Audiences instantly fell in love with Baby Groot from the second they were first introduced to the reborn version of the sentient tree, with the little guy dancing his way around an action-packed Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 prologue and capturing the imagination of fans all around the world.
It also conveniently allowed Disney to merchandise the ever-loving sh*t out of the adorable critter, while he stole just as many scenes as he did hearts during his innocently hilarious reactions to the intergalactic adventures that unfolded around him. Based on the reception to Baby Groot, you’d have thought he would have far and away been Vol. 2‘s most popular character.
Think again, after James Gunn took to Twitter and revealed that the hilariously deadpan stylings of Dave Bautista’s Drax the Destroyer actually saw him score higher among test audiences than even Baby Groot.
There’s an unfortunate hint of irony to this particular revelation, when Bautista admitted that once Marvel discovered how much fans were reacting to Drax’s barrage of one-liners, he was shifted into a comic relief role. The former WWE star also revealed that the mere thought of a solo spinoff made him miserable, while his accomplice is set to headline animated Disney Plus series I Am Groot, even if the fan favorite fauna was initially second best.