James Gunn has admitted he received some backlash from fans over Yondu's significantly smaller fin in Guardians of the Galaxy compared to his original comic book counterpart. Marvel was able to successfully tap into their cosmic realm with the introduction of the odd mix of space heroes, but it was not without any risk. The characters had little fan affinity which made the film a lot more susceptible to failure. But the gamble eventually paid off with Peter Quill, Gamora, Drax, Rocket Racoon and Groot now fan-favorites.
Crafting a big-budget film off of unknown characters is not new to the MCU. In fact, they had to mainly rely on their B-list heroes to build their cinematic universe. And although it could be riskier compared to using a more well-known property, Gunn took this disadvantage as an opportunity to tweak some of the characterizations of the film's main game players in a way that it would fit his vision for the film better. Most of the changes sat well with fans, except for one thing involving Yondu's big screen aesthetic.
The filmmaker has candidly shared during his commentary piece in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Blu-Ray (h/t: Comic Book) that even with such a well-loved Marvel debut film, he still received some ire from comic book purists who were not happy with Yondu's physical appearance - specifically with the size of his fin:
“Yondu became a space pirate, and not a sort of Native American-inspired spiritual warrior that he is in the comics, but people very rarely get upset about any of that. It seemed like the one thing that people got upset about was Yondu's small fin. They somehow thought it was important that Yondu had a big fin.”
Gunn has continued that while he was at a loss that such a small thing caused a bit of a fuss from fans, he eventually and happily obliged to their wishes as a way to let them know that their opinions matter:
“I don't understand what comics fans get upset about over something else they don't get upset about. That something so physical and small would be the thing they'd get upset about, but they did -- and in a nod to the fans, who I'm appreciative towards, we gave them the big fin.”
Although the fin in the film is still significantly smaller from what was in the comic books, fans could not have bashed the look especially with the kind of character treatment Gunn gave Yondu, especially in Guardians 2. Despite the fact that he started off as a borderline villain, he was eventually redeemed and has even become one of the fan-favorites in the Marvel sub-franchise by the end of the sequel with his sacrificial death delivering the emotional punch that the narrative was going for.
Yondu may have already died, but expect him to still be a presence in the Guardians' lives moving forward. Kraglin, although not yet officially a member of the team, inherited his Yakka arrow which is a tangible reminder of the Ravager. Further, Gunn has also said that the official soundtrack for the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will be heavily influenced by Yondu's legacy in a way that it will be the Centaurian indirect way of communicating with Peter.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is now available on Blu-ray and digital.
Source: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Blu-Ray (h/t: Comic Book)
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