A Universe Made More Mysterious in All-New Guardians of the Galaxy 10

By Taylor Anderson

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Anyone who knows anything about science fiction writing knows that world-building is key to creating a good story. Without an established universe full of wonder and mystery even the best plots will fall flat. All-New Guardians of the Galaxy has been tiptoeing along this line ever since its relaunch ten issues back, but has survived based on the inherent likability of its characters. In issue 10, however, Gerry Duggan finally begins to unveil mysteries of the universe and the result is an entertaining and engrossing issue.

The Guardians find themselves in the presence of the Collector, unwittingly delivering unto him his brother, the Grandmaster. After a brief punch-fest they become bosom buddies once again and talk about how something is not quite right in the universe. What they primarily speak of is their fellow Elder, the Gardener, who recently has gone from growing things to killing things. All of this talk of elders and the universe hints at a much deeper mythology to this comic than we have previously known. While the Elders aren’t anything new to the Marvel Universe, they are new to this story and they are much welcome addition.

The reason the reveal of the Elders is fun is that previously the Guardians universe seemed so small. Sure, they flew around space and met weird new aliens, but nothing that they did alluded to the deeper, darker, and more mysterious truths the universe has to offer up. Now, however, their world is suddenly a larger place, as Peter finds out when the Grandmaster psychically informs about the history of the soul stones.

Just as with the Elders, the soul stones show that the galaxy is weird and beyond just the simple thievery and plots and the Guardians usually find themselves wrapped up in. Indeed, their universe is but one of many! All of the information dropped in issue 10 promises a much more intriguing backdrop for the Guardians and takes a pedestrian story to places out of this world.

The conversation doesn’t stop there. What do you wanna talk about from this issue?

One comment on “A Universe Made More Mysterious in All-New Guardians of the Galaxy 10

  1. Scale has been such a key part of this book from the very beginning, and Duggan and Kuder so effortlessly raise the scale wonderfully by taking all the story points together and using it to reveal a universe where the Guardians feel smaller than ever.

    I disagree that the Guardians universe was small before. With all the villains and concepts running around, Duggan and collaborators had done a great job at making things big. But tying it all together makes them feel positively miniscule.

    DnA described their vision of the Guardians was a team with everything rigged against them. Where the Avengers had it easy, the Guardians would struggle. Peter would deal with team dysfunction, politics and disrespect that the Avengers didn’t. This combined well with the cosmic scope, making them true underdogs. Avengers may fight the Masters of Evil or Ultron, but the Guardians have to fight Thanos or the Cancerverse while the game is rigged against them.

    Duggan manages to replicate this amazingly. DnA sometimes never did well enough to truly make them distinct from Earth, thanks to relying on existing characters like Kang or doing things like a Cancerverse built on Earth events. But using Secret Wars really helps do that. This idea that everything has changed fundamentally that even the most powerful entities in the universe are scared really sells the underdog nature. The idea that the Guardians have to fight against THAT, despite mostly being a ragtag crew of people with pretty ordinary weapons, is the engine that Guardians are built on. The balance of cosmic overwhelmingness and team dysfunction is perfectly balanced at the moment.

    Combine that with all the villains running around, either distinctly Guardians (Raptors, and possibly Thanos) or cleverly chosen (Loki and Mojo) or new (the Gardener). And the new idea that the Infinity Stones are the universe’s source code, making them feel more meaningful and important (I am still pro introduce new cosmic McGuffins so we don’t always have to go back to the same ones all the time, but they use the stones well here). The book has expanded greatly, truly creates real stakes for the Guardians. The sheer complexity of the situation really works, especially with characters on the selfish side. Can’t wait to see where it goes.

    Also, a hunt for the Infinity Stones could be a fantastic way to tell a couple of smaller stories with the Guardians. I hope they use the stones as a way to rapidly tell a variety of different, uniquely Guardians stories. Can already imagine about three different heist stories you could tell.

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