Guardians of the Galaxy #6 finds the team in their most precarious position ever, giving them time to reflect on the tragic events that led there.
Warning: Spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy #6!
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Guardians of the Galaxy is finally revealing the mystery behind Groot’s turn to villainy, with each member of the team feeling responsible in some way or another. Since the series latest run began, Groot’s role as antagonist has loomed over the heroes as he consumes planets, galaxies, and people wherever he turns. Now, the latest issue explains the horrible events that led to his transformation into the Grootfall.
Guardians of the Galaxy #6 – by Collin Kelly, Jackson Lanzing, Alex Lins, KJ Diaz, and VC’s Cory Petit – addresses the series’ outstanding questions. After the team is swallowed by the Grootfall, they find themselves forced to relive the constantly alluded-to tragedy on the Proscenium.
Seemingly at their most dire moment, this may in fact be the turning point in the salvation of the team, Groot included.
Groot Is Infected By The Branch Worlds
As Guardians of the Galaxy #6 explains, the beginning of the end started when the team received a mysterious alert, which Nebula was able to track down in their database as “the most likely threat vector to galactic peace.” The team sent Groot and Rocket to investigate further. Throughout the first five issues of the series, characters have made mention of a tragic event on the Proscenium without revealing any details. Only that it shook the team to its core and changed Groot for the worst. Issue #6 shows that Groot personally volunteered for a mission to what was potentially, “the most statistically dangerous planet in the galaxy,”
The Guardians Newfound Unity Could Save Groot
Naturally, Rocket insisted on joining him for what turned out to be their last mission together. On their journey, Groot recalled memories of his home planet, the Branch Worlds, which the duo soon came across. They found no signs of life, save for Granopy, the first and last tree of Groot’s kind. Upon first meeting, it was clear that Granopy is dying. With her final breath, she gave Groot her branch, a gift overwhelming it changes Groot forever, transforming him into the Grootfall. Guardians of the Galaxy #6 reveals that Rocket feels responsible for Grootfall’s galactic devestation because he didn’t kill Groot at the first sign of trouble.
As the flashback depicts, Rocket isn’t the only member of the Guardians to blame himself for Groot’s current state. Each member of the team blamed themselves in their own way, with these feelings causing the break-up of the Guardians as a unit. Rocket even admits, “I told myself I blamed all of you,” which explains why he broke away from the team completely to become the Star Sheriff. With Groot – arguably the heart of the team – not only gone, but having become their adversary, that itself explains the drastic character shifts the team have experienced in their latest series.
The current Guardians of the Galaxy run has been patiently building over the previous five issues, with issue #6 finally offering a satisfying context for the start of the series, highlighting what made the team broken and separated. Yes, the Guardians’ confidence is shattered, and they’re on the brink of death inside Grootfall, but if they manage to survive this, they will finally be a united front again. As such, perhaps that unity could be capable of reforming Groot, reverting him back to his old self. Whatever the end result may turn out to be, readers can feel satisfied that they finally know what happened to Groot one year ago.