Here’s the bizarre reason James Gunn can’t include this alien in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 2’

This Marvel alien name has an unexpected meaning in Icelandic.


Gavia Baker-Whitelaw

Internet Culture

Published Sep 13, 2015   Updated May 27, 2021, 11:58 pm CDT

While working on the sequel to Guardians of the Galaxy, writer/director James Gunn spends a lot of time mining the Marvel back catalog for material. For instance, which obscure alien species should he include as background characters?

Not Sneepers, apparently. 

As he explained on his Facebook page, this little-known race of green-skinned aliens have been barred from Guardians of the Galaxy 2 for a hilariously bizarre reason.

“Every name I use I have to run through the Marvel legal department,” he wrote. “…It’s always a bummer when I can’t use a name, usually because Fox or Sony or Hasbro or whomever owns the rights. But today I received a brand new reason for being advised against calling one of the alien species ‘Sneepers.'”

That reason, he revealed, is that “Sneeper is a word for clitoris in Icelandic.” 

We checked, and it’s true: Sneeper, sneepur, or snipur is known as an Icelandic word for clitoris. We can only thank Gunn for widening our linguistic horizons in such a unique fashion.

Also, it sounds like other studios should take a leaf out of Marvel’s book when it comes to researching which fantasy words sound offensive in overseas languages and dialects. That way, we all could have avoided things like Jurassic World‘s unintentionally racist dinosaur name

Photo via Marvel

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*First Published: Sep 13, 2015, 1:45 pm CDT