Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special's Vol. 3 Connections Revealed (Exclusive)

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special is gearing up for a release on Disney+, bringing the cast of Guardians heroes together under the direction of James Gunn for the first time since Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 which released in May of 2017. Since then, the Guardians of the Galaxy cast and characters have appeared in Avengers: Infinity War, Avengers: Endgame, and Thor: Love and Thunder. With Gunn back at the reigns, the trilogy he has been planning since 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy is nearing its end wth the Holiday Special being the first step in that direction.

"It's the end of the trilogy for all of the Guardians really," Gunn told in an exclusive interview available on the Phase Zero channel. In the Holiday Special, Gunn's story focuses on Drax and Mantis more than most of the other Guardians character. Dave Bautista and Pom Klementieff's Marvel characters make a journey to Earth in an effort to bring Kevin Bacon to their friend Star-Lord as a Christmas present. It's the first time these two characters have been heavily focused on since Vol. 2

"I think it's such a unique relationship and they really are kind of like Abbot and Costello, but both are Costellos, but Drax is such an enormous Costello that he outweighs her Costello-ness," Gunn explained. "I love the two of them. I love the two of them. I wanted to be able to put them at the center of the story as opposed to on the sidelines. I think both of them have, in the past few movies that weren't Guardians movies have been incredibly sidelined, haven't been utilized so much, and so being able to really tell their story and put their journey at the middle of this was important to me. And to be able to see how, just how talented those two actors are as comedians and dramatically especially, you see how good Pom is in this show."

(Photo: Marvel Studios / Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special)

With Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 coming in May of 2023, the Holiday Special serves up a few new details to set the stage for the film. Gunn tried to be "balanced" when it comes to whether or not the Holiday Special will be required viewing to fully understand the plot of Vol. 3. Still, he admitted, "People should see the Holiday Special."

The writer and director went on to share some key details about the Holiday Special, revealing a few which some may consider spoilers. If you want to ride into the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special with a blank slate of knowledge about their current place in the MCU, be warned there are mild spoilers in this next quote! "You're obviously gonna learn a lot about where the Guardians have been in the past few years," Gunn said. "You're gonna see how they now inhabit Knowhere. They've got a new ship called the Bowie. They've got a dog is part of their crew now, who has telekinesis, named Cosmo. So, where you get to learn all that, and then there's a couple of bigger pieces of spoiler-y lore. You're gonna learn all of those things. In a way, the Holiday Special was a Trojan Horse for me to sneak in stuff that becomes important in Vol. 3, so I don't have to spend a lot of time at the beginning of that movie explaining it."

The reactions to the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special have been largely positive. Many boast about how much fun they had laughing with the characters through their Christmas journey. Gunn has a warning for fans expecting a similar experience going into Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. "It's also very, very different than Volume 3 because Volume 3 is a really a very emotional movie. And it tells this story about Rocket and where he came from and where he's going, and how that ties into everybody else, and the end of this iteration of The Guardians," Gunn said. "So, doing this goofy thing like once every four days, and then going and shooting four days of Guardians Vol. 3, and then going back, it almost created a lot of whiplash. But it was also almost like the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special days were like snow days, you know? Those were the... that was recess. That was fun!"

Are you excited for the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special? Share your thoughts in the comment section or send them my way on Twitter! The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special hits Disney+ on November 25.