Spoilers for Guardians Of The Galaxy 2 will follow. Marvel wasn't playing coy when they gave Star Lord's father a name like Ego. And the "Brandy" lyrics featured in Guardians of the Galaxy 2 help to illuminate the character's true nature. From his first introduction in the sequel it is clear there is something sinister lurking beneath those handsome, grizzled features. And while his name immediately affirms the narcissist within, it isn't until the third act audiences become privy to Ego's ethnocentric and evil plans. And Ego's favorite song, the 1972 hit "Brandy," serves as a warning sign.
The song by Looking Glass is utilized in more than one point in the film: It opens the intergalactic sequel in a 1980 flashback involving Ego and Star-Lord's mother, Meredith, singing the chart-topper in an open-air convertible. It's a sweet, care-free moment, but the happy memory is later transformed when Ego, now reunited with his son Star-Lord, uses the lyrics of the song to explain why he left his mother so many years ago.
Ego, who is a Celestial ("a God with a lowercase 'g,'" as he says), believes he is an all-important deity. Because he will never die and possesses powers beyond those of most intergalactic creatures (and certainly all humans), he has decided that anyone who is not also a Celestial is simply lesser-than.
But sweet, wholesome Star-Lord can't relate — his best friends are a motley crew of diverse weirdos, like a sassy raccoon and a dancing baby tree — so his father tries to break down his high-and-mighty philosophy by utilizing the song's lyrics:
He came on a summer's day
Bringin' gifts from far away
But he made it clear he couldn't stay
No harbor was his home
At night when the bars close down
Brandy walks through a silent town
And loves a man who's not around
She still can hear him say
She hears him say
Brandy, you're a fine girl
What a good wife you would be
But my life, my lover, my lady is the sea
It's obvious that Ego sees himself as the sailor in this song. Though Meredith drew him to earth, and though he impregnated her and left her to raise the baby alone, he sees the galaxy as his home. Ego uses these lyrics to attempt to explain to Star-Lord that lower-case-g-God's have bigger responsibilities than raising kids and loving earthly women. Sorry, Mer, you're second fiddle.
But Star-Lord doesn't buy it. This is his mother, after all, and there is no earthly or intergalactic excuse to leave her. But Ego isn't painting a full picture of what really went down: It's soon revealed that not only did Ego abandon Meredith, he also impregnated dozens (maybe even hundreds or thousands) of various female creatures, hoping to spread his celestial seed to all beings. Oh, and he injected Meredith with the tumor that killed her.
His sense of superiority may be a not-so-veiled metaphor for white cis male privilege. Sure, it was the '70s, but even free love can't justify the number of women Ego impregnated (...and ended up killing). "Brandy" encompasses this sense of male superiority: You're a chill girl, Brandy, but I've got bigger fish to fry. Please, continue to pine for me as I explore the ocean's vast and glorious corners. Maybe I'll pop in for a whiskey sometime. Maybe not. K bye!
Interestingly enough, 2000's Charlie's Angels also utilizes the popular Looking Glass song, but its usage is ironic, as it is Drew Barrymore's character who tells her lover Chad (or "The Chad" if you're nasty), she must leave. She's an Angel who has bad guys to fight and a world to save — a slightly better excuse than Ego's, some would say.
By the end of Guardians 2 there's no question that Ego is the film's biggest baddie, despite sharing DNA with our protagonist and hero. "Brandy" encompasses the gross male-gaze with which Ego sees the world — and galaxy — through, but unlike the sailor in the song, Ego's actions have consequences, and Star-Lord discovers he has an unexpected father figure much more deserving of his love — and family sing-a-longs.