The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is known for its intricately woven narratives and surprising plot twists. One such twist that left fans in awe was the return of Gamora in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
The unexpected return of Gamora in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has been a significant talking point in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Her journey in the film takes a fresh and surprising direction, which is a testament to both Zoe Saldaña’s remarkable portrayal and James Gunn’s storytelling finesse. Now, let’s dive deeper into how Gamora’s character evolution in the film makes the most of her return.
Wait, who’s Gamora again?
Gamora, portrayed by Zoe Saldaña, has undergone a profound transformation since her last appearance in the MCU. While all the characters have been through their fair share of turmoil, Gamora’s journey is particularly captivating. The events of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 were followed by the cataclysmic ‘Snap’ and its subsequent reversal, but Gamora’s story took a unique turn. She met her demise earlier than most, only to return as a younger, darker version of herself, courtesy of the Time Heist in Avengers: Endgame. As a result, she emerges as a distinct and intriguing character in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
Zoe Saldaña’s portrayal of Gamora in this film is nothing short of exceptional. Her performance is a testament to her commitment to the character, and it is fitting that she bids farewell to Gamora with her best performance yet. Gamora’s fate is a central question, especially given Peter Quill’s enduring attachment to her. Saldaña’s ability to infuse the character with fresh depth and complexity ensures that she leaves the MCU on a high note.
A condition of Gamora, not really Gamora herself
The romantic subplot between Gamora and Peter Quill that blossomed in the first two Guardians of the Galaxy films was abruptly shattered by the events of Avengers: Infinity War. Thanos, in his relentless pursuit of the Soul Stone, abducted and ultimately sacrificed Gamora. Her murder was the heartbreaking price he had to pay to claim the coveted gem, as it required the soul of someone he truly loved. In the wake of these tragic events, Quill and the rest of the Guardians fell victim to the Snap, only to return five years later thanks to the Hulk’s actions during Avengers: Endgame. However, Gamora, who met her fate before the Snap, did not return with them.
A version of Gamora did reappear, albeit from the year 2014. During the Time Heist in Endgame, Thanos and his army followed the Avengers into the post-Snap present to seize all the Infinity Stones at once. This included the 2014 version of Gamora, who had contemplated leaving Thanos but had not yet crossed paths with Peter Quill. It was only her sister, Nebula, who convinced her to change sides. After the final battle, this Gamora disappeared, her whereabouts unknown, leaving Peter Quill yearning for her return at the start of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
A grittier Gamora takes the stage
From the beginning of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, both Zoe Saldaña and the film itself emphasize how significantly Gamora has changed. Devoid of the Guardians’ sense of purpose and Peter’s love, she emerges as a harsher, wilder version of herself, with fewer moral qualms. Her tenure with the Ravagers, where her assassin’s skills prove invaluable, highlights her embrace of a more mercenary lifestyle that her former self never considered. These changes sharpen her instincts and embolden her actions but also push her to cross certain ethical boundaries, such as taking lives, which once horrified her comrades.
Crucially, her relationship with Peter Quill has undergone a dramatic transformation. Rather than pursuing a formulaic return to the status quo, the film opts for a more platonic understanding between the two characters. They acknowledge each other’s feelings but ultimately choose separate paths. Gamora finds herself back with the Ravagers, while Peter embarks on a journey to reconnect with his grandfather, resulting in a satisfying conclusion that leaves both characters at peace with their pasts and content with their present circumstances.
How Gamora’s not-really-a-return return respects change and keeps the door open for new plot developments
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 skillfully respects these profound character changes and allows Gamora to evolve in fresh and unexpected directions. This approach not only provides Gamora with closure but also leaves the door open for a potential return in the future. It’s a graceful departure for Zoe Saldaña from the role, allowing her to exit on her own terms while delivering a stellar performance.