Bug the Micronaut wasn’t a key member of the Guardians of the Galaxy, but he was fun to have on the team.
He was added to the team after a minor team shakeup during writer Dan Abnett’s run. Rocket Racoon brought in new members, including Bug, when other Guardians went their separate ways.
Bug In Marvel Comics
Even though he doesn’t bring a lot to the table, Bug has been known to lighten the mood.
His comedic humor could be just what the third Guardians movie needs, after the second movie ended with Groot returning to his normal size and Rocket experiencing a bit of a setback.
Bug And The Microverse
Bug first appeared in 1979’s debut issue of the Micronauts. He was from the planet of Kalikak in the Microverse. Known as both a thief and comedian, he was always a professional in action.
He formed a lasting friendship with his teammate Acroyear, despite their vastly different personalities.
In fact, Acroyear’s friendship with Bug may have been one of the main reasons why he started to question the cold, calculating warrior ethic that dominated his people.
In the first issue we find Acroyear and Bug in the Yard of the Gladiators along with other political prisoners. They were gathered there by the evil Baron Karza’s soldiers to practice for gladatorial games.
The duo then met Arcturus Rann when they were assembled in the gladiator colosseum. There they encountered a pulse-firing death tank.
While Acroyear attacked the tank’s wheels, Bug courageously vaulted up on top of the death tank and lobbed a packet bomb into its eye slits.
Bug, Acroyear and Rann escaped in a getaway vehicle piloted by Marionette, another political prisoner. The quartet joined forces with robots Microtron and Biotron as they escape Homeworld in a starship. Biotron piloted their craft around the edges of the Microverse.
Their ship, the HMS Endeavor, made its way to Earth. There, they found themselves in the backyard of an average American home.
They soon learned how much larger things are on Earth. Shortly after they left their ship, they met a puppy that Microtron attacked. They also encountered a manual lawn mower that Acroyear and Bug must swiftly escape from..
The Micronauts And Marvel Comics
Bug is first and foremost a Micronaut. Before the current iteration of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Bug and his crew’s adventures were chronicled in a pair of Micronaut comic books in the 1970’s and 1980’s.
Many of their adventures are still fondly remembered by fans decades after they were first published.
Unfortunately, Marvel doesn’t have rights to the Micronauts. They were released as a toy line by Mego, who then licensed them to Marvel when they were first introduced.
Writer Bill Mantlo (co-creator of Rocket Raccoon) was assigned the task of creating appealing storylines based on this line of rather basic robot and astronaut toys.
Bug’s character was loosely based on the Mego Micronaut toy “Galactic Warrior.” Mantlo and artist Michael Golden first brought the character to life on the comic pages.
Due to these artistic improvements, the comic character of Bug is now owned by Marvel. This is why Rocket was able to recruit him into the Guardians of the Galaxy in volume 2, issue #7 of their comic magazine (May 2017) when the team was experiencing some roster changes.
Character rights for use in movies and television can be rather complicated. Currently, IDW Publishing owns the rights to the Micronauts under a license from Hasbro.
Adding Bug to the next Guardians of the Galaxy movie wouldn’t be easy, and the efforts might be very beneficial, considering he isn’t as popular as most of their other members.
Major Appearances of Bug
Bug was a Micronauts member through all 59 issues and 2 annuals of the initial comic’s run (January 1979 through August 1984).
He was also featured in a four-issue crossover limited series with the X-Men in 1984 and in the 20-issue Micronauts: The New Voyages comic book that ran from October 1984 to May 1986.
Marvel had planned to launch a new Micronauts series in the 1990’s, even though their rights lapsed when The New Voyages series ended.
Abrams Gentile Entertainment owned the US rights to the Micronauts at the time, and Marvel assumed that they would approve the new book. Artist Cary Nord and writer Shon C. Bury were assigned to the project.
Bug and other Micronaut characters that Marvel owned appeared in Cable #39 (January 1997) and in Bug’s own one-shot book (March 1997).
Unfortunately, negotiations with AGE fell apart and the new series never materialized. The three new issues that were produced were never published.
Bug would return with other Marvel owned Micronauts (now known as Micros) in several issues of Captain Marvel in 2000 and 2001.
Bug would not be seen again in Marvel comics for another 6 years. He resurfaced in 2007 by himself, when he was held captive by the alien Kree. He later joined a rag-tag group of heroes led by Star-Lord.
Bug’s adventures were detailed in the limited series Annihilation: Conquest Star-Lord and Annihilation: Conquest.
The second edition of the Guardians of the Galaxy comic book grew out of this second limited series, and featured Bug as a recurring character in several issues.
Guardians of the Galaxy Membership
Bug and several other heroes were recruited to join the Guardians of the Galaxy after the original team broke up due to a few problems within the group.
He fought with the team as they tried to stop the conflict known as the War of the Kings between the rival Kree and Shi’ar alien races.
Although the Guardians were unsuccessful in preventing the conflict, Bug remained with the team through the series’s final issue #25 in 2010. He was also featured as a member of the Guardians of the Galaxy in the Avengers Assemble issue #s 4 through 8 in 2012.
Powers And Abilities
Bug the Micronaut is a very versatile hero. He can see well, and his exceptional vision is enhanced by using his helmet.
He is very agile, and can easily climb and scale walls. His antennae allow him to communicate with other insectovorids and other alien races with antennae. They also help Bug to become more aware of possible threats.
Bug’s agility, balance, coordination, durability, reflexes, recuperative abilities, speed, stamina, strength and sense of equilibrium are much better than those of average humanoids.
Bug is able to lift and throw heavy items several times his own body weight. His physical strength allows him to handle such objects with relative ease.
He is also able to move and run faster than most other humanoids his size. He moves beyond the physical limits of even the most coordinated human athletes.
Another advantage of Bug’s body is that it produces far fewer fatigue toxins while active. This means that he has greater endurance during physical conflicts. He can be in the battlefield for days before fatigue takes effect.
Bug’s body is more resistant to physical force than other similar beings. He is injured less because his body is more resistant to damage.
His coordination, agility and balance also exceed the limits of even the most toned and coordinated humans.
Bug is instinctively able to quickly adjust his position. This enables him to balance on just about any kind of object, no matter how big or small. His reflexes when combined with his danger sense also allow him to avoid injury as long as he is far enough away.
Bug can cling to any kind of surface and crawl along it just like other kinds of insects.
He also sometimes experiences a kind of buzzing sensation near the base of his skull. This “danger sense” lets Bug know when danger is present.
Bug can communicate with other beings with antennae. The range of this communication is limited, and can be motion sensitive if another antennae being is within a certain distance of him.