Who Is Lylla, Rocket's Otter Friend in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3? - Nerdist
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Who Is Lylla, Rocket’s Otter Friend in GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3?

If you’re wondering just who that anthropomorphic otter was that our beloved Rocket Raccoon gave a warm embrace to in the Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 3 trailer, wonder no more. In all likelihood, that otter is Lady Lylla, a character that originated in Marvel Comics. They often described her as Rocket’s “soulmate.” Lady Lylla made less than 10 appearances in the comics. However, she remains a crucial part of Rocket’s backstory, something that Guardians 3 will no doubt explore. Here’s the lowdown on the Marvel Comics history of Rocket’s one true love.

Rocket meets Lylla again in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
Marvel Studios

Lady Lylla, Otter and Toy Empire C.E.O.

Lylla first appeared back in 1982’s The Incredible Hulk #271, which was only the second appearance of Rocket Raccoon. In those early appearances, Lylla was the heir to an enormous intergalactic toy company, Mayhem Mekaniks, on the planet Halfworld. They named the planet that due to it being half industrial, half natural. Think “half Coruscant/ half Dagobah,” to use Star Wars terminology.

Rocket and Lylla in the original Rocket Raccoon series.
Marvel Comics

Once, the planet was a giant asylum, where robot caretakers looked after the patients. The robot caretakers eventually became sentient, and experimented on the patient’s animal companions in an effort to evolve them. Eventually, Halfworld became a planet occupied entirely by anthropomorphic animals, similar to what we saw in the Guardians 3 trailer. We have a feeling James Gunn is fusing Halfworld with Counter-Earth, another similar Marvel Comics concept from the same era.

Meeting Her Soulmate

Rocket Raccoon's lady love Lylla, holding a blaster.
Marvel Comics

Eventually, a hostile takeover over Mayhem Mekaniks occurred, by the malevolent half-man/half-mole Judson Jakes, and Lylla’s parents were murdered. She needed help, and she received it from our favorite swashbuckling “trash panda.” Although Lylla regained control of Mayhem Mekaniks after that, she fell in love with Rocket. The two went on to become a couple. They went off into the galaxy to have adventures together, getting a “happily ever after” style ending.

Reunion with Rocket

Rocket reunites with Lylla in 2010's Annihilators series.
Marvel Comics

There were many years between these adventures, which took place in the four-part Rocket Raccoon series, and Rocket’s return to the Marvel Universe in the ongoing Guardians of the Galaxy comics. In those comics, we learned that Rocket and Lylla split up before he became partners with Groot and joined the Guardians of the Galaxy. However, Rocket and Lylla reunited in 2011’s Annihilators #4.

There, Rocket learned that his former love had married an anthropomorphic rabbit named Blackjack O’Hare. Ultimately, Rocket accepted that Lylla had moved on, and the two parted ways, as Rocket continued his adventures with the Guardians. In fact, Rocket discovered that many of the memories he had of his girlfriend Lady Lylla were implanted, putting into doubt whether they were really soulmates after all. It’s now been a decade since Lady Lylla appeared in a comic, the previously mentioned Annihilators #4.

Lady Lylla in the Rocket Raccoon series.
Marvel Comics

It is likely that James Gunn will heavily revise the backstory of Lylla for the MCU. While we expect her and Rocket to have a history together, we doubt that Halfworld or her giant toy empire will be a part of it. It’s far more likely that both Lylla and Rocket were subjects of the High Evolutionary’s experiments, and formed a bond as test subjects in his laboratory. We’ll find out how much of her backstory remains when Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 3 hits theaters in May.

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