Let me first say that I am by no means an expert on the subject of the Guardians of the Galaxy comic line. I never read them as a child, and I don't read them now. The knowledge I have is knowledge I've gained in passing. So hopefully you'll forgive me for any holes in my familiarity with that particular branch of the Marvel universe. But I've got a theory about the identity of Star-Lord's father, as well as the villain of the second installment. In short, I think they're one and the same. Let's take a look at the hints we've been given about his father, shall we?
1) He's not from any recorded race
This is the obvious starting point. We know that he's not Terran (which, for those of you who didn't pick up -- and shame on you if you didn't -- is basically alien for "Earthling"). At the end of the film, after the final Avengers/Galaga-esque battle with Ronan and his forces, Nova Prime informs Quill that he was only half-Terran, and that the half of his DNA sequence in question came from his father. She went on to say that his father was from an ancient race that they have no records of, nor have they ever come in contact with it, at all. Key words/phrases are "ancient" and "never seen before."
2) He's super powerful
This is an extension of the first one, playing directly off of his father's mysterious DNA and identity. Nova Prime suggests that it was his father's DNA was what allowed him to hold the Infinity Stone. Moving on.
3) On one hand, he was an "angel"
At the very beginning of the film, Quill's dying mother describes his father as an "angel, composed out of pure light." So with that we can gather that he possesses some angelic qualities. And, I'm just gonna go ahead and assume that he was handsome enough for Quill's mom to want to make a baby with him. So... Unless Yondu was a gorgeous bastard back in the day but suddenly pulled a Mickey Rourke, I'm gonna go ahead and rule him out early. But we'll keep him in the mix for the sake of the argument.
4) On the other hand, he's a "jackass"
At the end of the film, after Kraglin said that it was probably better that they didn't return Quill to his father like they were "hired to do" (more on that later), Yondu responds with, "Yeah. That guy was a jackass." Now, here's what I see here: either Yondu -- who isn't a particularly upstanding citizen -- was rubbed the wrong way by daddy-Quill's goodie-goodie nature, or he really was a bad person ("person"), even by Yondu's standards, which aren't that high. So we've got conflicting descriptions of his personality.
5) He hires people to retrieve things
He employed some, ummm, "unsavory" characters to go and retrieve his young son from Earth, and somehow knew exactly when to do it. He (presumably) knew to get Quill right when his mom died, and if he didn't come to do it himself and see his dying former lover, then maybe he is a jackass. That's all I've got for this entry, so let's move on.
Now, let's play Maury and look at who may or may not be the father. I'll just lay out some names I've heard:
3) The Collector
4) J'son of Spartax
5) Adam Warlock
Alright, let's get into this... I'll give my input on each of these guys (and I promise, I'll be brief), and I'll acknowledge whichever of those characteristics they may or may not fulfill.
Oh, Yondu... Yondu, Yondu, Yondu... Definitely a fan favorite character, a lot of people are pulling for him to be Quill's dad. I personally think he was more of a father figure who fulfilled a parental role for Quill in the absence of an actual father. I mean hell, he was probably fixing to kill him on the ship. What he's got going for him... Yondu did drop a line at the end there that made me raise an eyebrow. He said, "I may be as pretty as an angel, but I sure as hell ain't one." Angelic? That was definitely one of the bullet points I mentioned above. He also retrieves things, which was another bullet point. He is kind of a jackass, in a lovable way. That's about all he's got. But, as you can tell, he's... not as pretty as an angel. He's not composed out of pure light. He's not super powerful, definitely not enough to hold an Infinity Stone. And he's not of an unclassified race. I've gotta say, Yondu only hits one of those bullet points. Plus, I kinda have a feeling he'll meet his end in the sequel. Yondu: 1.
Richard Ryder, AKA Nova. He's a human, and James Gunn already said that there will be no other humans. Plus, he'd have to be way older than Quill to be his father, since he's a human also. I will say, the "composed out of pure light" line may fit here, if we reinterpret "composed out of" to "cloaked in". But even then, that's not too strong of a theory. He's of a known race. He's not powerful enough to hold an Infinity Stone. We haven't established him as an "angel" or a "jackass", because as of yet, he doesn't exist. And he probably wouldn't pay Yondu to retrieve something. Nova: .5
3) The Collector
This is one of the stronger candidates in my mind. He fulfills a couple of very important bullet points. That, coupled with the confirmation that he will be returning in the sequel, makes a decent case for him. Let's look at it... He's of an ancient race (at least in the comics), so that adds up. He does pay people to retrieve things. That's his M.O. With his white hair and his white clothes, he could definitely pass for an "angel" who is "composed out of pure light". He's sort of a jackass, also. My beef with this theory comes at a few points... First of all, he didn't touch the Infinity Stone. He needed a machine to open the Orb, and when Carina approached it, he warned her to stand back. Now, admittedly, that isn't undeniable proof that he couldn't wield it, but it makes something of a case for it. Why open it with a machine when Yondu was so capable of opening with his hands? Come on. Secondly, why would Yondu decide not to take Quill to him? I mean, sure, maybe he didn't like the idea of taking a young boy to a weird, space-Liberace, but something tells me Yondu doesn't have a strong moral compass (though it's not like the Collector would have killed him). The Collector showed Groot enough courtesy to ask him if he could purchase his body after he died. Why wouldn't he show Quill that same courtsey? My biggest gripe, however, is with the fact that he didn't hold it himself. If he could have, he would have. The Collector: 4.
4) J'son of Spartax
Alright, I'll be straight with you: I don't know much about J'son. But from what I can gather, he's kind of a jackass (but again, I'm unfamiliar with him). I could see the ruler of an empire hiring a group of bandits to retrieve his child for him. I get that. But I don't see him as being someone "composed out of pure light." Also, I don't think (correct me if I'm wrong) he's from an extremely ancient and powerful race. Plus, a big drawback is that James Gunn said he would not be the father. But who knows? Gunn could be throwing us a red herring. It's not unusual. J'son: 2.
5) Adam Warlock
Here we go... We saw his cocoon in the post-credits scene of "Thor: The Dark World." James Gunn recently said that Warlock was one of his favorite characters. When asked if Warlock would be in it, he didn't deny it, whereas with other questions, he'll flat-out shut down any speculation. If that whole THANOS acronym thing works out (Tesseract, H?, Aether, N?, Orb, Scepter) is actually legit, Adam Warlock also goes by "Him", so there's your H. Points against Warlock: he's very similar to Vision. They're both pure, god-like superbeings with an Infinity Stone in their foreheads. Both were created to be perfect, and they both came from a cocoon (or something reminiscent of it). Now, points FOR Warlock... He is not a human, and he is not an alien. He is something completely and utterly unique unto himself. He is ancient. That's check #1. In the comics, he wielded the Infinity Gauntlet (we'll get to that later), and, as I said before, had the Soul Stone wedged into his forehead. So we know he's capable of holding one and using its power to the fullest. That's check #2. Is he an angel? With that flowing blond hair and that big-ass cape and those god-like powers, I'd say yes. Warlock is a good "person" in any and every sense. That's check #3. Is he a jackass? Now, here's where it gets tricky. One one hand, Yondu could think of him as a jackass because of his completely morally upstanding nature. On the other hand, in the comics, Warlock has an evil alter-ego named the Magus. He's the exact opposite of Warlock. He's evil. I'll explain my theory in a second, but right now I'll mark this check #4. And, in any event, I can see Warlock/Magus sending Yondu to retrieve Quill. I'll explain that. That's check #5. Warlock: 5.
Adam Warlock, the godly, pure being, impregnated Quill's mother. That accounts for the holistic, angelic description she gave of him. In the months during her pregnancy and the years leading up to her death, somewhere along the way, Warlock turned into the evil Magus. Knowing he had a son out there who would probably be capable of holding an Infinity Stone, he saw one of two things. 1) he could use his son as a partner to help take over the universe. Or 2) the more likely of the two, he saw him as a potential threat to his power one day, and wanted Yondu to bring him back so he could kill him. Certainly Yondu would go, enticed by the prospect of money. But when he got the kid, he realized what exactly he was taking him back to. It set in that the being he'd be turning young Quill over to would murder him. Yondu may even refer to him as a "jackass." That'd also explain why Yondu felt as though Quill should be so grateful to Yondu for all he did for him. He knew what the alternative was, and what Quill's fate was supposed to be. Anyways, part 2 sees Quill learning more about his past (and, as Gunn confirmed, discovering the identity of his father). He discovers that Magus, the villain of the movie (rumored to be a major player in the "Infinity War" films), is his dear ole dad. A very "Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker" type of deal. It'd make sense to introduce the villainous form of Warlock before the ACTUAL Warlock, so the movie would have a viable antagonist. Plus, that'll probably help distinguish him from the Vision. Yadda-yadda.
If rumors hold true, and Magus IS a major player in the "Infinity Wars" movies, where does that leave us? Well, Kevin Feige recently confirmed that there are, in fact, TWO Infinity Gauntlets in the MCU. In the comics, Adam Warlock (who, as I said before, is the pure version of Magus, a potential lieutenant for Thanos in "Infinity War") used the Infinity Gauntlet to defeat Thanos. Since there are two of them, I can see this working out quite nicely. Can't you? I hope so.
Well folks, there's my theory. I hope you at least found it interesting or entertaining to read, whether or not you agreed with it. Think on it, and get back to me on what you're feeling.