I Am Groot is a new Disney+ series of shorts that allows the littlest Guardian of the Galaxy to set down roots in a show of his own. Vin Diesel returns to put as many inflections on as many variations of “I am Groot” as possible, and there may even be another cameo or two in store for viewers (this is a Marvel show, after all). The real question is, though, can a kid with the smallest vocabulary in the MCU sustain a combined half hour of antics, or is “I am Groot” one joke in a one-joke show?
I AM GROOT: STREAM IT OR SKIP IT?
Opening Shot: Every short begins with the usual bombastic Marvel Studios fanfare… and then fast-forward kicks in as Groot pops up from offscreen and bumps into the camera. This sets the tone for the series: take what you know about Marvel and ignore it because Groot is gonna Groot. The opening shot of the first short, “Groot’s First Steps,” shows the li’l guy waking up in his pot after his rebirth at the end of the first Guardians film.
The Gist: Set somewhere between Guardians of the Galaxy Vols. 1 and 2, I Am Groot is a series of five 3-4 minute shorts that allow the cutest Guardian to cut loose and go on some solo adventures. He discovers new lifeforms on an alien world, investigates an intruder onboard the ship, does some crafting, and treats himself to a spa day. Oh — and it’s all chaos. You wouldn’t think that a walking and talking twig could cause so much damage, but he really can. That’s mainly because what Baby Groot lacks in height he more than makes up for in attitude.
What Shows Will It Remind You Of? I Am Groot channels some old school Looney Tunes mayhem in the best way possible. Because of Groot’s monosyllabic nature, writer, director, and EP Kirsten Lepore (Adventure Time) essentially reaches all the way back to the dawn of animation and utilizes lots of solid storytelling techniques. I’d say they don’t make them like this anymore, but they clearly do.
Our Take: It’s easy for diehard MCU fans to dismiss a series like I Am Groot as unnecessary fluff for children. Where are the big reveals, the major villains, the A-list actors, the fight scenes, etc. It’s true that I Am Groot hasn’t exactly received the same amount of anticipatory fanfare as Ms. Marvel or She-Hulk: Attorney at Law — and that is a shame, because I Am Groot is a damn delight from beginning to end.
I Am Groot proves that there’s no such thing as too much of a good thing when it comes to mischievous tree critters. Any worry that Baby Groot would wear out his welcome was unwarranted. Each short zips along at a perfect pace, deploying sight gags that hit their mark every time. The best thing about the series is Groot, which is good considering it’s his show. Left to his own devices, we see Groot get into ridiculous situations particularly because he’s too stubborn or too curious to avoid them. Groot behaves every bit like a hyped-up five-year-old. His intentions are always pure (the kid just wants to sprout a flower dress and look gorgeous for a second!) and the results are always calamitous (maybe the Guardians’ ship needs some, uh, hull repair after this series is done).
The only negative about this series is that the entries have been confusingly scattered across the entirety of Disney+’s platform instead of organized under one title. And unless you’ve committed the titles of all five to memory, It’s hard to keep track of which ones are which. Come on, Disney+. Fix this!
Sex and Skin: Does bark count? No, he’s a baby! Leave him alone, weirdo!
Parting Shot: The final shot of the final short, titled “Magnum Opus,” is of the aforementioned hull breach.
Sleeper Star: If we’re lucky, the pint-sized, laser-toting, jetpack-riding glob warriors from “The Little Guy” will get their own spinoff.
Most Pilot-y Line: “I am Groot.”
Our Call: STREAM IT. Shorts starring a tiny hero result in humongous laughs.
The post Stream It or Skip It: ‘I Am Groot’ on Disney+, Where the Feisty Little Guardian Gets into Big Trouble appeared first on Decider.