Afterlife Takes a Page From the MCU’s Guardians of the Galaxy

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Ghostbusters: Afterlife, now playing in theaters.

As much as the Marvel Cinematic Universe has epic endings, it's known for some misses. Not every movie can hit the emotional highs of Avengers: Infinity War and Black Panther, with James Gunn's first Guardians of the Galaxy film -- as good as it was -- botching the end. That was due to the MCU's most idiotic move from Chris Pratt's Star-Lord. Come Ghostbusters: Afterlife, this approach to saving the day gets remixed in the finale.

In Gunn's 2014 movie, Star-Lord distracted Ronan the Accuser, who was hellbent on destroying Xandar and then going off with the Power Orb to wreak havoc across the cosmos. Star-Lord used a bevy of cheesy moves from the '80s, making it clear he'd win this dance-off in a totally ridiculous moment.

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It was quite a gamble as the stern Ronan was never going to partake in the competition, but it paid dividends as it allowed the heroes to destroy the villain's hammer, take the Infinity Stone for themselves and kill him. However, it didn't register well for some fans, who felt it was stupid and something that made Ronan look like a buffoon, even if they appreciated the comedy.

This dumb Hail Mary strategy is now followed by Mckenna Grace's Phoebe, the granddaughter of the famous Ghostbuster, Egon Spengler, in the dusty Oklahoma town of Summerville. She realizes Egon secluded himself there to stop Gozer from coming through the mines, but sadly, Phoebe and her friends can't prevent the gateway from being opened after the Terror Dogs possess her mom, Callie, and the kids' teacher, Gary.

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Gozer's portal allows ghosts to start wrecking the town, leading to Phoebe sneaking into the lair to try to distract the evil god. As the youngster slowly walks out, she starts telling bad jokes -- her modus operandi in Ghostbusters: Afterlife to show she can be sociable. However, only the science nerds, Gary and Podcast, laugh at them.

Unfortunately, Gozer's disgusted by the child's poor attempt at humor. But it's a misdirect as Podcast uses a remote control to send a mobile ghost trap out and suck one of the Terror Dog's spirits in, freeing Callie. This allows them to regroup and use Egon's farm -- a giant ghost trap -- to defeat Gozer. But it doesn't change how Phoebe's stand-up failed to resonate amid such high stakes. It breaks Ghostbusters: Afterlife's serious tone at that point, feeling like the awkward weapon Star-Lord used in Guardians.

Ultimately, it's another idiotic, risky move, plus, like Ronan, audiences don't get why Gozer doesn't crush her as the demonic entity sees the kid as an ant. More so, the dogs should have ripped Phoebe apart, but this bad comedy's a bit of plot convenience so they can free Egon's daughter and push the plan he conceived years ago into play to save Earth.

To see how Phoebe sucks at comedy like Star-Lord did, Ghostbusters: Afterlife is in theaters now.

KEEP READING: Ghostbusters: Afterlife Includes Unintended Commentary on Modern Science Skepticism

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Renaldo Matadeen (7021 Articles Published)

I'm a former Chemical Engineer. It was boring so I decided to write about things I love. On the geek side of things, I write about comics, cartoons, video games, television, movies and basically, all things nerdy. I also write about music in terms of punk, indie, hardcore and emo because well, they rock! If you're bored by now, then you also don't want to hear that I write for ESPN on the PR side of things. And yes, I've written sports for them too! Not bad for someone from the Caribbean, eh? To top all this off, I've scribed short films and documentaries, conceptualizing stories and scripts from a human interest and social justice perspective. Business-wise, I make big cheddar (not really) as a copywriter and digital strategist working with some of the top brands in the Latin America region. In closing, let me remind you that the geek shall inherit the Earth. Oh, FYI, I'd love to write the Gargoyles movie for Disney. YOLO. That said, I'm on Twitter @RenaldoMatadeen. So holler.

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