Warning: SPOILERS Below for Avengers: Infinity War!
After meeting the Guardians of the Galaxy in Avengers: Infinity War, Thor should have a new calling: replacing Star-Lord as their leader. While many characters encountered each other for the first time in Avengers 3, the most worthy Marvel team-up was the God of Thunder encountering the ragtag band of intergalactic screw-ups he had no idea even existed. This combo was the jolt of lightning both Avengers: Infinity War and the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a whole needed.
The heroes played by two of the MCU's three actors named Chris - Hemsworth and Pratt - came face-to-face for the first time, and they did not get along. However, this was mainly Peter Quill's fault as his fragile ego felt threatened by the sudden appearance of a handsome Asgardian god in need of aid. They went their separate ways for the rest of the film, with Thor taking Rocket and Groot to meet Eitri in Nidavellir in order to acquire a new weapon that can kill Thanos, the Stormbreaker axe. Meanwhile, Star-Lord led his group to find Thanos on Knowhere. But the seed was planted, and Thor hanging with the Guardians is an irresistible idea that needs to continue.
Though the combined heroes ultimately failed to stop Thanos from wiping out half the universe with the Infinity Gauntlet, it's telling which assortment of Guardians heroically distinguished themselves in the fight and who completely failed the universe. The trio of Thor, Rocket, and Groot performed some miraculous feats before they turned the tide for the Avengers in the fight against the Black Order in Wakanda. Meanwhile, on Titan, Quill lost his cool and ruined what he claimed was his own plan, costing Tony Stark's squad the chance to take the Gauntlet from Thanos.
Whatever the future holds for the space gang after Avengers 4 - Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is due in 2020 - Infinity War showed fans that the Guardians would be better off with the God of Thunder calling the shots instead of Star-Lord.
The Guardians Are Going Nowhere With Star-Lord
Avengers: Infinity War picks up four years since the end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (as evidenced by Groot growing into a surly teen), but it seemed like Star-Lord hasn't matured at all. Under his leadership, the Guardians are still bouncing around space scraping for work that can earn them some credits. Of course, this was a deliberate choice by the filmmakers; the Guardians can't change too much so that the characters are recognizable in the way fans knows them best. But some newfound maturity from Star-Lord would have been welcome; instead, we saw the complete opposite. Outside of becoming romantic with Gamora, Peter comes off like he hasn't grown one bit as a person or as a leader. Rocket and Gamora remained as exasperated with him as ever.
To be fair, Peter Quill is a great character. In Guardians, he can be roguish and infuriating, but he's also cool and funny. Ultimately, Star-Lord proves to be heroic and loveable despite his character defects. In Infinity War, however, Star-Lord was at his absolute worst. Of all of the characters in the film, none behaved more poorly than Quill. His emotional outburst sabotaged the Avengers and Guardians when they had Thanos subdued and had almost taken the Gauntlet. Of course, Peter losing it in that moment was human and understandable - he was emotionally distraught that Thanos had killed Gamora to gain the Soul Stone. Most people would react with similar anger towards the murderer of the woman they love.
However, Quill's behavior even before that mistake hardly made him endearing. From being petty and jealous just because Gamora massaged the arm of a "not-that-good-looking" god to acting like an arrogant jerk while Tony Stark was trying to come up with a game plan against Thanos, Star-Lord was in rare form throughout the entire movie. The high stakes of the dire crisis Thanos caused was a call for every hero to be at their best; the fate of the universe in jeopardy. Every other hero rose to the occasion while Quill careened farthest in the opposite direction. Of course, one of the roles the Guardians played in Avengers: Infinity War was to provide comic relief, and Star-Lord's behavior was intended to get laughs, but in doing so, he became the biggest detriment to the heroes and their attempts to save the universe (although it's likely to be an essential part of Doctor Strange's endgame).
Now, the Guardians are a found family and Peter is, by default, the head of that unit. However, his claim to leadership often amounts to the fact that he owns the ship they live on, in this case, a new vessel called the Benatar. But after four years under Quill's guidance, the Guardians seem to have grown stagnant. If and when the Guardians return to life in Avengers 4, maybe they simply require new leadership. As fate would have it, the solution slammed right into their windshield.
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 05, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019