Review- Guardians of the Galaxy animated series- Episode 01- the Road to Knowhere

Anime Reporter checks out the very first episode of the brand new animated series Guardians of the Galaxy, based on, you guessed it the Marvel film of the same name which is in turn based slightly more loosely on the Marvel comic book of the same name.

Guardians of the Galaxy S1e01 02

We all remember GotG, right? I loved that movie, as you may recall from my words located here on that very subject. The cartoon starts off with Blue Swede’s Hooked on a Feeling playing on Peter Quill’s walkman as he and the other guardians scale a rocky tower. That’s right, Awesome Mix Vol. 1 is still in play and, while the tune is different, it’s already starting to feel like a less charming version of the film’s opening scene.

Guardians of the Galaxy S1e01 04

Minutes into the cartoon, as the team are breaking into a facility to liberate/kidnap and arms dealer/freedom fighter/none of the above, Peter is asked the somewhat on the nose question of whether the guardians are meant to be heroes or outlaws. This question feels all the more awkward for being asked by Gamora, one of Peter’s fellow guardians and his response of “Why can’t we be both?” honestly makes me wonder if those characters were paying attention when Peter delivered that exact sentiment a lot more smoothly at the end of the film.

Guardians of the Galaxy S1e01 01

Unfortunately. Things do not advance much further than 23 minutes of “Hey, this or something very like it was in the film! Cool, right?” Groot, the kind yet incredibly dangerous tree giant takes a lot of damage in one fight and much later falls apart revealing a tiny version of himself hidden inside, paying very little attention to how Groot actually ended up as a tiny stick in a pot during the film in a mad dash to replicate its cute factor.

Guardians of the Galaxy S1e01 07

The overall plot of this first episode feels like a fairly half-assed attempt at copying the film’s actual plot except with the team already assembled. There’s a mysterious artefact that all the powerful baddies, (including Thanos, naturally), seems to want to get their hands on, so the guardians jump into the fray to save the day. We’ve got Drax’s need for vengeance and Gamora’s rivalry/hatred for an adopted sibling. Groot is vaguely adorable and Rocket wants to blow stuff up and make some money. Peter, or Starlord, well… he kind of just wants to say things that probably sounded smooth in his head. There isn’t really any motivation for why this team of ne’erdoewells are so determined to lock horns with Thanos once more and this episode feels more like a crude advertisement to remind people about the film.

He was in it, remember? The guy from Blood Diamond and Gladiator? Yes, I could google him, but I'm not putting in more effort than the people who made the cartoon and that actor almost certainly didn't sign back up for this.

He was in it, remember? The guy from Blood Diamond and Gladiator? Yes, I could google him, but I’m not putting in more effort than the people who made the cartoon and that actor almost certainly didn’t sign back up for this.

The animation is… unfortunate. There are a few scenes with wonderfully detailed backdrops and animation, but these give way to more than a couple scenes of animation so crude that I had to ask myself who made this show… Then I remembered that it was Marvel and Disney which made me feel a bit cheated.

Disney... Marvel... This is not your best level of work. Must try harder.

Disney… Marvel… This is not your best level of work. Must try harder.

Unfortunately, the characters don’t fare much better than the animation. Dialogue feels very forced and, while I’m sure the cast did their best to pull off their impressions of the original ensemble, it really lacks any of the charisma or light-heartedness of the original. The action reels in many previously seen characters and locations, making very little effort to produce anything new. The only really new element is a more specific reference to Starlord’s alien heritage.

Guardians of the Galaxy S1e01 03

Ultimately, this episode feels like a missed opportunity to give us something interesting and light, to make us care about it as a series rather than attempt to borrow from its older brother’s acclaim. This show has a lot of room to grow into, but I highly recommend it gets its rocket boots on pronto, because halfway through this first episode, it was already starting to feel a little stale, and there’s no reason that this premise, these characters, or the creative studios behind them should disappoint. Let’s hope they don’t.

Guardians of the Galaxy S1e01 06

Advertisements

Anime Reporter brings you reviews and insights on anime, manga and whatever else I feel like! Welcome!

Tagged with: , , ,
Posted in American Series, Cartoon, Reviews
One comment on “Review- Guardians of the Galaxy animated series- Episode 01- the Road to Knowhere
  1. Sunite says:

    Looks awesome, I might have to check it out.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow Anime Reporter on WordPress.com
Anime Reports
September 2015
M T W T F S S
« Aug   Oct »
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
282930  
%d bloggers like this: