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Guardians of the Galaxy Annual #1 review: where is everyone?

An okay middling issue that establishes what’s going on in the Marvel Universe.

With the devastation wrought to Marvel’s cast of celestial characters in Donny Cates’ latest shot at Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s a fair question to ask where everyone has ended up. Thanos lives again and with the Black Order’s attack, countless heroes were lost to a singularity. This annual seeks to establish the status of various characters in the aftermath of the catastrophe, while reuniting them for what seems to be the next universal threat. How does it hold up?

Unfortunately it falls into the category of anthologies best left unwritten.

What’s this about?

So this issue follows four primary characters in the aftermath of Guardians of the Galaxy #1. Including heavy hitters such as Nova, Adam Warlock and Darkhawk, Cosmo the Space Dog also makes an appearance. There are a lot of nice cameos here for long term and invested fans who care about special characters that haven’t received much attention in the mainstream. But it falls into the same trap most annuals try to avoid: Relevance.

In Soviet Russia, Space Dog get YOU back home. Marvel Comics

Each of these characters gets their own short story, with all of it being tied together with Cosmo and his new mysterious benefactor. A benefactor who seems intent on collecting the celestial heroes for his own ends.

Each of these anthologies explores the universe, sets plot lines for the future and just shows where Marvel’s celestial cast is at. It’s a nice show of universe building with some great ideas being brought up while old ones are polished off.

No I actually didn’t know there were Skrulls dressed up like mobsters. Marvel Comics

None of these stories are inherently bad, but clumped together with varying art styles, it doesn’t stick the landing. None of this feels like it couldn’t have simply been included in the main Guardians series. The proper Guardians team(s) do not appear. All in all, unless you care specifically about new developments for the characters mentioned above, you can safely skip this issue for the main series.

Guardians of the Galaxy Annual #1
Is it good?
An okay middling issue that establishes what's going on in the Marvel Universe.
It's good to revisit old characters that haven't received much attention till recently
Characters are developed in new and interesting ways
It feels like a bump in the road for the main Guardians run
All in all, the anthologies feel disjointed and smashed together

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