Marvel's beloved a-holes the Guardians of the Galaxy are getting their own video game in October, with a trailer that draws on the vibe and roster of the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of the team (opens in new tab), down to the use of Bonnie Tyler's classic rock song 'Holding Out for a Hero.'
But the trailer takes at least as much inspiration from the Guardians' comic book history, which goes back all the way to the '60s, and the game seems to include Easter eggs, concepts, and characters that span the Guardians' entire decades-long run.
Some of the characters and Easter eggs may be easily spotted by fans of the Guardians of the Galaxy from both the MCU and comic books - but others require a deeper bench of comic book knowledge to pick up on.
Fortunately, that's exactly what Newsarama is here for, so step aboard the Guardians' ship and get ready to blast off as we rundown the origins and meanings of all the Easter eggs, characters, and comic book references throughout the Guardians of the Galaxy video game trailer.
Sentinel Mk II(opens in new tab)
Right at the start of the trailer, there's a huge cloud of space debris floating around, including a giant robot head over on the far left. The cosmic coloration makes it hard to say for sure, but it looks a lot like the head of a Sentinel, the mutant-hunting robots and classic X-Men foes.
Specifically, it looks like the head of a Sentinel Mk II, nearly all of which were destroyed in Avengers #102 (opens in new tab) when they were programmed to fly into the sun - so it could be a nod to that classic comic book story.
Nova Corps(opens in new tab)
The Nova Corps agents seen in the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer seem to take more inspiration from the MCU than comic books, with the primary difference being that the comic book Nova Corps are less straightforward space police than they are cosmically-powered superheroes.
The uniforms they wear seem to reflect their MCU inspiration, though they also bear some interesting similarities to the Steve McNiven-designed costume Star-Lord once wore in comic books.
Classic Guardians logo(opens in new tab)
There's a box on the desk next to Star-Lord's self-branded coffee mug with a classic Guardians of the Galaxy comic book logo and insignia on it, a nod to the classic comic book Guardians and their stylized uniforms.
In the MCU, the flame-like shape has been adapted as the symbol of the Ravagers. In Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Yondu's old Ravager clan is comprised of members of the original comic book Guardians of the Galaxy.
Blood Brothers(opens in new tab)
The two hulking red aliens who charge Star-Lord as he attempts to bargain with them are a pair of villains known as the Blood Brothers, who come straight from comic books. The Blood Brothers - Gh'ree Blood and R'Hos Blood, respectively - are members of the Roclite race who are essentially space mercenaries.
They actually got their start taking on Tony Stark in Iron Man #55 (opens in new tab), the same story that introduced their on-again-off-again comic book boss, Thanos - who of course has his own history with the Guardians.
Kallusian child?(opens in new tab)
Star-Lord and Gamora can be seen interacting with a young alien child, who doesn't look quite like a member of any Marvel Comics race - but oddly enough, he looks a lot like the MCU's take on Guardians villain Taserface, whose alien species has not been named in movies.
In comic books, Taserface is a Stark; blue-skinned aliens who evolved based on Tony Stark's technology that made its way to their planet. But the MCU Taserface, and the child in the Guardians game trailer, look more like Kallusians - alien invaders with pink skin and white hair that fought the Avengers way back in Avengers #14 (opens in new tab).
Xandarian Worldmind(opens in new tab)
The big gold face that addresses the Guardians (apparently through the front windscreen of their ship) doesn't correspond exactly to comic books, though her star shape is reminiscent of the symbol of Spartax, Peter Quill's comic book ancestral home, and her gold coloration is similar to Ayesha, one of the villains of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.
However, this seems to be a video game adaptation of the Xandarian Worldmind inspired by Glenn Close's MCU Nova Prime. The Worldmind is a sentient computer system that carries the memories and knowledge of the Nova Corps and the people of their home world Xandar - kinda like the Kree Supreme Intelligence seen in Captain Marvel in the MCU.
Dweller-in-Darkness(opens in new tab)
Of all the Marvel Comics characters and creatures shown in the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer, maybe the creepiest is the giant, Lovecraftian tentacle monster the team is shown facing down.
That monster is in fact the ancient cosmic entity known as the Dweller-in-Darkness, a so-called 'Fear Lord' who is an enemy of Thor and Doctor Strange in Marvel Comics. The Fear Lords, who also count Strange's enemy Nightmare in their ranks, are collectively comic book enemies of Loki.
"Flarking great!"(opens in new tab)
It may sound like Rocket is invoking the name of the catlike alien Flerken of Captain Marvel fame when he swears at Star-Lord, but he's actually saying "Flarking great!"
That's a very Rocket kinda curse word, as 2017's Rocket #2 (opens in new tab) establishes the term "Flark" or "Flarking" as a swear word used throughout the galaxy, which comes from space parasites known as Flarks that often bedevil interstellar travelers in the Marvel Universe.
Lady Hellbender(opens in new tab)
The bluish-skinned villain seen wearing red armor and wielding a massive weapon against the Guardians is basically a direct comic book adaptation of Lady Marguerite Hellbender of the planet Serknarf Nine.
Lady Hellbender is a galactic warrior who is obsessed with collecting a menagerie of monsters - a mission that has led her to clash with Amadeus Cho when he was the Gamma-powered Totally Awesome Hulk, and later to try and capture Eddie Brock and the Venom symbiote.
Star-Lord's father?(opens in new tab)
There's an old guy with a glowing staff shown partway through the Guardians game trailer that doesn't seem to exactly line up with any comic book character - though there are a few likely guesses. For one thing, he could be a version of Star-Lord's father J'Son of Spartax, who looks a bit younger but has often worn similar clothes.
There's also the chance he could be a version of Ego, Peter Quill's MCU dad, especially considering he appears in the trailer close to Mantis. And in Marvel Comics, there's a former Herald of Galactus named Firelord who carries a flaming staff. Speaking of which...
Sun Lord(opens in new tab)
Mantis calling Star-Lord "Sun Lord" by mistake is probably another bit in the running gag of people messing up Peter Quill's lofty sounding codename - and a sun is a star that sits at the center of a solar system, after all.
But oddly enough, there is a comic book character named Sun Lord with a Marvel Comics connection - though he's not actually a Marvel character. Sun Lord is a one-off character from the Marvel/DC joint venture Amalgam Comics in which some of their characters were mashed-up as a short-lived gimmick, Sun Lord himself being a combo of Legion of Super-Heroes member Sun Boy and Galactus's one-time herald Firelord.
Cosmo(opens in new tab)
That's Cosmo the talking space dog, the galaxy's goodest good boy! Cosmo is a Russian dog who was sent to space and became super-intelligent and telepathic.
Cosmo had a minor MCU cameo as one of the beings held prisoner in the Collector's chambers in Guardians of the Galaxy.
Kammy(opens in new tab)
The fuzzy blue llama-like creature held by Groot at the end of the trailer actually has a name - Kammy, according to the game's official Twitter account (opens in new tab).
In Marvel Comics, there's a human girl named Cammi who becomes an ally of Drax and a galactic bounty hunter when she is transported to space - so the name may be a fun nod, even with the spelling difference.
A'Askavariian(opens in new tab)
In a kind of stinger bit on the trailer's end, Peter Quill is seen leaving someone's quarters - someone who has long, pink, caressing tentacles.
This seems to be a reference to Quill's line from the first Guardians of the Galaxy about hooking up with an A'askavariian, who in comic books have pink skin and masses of tentacles.
While you wait for Guardians of the Galaxy to arrive on Playstation 4 and Playstation 5, dig into the best Guardians of the Galaxy comics of all time!