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The Science Behind Yondu's Yaka Arrow Explained

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[SPOILERS for those who have not yet seen Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2]

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James Gunn offers some background info on Yondu's infamous yaka arrow from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, complete with a scientific breakdown. While Michael Rooker's updated take on Yondu was a fan-favorite character in the first Guardians, the sequel last month gave him even more room to shine. The film fleshed out his backstory by exploring his history with Peter Quill and the original Ravagers. It not only set up the potential for Stakar and his crew to come back in a future film, but put Yondu and Quill's father-son relationship at the heart of the movie.

One of the most talked about scenes from the first movie came when Yondu finally used his yaka arrow after threatening to do throughout the film. An innovative update on the more traditional bow and arrow he uses in the comics, the whistle-controlled super-arrow was a weapon to behold. In Vol. 2, it got an even more prominent spotlight in a brutally comic scene. By the end of the film, Kraglin had picked up Yondu's fin and arrow as he learned how to control the powerful weapon. Now, we finally know a bit more about how it works.

Nerdist released a new video (seen above) which breaks down the science of the yaka arrows and how they're controlled via whistling. We'll leave it to Kyle Hill to properly explain it, as well as how it connects to Mary PoppinsGuardians writer/director James Gunn must have found it to his liking, as he shared the clip on Twitter before adding in some context of his own:

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Side note on the yaka arrow: the whistle sound is picked up by the headpiece and is transmitted wirelessly to the arrow.

— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) June 8, 2017

2nd side note on the yaka arrow in explanation of an unnamed spoiler: the headpieces are fairly common/simple; the arrow is incredibly rare.

— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) June 8, 2017

As you can see, Gunn seems to buy into Hill's explanation, stating that the whistling is picked up using the head-fin as a receiver to direct the arrow. He also mentions that the arrow itself is super rare, which is why Rocket has to repair the broken one for Kraglin to use. As for the headpiece, the devices are fairly standard in the world as they're essentially a speaker and wireless router combined. When a fan tried to call out Gunn on the rarity of the arrow versus the common nature of the headpiece, the writer clarified further.

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Not odd: there are many brain implantations in the universe (see Korath Vol 1); that tech is easily manipulated from one need to the other. https://t.co/N2eTwWOwXz

— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) June 8, 2017

As Gunn states, cybernetic implants are super common in the universe. Just like in Star Wars, many people in the Guardians universe have augmented themselves with various devices. Yondu himself seems to have an implant along his skull which he can plug the various fins into -- and we have to assume Kraglin does as well. From there, creating more of the transmitters is fairly simply. Meanwhile, the true power lies in the arrow, which is why it makes sense that it's rare.

As seen in the movie, Yondu's mastery of the yaka arrow allows him to wipe out dozens of enemies just by blowing some air through his lips. Luckily for the Guardians, those things aren't just lying around. The yaka arrow is one of Gunn's more ingenious additions to the canon, and it's always enjoyable when he takes the time to get on social media and provide further context for his hit franchise. Given that, expect more info to leak out from Gunn regarding Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.

Next: James Gunn Shares Details On His Role Shaping the Cosmic MCU

Source: NerdistJames Gunn

Key Release Dates
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) release date: May 05, 2017
  • Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017) release date: Jul 07, 2017
  • Thor: Ragnarok (2017) release date: Nov 03, 2017
  • Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
  • Black Panther (2018) release date: Feb 16, 2018
  • Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
  • Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
  • The Avengers 4 / Untitled Avengers Movie (2019) release date: May 03, 2019
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