Marvel Characters Who Should Join “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3”

8 minute read

By Nick Steinberg (@Nick_Steinberg)

For a film that’s still at least a few years from release, there’s no upcoming Marvel release as ripe for speculation as Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Much of this can be attributed to the production’s much-publicized behind-the-scenes controversy. In July 2018, Disney fired writer-director James Gunn following the resurfacing of controversial tweets from Gunn. While some were supportive of Disney’s decision, many more came to Gunn’s defense, including the film’s cast (Dave Bautista even threatened to quit if Gunn’s script wasn’t used).

In March 2019, Disney reversed course and rehired Gunn, who by that point had already signed on to direct Suicide Squad 2. As a result, Guardians Vol. 3 was pushed back and is now expected to start filming this year. Little is known about the film other than that the principal cast is returning, while Chris Hemsworth’s Thor is expected to play a prominent role. There are many directions Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 can go in, so here are 12 characters we’d love to see join in on the fun.

12. Starhawk

Sylvester Stallone made his MCU debut in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, playing Stakar Ogord aka Starhawk, leader of the Stakar Ravager Clan. Stallone’s role in the film went a bit further than just a cameo, as he was the one responsible for exiling Yondu for violating Ravager code. However, it would be great to see Starhawk and his team take on a more active role in Vol. 3.

Given Marvel’s desire to expand its cinematic universe in Phase 4 and the fact that Starhawk’s team were the original Guardians of the Galaxy in the comics, there’s a good chance we’ll get an entire Ravagers spinoff down the line. And an expanded role for the Stakar Ravager Clan in Guardians Vol. 3 would be a perfect way of setting up such a spinoff.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

11. Lockjaw

The ill-fated Inhumans TV series was a rare Marvel misfire but it did at least give the MCU one great addition: Lockjaw. A massive, lovable dog with teleportation abilities, Lockjaw is simply too good to be limited to a bad TV show nobody watched. At first glance, it might be unclear how Lockjaw could be worked into Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 but there is precedent for him joining the team.

In Guardians #5 (May 2019), Lockjaw teamed up with Star-Lord and the gang to track down a captured Gamora, so he’s basically an honorary member of the Guardians at this point. Plus, what movie wouldn’t benefit from adding a big teleporting dog?

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

10. Angela (Aldrif Odinsdottir)

Not to be confused with Hela, Aldrif Odinsdottir is the true firstborn of Odin and Freyja in Marvel Comics lore. However, longtime comic readers may know her better as Angela, a bounty hunter, and agent of Heaven created by Neil Gaiman and Todd McFarlane. Despite making her debut in McFarlane’s Spawn series, Gaiman later won the rights to the character in a legal battle and sold the rights to Marvel. Angela made her first appearance in the 2013 story “Age of Ultron” but wasn’t revealed to be Thor’s long lost sister until 2014’s “Original Sin”.

Early on in her Marvel Comics debut, Angela crossed paths with the Guardians of the Galaxy and even joined the team. Fittingly, Angela joins in Vol. 3 #5, so it only makes sense for Aldrif Odinsdottir to make her screen debut in the third Guardians of the Galaxy movie.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

9. Lady Lylla

Did you know Rocket Racoon has a sentient otter girlfriend? Well, say hello to Lady Lylla, a character we feel pretty confident in saying will appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. First introduced in Incredible Hulk #271(1982) during the Toy War, Lady Lylla is the heiress to a large toymaking empire called Mayhem Mekaniks. In the MCU, Rocket gives no indication of having a girlfriend; in fact, much of his backstory revolves around being the only one of his kind.

For this reason, James Gunn has voiced reluctance for introducing Lylla in the past, revealing in a Facebook Q&A that “You’ll have to wait and see on Lylla … I think it’s very important that Rocket is the only thing like him.” Despite this, rumors have persisted that Lady Gaga is being considered to play Lylla and given her A Star is Born connection to Rocket voice actor Bradley Cooper, this feels like a cinematic reunion of galactic proportions.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

8. Quasar

For fans of Marvel’s cosmic brand, Quasar is a hero who needs little introduction. Many characters have adopted the Quasar moniker but the most popular is Wendell Vaughn. Like Star-Lord, Vaughn is also from Earth but is considerably more powerful thanks to his Quantum Bands, which imbue him with powers such as flight and the ability to control all forms of energy.

Way back in 2017 before the whole firing/rehiring controversy, James Gunn tweeted out a picture of an old Quasar VCR – a not-so-subtle hint of where the writer-directors mind was at for the Vol. 3 script. Of course, things very well may have changed since then but it’s hard not to think Quasar is at or near the top of the shortlist of new characters we’ll be seeing in Guardians 3.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

7. High Evolutionary

Although more casual fans likely haven’t heard his name, High Evolutionary was created by the most famous Marvel Comics duo, Jack Kirby and Stan Lee. First introduced in The Mighty Thor #134 (1966), High Evolutionary was a British scientist who used a genetic accelerator on himself to gain god-like powers and abilities.

While High Evolutionary could feel like a retread after Kurt Russell’s Ego in Guardians Vol. 2, he’d be solid addition if used correctly. It’s been rumored that High Evolutionary will be revealed as Rocket’s creator, which tracks with the reports that Vol. 3 will place a heavier focus on the wise-cracking raccoon.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

6. Mephisto

If James Gunn really wants to go big with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, adding the Marvel Universe’s version of Satan would be one way to do it. A demon of untold power, Mephisto once fought Galactus to a stalemate, so there’s no doubt he’d one of the most formidable villains yet seen in the MCU. How Mephisto would fit into a Guardians movie remains to be seen, as he doesn’t have much history with the group in the comics.

However, if Christian Bale ends up playing Mephisto in Thor: Love and Thunder like some are speculating, it would make a lot more sense to include him in Guardians Vol. 3 given Chris Hemsworth’s Thor is expected to figure prominently in it.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

5. Annihilus

If you were to assemble a shortlist of possible villains for the next Guardians of the Galaxy film, Annihilus would be near the top. Nicknamed “The Living Death That Walks,” Annihilus is a recurring antagonist for both the Guardians and Fantastic Four. Traditionally, he’s been used in stories involving the Negative Zone, which has essentially been replaced by the Quantum Realm in the MCU.

Does this mean the Guardians will follow in Ant-Man’s footsteps and enter the Quantum Realm to do battle with Annihilus? It’s hard to rule anything out at this point but if Annihilus does show up in Vol. 3, we just hope he’s voiced by Mark Hamill.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

4. Nova

Ever since the Nova Corps were introduced in the original Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s felt like just a matter of time before the actual superhero known as Nova makes his debut. After all, Nova is a member of the Nova Corps and has played a prominent role in a number of comic storylines. His name has also frequently come up in discussions of where the MCU will go post-Endgame.

In that same aforementioned Facebook Live chat, James Gunn revealed that “Nova comes up occasionally as someone we might use [in Vol. 3].” Also known as Richard Rider, Nova is an Earthling like Star-Lord and the two are good friends in the comics. If Marvel can get the casting right, it’s easy to see Chris Pratt’s Peter Quill hitting it off with his new buddy Nova … and alienating/annoying the rest of the Guardians in the process.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

3. Moondragon

In the first Guardians of the Galaxy, we learn that Drax’s wife and daughter were killed by Ronan the Accuser. But what if his daughter is actually still alive? In the comics, Drax’s daughter Moondragon is a powerful telepath raised by Thanos’ father Mentor on the planet Titan.

While her origins will likely need to be revised a bit — bringing Thanos’ father into the mix at this point doesn’t make a lot of sense — bringing Moondragon in as an antagonist sets up some heavy father-daughter narrative threads. Moondragon would also likely figure prominently in Thor’s arc, as there’s an entire storyline in the comics where she seduces him and puts him under her control.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

2. Adam Warlock

At first glance, this one may seem like a bit of a cheat, as Adam Warlock seems all but guaranteed to appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. For one thing, Warlock was literally introduced in one of the Vol. 2’s post-credit scenes! But a lot has changed in the MCU since that film’s release and there’s a chance Vol. 3 will skip Adam Warlock altogether. Many fans expected the Quantum Magic wielder to play a key role in defeating Thanos but he didn’t get so much as a mention in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame.

James Gunn has also played coy about his plans for Adam, stating in an Instagram Q&A last year, “I never said Adam Warlock was in the movie.” Of course, Vol. 3 is far enough away that Gunn can get away with denying pretty much anything, but we’re definitely less confident about Adam Warlock showing up than we were a few years ago.

Source: Screenshot via Marvel Comics

1. The Silver Surfer

Hey, why not have some fun with the top pick? Now that Disney has control over the Fantastic Four and X-Men properties, they’re free to add a whole bunch of new characters to the MCU. For many fans, Silver Surfer would be near the top of the list, as the cosmic hero deserves a better film adaptation than 2007’s forgettable Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer. He’d also fit in surprisingly well with the Guardians of the Galaxy.

Alongside Quasar and a few others, Silver Surfer is a member of the Annihilators, a team of galactic protectors that the Guardians could realistically encounter during their travels. More than likely, we’ll have to wait for the inevitable MCU Fantastic Four reboot to see Silver Surfer on screen again but here’s hoping James Gunn and co. surprise us all by putting him in Guardians Vol. 3.

Source: Screenshot via 20th Century Fox

Nick Steinberg (@Nick_Steinberg)