Say what you want about She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, but every time it seems to have a big issue, it gets addressed immediately. A big question at the end of the first episode was quickly answered in the second—and in the third episode, titled “The People vs. Emil Blonsky,” it happens two more times. Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany) turns to camera to directly address, in a very charming way, things that aren’t quite working. It’s almost like the team behind the show knows it’s not perfect, and is using that to its advantage.
After breaking out of prison to fight in Shang-Chi last week, Emil Blonsky (Tim Roth) was, somehow, back in prison. How? Why? Well, that was the best part. Blonsky explains that the Sorcerer Supreme, Wong (Benedict Wong), broke him out against his will which means Jen would have to track down Wong to explain why her client should still be paroled, even though he broke out of prison.
At this moment, I was thinking “Is this show just cameo after cameo?” And Jen turned to camera and joked about it. “I just want to make sure you don’t think this is one of those cameo-every-week type of shows,” she assures us. “It’s not. Except Bruce. And Blonsky. And Wong. [Pause] Just remember whose show this actually is.” Gotta say, I loved it.
After a montage that continues to show how famous She-Hulk is becoming (which, of course, is leading to misogynistic backlash: men mad that a woman has co-opted the Hulk, etc.—really funny stuff), she’s called into a meeting with her boss. Her annoying former colleague Dennis Bukowski (Drew Matthews) has come to GLK and H, looking for representation in the superhuman division. Apparently, he was dating a shape-shifting elf from New Asgard who he believed was Megan Thee Stallion. Which, when I heard it, my immediate thought was “No way they actually get Megan Thee Stallion for this.” They did, which was spoiled in the news earlier this week, but we had to wait to see her. Jen laughs the case off and, very very briefly, we get a glimpse of Mallory Book, played by Renée Elise Goldsberry, singing. It’s an awkward, brief introduction to a character that will, surely, have more to do later. (She’s Hamilton’s freaking Angelica Schulyer, after all.)
Jen has to leave the Bukowski meeting because Wong shows up to see her. He explains that Blonsky was telling the truth: Wong forced him to leave so they could fight because he needed a worthy opponent to help him become Sorcerer Supreme. Which is a little confusing since Doctor Strange said in No Way Home Wong became Sorcerer Supreme during the Blip, which would have been years ago and the show makes it seem like the fight was days ago. Unless, of course, only the footage of the brawl leaked recently but Blonsky has been in jail this whole time. Either way, the timeline is unclear.
Anyway, while we, the audience, want to continue the story of Jen, Wong, and Blonsky, the episode keeps spending time with Bukowski, who is being represented by fellow lawyer, Augustus Pugliese, aka Pug (Josh Segarra). He wins a motion to not have the trial dismissed and when the shape-shifting elf Runa (played by Peg O’Keefe) impersonates the judge, Pug is feeling very confident.
Back to that main story though. It’s time for Blonsky’s parole hearing, which is attended by his seven pen-pal soulmates, all of whom are women who are madly in love with him. Jen puts up a compelling argument about how her client has changed but she’s missing her key witness, Wong. And just when you thought you’d get Wong back, the show cuts to the damned Bukowski hearing. Enough with the Bukowski hearing!
Again, this could very easily be seen as a shortcoming but after he leaves court, and Pug meets Jen and Nikki for a drink, Jen turns to camera and acknowledges that the A and B story are finally being brought together. (Thank you, fourth-wall-breaking, for attempting to smooth out another issue.) Pug then realizes that Jen’s disdain for his client, her former colleague, might be exactly what they need.
Wong does eventually show up and the parole board seems intrigued, but when they asks about Blonsky’s control over Abomination, and he transforms into Abomination, it scares the crap out of everyone. It seems like the parole hearing is lost, except for the fact that those A and B stories linked up. Jen’s testimony for Bukowski reveals he’s vain enough to actually think he was dating Megan Thee Stallion, as well as the idea Blonsky can wear some kind of inhibitor to curb his powers.
And so with that idea in her back pocket, Jen gets Blonsky paroled on the condition that he never ever turn into Abomination again and always wear an inhibitor. Jen feels so good about the win, she even decides to grant an interview to the press to hopefully answer some questions the public has about it. It’s a good day of work for She-Hulk: Attorney At Law, except for when she gets home, four men with what look like alien tech attack her. She beats them up easily, but she realizes her life is truly different now. And it’s bound to get even more different, when we realize the thugs were hired by someone to get her blood. Titania we suspect?
After two wildly fast episodes of She Hulk, the third one slowed down a bit but still had plenty to chew on. Is Blonsky just done with the show now? Who is after Jen? And did we really need that whole sub-plot just for Jen to get the idea of a super power inhibitor which her cousin? Seems like a stretch. At least that B-plot allowed Megan Thee Stallion to not only cameo, but become an official part of MCU canon and, in the mid-credit scene, a client and twerk parter of She-Hulk herself.
What did you think of the third episode of She-Hulk?
She-Hulk is absolutely a show you need to watch a few times to really catch all the jokes, many of which are just text on screen, said off screen, or zoom by so fast you can miss them. In this episode, you hear Bukowski complain about there not being Red Bull in the office, which says so much about his character, while the reporters outside the prison act as almost a Marvel Greek Chorus.
They start and perpetuate a rumor that Jen has been rejected by the Avengers and even throw in a nice Marvel Comics joke about Jen’s origin being from a mafia hit gone wrong—which it was in the comics, but not in the show. A nice nod to the fans.
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