*Warning: This piece contains spoilers for episode one of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law*
In a bit of a breath of fresh air, She-Hulk: Attorney at Law brings a very light and comedic side to the Disney+ series of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Complete with a self-aware edge, fourth wall breaks, and a plethora of Hulk antics, this premiere of She-Hulk sets an encapsulating stage for the rest of the series to follow.
The episode begins with Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany)–an attorney who specializes in superhero cases–practicing her closing arguments for a big case. After one of her co-workers jokes around about her “hulking” out during the trial, Jen addresses the camera and tells us the story of how she earned her hulk powers.
We cut to a few months prior where Jen and her cousin Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) are on a road trip. Suddenly, a spaceship dips down into their way causing them to veer off the road and get into a nasty car accident. When helping Bruce out of the wreckage, Jen ends up getting Bruce’s blood in an open cut of hers, spreading the gamma poisoning and causing her to hulk out and flee into the nearby woods.
Jen stumbles upon a bar where some female patrons comfort her and help her get cleaned up. She borrows one of their phones to call Bruce to pick her up. While waiting outside for Bruce’s arrival, Jen ends up getting catcalled by a group of rowdy men. When they advance on her, she transforms, and hulks out at them before blacking out.
Jen wakes in Mexico in Bruce’s secluded lab underneath a serene hut. We find out this is where Bruce had been spending a lot of his time during the Blip, and that he created the lab with the help of Tony Stark. Bruce, now in Smart Hulk form, puts Jen through a test to see how easily she can transform into the She-Hulk. She transforms and hulks out, and Bruce is surprised to discover that both Jen and She-Hulk can exist at the same time, contrary to how Bruce and the Hulk were not able to coexist at first. Bruce attempts to train Jen to become a superhero, to her chagrin.
During the ensuing training, Bruce and Jen participate in such activities as chucking boulders, balancing exercises, dialectical behavioral therapy, and consuming immense amounts of alcohol. Jen eventually grows weary of training and wants to resume her life outside of Mexico. After a heated altercation between himself and Jen, Bruce finally relents and lets Jen leave while offering her support if she ever needs it.
Back in the present, as Jen is about to begin her closing arguments, the trial is interrupted by Titania (Jameela Jamil) crashing through the wall and disrupting the courtroom. In full view of the court and public, Jen transforms into She-Hulk and defeats Titania with ease. The episode ends just as Jen is about to deliver her closing arguments.
Episode one of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law brings a new type of charm to the current MCU slate. While this first episode did not prove to be lackluster, it did come across as a touch less ambitious as other recent Marvel projects and is much easier to peel back, which feels very refreshing. While the main plot of the episode is wrapped up nicely by the end, there are still some lingering questions remaining: Why did that alien ship interfere with Jen and Bruce? Why did Titania interrupt the trial? What were Jen’s closing arguments? Perhaps episode two will bring us some solace and these remaining questions to a close.
You can stream She-Hulk: Attorney at Law now on Disney+