Another MCU Superhero Is Officially Struggling with Addiction

Warning: Spoilers for Guardians of the Galaxy #8!


  • Gamora in Guardians of the Galaxy #8 reveals her struggle with alcohol addiction, joining other Marvel heroes who have battled with addiction.
  • Marvel comics frequently explore real-life problems like alcoholism, with many heroes, including Iron Man and Captain Marvel, dealing with alcohol dependence.
  • The prevalence of alcohol addiction in Marvel heroes may be a reflection of the extreme experiences and responsibilities they face as crime fighters.

Several MCU characters like Iron Man and Captain Marvel have struggled with alcoholism in the comics, and now Gamora is joining their ranks. While the MCU has dabbled with tackling themes of addiction, most notably in Iron Man 2’s loose adaptation of the “Demon in a Bottle” storyline, these themes are still most prominent in Marvel’s original comics.

The latest comic to touch on such themes is Guardians of the Galaxy #8 by Jackson Lanzing, Collin Kelly, Walden Wong, Matt Hollingsworth, VC’s Cory Petit, Kev Walker, and Darren Shan. It is in this issue that the Guardians of Grootspace prepare to protect Groot from the galaxy at all costs.

Guardians of the Galaxy #8 preview-1

In that preparation, Gamora’s deeper addictions are unearthed, continuing a harrowing trend across the Marvel Universe.

Gamora Has an Alcohol Addiction

Gamora, Nebula, and Mantis of the Guardians of the Galaxy talk about Groot in Grootspace

Moments before a team meeting takes place to discuss an upcoming battle, Gamora takes a walk through what’s left of the Manifold Territories alongside her sister, Nebula. In their conversation, Gamora mentions being grateful for the renewed family camaraderie, joking that she’d have gone for the bottle over it in the past. She happens to be literally drinking at the time anyway, but she points out it’s merely Grootjuice. When it comes to alcohol, Gamora has been sober for 30 days, seemingly not having a drink since becoming an extension of Groot. Nebula is proud of her. The moment is played in jest, but it speaks to a deeper concern across Marvel’s hero community.

Marvel is Full of Recovering, Struggling Alcoholics

Zoe Saldana as Gamora in the MCU

Comics tend to explore real-life problems like addiction through their characters, but alcohol addiction seems to be a constantly recurring theme among Marvel heroes. Iron Man is a prime example of someone within the Marvel Universe who struggles on and off with alcoholism. Even the current leader of the Avengers, Captain Marvel, has a history of being overly dependent on alcohol. More recently, X-Force readers saw Sage battle with alcohol addiction last year. The list of Marvel superheroes who struggle with alcohol is long, and Gamora is the latest addition to that ever-expanding list.

From a creative perspective, it could just be a coincidence that so many writers have chosen alcohol as the vice of choice to tackle addiction in their hero-driven stories. However, in the context that exists within the current Marvel Universe, it makes for a curious thought to ponder why so many of Marvel’s heroes are plagued by alcohol specifically. Even more interesting is that it’s always the major heroes, the ones with the most responsibility on their shoulders compared to the average hero. Perhaps there is a link between the extreme experiences of a crime-fighting lifestyle alongside alcoholism as the go-to way to cope for heroes.

In Gamora’s case, she’s had a wealth of responsibility and struggles to deal with lately. Over the past year, she has been under the impression her friend Groot is an evil monster, which is what caused the Guardians as a whole to fall apart. The pain manifested outwardly in convincing the team (or what was left of them) to become anti-heroic rogues, but now readers learn that inwardly, it manifested into an addiction for Gamora.

Guardians of the Galaxy #8 is available now from Marvel Comics.

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