughter dynamic is also fun, and you have to hand it to Gunn for getting this theme right and not once dropping the ball.

Have you seen Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2? If so, let us know your thoughts on these points and what you think did and didn't work in the comments section down below.


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