Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Is a Marvel Superhero Movie Made in Poor Taste. And It’s Better for It.
It’s easy to forget, but James Gunn, the schlock visionary behind Marvel’s first two Guardians of the Galaxy films, almost didn’t get to make a third entry. In the summer of 2018, Gunn was fired from his job directing the movie, which was then in development, after right-wing trolls dug up a slew of old tweets that were in decidedly poor taste, and which included jokes about violence toward children.
But poor taste was, of course, precisely the point. Before Gunn landed at the helm of a top-tier comic book franchise, he was a low-budget gross-out horror provocateur. His filmmaking career started with Troma Entertainment, the company most famous for the Toxic Avenger franchise, and his credits included work on films like Tromeo and Juliet, a hyperviolent, sexually explicit, gleefully vulgar reboot of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Shock, outrage, ultraviolence, and scatological humor were the tools of Gunn’s trade and he crafted a public persona to match.
When evidence of that persona resurfaced, executives at Disney decided to give Gunn the boot. The famously family-focused company didn’t want to be associated with his brand of black comic grotesquerie.
Gunn, in turn, went to Marvel’s chief rival in the superhero movie business, the DC Comics universe of characters, to make another superhero movie with a brand more forgiving of his past image. That film, 2021’s sequel-reboot Suicide Squad, was an exuberantly violent but ultimately sentimental romp that not-so-subtly dealt with themes of cancellation by murderous (starfish monster–controlled) mobs.
The movie served as a kind of personal therapy—and a job interview. Late last year, Gunn was put in charge of rebooting the DC Comics m
Article from Reason.com