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What are GoBots? How Marvel Canonized Transformers in GOTG

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The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special is one of Marvel’s most meta features to date, alongside that She-Hulk: Attorney at Law finale. We explain what GoBots are and discuss how Drax’s Hollywood scene with Mantis may canonize Transformers in the MCU.

With a run time of just under one hour, the holiday special is a festive tidbit to tee up Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, which is scheduled to debut in theatres on May 5, 2023. 

The upcoming Christmas special presentation is brought to you by writer and director James Gunn, the man behind the MCU’s Guardians trilogy, and focuses on the titular heroes celebrating the holiday season on Earth in order to lift Peter Quill’s spirits. The feature will see Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Sean Gunn, Michael Rooker, and Zoe Saldaña reprise their roles.

Marvel Studios’ Special Presentation: The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special | Official Trailer

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Marvel Studios’ Special Presentation: The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special | Official Trailer
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Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special Recap

In an attempt to cheer Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) up for Christmas, Drax (Dave Bautista) and Mantis (Pom Klementieff) leave Knowhere to visit Hollywood on Earth.

Upon arriving in tinsel town, the pair are greeted by a walkway of cosplayers, from Zorro to Captain America – the latter of which Mantis is excited to see.

Drax then catches a glimpse of a man dressed as a robot, which immediately angers Drax and provokes Mantis to hold him back revealing that a GoBot killed his cousin.

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special – Cr. Marvel Entertainment, Disney Plus.

What are GoBots?

GoBots are a specific line of “transforming robot toys” that were released by Tonka between 1983 and 1987 and they were major competition to Hasbro’s Transformers.

The toy line featured sentient robots that were divided into good Guardians and evil Renegades and they could transform into vehicles at will.

After Hasbro bought Tonka, the GoBots IP became its to own alongside Bandai which owns the molds, and the 1984 animated series Challenge of the GoBots confirmed GoBots existed within an alternate universe in the Transformers franchise.

Marvel Canonizes Transformers – GoBots Killed Drax’s Cousin

While Drax gets angry at the GoBot in the holiday special, Mantis revealed the root of his anger stemming from a previous altercation when a GoBot killed Drax’s cousin.

This detail from Drax’s past suggests that GoBots were more than just toys in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, since one of them managed to kill his cousin.

If GoBots exist in the MCU, then there’s a high chance Transformers do as well, and Peter Quill likely referred to robots of this ilk as GoBots since he was on Earth during the time of their circulation and maybe favored them over Transformers.

By Jo Craig – [email protected]

The Guardians of the Galaxy: Holiday Special is now streaming on Disney Plus.

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Jo Craig
@https://twitter.com/shingeekyjo

Jo Craig is a staff writer at GRV Media reporting pop culture content on Forever Geek and brainstorming with the HITC Entertainment team. After nearly a decade in the game, Jo finds dissecting Marvel trailers for hours standard practice and still finds time to review, analyse, and research film, anime, video games and everything on the nerdy spectrum. Maintaining a strong social media presence, Jo’s passion for contributing to the geek culture community is a staple in their work and the spark behind vibrant discussions with comrades, even though some disagree that The Lord of the Rings is the best franchise.

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