I Am Groot Review Featured

I Am Groot is Cute but Inconsequential

How far does the fruit fall from the Guardians tree?

Reader Rating0 Votes
We Are Groot
Fun and cute, the series clearly delivers what its target audience would want
What little cameos we get are fun and well used
We Are Venom
I dunno, just had to remind people how bad Venom was
The series feels a little purposeless--very much shorts for the sake of having them

2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy left an indelible mark on the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) series of movies, and even the larger superhero genre. The first explicit departure from the strictest confinements of what a superhero movie could (or should) be, Guardians of the Galaxy skyrocketed an unlikely crew of heroes (and director James Gunn) into the A-list spotlight.

While each character quickly found their niche audience, Vin Diesel’s endearing superhero Ent, Groot, was an easy fan favourite. And his death was an unexpected, yet genuine moment of emotional sincerity which got the audience tearing up. But, of course, in true Marvel fashion, the character was revealed to be “alive,” albeit not in the traditional MCU sense.

Resurrected as Baby Groot, the character continued being an integral part of the Guardians and was quickly aged up to a teenager to face the challenges brought on by Thanos in 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War, even providing the haft of Thor’s new weapon, Stormbringer.

And, now, Groot seeks to conquer new ground with his own series of shorts. Venturing back to his Baby Groot days, the wooden wonder’s pre-Infinity War misadventures are collected in this season of five shorts, each almost entirely focused on the titular hero.

And for the timeline pedantic: one of the shorts’ setting on the Quadrant, the detachable component of the now-destroyed Eclector, more or less confirms the period to be at least partially post-Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, but certainly before the post-credit scene revealing his teenage form.

The Quadrant escaping the exploding Eclector in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
The Quadrant escaping the exploding Eclector in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

That little bit of timeline trivia, however, is pretty much all the significance the MCU has on the series as a whole.

While I Am Groot is arguably more adult-friendly than the preceding Disney+ shorts series Baymax!, the extremely brief nature of the series (both in runtime and episode count) doesn’t allow for there to be any real story. That’s not so much a problem, but it does kinda feel… pointless. It’s absolutely fine that the series doesn’t really work with or tie-in to the greater MCU–an actually refreshing element, at this point–but even within the confines of a standalone series, it does little to do more than celebrate CGI cuteness.

However, with another 5 episodes in development, perhaps I Am Groot, like Baymax!, may pull together a narrative thread. But, at this juncture, the series is deserving of a watch if you’re just looking for a fun couple of minutes, and to whet your appetite for the incoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 next year, and the Holiday Special later this year.

Additionally, fans of the merchandise-darling will be sure to enjoy these shorts. It can also be argued that Baby Groot is better used in these independent shorts without being forced into whatever bigger picture content the Guardians are faced with in their feature appearances.

I Am Groot is now available on Disney+.