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Guardians of the Galaxy 3: James Gunn Clears Up (Some) Confusion About Bucky’s Arm From Holiday Special

Guardians Galaxy Rocket Bucky Arm Nebula
Guardians Galaxy Rocket Bucky Arm Nebula
Courtesy of Marvel

The following contains an anti-spoiler — meaning, information about something that didn’t happen! — from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.

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Did Rocket Raccoon return the gift he received in Disney+’s The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special?

That burning question thus far remains unanswered for those who this weekend saw the trilogy-ending Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 — though writer/director James Gunn did shoot down one theory about the whereabouts of Bucky Barnes’ vibranium left arm.

As last Thanksgiving’s Holiday Special drew to a close with a festive montage, we saw that Nebula (played by Karen Gillan) had gifted Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper) with Bucky’s tricked-out arm. Rocket of course had coveted Bucky’s left arm ever since he first laid eyes on it during Avengers: Infinity War‘s Wakanda-set battle sequence.

“How much for the arm?” he asked Bucky, who met his inquiry with an unamused glare. “Ohhh, I’ll get that arm,” Rocket said to himself after being rebuffed.

Guardians Holiday Special Bucky Arm
‘The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special’ (Disney+ screenshot)Disney+ screenshot

Yet despite having it gift-wrapped for him in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, Rocket did not rock said appendage in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Nor was it seen or even mentioned at all.

Some moviegoers have suggested that the modified, nanotech-based arm that Nebula puts to good use in Vol. 3 is in fact Bucky’s, but Gunn has dismissed that theory.

“Nebula’s arm is the Bucky’s arm from Holiday Special?” a Twitter follower asked Gunn during a weekend Q&A. Gunn replied, “No. It’s way better.”

Gunn, however, has yet to answer any of the many tweeted inquiries about where Bucky’s vibranium arm now is, given that that particular Holiday Special plot point was 100% ignored by Vol. 3.

At the time Disney+’s Holiday Special was released, Gunn fielded fan Qs about how Nebula came into possession of Bucky’s arm in the first place, explaining(/joking?), “She took a trip to Earth and tore it off his body because she was feeling so Christmasy.”

He also added that whether MCU fans buy into the idea that Nebula could ever best Bucky, or if her doing so was some form of “forced inclusion” (as one tweeter argued), “now it’s canon.”

Want scoop on any Marvel TV show? Email and your question may be answered via Matt’s Inside Line.

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