Guardians of the Galaxy cartoon in the works?

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The Guardians have appeared in Marvel cartoon shows before, having had cameo appearances in 'Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes,' 'Ultimate Spider-Man,' and 'Superhero Squad,' and it had been previously rumoured that a show of their own might be on the cards, particularly after the comic's editor Steve Wacker suggested as much back in July 2013.

However, Comic Book Movie report that "a well placed source has confirmed to us that Marvel do indeed have plans for a new animated series focusing on the 'Guardians of the Galaxy'" in the near future.

Not only is this an entirely logical move, it's one that I'm surprised Marvel hadn't already made some time ago.

Let's face facts, now: the audience for comic book movies by far out-measures the readership of even the most popular comic books. Cartoons have played, and continue to play, a major role in promoting both Marvel and DC properties in the popular consciousness.

I know for a fact that I'm not the only child of the 1990s whose first real exposure to the likes of Spider-Man, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, the Hulk and Iron Man was not from the comics, but from the cartoon shows co-produced by Marvel and Saban Entertainment.

Subsequent animated series, up to and including the current Disney XD shows such as 'Hulk and the Agents of SMASH,' 'Iron Man: Armoured Adventures' and the aforementioned 'Spider-Man' and 'Avengers' shows, play a vital role in keeping younger viewers aware of these characters.

Not only that - they've resulted in some damn fine cartoons, the 25-minute format being ideal to tell a story roughly equivalent in length to that of a typical comic book.

The reason I find it particularly surprising that Marvel have not produced a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' series before now is, quite simply, these characters are nowhere near as well known as any of the properties Marvel have based one of their mega-budget live action movies around to date.

A cartoon show would have ensured a greater degree of awareness for Starlord, Gamora and Drax - and would of course seem a very natural home for Rocket Raccoon and Groot.

I suppose it might have been a conscious decision not to launch the 'Guardians' as a cartoon first, in case older viewers wrote the movie off as being just for kids; I'm sure I'm not the only one who hears 'gun-toting space raccoon' and is immediately reminded of 'Bucky O'Hare,' the space-bound rabbit who headlined another 90s cartoon (incidentally adapted from a lesser-known comic book).

Either way, the fact that Marvel are prepared to launch such outlandish characters on an audience comparatively cold goes some way to showing their confidence in the project.

Looking forward to 'Guardians of the Galaxy?' Think it'll work as a cartoon show? Speak your piece in the comments.