Why Does Groot Look Different in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’? Why Is He So Buff?

groot looks different

Groot is the Guardians of the Galaxy member who has seen his fair share of figurative and literal growth throughout the entire storyline because he is a growing character that started as a twig. In that regard, we saw in the trailer of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 that he now looks different from the Groot that we saw in Thor: Love and Thunder. So, why does Groot look different in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3?

Groot looks different in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 because it was a creative decision on the part of James Gunn and his crew, so he would be different from the original Groot. As such, the current Groot has a stockier build than the taller and slimmer original Groot.

It is worth noting that the current Groot is an entirely different version of the character, even though he may be a “clone” of the original Groot. As such, giving him a new appearance that is different from the first Groot was a decision on the part of the director so that he would be different from his “father.” Now, let’s take a look at the reason why Groot looks different.

Was Groot reborn from the original Groot?

In the events of the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie, we met the founding members of the Guardians. These guys were forced to team up due to a common goal, and they eventually became a team that fought and worked together well despite how dysfunctional they were. And one of the original members of the Guardians was the first Groot.

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But near the end of the first movie, Groot sacrifices himself to ensure that the rest of the Guardian of the Galaxy members are safe. Luckily for Rocket Raccoon, he saved a twig of Groot as it grew into the Groot that we currently know in the MCU. This Groot is particularly young compared to the original Groot, as he has only been around since 2014 and even missed five years of his life due to Thanos’ snap. 

Nevertheless, the thing that we know about this current Groot is that he has the same capabilities as the first one, and he is just as strong and has the same kind of protective nature as the original one. So, does that mean that Groot was reborn?


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It is worth noting that our current Groot is actually a new one. There is a good chance that this Groot is genetically similar to the old one, considering that plants grown from trimmings of their “parent” plants are genetically identical. However, the current Groot is his person and is not the same as the old Groot in terms of his personality and memories.

The current Groot doesn’t have any memories of the old Groot but is still quite similar in appearance and personality. But, of course, the current Groot had to undergo a process of literal and figurative growth as he started as a twig but is now a bigger and more muscular version of himself, as we saw during the events of both The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special and the trailer of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

Before the Holiday Special, Groot was a smaller and skinnier version of himself as he was still a teenager. The last time we saw this Groot was in Thor: Love and Thunder. But now, Groot has grown up to become a young adult that is bigger and more muscular. His personality also changes as he grows; this proves that he is an entirely different Groot compared to the old one.

Why does Groot look different in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3?

As mentioned, Groot underwent a massive transformation process in just a quick amount of time. He was just a twig at the end of the first movie but is now a bigger, tree-like creature than most men. We first saw this Groot in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, and he is set to return in this form in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.


Of course, Groot was still growing when we last saw him, which is why he is now bigger than before. It is also possible that his species grew faster than other species, which is why he experienced many growth spurts in his life. But while that may be true, one of the things that people notice is that this Groot looks different compared to the original Groot. So, why does Groot look different?

The reason why Groot looks different can be attributed to a creative choice by James Gunn and his team. Called YA (Young Adult) or Swoll Groot, this Groot is still quite young but is already more muscular than the original Groot, who was skinnier yet taller.

Making Groot more unique compared to his “father” is a way for Gunn to tell us that he is different from the original Groot and is his own person. While his father was a tall skinny tree, the current Groot is muscular and stockier. It is similar to a college student that first started going to the gym after entering university.


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Kraglin, the former right-hand man of Yondu, also said something interesting about Groot in the Holiday Special. He said that Groot might be big, but he is still actually just a kid. Again, this is similar to how young adults or older teenagers still look young in terms of their facial features but have bigger bodies. So, if you look at the current Groot, his face still looks young because he is still actually young in terms of chronological years, whereas the original Groot had an older face.

In a way, Groot’s different look is a way for the movie franchise to showcase that he is an entirely different character with a different appearance and personality. If he had been given the same face as the old Groot, that would only take away the fact that he is unique and has his own character.

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