Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special marks the debut of the “real” Mantis, according to writer-director James Gunn.
Gunn commented on the portrayal of Mantis (Pom Klementieff) in Marvel Studios’ special presentation with a holiday theme in a recent tweet. The filmmaker wrote that Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special introduced Mantis as “her whole self” for the first time in her run in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He went on to explain that this was because the empathic alien had finally moved “out of the background.” [and] out of the shadow of [Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 villain] Ego” in the special.
Gunn also mentioned Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas SpecialThe first reviews of , expressing appreciation for the overwhelmingly positive response it has received. In particular, he highlighted the praise Klementieff received for his performance and said he was “especially grateful” to see the actor’s work recognized. other aspects of Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special noted by critics but not mentioned by Gunn include its sentimental tone and deft use of established Christmas storytelling tropes.
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The special’s strong critical showing is all the more impressive when you consider that it doesn’t include a key element of the tried-and-tested playbook of the MCU. As Gunn himself previously confirmed, Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special it is the first MCU project without a villain. Because of this, he called the special’s story “low stakes” and “silly”, noting that these qualities made it fun to film alongside the more emotionally intense story. guardians of the galaxy vol. 3.
The light villain approach of Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special It’s not the only way it breaks with MCU tradition, either. The “Awesome Mix” playlist from the Marvel Studios special presentation includes an original song, unlike the previous ones. Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Mixes of outings that were based exclusively on existing licensed tracks. The new tune is titled “I Don’t Know What Christmas Is (But Christmastime Is Here)” and is performed by alternative country band Old 97’s.
Gunn co-wrote “I Don’t Know What Christmas Is (But Christmastime Is Here)” with Old 97 lead vocalist Rhett Miller, who also appears along with the rest of the band on the special. Miller and his bandmates wore heavy makeup and prosthetics to film his cameo, which Gunn later described as “[s]Some of the funnest days on set ever.”
Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special now streaming on Disney+.