She-Hulk a.k.a. Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany) is new to the MCU, but popular in Marvel comics, where she gains the powers shared by cousin Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) thanks to a blood transfusion. As the trailer shows, Jennifer has a much easier go of her green friend than Bruce did, staying mentally in control and mastering her new physical abilities quick enough to return to society and pick up her old life.
While Marvel’s TV adaptation won’t strictly follow its source material, here’s everything you need to know about this specific iteration of She-Hulk and where she fits into the MCU.
Bonded By Blood
In Marvel comics, Jennifer gets shot by the criminal Nicholas Trask and Bruce’s blood is what saves her. This could go differently in the live-action series, whether it’s the nature of her injury, the perpetrator, or if she’s even injured at all. There are plenty of existing antagonists who could attack Jennifer, though Trask killing her mother is what led her to seek him out in the first place.
No matter how she got her powers, she’s definitely still Bruce’s cousin, and they share a tender but teasing sibling dynamic in the show’s trailer. It can’t be easy for Bruce to watch someone Hulk out with such ease, but he takes it like a champ and is there for cousin Jen however she needs him.
Part of the Puzzle
While most Disney+ Marvel shows have only loose links to the MCU (at least at first), the “She-Hulk” trailer boldly features Hulk himself, Emil Blonsky (Tim Roth) from “The Incredible Hulk,” and Sorcerer Supreme Wong (Benedict Wong) from the “Doctor Strange ” films. Unlike “Ms. Marvel,” we get direct connections up front to existing MCU superheroes, and Jennifer is on their radar.
Attorney at Law
“She-Hulk” heavily advertises its hero’s vocation, and that’s because Jennifer Walters specializes in cases for enhanced individuals, of which there are more and more every day in her world. It’s this work that leads her to defend Blonsky, who turns into a monster known as Abomination thanks to an ill-advised cocktail of knockoff super soldier serum, Gamma radiation, and Bruce’s blood (everyone is obsessed with his blood!). Their connection prompts Jennifer to declare a conflict of interest, but her bosses don’t care.
Head writer Jessica Gao says the show will lean into comedy, particularly the juxtaposition of Jennifer’s new superpowers and demanding day job. Her specific casework on enhanced individuals also leaves the door open for further MCU cameos, including the stunt casting that’s become a staple of Phase 4.
“She’s in a career that’s male-dominated and incredibly vicious and hierarchal,” Maslany told Empire in May. “When she’s heading this superhuman firm, that’s where we get some really fun characters that she’s either defending or in opposition of. It’s like this really absurd take on a legal show.”
Not only does “She-Hulk” put a woman in possession of mean green Hulk strength, but it’s got powerful female characters all over. Jennifer brightly declares in the trailer that her best friend is Nikki (Ginger Gonzaga), and she also works with fellow lawyer Mallory (Renée Elise Goldsberry) and eventually comes up against Titania (Jameela Jamil). Hey, who else misses “G.L.O.W.?”
A Wink to the Audience
“She-Hulk” promises at least a slight comedic tone, but the trailer also reveals something the MCU has never done: Spoken directly to the audience. Maslany breaks the fourth wall and looks into the camera like the protagonists of “Fleabag,” “Chewing Gum,” and more — but it’s more than an edgy style choice. “She-Hulk” comics can get pretty meta, with Jennifer addressing her writers, artists, and editors and even coming close to jumping off the page. Her in-camera looks in live-action pay homage to this character’s unique tone of voice and overall humor and charisma — and may even include a nod to Kevin Feige himself.
The Big Bad
The superpowered She-Hulk can comfortably face off against most opponents, but Titania is super super strong. In the comics, she’s not just superhuman, but pushes herself even further with weight training and is less susceptible to physical injury than most.
But in the comics, Titania loses in battle with She-Hulk…many, many times. At one point she refuses to fight her because of this poor track record. Over time defeat crystallizes into obsession, with Titania stretching her own endurance so that she can best She-Hulk. She even uses the Power Stone, but She-Hulk ends up taking it from her.
Most notably, She-Hulk and Titania’s rivalry kicks off in the comics with Secret Wars, which Marvel Studios is confirmed to bring to the big screen in 2025. Whether or not that factors into this round with Titania remains to be seen…
(Another) Really Good Lawyer
The “She-Hulk” trailer had one final trick up its sleeve. In its final moments, She-Hulk battles a mysterious suited figure on a rooftop — a mysterious figure wielding billy clubs, the chosen weapon of Daredevil a.k.a. Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox). The character is part of the MCU as of 2021’s “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” but fans of Cox as the blind vigilante haven’t seen him fully in action since Netflix’s “The Defenders” in 2018.
With so many Marvel connections, a distinct sense of humor, and guest stars galore, “She-Hulk” promises to be just like its namesake: A little weird, extremely tough, and utterly unique.
“She-Hulk” premieres August 17 on Disney+.