In I Am Groot, Marvel seems to have changed MCU canon by suggesting that Baby Groot remembers the death of the OG Groot in Guardians of the Galaxy.
I Am Groot seems to have changed MCU canon by suggesting that Baby Groot remembers his past life frin the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. Although I Am Groot’s shorts focus on Groot as a child, they take place at different points across the MCU timeline, spread between Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 and Avengers: Infinity War. With Marvel labeling the shorts as part of MCU Phase 4, one episode of the series appears to retcon Baby Groot’s connection to the original Groot, aka “OG Groot”. In I Am Groot season 1, episode 5, “Magnum Opus,” Groot scavenges for art supplies around the Guardians of the Galaxy’s ship to draw a giant version of Groot using his arms to encircle his family, including Rocket, Star-Lord, Gamora, and Drax.
Baby Groot’s picture resembles adult Groot’s final sacrifice at the end of the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie, which further confounds I Am Groot‘s place in the MCU timeline. Back in Guardians 1, Groot grew into a giant sphere to encase the rest of the Guardians as the spaceship that they were on crashed. While this saved his friends, Groot died from the impact. The drawing of Groot’s long branch arms surrounding the other Guardians is reminiscent of this event, hinting that Baby Groot might have retained some memories of adult Groot’s life. In this way, I Am Groot might have contradicted the previously established MCU canon, confirmed by James Gunn, which has always held that Baby Groot did not remember events experienced by the original Groot.
Baby Groot Is OG Groot’s Son – I Am Groot Created A Plot Hole
Although it is unclear if I Am Groot is MCU canon, some facts have been established about Baby Groot in the past. When directly asked if Baby Groot remembered any events before the end of Guardians of the Galaxy, the movie’s writer-director, James Gunn (via Twitter), stated simply, “No memories. Son of OG Groot.” Given that he grew from twigs from adult Groot that Rocket gathered and planted, this many viewers had wondered why Baby Groot did not remember his past life. As clarified by Gunn, Baby Groot is a different character than the original Groot, proving that Baby Groot does not remember adult Groot’s life, even if his drawing seems to suggest otherwise. However, Groot’s species is complex — Groots genetically passing memories between generations isn’t implausible.
While the other characters’ reactions to Groot’s picture reinforce that Baby Groot has no earlier memories, they also reveal the hidden importance of the drawing. Baby Groot is excited by his creation, which represents a family hug rather than adult Groot’s rescue, which could also foreshadow the events in I Am Groot season 2. In contrast, Rocket speaks in a nostalgic tone when Baby Groot hands him the picture. He immediately comments, “Oh, look how big you are,” signaling that the picture reminds him of his old friend. In this way, Baby Groot’s drawing in I Am Groot is a poignant reminder of his origin without breaking canon about his memories of the past. But considering James Gunn has denied I Am Groot canonically links to his Guardians of the Galaxy movies, despite Marvel’s claim it’s part of MCU Phase 4, none of the clarification matters anyway.
The Guardians of the Galaxy 3 Trailer Shows Groot Might Remember More
While I Am Groot‘s title is an obvious reference to how Groot talks, the current Groot saying “We are Groot” in the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 trailer is a huge callback to the first Groot, the “OG Groot” referred to by Gunn on Twitter. In the trailer, the son of OG Groot speaks the words “We are Groot” during what appears to be a last-stand moment alongside Star-Lord. While this worryingly opens the possibility of Groot dying in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, it may also hint that he does remember when OG Groot died. The fact it’s current Groot once again referencing this specific moment in OG Groot’s life, the same one he drew in I Am Groot, is definitely interesting. There may have been two Groots in the MCU so far, but the OG Groot may have had an even greater influence on events than first appeared if his son has inherited his memories.