The official trailer for “I Am Groot,” a collection of five shorts, is finally here. It is a spin-off of Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” and will show Groot’s life before he became a “guardian of the galaxy.” While there isn’t much to ponder after watching the trailer, one thing that we are sure of is that it will have a visual quality to it. And with Groot being the plant that he is, nature and its myriad shades will be incorporated into the show.
Each of the five episodes will explore a particular point from Groot’s past. In the trailer, we see Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel) face a colony of tiny blue aliens who first take him to be a monster, but some time later as their provider. We also see him explore a spaceship that might bring him face-to-face with Rocket Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper). He is there in the show. Then there are forests and other environments that Groot will explore. More than anything, “I am Groot” will showcase Groot’s gentle nature. Gelatinous creatures (including a version of Groot), moss, huge mushrooms, and more; the world will be MCU’s own Wonderland.
From the looks of the trailer, it is clear that Marvel is going all-in on visual storytelling. Everything that we see in the trailer seems tangible. The little blue aliens, the leaves, the soil, the plants, even the lighting, and finally Groot himself, all feel real. We do not know how much the show will contribute to the larger MCU, but it is perhaps a good way to take a break from the multiverse and its madness.
For an animated character like Groot, it is important to give special attention to expressions. The trailer does show how much detail has been put into making Groot appear as photoreal as possible. It is one thing to show off the feats that have been achieved using CGI, and a totally different thing to use CGI in a way that makes it seem as if it wasn’t used at all. It is that uncanny valley that Marvel has seemingly been able to overcome.
Groot’s character was first introduced in the 1960s comic book Tales to Astonish by legendary comic artists/writers Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, and Larry Lieber. We first saw Groot in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), where he sacrificed himself and, out of a sapling from his body, his son, “Baby Groot”, grew and took his place. Since then, Groot has been through a lot, especially in Avengers: Infinity War (2018), where he chops off his arm to make a handle for Thor’s new weapon, Stormbreaker. However, in “I am Groot,” it is Baby Groot whom we will come across and get to know more about.
The San Diego Comic-Con animation panel revealed that after the 5 animated shorts, the show will return with more episodes later. We also have The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special that will come out in December. “I am Groot” is Marvel’s second animated show after What If…?, which garnered great reviews from viewers and critics. Although the release is close, we can expect a second trailer, a longer one, to drop soon that will give us more details about the other characters in the show as well as some kind of a synopsis.
All five shorts of “I Am Groot” will be released on Disney+ on August 10. The show is created and written by Ryan Little (script coordinator and writer, What If…? ), directed by Kirsten Lepore (animation director, Marcel the Shell with Shoes On), and co-produced by James Gunn (director, “Guardians of the Galaxy”).