Kevin Bacon attends the "THEY/THEM" New York Premiere at Studio 525 on July 27, 2022 in New York City.
Marvel fans are getting a treat before Halloween weekend, as Director James Gunn shared the first trailer for the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special on Instagram Tuesday (October 25). He revealed the upcoming special will debut on Disney+ in November, and it follows everyone’s favorite space rejects as they try to spread a little Christmas cheer. “I just saw on the calendar that it’s almost Christmastime on Earth,” Sean Gunn’s Karglin says.
The special is set after the events of Avengers: Endgame, with Chris Pratt’s Star-Lord mourning the loss of Gamora (Zoe Saldaña) — as he should. Fellow Guardians include a reprisal of the full cast including Mantis (Pom Klementieff), Drax (Dave Bautista), Nebula (Karen Gillan), Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper), and Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel) — who take it upon themselves to help get him in a more festive mood.
More specifically, their goal is to head to Earth and find him “something special he will never forget” for Christmas, Mantis proposes. “What about someone special?” asks Drax. The two make it to Kevin Bacon’s house (who plays himself) and sort of force their way in to cheer up their pal Star-Lord. As the characters names and faces appear, we see an introduction to two new characters: Cosmo the Space Dog, played by Borat breakout Maria Bakalova and “introducing Kevin Bacon” as he frantically tries to escape being snatched by Drax and Mantis.
The holiday special takes place before the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, which is scheduled to hit theaters in May 2023. Per Entertainment Weekly, Gunn said that he expects this third installment to be his last Guardians movie, describing it as the end of the story he first set out to tell 10 years ago. As he exits the Guardians franchise, Gunn and Peter Safran (Aquaman, Shazam) have reportedly teamed up to lead DC’s TV, film and animation division. Gunn confirmed the news on Twitter below:
The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special will debut on Disney+ on Nov. 25. Watch the trailer below:
Marvel/Netflix Characters We Want To See In The MCU
For years, there’s been lots of talk among fans of Marvel’s Netflix TV shows about how they fit into the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe… if they do at all. In the early seasons, there were definite references to the films — New York Bulletin reporter Ben Urich (Vondie Curtis-Hall) had reported on “The Battle of New York” (as seen in the first Avengers film). Jessica Jones name-dropped “the big green guy and the flag-waver.” Luke Cage also mentioned “the big green guy and his crew.” But the MCU never seemed to notice Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Danny Rand or the Punisher.
SPOILERS AHEAD IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN HAWKEYE AND SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME.
Part of this came down to real-life corporate politics. Kevin Feige used to be “just” the President of Marvel Studios, but his department apparently didn’t have much communication with the television division. Allegedly, he didn’t like the television division and was interested in continuity with their storylines. But now, in addition to his role with Marvel Studios, he’s also the Chief Creative Officer for Mrarvel Comics, Marvel Television and Marvel Animation. To quote another classic franchise, he became the one boss to rule them all. Now he’s able to oversee story arcs from characters who may go from movies to TV shows back to movies. For instance, Elizabeth Olsen’s Wanda’s story went from Avengers: Endgame to the Wandavision series on Disney+, and we’ll see her next year in Dr. Strange In The Multiverse of Madness (and she appeared in a post-credits scene after Spider-Man: No Way Home). Anthony Mackie’s Sam Wilson went from Endgame to the Falcon and the Winter Soldier series and we’ll see him next in Captain America 4.
But within one week in our timeline, we’ve seen two references to the Netflix characters, thrilling fans of those shows. But are the Netflix shows (all of which were canceled) part of the MCU’s canon? Will it turn out that the Netflix shows were part of another, darker, timeline? (If that doesn’t make sense, you should binge-watch Loki.) Time will tell. But here are the characters — and the actors who play them — who we want to see again (and, TBH, two that we’re ok with never seeing again).