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‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’ First Reactions Have Us All … Hugging Pets?

Rocket Raccoon looks pensive.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 may finally be hitting theaters this week, but we’ve already seen a lot of opinions about it out on the internet—mainly about how good the movie is, and I can confirm; it’s very good. But one thing I can also confirm is that many of us have left our screenings and instantly wanted to go hug our furry friends.

Once I came out of my screening, I thought to myself that I would love to just hug my cat because of seeing Rocket Raccoon and his big eyes. And I’m slowly realizing that I am not the only one who had such a desire. I mean, once you see the movie, you’ll get it too, but it seems as if we all just wanted to protect the animals we know and love in our lives.’s Liam Crowley posted that he wanted to protect his dog “from evil utopian sociopaths” after his screening, and this was pretty much how I felt about my cat, Benjamin Wyatt the Cat. Because if we can’t protect them, who can?!

The feelings come from—NOT a spoiler—learning about Rocket’s backstory. Guardians writer/director James Gunn has said multiple times that this is Rocket’s story, and we’ve also seen clips already about Rocket naming himself. So, seeing Rocket with his big eyes and the pain we all know he’s been through? It’s just too much to not need your pets. If I could, I’d bring my cat with me just to hug him throughout the movie, because it’s incredibly emotional.

Look, even if you’re not an animal lover, you have to admit that Rocket Raccoon is cute, but still. It’s a lot to unpack.

If you don’t have a pet, a stuffed animal will do

The love we feel for characters like Rocket Raccoon comes from years of watching them grow. When we first met Rocket, he was angry at the world, and now he has a family that loves him. Or, if you’re like me, he’s been your favorite character in the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise from the start. So, him getting his time is emotional enough without adding in the tragic backstory that we always knew was there.

All of this is lending itself towards audiences leaving the movie and wanting to hug a pet. Again, no spoilers here. I’m just stating what we already knew about the movie and why my cat was questioning what the hell was wrong with me for two hours after I saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. You cannot tell me that you look at Rocket Raccoon and you’re not ready to throw hands in his honor.

So, now that you’ve been warned, prepare yourself (and your pets) for your post-viewing hugs when the movie debuts this week.

(featured image: Marvel Entertainment)

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Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. A writer her whole life but professionally starting back in 2016 who loves all things movies, TV, and classic rock. Resident Spider-Man expert, official Leslie Knope, actually Yelena Belova. Wanda Maximoff has never done anything wrong in her life. Star Wars makes her very happy. New York writer with a passion for all things nerdy. Yes, she has a Pedro Pascal podcast. And also a Harrison Ford one.