Warning: The following contains spoilers for Yondu #1 by Zac Thompson, Lonnie Nadler, John McCrea, Mike Spicer, and Joe Caramagna.
Yondu has never been one of Marvel's most popular characters. Like many of the current MCU's Guardians of the Galaxy, the character was somewhat reborn following his cinematic debut. Yondu's newfound cinematic popularity has seen him make a comeback in the pages of Marvel's comics in recent years.
With his new miniseries, Marvel is continuing to bridge the gap between the original Yondu and its more MCU-inspired Yondu, who's crass, violent, rude, unpredictable and all about finding his next big score. Yondu's vulgarity is personified by the name of his ship: The Blue Moon - a reference to his blue butt, which is further signified by a pair of pants bolted onto the back of his ship.
An encounter with the Herald's Run, one of the galaxy's most expensive artifacts leads him to encounter his past - literally. As Yondu wonders how he's going to move such a valuable artifact with so much heat on it, he encounters a not-so-happy group he previously stole fuel from. They attack him, but he's saved when an arrow magically shoots through the air and incapacitates the gang in quick fashion. While it wasn't the arrow he controls with a whistle in Guardians films. Yondu is saved by the older version of Yondu.
While Yondu's known as a plucky Ravager currently, he hasn't always been that way. The character first debuted back in Marvel Super-Heroes #18 by Arnold Drake and Stan Lee. Originally conceived as a Zatoan hunter from Centauri V, Yondu was a hunter and member of the Guardians of the Galaxy. He used a bow to shoot his yaka arrows, which he could control their direction after being fired.
The creative team makes an interesting choice is bringing the current version of the character head-to-head with his past. The other Yondu doesn't have a brash personality, a gold grill on his teeth or a devil may care attitude. He's an analytical, noble family man who takes on the mission to make sure the Herald's Run doesn't fall into the wrong hands. Naturally, the less level-headed Yondu isn't excited about teaming up with his ancestor and promptly kicks off the ship and flies away in a moment that leaves the older Yondu wondering, "How can this be the great Yondu Udonta?"
The juxtaposition between the different versions of the characters is noticeable. The original Yondu wasn't created in mind to be a Ravager with an unquenchable thirst for money. Director James Gunn and Rooker molded the previously laid groundwork and turned Yondu into a much more personable, memorable character. Yondu simply would not be as fondly remembered without Rooker's performance. But, it's great to a re-exploration of the character's past. It shows sometimes characters need to change to become more memorable. I mean, which other Marvel character would name their ship Blue Moon and have a giant butt attached to it? Definitely not the old version of Yondu.