The Saddest Parts Of Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3

A combined image of Lylla and Adam Warlock in the MCU's Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 released on May 3, 2023, but MCU fans already consider it one of the franchise’s best movies. Marking the end of James Gunn’s trilogy in the MCU, the film is incredibly emotional, even when it boasts the Guardians’ trademark sense of humor.

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Whether it’s Rocket Raccoon’s harrowing backstory or the fact that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 marks the end of an era, viewers will definitely find themselves tearing up during the film. Vol. 3 treated fans to many wholesome and heartwarming scenes, but also numerous upsetting moments.

Spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3 ahead.



10 Peter’s Reunion With His Grandfather

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By the end of Vol. 3, Peter Quill takes a leave of absence from the Guardians to go to Earth and spend time with his grandfather. He reunites with Jason Quill in his house in the suburbs where he and his wife welcome Peter immediately in a beautiful scene.

Although fans are sad about losing Peter as the Guardians’ leader, his decision in Vol. 3 makes perfect sense for the character. Peter’s self-discovery journey started in Vol. 1 and expanded in Vol. 2 with Ego, his father. Now, he gets to connect with his grandfather.

9 “Come & Get Your Love” In The Post-Credits Scene

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Chris Pratt's Peter Quill leads the Guardians of the Galaxy in the third entry in the MCU sub-franchise

Vol. 3’s first post-credit scene gives the audience a first glimpse of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s new roster. Rocket, Groot, Adam, Kraglin, Cosmo, Phyla, and Blurb get ready to fight a horde of aliens. Before this, they discuss music, and Rocket tells them one of his favorite songs is “Come & Get Your Love” by Redbone.

Guardians fans recognized this song immediately as the song Peter dances to in the opening scene of Vol. 1. Knowing Vol. 3 is the last movie of the trilogy, this scene lets the saga go full circle.

8 Drax Embracing His Role As A Father

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Drax looks onward in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Since he debuted in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1, Drax has been an asset in battle and a great comic relief character. These two things have led the fandom to forget he has a tragic backstory, as he lost his wife and daughter to Ronan the Accuser.

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Vol. 3 reminds fans of Drax’s emotional past by giving him a new chance to be a father figure. After the Guardians rescue all the kids trapped on the High Evolutionary’s ship, Drax and Nebula chose to stay in Knowhere and raise them. Knowing that these two Guardians get to have a real family after all their suffering was so heartwarming.

7 Peter Realizing Gamora Will Never Be The Same Again

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Peter Quill and Gamora in front of a nebulous sky in Guardians Of The Galaxy.

Peter Quill and Gamora shared one of the cutest love stories in the MCU. Unfortunately, Gamora’s death in Avengers: Infinity War cut their romance short. Since an alternate version of the heroine traveled to the present in Avengers: Endgame, fans thought the couple still had a chance. Unfortunately, Vol. 3 didn’t deliver on this front.

Vol. 3 shows Peter’s attempts to win Gamora back, but even if the heroine warms up to the team throughout the movie, she makes it very clear that she has no feelings for Star-Lord. Fans are having a hard time processing the fact that Star-Lord and Gamora may never be together again.

6 Rocket’s First Word Ever

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Baby Rocket Raccoon being experimented on in Guardians of the Galaxy 3

One of the first flashbacks to Rocket Raccoon’s past depicts the many experiments that the High Evolutionary put him through when he was just a kid. Other flashbacks show fans the first time he met Lylla, Teefs, and Floor after becoming sentient. Still scared about what happened, a shocked Baby Rocket only manages to utter one word: “Hurts.”

Baby Rocket is very different from his adult version. Rocket Raccoon is cynical, bitter, and often violent, but as a kid, he was incredibly innocent. This flashback is the first glimpse at understanding why he changed so much: the first thing Rocket ever understood from life was pain. This heartbreaking realization had many in the audience tearing up.

5 Peter’s Reaction To Rocket Almost Dying

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Peter Quill and Rocket during battle in Guardians of the Galaxy

In one of the saddest moments of the film, the Guardians struggle to override Rocket’s kill switch and bring him back to life. When Rocket flatlines, Gamora tries to convince Peter that Rocket is gone, but Peter starts CPR chest compressions after telling her that he’s “not letting [Rocket] go.”

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Peter manages to bring Rocket back successfully, but his reaction to the raccoon’s near-death experience will haunt fans for a while. Chris Pratt’s bloodcurdling scream when Rocket dies, and the hug they share after Rocket returns, confirmed that they have one of the best friendships in the MCU.

4 Batch 89’s Naivety Vs. GotG 3’s Body Horror

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Floor in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3

One of the saddest scenes in Vol. 3 is Rocket and his friends’ horrific past. Through flashbacks, Vol. 3 shows these innocent animals living in horrifying conditions, all thanks to the evil High Evolutionary.

The contrast between the four creature’s hopeful friendship and the torture the High Evolutionary subjects them to is incredibly upsetting. Fans couldn’t watch Teefs, Floor, and Lylla’s scenes without feeling incredibly powerless. Viewers simply knew Rocket’s friends would die, which only made things worse. This scene turned the High Evolutionary into one of the worst MCU villains.

3 Peter Almost Dying In Space

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Peter Quill/Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) smiling and looking at Nebula (Karen Gillan) in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

Since James Gunn announced that the movie would be the last in the saga, fans have theorized about who would die in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Gunn played with fans’ expectations, making them believe that Peter wouldn’t make it after rescuing everyone from the High Evolutionary ship.

Ultimately, Adam Warlock saved Star-Lord. However, this scene dragged on way longer than anyone expected for a red herring. His body started freezing right in front of his friends, who were only capable of screaming in horror. Star-Lord fans were on the edge of their seat for this moment, which felt a lot like the end for the character.

2 Rocket’s Reunion With Lylla, Floor, & Teefs

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Rocket Raccoon's near death experience in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3

As Rocket flatlines while the Guardians try to save him, he has a near-death experience and reunites with Lylla, Floor, and Teefs “in the sky.” Here, Rocket apologizes for letting them die and tries to join them. Lylla stops him, reminding him that he still has a purpose on Earth, and releases him from the guilt he has carried for so many years.

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Vol. 3 establishes that this guilt is the core of Rocket’s trauma. This moment is incredibly emotional because it shows how he heals from his horrific past. Even if it was just in a vision, viewers loved seeing Lylla, Teefs, and Floor fulfill their wish of seeing the sky.

1 The “Dog Days Are Over” Sequence

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Groot in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

By the end of Vol. 3, “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence + the Machine plays in Knowhere. A general aura of hope surrounds them when Groot and Rocket start dancing. At the same time, Gamora returns with the Ravagers, Mantis leaves for her own adventure, Adam embraces his new life in Knowhere, and Peter finds his grandfather’s house.

With Gunn leaving Marvel to head the DCU, Guardians of the GalaxyVol. 3 marks the end of an era, so having an epilogue-like ending feels fitting. Long-standing MCU fans found it impossible not to cry during this scene. “Dog Days are Over” is the perfect song to say goodbye to these beloved heroes, almost 10 years after the first film premiered.

NEXT: Every Member Of The MCU Guardians Of The Galaxy & Their Comic Debut, Explained


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