Groot (/ɡrt/) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber and Jack Kirby, the character first appeared in Tales to Astonish #13 (Nov. 1960). An extraterrestrial, sentient tree-like creature, the original Groot first appeared as an invader that intended to capture humans for experimentation.The character can only say the repeated line "I am Groot", but has different meaning. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Thor and Rocket Raccoon are able to understand him.

Groot
I am Groot vol 1.jpeg
Groot on the cover of I am Groot #1. Art by Flaviano Armentaro.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceTales to Astonish #13 (Nov. 1960)
Created byStan Lee
Larry Lieber
Jack Kirby
In-story information
SpeciesFlora colossus
Team affiliationsGuardians of the Galaxy
S.H.I.E.L.D. Paranormal Containment Unit
Nova Corps
PartnershipsRocket Raccoon
Notable aliasesMonarch of Planet X
Tree
Abilities

The character was reintroduced as a heroic, noble being in 2006, and appeared in the crossover comic book storyline "Annihilation: Conquest". Groot went on to star in its spin-off series, Guardians of the Galaxy, joining the team of the same name. Groot has been featured in a variety of associated Marvel merchandise, including animated television series, toys and trading cards. Vin Diesel voices Groot, "baby" Groot, and "teen" Groot in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films Guardians of the Galaxy (2014), Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), and Avengers: Endgame (2019), while Krystian Godlewski played the character via performance capture in the first film. Baby Groot will return for the upcoming Disney+ short form show I Am Groot. Fred Tatasciore voices Groot on the Disney California Adventure ride Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout. Diesel will return to voice the character in Thor: Love and Thunder (2022), The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special (2022), and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023). Diesel also voiced Groot as a cameo in the 2018 Disney animated film Ralph Breaks the Internet. Since his film premiere and animated series debut, Groot has become a pop culture icon, with his repeated line "I am Groot" becoming an Internet meme.[1]

Publication historyEdit

 
Groot's first appearance in Tales to Astonish #13

Groot first appeared in Tales to Astonish #13 (Nov. 1960), and was created by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber and Jack Kirby.[2] He appeared again in The Incredible Hulk vol. 2 Annual #5 (Oct. 1976), alongside five other monsters from Marvel's anthology horror comics of the late 1950s and early 1960s. In The Sensational Spider-Man #−1 (July 1997), Groot was featured in a nightmare of the young Peter Parker.

Groot reappeared in 2006 in the six-issue limited series Nick Fury's Howling Commandos, and appeared in the Annihilation: Conquest and Annihilation: Conquest – Star-Lord limited series. Groot went on to join the Guardians of the Galaxy in the series of the same name, and remained a fixture of the title until its cancellation with issue #25 in 2010. Groot appeared in its follow-up, the limited series The Thanos Imperative, and, alongside fellow Guardian Rocket Raccoon, Groot starred in backup features in Annihilators #1–4 (March–June 2011) and Annihilators: Earthfall #1–4 (Sept.–Dec. 2011).

Groot appeared in issues #6–8 of Avengers Assemble as a member of the Guardians. Groot is one of the stars of Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3, a part of the Marvel NOW! relaunch.[3]

In March 2015, it was announced that Groot would be getting his very first solo series by writer Jeff Loveness and artist Brian Kesinger.[4]

The Groot that debuted in Tales to Astonish and the one that was introduced in Annihilation: Conquest were retroactively established as being separate members of the same species in the sixth and final issue of the Groot ongoing series that launched in June 2015.[5] With Infinity Wars in August 2018, however, Groot specifically references the fact that during his first visit to the planet Earth, he had promised to "march across the surface of the planet and doom all who dared to oppose Groot."[6] This seemingly reverted the character's origins to having both eras of Groot referencing the same persona, therefore invalidating the retroactive change from issue six of the Groot series.

OriginsEdit

Groot is a Flora colossus from Planet X, the capital of the branch worlds. The Flora colossi are tree-like beings whose language is almost impossible to understand due to the stiffness of their larynxes, causing their speech to sound like they are repeating the phrase "I am Groot". Other beings try to be friendly but become angry with the Flora colossi for not being able to speak. (Groot was shown to be capable of speaking not just understandably but eloquently throughout Annihilation: Conquest.) The Flora colossi are ruled over by the "Arbor Masters" and teach the children of the species with "Photonic Knowledge", which is the collected knowledge of the Arbor Masters of the generations and is absorbed through photosynthesis; this is a highly advanced education method, making the Flora colossi geniuses.

The Flora colossus sapling that would come to be known as "Groot" came from an "Ennobled Sap-line" and was gifted with a tremendous grasp of quasi-dimensional super-positional engineering. Groot did not get along with fellow saplings but instead preferred the company of the "Maintenance Mammals", against which the other saplings discriminated. Groot was exiled by the "Arbor Masters" in Guardians of the Galaxy #14[7] after killing another sapling to defend a maintenance mammal it was brutalizing.

An alternate origin was presented in the Groot ongoing series. In the story, it is revealed that the other Flora colossi had been abducting organisms from other planets, including a young human girl named Hannah. After seeing Hannah, Groot realized that what his people were doing was wrong, and managed to save the child and send her back to Earth. However, for his disobedience, Groot was exiled from Planet X and forced to wander the universe until he met Rocket Raccoon many decades later, where this version of Groot later became a member of the Guardians of the Galaxy.[5]

Fictional character biographyEdit

Original GrootEdit

Groot is an extraterrestrial tree monster who initially came to Earth seeking humans to capture and study. Groot was seemingly destroyed by termites used by Leslie Evans.[8]

Xemnu made a duplicate of Groot by making a human and tree hybrid that was used to fight the Hulk, but it was destroyed in the battle.[9]

Groot was later revealed to have survived, but was a captive of the Collector and held in his zoo in Canada until Groot and the other captive creatures were freed by the Mole Man. Groot and the other creatures rampaged in New York City until they were stopped by a band of superheroes, and were then dumped through a portal to the Negative Zone.[10]

Groot was later tracked down and captured by S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Paranormal Containment Unit, nicknamed the Howling Commandos, when his tree scent was detected by Sasquatch and Abominable Snowman.[11] While Groot was being held captive, Gorilla-Man talked to Groot about joining the Howling Commandos.[12] When Merlin and his forces attacked the base, the Howling Commandos let Groot and their other captives free, who proceeded to stampede on Merlin's army; Groot was the only one to turn back, offering to join the Howling Commandos.[13] Groot aided the Howling Commandos as they assaulted Merlin's forces.[14]

Guardians of the Galaxy's GrootEdit

 
Cosplay of Groot and Rocket Raccoon

A different Groot played a part in Annihilation: Conquest, at which time it was shown Groot may be the last remaining member of the Flora colossi, and was under arrest by the Kree for an unknown reason. Groot earned freedom by joining Star-Lord's strike force, where Groot and Rocket Raccoon formed a bond, Rocket being one of the few beings with the ability to understand Groot's language.[15] Star-Lord's team fought their way through the Phalanx, but after the death of Deathcry the team decided to escape through a drainage pipe that Groot could not fit into.

As a consequence of the battle, Groot dies, buying the team some time to escape.[16] A new Groot was created as a sprig offshoot and went on to accompany the team on their continued mission against the Phalanx, but was one of the team members captured by the Phalanx.[17] Groot and the others were freed by Mantis, and escaped back to the lines of the Kree's resistance. In time, Groot's body regenerated from the twig, growing back to full size. Groot and the others intended to carry on as part of Star-Lord's team.[18]

Groot and the team returned to Hala to prepare another assault against the Phalanx, but their agent Blastaar was captured by the Phalanx and taken to their Babel Spire as he tried to carry Groot's pollen spores.[19] Groot and Rocket Raccoon continued their mission by sneaking into the sub-basement of the Babel Spire.[20] When Star-Lord was captured by Ultron, the original plan of laying explosives in the Spire failed, so Rocket Raccoon and Groot needed to come up with a new plan.[21] Groot decided to sprout inside the Spire, growing to colossal size and filling a large portion of the building.

Mantis was able to remix Groot's sap in a way as to make it extremely flammable, and again Groot died for the team, this time by purposefully igniting so the resulting fire would destroy the Babel Spire.[22] A cutting of Groot was kept by Rocket Raccoon, though, and Groot was again able to regrow.[23] Groot then joined the new Guardians of the Galaxy (or, as Groot would have it, "Groot and Branches"), and began regrowing under the care of Mantis.[24][25]

When the Guardians reformed, Groot joined with Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, Drax the Destroyer and Gamora, whom Groot counted as friends.[26]

 
A statue of Groot in Peru.[27]

During the 2015 Secret Wars storyline, Groot is with the Guardians of the Galaxy when they take part in the incursion between Earth-616 and Earth-1610. Groot and Rocket Raccoon are killed by the Children of Tomorrow.[28] However, when Peter Quill — one of the few survivors of the incursions from Earth-616 — finds himself confronted by Black Swan in the castle of Emperor Doom, he reveals that he has been carrying a small twig of Groot in his pocket ever since the incursion, slamming it into the roots of the World Tree and causing Groot to transform the giant tree into his body, decimating Doom's castle as the surviving heroes mount their final assault.[29]

During the "Civil War II" storyline, Groot and the Guardians of the Galaxy are summoned by Captain Marvel to help her in her fight against Iron Man's side when it came to the fate of the Inhuman Ulysses Cain. The resulting battle damaged the Guardians of the Galaxy's ship stranding them on Earth.[30]

During the "Monsters Unleashed" storyline, the Guardians of the Galaxy defend Groot from a snake-headed Leviathon.[31]

During the "Secret Empire" storyline, Groot and the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy assist Captain Marvel, the Alpha Flight Space Program, members of the Ultimates, Hyperion, and Quasar in intercepting a fleet of Chitauri that are approaching Earth until a Hydra-aligned Steve Rogers activated the Planetary Defense Shield trapping those fighting the Chitauri outside of Earth's atmosphere.[32] Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, and Groot try to enlist representatives of the Skrulls, Kree, Brood, Shi'ar and Spartax empires that are on the Galactic Council in helping against the Chitauri hordes and to break down the Planetary Defense Shield and get rid of Hydra. Realizing they are now facing a galaxy without human interference, the Galactic Council refuses aid and attempt to kill the three Guardians as they flee.[33] After the Planetary Defense Shield is shut down, Groot and the Guardians of the Galaxy join the final battle against Hydra.[34]

Rocket Raccoon and Groot are on their way to the Stohlad Ring when they are ambushed by Gardener where he shattered Groot because the Guardians of the Galaxy "corrupted" him and diverted him from his true purpose. Rocket Raccoon escaped with a splinter where Groot grew a new body from it.[35]

During the "Infinity Countdown" storyline, Groot was with the Guardians of the Galaxy when they notice that the planet Telferina is under attack by the Flora colossi that Gardener grew from Groot's splinters. Groot got close to Gardener and used his healing powers to purge the poison that Loki put in him from his body. Gardener repaid Groot by using his abilities to restore Groot back to his previous size. In addition, Groot can now speak in full sentences and refers to himself in the third person.[36]

Powers and abilitiesEdit

Groot can absorb wood as food, and has the ability to regenerate.[37] Groot can control trees and plants, using them to attack others, and appears to be resistant to fire. Groot is able to sprout dramatically increasing mass which then severely inhibits movement.[volume & issue needed]

Groot has been seemingly killed on multiple occasions, each time regrowing from a sprig.[volume & issue needed]

"I am Groot"Edit

Black Bolt's brother Maximus the Mad asserted that whenever Groot is saying the trademark "I am Groot!" he has actually been saying a number of things, and his varying inflections of the sentence are the equivalent of words and sentences. People who have interacted with Groot are gradually able to decipher the meaning of the inflections and can carry on full conversations with Groot as time goes on. The mature form of Groot's species is robust and heavyweight, which causes the organs of acoustic generation to become stiff and inflexible. It is this nature of Groot's larynx that causes people, who are oblivious to the subtle nuances of Flora colossi speech, to misinterpret Groot as merely repeating his name. It could not be determined whether Maximus's claim was true or merely another manifestation of his madness, though Groot did genuinely seem to be assisting Maximus with highly advanced engineering.[38] Later, in All-New X-Men #23, Jean Grey telepathically links with Groot, showing that Groot's thought processes are indeed complex, and the declaration of "I am Groot!" usually represents attempts at highly intelligent communication.[39]

In Avengers: Infinity War, which takes place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Thor explains that Flora colossi is offered as an elective in Asgardian schools. Filmmaker James Gunn has interpreted this as a joke on the part of the character of Thor.[40]

In other mediaEdit

TelevisionEdit

Marvel Cinematic UniverseEdit

Groot appears in media set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, voiced by Vin Diesel, who also provided the voice work for a number of languages the movie was released in and also provided some motion capture elements for the character.[50][51][52]

FilmEdit

Vin Diesel voices Baby Groot in the 2018 Disney Animation film, Ralph Breaks the Internet, reprising his role from the Marvel Cinematic Universe films.[53]

Video gamesEdit

ToysEdit

  • A Groot action figure was included with the Guardians of the Galaxy pack in 2011 part of the Marvel Universe toyline.[citation needed]
  • A Rocket Raccoon and Groot figure set with a "Dancing Baby Groot" will be released by Hot Toys.[when?][62]
  • Funko announced the "Dancing Groot Funko POP" vinyl figure on August 26, 2014 and released it shortly after Christmas 2014.[63]
  • Groot has appeared 11 times in the miniature game HeroClix, often alongside Rocket Raccoon.[64]
  • Groot appeared in a fake trailer for Season 2 of The Mandalorian as a toy that teenage Yoda had.

TelecommunicationsEdit

In 2014, Twilio employee Ricky Robinett set up a phone number at which Groot can be texted, (866) 740–4531, which results in the character's familiar response "I am Groot".[65]

Theme parksEdit

OtherEdit

  • Baby Groot appears in the online animated series Cartoon Beatbox Battles by Verbalase. He first appears in the second episode where he faces Pikachu and wins. He then appears in his Ravager outfit in episode 11, where he battles Pennywise the Dancing Clown and loses.

ReceptionEdit

Groot was ranked #16 on a listing of Marvel Comics' monster characters in 2015.[67]

Collected editionsEdit

Title Material Collected Publication Date ISBN
Rocket Raccoon & Groot: The Complete Collection Material from Tales to Astonish (vol. 1) #13, The Incredible Hulk #271, material from Marvel Preview #7, Rocket Raccoon (vol. 1) #1–4, material from Annihilators #1–4, and material from Annihilators: Earthfall #1–4 April 10, 2013 978-0785167136
Groot Groot #1-6 January 27, 2016 978-0785195528
Rocket Raccoon & Groot Vol. 0: Bite and Bark Rocket Raccoon (vol. 2) #1-11, Groot #1-6, and material from Guardians of the Galaxy: Tomorrow's Avengers #1 September 21, 2016 978-1302902186
Rocket Raccoon & Groot Vol. 1: Tricks of the Trade Rocket Raccoon & Groot #1-6 July 20, 2016 978-0785199731
Rocket Raccoon & Groot Vol. 2: Civil War II Rocket Raccoon & Groot #7-10 November 9, 2016 978-0785199748
Rocket Raccoon and Groot: Tall Tails Rocket Raccoon and Groot #1-10 March 11, 2020 978-1302921156
I Am Groot I Am Groot #1-5 December 5, 2017 978-1302908546

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit