Well, the wait is over, and She-Hulk is here. The hype and the anticipation that people have been dealing with for the last several months have paid off. Or have they? It’s straightforward to walk into this first episode thinking that Jennifer Walters was going to be a strong-willed and independent woman who could be capable of entering the MCU with both feet firmly on the ground, but how this has been done is enough to irritate a lot of people, or so it feels. The sexist backlash that’s been spoken of for a while might have left a sour taste in the mouths of many people since, in the comics, She-Hulk has been a popular character, but she’s also been someone that’s not exactly the perfect role model. Many heroes have tripped or shown that they’re given fundamental human instincts now and then. Still, while it’s true that women who are promiscuous in the comics tend to get looked at in a different light, the live-action show is already off playing defense by making Jennifer a tough as nails individual who’s simply better than many of her male counterparts in, well, in some things at least.
Jennifer isn’t a weak woman, which is nice.
Giving props to this character is easy since she’s a very confident and capable individual who knows what she wants in life and knows how to work hard to get it. But the kicker is that when presented with a life-altering situation, she falls back on her confidence in a way that feels entirely off-putting since the initial idea is that her life as a Hulk is going to be easier given that she’s more efficient when dealing with her emotional state than her cousin Bruce is. One thing that definitely feels out of whack is the ease with which Jennifer is able to turn into She-Hulk and then turn back, which is pretty accurate from the comics but still feels a little too easy in the show. Her freakouts are understandable since this is all new terrain to her, but the speed with which she acclimates to the idea of being She-Hulk doesn’t necessarily feel earned, though it’s hard to argue against beyond that.
Her attitude toward her cousin’s advice is a bit off-putting.
Let’s be honest and say that Bruce does lay it on a bit heavy, and he’s a bit heavy-handed in his attempts to get her on board with being a hero. But looking at Jennifer in an entirely positive light is a bit difficult since Jen is a bit, well, uppity in her manner since she insists on reminding Bruce how women are in a constant state of fear and anger. If anyone is thinking that this is one hundred percent true then it needs to be said that it does more damage to the reputation of women than anything, as it continues to perpetuate the stereotype that women are scared and weak in a way that needs to be highlighted over and over to remind everyone that men are, well, the problem or the precursor to the problem. But laying that aside for the moment, one has to remember how much of a struggle it was for Bruce Banner to finally become the Smart Hulk, as he’s been called. Jennifer hasn’t had that struggle, at least not yet.
She-Hulk could be a very positive hero.
Her attitude is without any doubt one of the main reasons why it’s so easy to criticize her at the moment, especially since despite her current situation, Jennifer is being positioned as a woman who knows enough to adapt to a situation that she’s never had to deal with. In other words, she’s being given the mental stability Banner didn’t possess long ago. While this is a boon to her character, it’s a bit irritating since it means her struggle if it comes, will be far less, and her reward will be far more in the episodes to come. That’s the initial thought, at least since as of now it doesn’t feel as though Jennifer has had to deal with nearly as much as Bruce did.
If this is the pace the show is going to follow, it feels as though it will divide the fanbase
On the one hand, the She-Hulk series feels like it will be fun to watch since it will be new, updated, and innovative. The fact that it takes place post-Blip is fun since it will bring up a lot of great MCU history that people might enjoy hearing about. The whole conversation about Steve Rogers not being a virgin was interesting. But if the constant need to disregard anything that’s helped to shape the world into which she’s emerging continues, it might not go over very well.Jennifer
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