Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) dir. by James Gunn
Mom Gamora is best Gamora
She’s so naturally good at it; loves this little baby so much. <3
This is such a great scene though, because Gamora is NOT naturally good at it. She’s cold and hard and has the emotional awareness of a grape. Look at how she treats Peter and Nebula throughout the whole movie; she doesn’t even realize she loves them until they smack her in the face with their own feelings. Repress and deny, that’s how Gamora does feelings.
But she’s soft with Groot. It’s a sweet contrast that shows that she’s working on her shit.
Yessssss. Seriously, Gamora is more afraid of feelings than almost any character I’ve ever seen. She doesn’t just fail to notice her feelings for Peter and Nebula, she’s actively afraid of them (at the very least for Peter, and quite possibly for Nebula as well). Look at how she snarls and wheels on Peter the moment he starts to charm her in vol1. Gamora tenses up the moment she finds herself feeling charmed and then tries to squash the scary feelings under aggression.
Gamora consistently treats the people she loves most by being meanest to them. So her carefulness with Groot is evidence of really, really hard work and character growth on her part. In some ways, she is actually working harder on being nice to Groot here than Rocket is, which is hilarious and terrifying.
I think it makes a lot of sense that it’s Baby Groot she manages to be the softest with as well. Gamora has got to have a lot of thoughts about How to Do Parenthood Right; I’d imagine she’s extremely motivated to do a better job with Groot than Thanos did with her. (I mean, that’s a low bar, but she’s still very determined to pass it.)
Plus, Peter and Nebula might ask things of her she’s not prepared to give, they have their own unknowable motivations, they might (do!) fuck up; it’s all sorts of complicated and messy. But Groot’s a child, and she knows very well that entails a responsibility for her to provide not just food and shelter, but comfort and love.
I really adore the moment in the opening battle of GotG2 where Gamora stops fighting briefly to just give Groot a friendly “hi!”, because I feel like that encapsulates their relationship: Gamora forcing herself to put down her defenses because Groot needs to see her feelings.
Yes. all of this.
Also, baby Groot is the least threatening. Like you said, Peter or Nebula might ask things out of her that she doesn’t expect or can’t give. But Gamora can predict everything Groot wants (affection, brightly colored candy, good tunes, to not get squished, and the odd bug) ahead of time. Groot is simple and wants relatively simple things.
So he’s not so scary.
Peter and Nebula, though… that’s another story.
Gosh I love Gamora so much