By now nobody is questioning Disney and Marvel’s decision to invest in the Avengers franchise. It started out a bit rough - 2008’s The Incredible Hulk is still a mostly ignored part of the cinematic universe – but by Iron Man 3, the series was grossing billions. Now that Marvel is on sure footing and the cinematic universe has an established fanbase, the studio is making the next move with Guardians of the Galaxy.

Guardians of the GalaxyGuardians of the Galaxy is one of the most aniticpated movies of the year

On Tuesday the studio released a trailer and it looked like a hot mess. Granted, a hot mess featuring Chris Pratt, but there was also a talking raccoon. It had the unmistakable feel of an 80s sci-fi flick. On that note, here’s what you need to know about GotG’s bunch of A-holes for this movie to make any sense.

Chris Pratt is Peter Quill or, as he likes to call himself, Star Lord. Clearly, dude’s got a few issues. He has an excuse though – Quill is a human, who was taken from Earth as a child in the late 1980s. It’s unclear which version of the comicbook Star Lord will appear in the movie (probably a mix of everything), but what you need to know is: Steven Englehart first created the character with the idea that the character would start off as an annoying, introverted jerk and then have his mind opened through a series of space adventures. Unfortunately, Englehart left Marvel before he could tell that story, so Peter Quill/Star Lord remained… you know.

Chris PrattChris Pratt as Peter Quill in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

Zoe Saldana is Gamora – feel free to cheer. Gamora is the adopted daughter of Thanos (aka Creepy Purple Dude Who Gave Loki An Army In The Avengers). Obviously, she has huge daddy issues, is looking to avenge the death of her real parents and is (can you guess?) a master assassin. She’s teamed up with the Avengers against Thanos before joining the Guardians, but that story might be left untold.

Zoe SaldanaZoe Saldana as Gamora

Bradley Cooper is Rocket or the racoon. Yes, this movie features a genetically engineered raccoon, who is coincidentally an expert marksman and master tactician. Bear with us here In the comic book universe, he was created as an intelligent companion at a colony for the mentally ill. He has a friend called Wal Russ, who is, yes, a genetically engineered walrus. Thankfully, the studio seems to have omitted that bit, but in the best case scenario we’ll get to see some of Rocket’s origin issues and his close friendship with Quill.

Bradley Cooper RocketBradley Cooper Plays Rocket Raccoon

Vin Diesel is Groot, an intelligent tree-like humanoid, which is Marvel casting at its finest. Not much of an origin story here – conceived as an extraterrestrial plant monster, who came to earth to hunt humans, at some point Groot was captured by SHIELD, switched allegiances and later joined the Guardians.

Groot Vin DieselVin Diesel Plays Groot

Lee Pace is Ronan – bad guy. “Psycho”. “Monster”. As described by Pace himself. Employed by Thanos.

Karen Gillan is Nebula. She’s the female villain of the film and a gun for hire. Has some history with Gamora, but is mostly there to be blue and hot.

And that’s most of them. Marvel’s continuity and crisscrossing storylines make all these characters a bit hard to follow, but that’s enough backstory to get you through the movie anyway. It’s going to be… different.

Watch the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer: