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James Gunn explains how Nebula got Rocket’s Christmas present

In the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, James Gunn included an Easter Egg which paid off a four-year-old one-line joke and made Rocket very happy.

Nebula Guardians of the Galaxy

Everyone loves a MCU Easter Egg, and despite the short run-time of the Disney Plus Holiday Specials, they still manage to squeeze a few in. In the Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special, James Gunn paid off a one-line throwaway joke from Avengers: Infinity War which was released four years ago, in 2018. Spoilers for the Holiday Special ahead!

In the Battle of Wakanda, Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) and Rocket Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper) briefly became unlikely comrades-in-arms, fighting side-by-side. Rocket has a fascination with prosthetic or mechanical limbs, and during the battle, he asks Bucky; “how much for the arm? Oh, I’m gonna get that arm.”

Bucky’s arm is the chief weapon of the Winter Soldier. A titanium arm is given to him by HYDRA after he loses his flesh-and-bone arm during World War Two, in the events seen in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011). The titanium arm was eventually destroyed by Tony Stark, and he is given a Shuri-designed vibranium arm by T’Challa while he is in exile in Wakanda, where they call him the White Wolf.

In the Christmas Special, the Guardians have strange notions of what constitutes a good gift. Due to their alien natures, Mantis and Drax believe that Kevin Bacon (the human man) is a good present for Peter Quill (Chris Pratt). And in-keeping with her, um, more aggressive alien nature, Nebula (Karen Gillan) procures Bucky’s arm for Rocket.

A fan asked director James Gunn on Twitter how Nebula got Bucky’s arm. He responded; “She took a trip to earth and tore it off his body, because she was feeling so Christmassy.” However, the arm given to Rocket looks more like Bucky’s original titanium arm, and not his current vibranium one. So, maybe it’s a spare? Let’s hope so. We’re sure that Shuri can rustle Bucky up a new one if needed, anyway.

Check out our guide to Marvel’s Phase 5.