Let’s Talk about She-Hulk Episode 1-3
Last week, She-Hulk appeared to hit its stride with an episode brimming with humor and wit.
Did the new Marvel series maintain momentum with its most recent story? Let’s talk about She-Hulk episode 1-3, the one with Megan Thee Stallion.
The People vs. Emil Blonsky
This week’s episode starts with Jennifer Walters quizzing her new client, Emil Blonsky, about why he lied to her.
From Walters’ perspective, Blonsky has escaped from prison and been caught on film in the process.
Blonsky, who may not be a criminal mastermind, defends himself by saying he had no choice. A Sorcerer Supreme forced him to appear.
Then, The Abomination willingly returned to his jail cell, demonstrating that he was the opposite of an escapee.
The humor comes hard and fast in this episode, as She-Hulk has definitely hit its stride. Jennifer’s loyal assistant, Nikki, researches the Sorcerer Supreme, “Wong…just Wong.”
At this point, we catch a glimpse of his social media profile, which lists him as the Sorcerer Supreme, a librarian at Kamar-Taj, and a “Target Sales Associate” at Kamar-Taj, Nepal.
Did you know they had a franchisee in Kamar-Taj? I did not, and I question the business savvy here. It doesn’t seem like a place that uses currency.
Anyway, Nikki lays out a thirst trap – her words, not mine – that is just her sitting around a bunch of books. I’m now hoping that Nikki and Wong will date.
Whether this strategy works or not is left in the air. Wong does teleport into Jennifer’s office, though. But, before that, Jennifer chats with the audience.
During this breaking of the fourth wall, she acknowledges that viewers can’t wait to see Wong. She promises hers isn’t a cameo-every-week show, though.
Then, she rattles off Bruce Banner, Wong, and Blonsky as proof to the contrary. Also, this joke is even better than you think, as I’ll explain in the next section. For now, the story is that She-Hulk, a “monster,” is defending Abomination, also a monster.
She-Hulk vs. Fanboys
When Marvel announced a She-Hulk series, a vocal but tiny subset of social media berated the studio for its choice.
Apparently, the She-Hulk production team took notes, and they brought the receipts in this episode.
A quick subplot plays out of men complaining about Hulk being replaced by a woman. Quick screen caps could just as easily have come from Marvel’s comments section.
In one fell swoop, She-Hulk eviscerates all its sexist critics. Well done, producers and writers!
This episode doesn’t stop destroying toxic male culture, either. A marginal character from the series premiere, Dennis Bukowski, returns.
The attorney at the district attorney’s office no longer works with Jennifer, but he needs help from her firm.
Bukowski is the victim of a kind of catfishing. He dated a woman whom he gave plenty of money. For whatever reason, he thought she was famous.
The dude’s ego allowed him to believe he was hooking up with Megan Thee Stallion. In reality, he was getting played by a New Asgardian shapeshifter. Bukowski wants his money back. So, he turns to GLK&H for what proves to be a $175,000 lawsuit.
The joke here is why Megan Thee Stallion would need money when she’s worth 100 times that amount.
Actually, no. The REAL joke here is that Megan Thee Stallion appears in a cameo…not long after Jennifer swears it’s not that type of show.
She-Hulk leaves it to the viewer to realize that it acknowledges three superhero cameos but then adds an even more famous celebrity in a subplot. At the risk of seeming too much like Bukowski, I kinda want to fist-bump the writers for this idea.
By the way, Renee Elise Goldsberry finally appears for a moment as another GLK&H attorney. I’m hoping she becomes the focus soon.
The Greatest Parole Board Hearing of All Time
We’re building to two different trials this week. One involves Bukowski vs. a shapeshifter for some money.
The other is Blonsky’s parole board hearing. He and his seven soulmates are ready to live out their happily ever after if Walters can secure his freedom.
Wong must appear for that to have any chance of happening. He promises that he will, but then he runs late.
Meanwhile, the parole board is actively laughing at the idea of allowing the Abomination to roam free.
Walters improvises by asking Blonsky to discuss his rehabilitation.
Hilariously, his seven soul mates stand in a viewing window in the background. Their outfits are so very Renaissance Fair.
“Blair, Ruth, Marta, Sheila, Alejandra, Yvonne, and Nicolette » are his “better eighths.” Make of that what you will.
Remarkably, others at the prison speak strongly in Blonsky’s defense. One suggests that thanks to his efforts, the library is now “more than just a quiet place to shiv someone.”
Seriously, we’ve got top-tier jokes flowing from start to finish this week. It’s a flawlessly written episode with impeccable flow.
The writers know it, too. In a different courtroom, Runa, “the daughter of an Elfin diplomat on Asgard,” defends herself from Bukowski’s claims.
The shapeshifter is mischievous like Loki and not at all apologetic. She imitates multiple people throughout the episode, including the judge. During a post-court bar scene, the lawyers share notes about their cases.
At this point, Walters stares at the camera and jokes about how they’ve just tied the A and B stories together. The writers are taking a victory lap via their own dialogue.
After tension builds about Wong’s appearance, he finally arrives just in time to provide the defense Blonsky needs to earn his liberty.
Amusingly, Wong simultaneously confesses to the crime of breaking a prisoner out of jail, something the parole board notices.
So, Wong quickly teleports out of town. However, I feel like anyone who defeated Thanos probably has diplomatic immunity for life anyway.
Of course, what really seals Blonsky’s fate is that the parole board views him as an unreasonable monster.
Blonsky pulls a She-Hulk and transforms into the Abomination. Then, he calmly shows he can control the beast as his soulmates seem orgasmic in the background.
Blonsky’s demonstration that he has gained control tips the balance. The parole board declares him a free man ready to live on his parcel of land with his soulmates.
Walters has won the big case! But how about her former co-worker, Bukowski?
Fittingly, Walters testifies in his defense, at least technically. What she really does is bury him with testimony suggesting that he’s terminally self-delusional.
She paints a portrait of him as a broken man with issues of chauvinism and conceit. He has apparently described himself as a “New York 10 and an LA 11.”
The judge declares the case in Bukowski’s favor. Also, he sentences the shapeshifter to prison for impersonating a judge.
Do you know who is happiest about this? Megan Thee Stallion. Yes, the musician sits in court to ensure justice gets served. Despite what Walters said, it’s cameo week on She-Hulk!
Wow. Just wow.
I thought the first episode of She-Hulk was messy and showed heavy signs of outside interference. It reeked of studio meddling.
That’s what often happens behind the scenes when the people writing the checks aren’t happy with the outcome. So, I’d worried that She-Hulk as a series would disappoint.
Then, the show really turned around with episode two, a sparkling display of whimsy and confidence.
Then, this episode starts with a borderline criminal assault on toxic male culture and social media venom.
Then, the story ends with She-Hulk defending herself from an assault from a bunch of random angry dudes.
They’re apparently trying to attain Walters’ blood so that they can build some sort of Hulk army of their own.
While we haven’t gotten there yet, this subplot explains the importance of having Tim Roth return as Abomination.
People shouldn’t mess with Hulk DNA, Super Soldier Serum, or the like. The writing is subtle at times and aggressive at others. It’s irreverent but poised.
We even end with a post-credits scene of She-Hulk twerking with Megan Thee Stallion.
The show rewards us for staying to the end by including the dialogue, “I WILL KILL FOR YOU, MEGAN THEE STALLION!!!”
This is a perfect 10-episode and one of the best things Marvel has ever done. I cannot wait for next week!