Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3
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Warning: This story contains spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
Every rock concert needs an encore — and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has two.
The third and final film in James Gunn’s trilogy hit theaters May 5, promising one last swan song for everyone’s favorite band of intergalactic oddballs. Vol. 3 is Gunn’s last Marvel film before he departs to run rival studio DC, and it’s an emotional sendoff, following the Guardians as they clash against the villainous High Evolutionary (Peacemaker actor Chukwudi Iwuji).
Ever since the tear-jerking first trailer debuted last year, fans have been wondering which characters might survive Vol. 3 — and which might say goodbye forever. Surprisingly, every member of the Guardians survives, although many end up quitting the team and setting out for new adventures. Chris Pratt’s Star-Lord/Peter Quill returns home to Earth for the first time since his abduction, while his former paramour Gamora (Zoe Saldaña) reunites with her fellow Ravagers. As for Mantis (Pom Klementieff), she heads off into the unknown, joined by three monstrous abilisks. Meanwhile, Nebula (Karen Gillan) and Drax (Dave Bautista) leave the crew to remain at Knowhere, where they volunteer to help take care of the High Evolutionary’s liberated lab experiments.
It seems like a definitive end for many of our heroes, but the film’s two end-credits scenes suggest that the Guardians’ song may not be over yet. (Unlike 2017’s Vol. 2, which had a whopping five post-credits scenes, Vol. 3 has a more manageable two.)
EW breaks down both of the post-credits scenes from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
Mid-credits scene: Meet the new Guardians
When Star-Lord leaves at the end of the film, he names Rocket (Bradley Cooper) as the new leader of the team. (Peter also gives Rocket a parting gift: his beloved Zune MP3 player.) The mid-credits scene finds Rocket leading a new crew, joined by Groot (Vin Diesel), Cosmo the Space Dog (Maria Bakalova), and Kraglin (Sean Gunn). The reformed Adam Warlock (Will Poulter) has also joined the squad with his beloved alien pet Blurp.
There’s one more member of the new Guardians that’s worth noting: a young girl with white hair (played by Kai Zen), rescued from the High Evolutionary’s lab. The credits identify her as Phyla, an apparent nod to the comics character Phyla-Vell. In Marvel comics, Phyla-Vell is a powerful heroine, the daughter of legendary Kree warrior Mar-Vell. She’s gone by various names, including Captain Marvel and Quasar, but she’s perhaps best known as a member of the Guardians.
Phyla’s introduction to the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes at a particularly interesting time: The next film to hit theaters will be The Marvels in November, focusing on Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers, Teyonah Parris’ Monica Rambeau, and Iman Vellani’s Kamala Khan. Like Phyla-Vell, all three of those characters have ties to the Captain Marvel/Ms. Marvel moniker. Might Phyla play a role in The Marvels? We’ll have to wait and see.
As for the rest of the Guardians, Rocket proves to be a more than capable captain, leading his team into battle against a group of aliens. He also provides an appropriate soundtrack, cuing up Redbone’s “Come and Get Your Love” on the Zune — a throwback to the opening of the original Guardians movie.
Post-credits scene: Back to Earth
The second scene comes at the very end of the credits, and it finds us back on Earth. Quill sits down to breakfast with his grandfather (Gregg Henry), who’s seen reading a newspaper called The St. Charles Post. The front-page headline teases an exclusive interview with actor Kevin Bacon, who promises to “tell all” about his “alien abduction.” It’s a fun Easter egg nod to last year’s Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, in which Mantis and Drax went to Earth to kidnap the Footloose star.
But what’s more exciting is what comes after the post-credits scene. A large title card declares: “The Legendary Star-Lord Will Return.” Vol. 3 feels like a fitting goodbye for Peter, so it’s intriguing to see that he might make another appearance — this time as a potential solo act. There’s a recent comics run also titled The Legendary Star-Lord, from writer Sam Humphries and artist Paco Medina. It follows Peter after he departs the Guardians, so perhaps we’ll see a Star-Lord movie (or Disney+ TV show) in the future.
For more on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, read EW’s exclusive preview with Gunn and the cast here.
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