Saturday, August 10, 2013

Guardians of the Galaxy Meet and Greet: Yondu

My Guardians of the Galaxy write ups were met with mostly positive comments despite me making an error or two. As a follow up to those I am going to introduce a few of the characters who will also be debuting August 1, 2014 when James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy comes to theaters.

One character whose role in Guardians of the Galaxy I am most curious about is Yondu, a Zatoan tribesman from the planet Centauri IV.  The Zatoan were primitive humanoid beings from an alternate timeline of the Marvel universe which is designated as Earth-691 whereas Earth-616 includes the majority of the heroes with whom most people are familiar.  In the 691 continuity all of Earth's superheroes were killed off in the year 2001 during a Martian invasion.  Fast forward to the year 3007 and the Badoon, the alien species I featured here, in the midst of their galactic conquest, attack Centauri IV.  During the attack Yondu, who was apart from the tribe while undergoing his manhood ritual, is discovered by 20th century astronaut Vance Astro.  Astro had been sent to Centauri IV in 1988 on a mission to help colonize the planet.  When he finally arrived he soon found that his ship, which did not possess advanced technology, had been beaten to the punch by further advanced vessels sent after 1988.  

Yondu and Astro survived the attack which left Yondu as the last of his tribe.  After briefly escaping to Astro's 20th century ship, the pair were captured and kept for study by the Badoon.  Eventually, with the duo escaped the Badoon and, along with other survivors of the Badoon attacks and Starhawk, an immortal god-like being in the 691, to form the Guardians of the Galaxy.

The 691 Guardians of the Galaxy are, in terms of publication, the original Guardians of the Galaxy team.  Over the years they have interacted with members of the 616 universe and aided in several major events including helping the Avengers of Earth-616 fight against Korvac.  Though membership has revolved, Yondu has always been a part of the group.

Yondu is a skilled hunter and bowman.  The arrows he fires are damn-fancy in the fact that the direction of them can be controlled by high-pitched whistles emitted by Yondu while they are in flight.  Yondu, as were all members of his tribe, are also highly mystical beings, very in tune with nature.  Yondu's tribe worshipped the god Anthos who, through a series of events was revealed to quite possibly be an alternate future version of Thanos, the Mad Titan I featured yesterday.

I quite honestly don't know exactly where Yondu fits in the grand scheme Guardians of the Galaxy.  Some have rumored him to be a part of the villainous team, led by Nebula, who are out to hunt down the Guardians.  The fact that he's seen with Sakaaran warriors certainly seems to fit that bill; however, his entire comic history would have to be ignored in that instance and that doesn't seem entirely likely. We do know from the trailer that Yondu is a known associate of Peter Quill, so there could be some double-crossing going on. It is possible that the movie features some sort of time travel which could, ultimately, lead to cameos by other members of the 691 Guardians.  

Michael Rooker, one of director James Gunn's homies and former member of The Walking Dead, was tabbed to play Yondu.  In advance of having a large red fin atop his melon for the role, it seems Rooker decided it was in his best interests to leave a little landing strip on his dome.  Anyone familiar with Rooker's work is likely just as excited as I am to see him in a mainstream film, though given the fact that Yondu doesn't do a whole lot of speaking, Rooker is going to have to a challenge.