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The Guardians Of The Galaxy Holiday Special Trailer Has Fans Buzzing Over Groot's New Appearance

James Gunn made the news twice today, with an official trailer for his upcoming "The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special" somewhat overshadowed by the announcement that the director has been tapped to head up DC's film and TV division. But over in the Marvel sphere, fans are busy dissecting the trailer for the Christmas-themed "Guardians" special, which will follow the Guardians as they attempt to give Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) a dose of holiday cheer. And fans have had some particularly strong reactions to a newly redesigned Groot (Vin Diesel).

Across Groot's previous appearances in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the fan-favorite character has undergone numerous visual changes. In the original "Guardians of the Galaxy," the tree-like alien sacrifices himself to save the rest of the team, and is depicted as a sapling-like, childish version of himself when he begins to regrow in the sequel. For "Avengers: Infinity War" and as recently as "Thor: Love and Thunder," he appears as the so-called "teenage Groot." Now, as seen in the trailer for "The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special," Groot has reached a new stage in his growth. Though his face still appears young (by the standards of an anthropomorphized tree), his body has bulked up. It appears Groot may be hitting the weight room, prompting the question: is a fitness center for trees called a jungle gym?

As is to be expected, Marvel fans have plenty of opinions — and a full clip of hilarious zingers — at the ready in response to Groot's new appearance.

Swole Groot? Chad Groot? Fans weigh in

Groot's new, buffed-up physique in the trailer for "The Guardians of the Galaxy" holiday special prompted a variety of reactions from fans of the MCU, ranging from perplexed to comedic. On Twitter, some compared the tree creature's new appearance to the "GigaChad," a popular meme depicting a male model Photoshopped to exaggerated proportions of traditional masculinity. With a side-by-side comparison of the two images, @ShadowKnightPK asked, "Why Groot is getting the giga chad treatment?" while others such as @cine_hqWill simply nicknamed the new look, "Chad Groot."

Others have dubbed Groot's latest evolution "Buff Groot" or "Swole Groot," while another contingent has settled on "College Groot." The latter is possibly more accurate to what the filmmakers intend, as it would be the logical progression after Baby Groot and Teenage Groot. @Vaughanilla_Ice remarked, "I was not expecting buff college Groot today". On Reddit, u/neoblackdragon hypothesized, "I assume this is [the] equivalent of a 20's Groot while the OG Groot was 30's/40's. A fully mature oak. So Groot still has a bit of chubbiness to his face."

What, exactly, Groot's new deal is will likely remain a tantalizing mystery until "The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special" releases on Disney+ this Christmas.