I noticed that Moon Knight is no longer in the Marvel Studios identity, but Jen has a “See you later, litigator” mug sitting on the shelf in her office, which of course reminds me of Steven Grant and his “later” chirps. alligator”. It’s not for nothing that this famous image of Oscar Isaac eating Cheetos with chopsticks also came to mind when Jen was praising the virtues of the technique with Bruce. Feel free to google “Oscar Isaac Cheetos” if you don’t know what I’m talking about!
The verdict: Are you okay?
“A Normal Amount of Rage” is a competent introduction to the character of Jennifer Walters and Maslany is, as always, good at bringing the person she inhabits to life. black orphan fans will be happy to see the actress in another challenging lead role (I’m black orphan fans) and so far the supporting cast seem excellent, especially Gonzaga as Nikki.
It’s interesting to see Marvel Studios taking a different approach to all of their MCU Disney+ shows, and with She-Hulk: Lawyer they seem to have tried their hand at producing an amiable and harmless sitcom. The first episode is different from the others and sticks to Jen’s origin story before the show became her true procedural identity.
The problem for me is that the next three episodes are just too chewy, too hackneyed, too light on everything vital to really sink my teeth into it. They are disappointing at best and completely cringe at worst. This series aims for the funny, but I didn’t laugh at any of the jokes, so I can’t personally say it manages to be a comedy. The latest procedural stuff is also a bit endless, with a succession of expected MCU cameos and very slight new characters heavily distracting and undermining Jen’s story. Then there’s the broken fourth wall, which happens so rarely that it feels shocking instead of endearing. But hey, maybe viewers who like network-style sitcoms and procedural shows will enjoy the whole thing more, and maybe She-Hulk: Lawyer will improve markedly after episode four. Here I hope!
As is becoming a tradition with these Marvel MCU shows, the end credits shine once again, the art giving us some good-humoured context for Jen’s new life as She-Hulk. They end everything on an optimistic note, but the well documented chatter about the CGI quality of the show will not be completely put to rest after this first episode. It’s pretty good, I’d say, but there are a few moments where it looks a little dodgy. The overworked VFX artists on She-Hulk: Lawyer probably tried their best, and She-Hulk’s CGI rarely wanders into polar express territory, although I regret to inform you that in some of the last episodes I watched, it definitely leaned more in that direction.
What I find annoying is how detailed the CGI on Smart Hulk is in comparison. There are probably legitimate reasons for this (the VFX team may have already had access to some established layers of Avengers: Endgamewho knows?), but it kind of sounds like “well, Hulk is more important” and going back to my earlier complaint with some of the writing heaviness here, I think giving the VFX makers some time what they needed to fully realize She-Hulk visually opposed to the Hulk would have been a pretty powerful statement on its own.