She-Hulk: Attorney at Law isn’t for everyone, but I found it to be a pleasant surprise and for the most part, it works. With sharp writing, a new format, and a stellar lead in Tatiana Maslany, She-Hulk is another fun entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and an enjoyable way to end off the Phase Four television shows.
This venture is largely female-driven with Jessica Gao as the creator and head writer, Kat Coiro directing, Amie Doherty composing the score, and Tatiana Maslany as the lead actor. The budget for this series was significantly lower than what we have seen in past Marvel projects and I can’t help but wonder if this had anything to do with the fact that it was a female-led project. The whole series, and some of the special effects, in particular, would have benefitted from a more substantial budget.
As with every Marvel project, the cast is excellent. Tatiana Maslany is great as our titular heroine and reluctant superhero. Even as a CGI green monster, Maslany is relatable and manages to convey her emotions very well. There are a lot of fourth wall breaks in this series, and while this is not a new Marvel tactic, Maslany brings her own fresh take on it, and pulls it off with some excellent line delivery. Mark Ruffalo and Maslany have great chemistry and the family connection is believable and endearing. The rest of the supporting cast, including Ginger Gonzaga, Tim Roth, Benedict Wong, and especially Patty Guggenheim, all stand out in their own way and make the show better.
Attorney at Law is also very funny. Every time Maslany broke the fourth wall, I was laughing out loud. There are some great one liner’s and the first episode’s post-credit scene is probably my favorite in the entire MCU (Yes, it’s really that funny). The head writer, Jessica Gao, is a writer on Rick & Morty and wrote the famous Pickle Rick episode so it shouldn’t be any surprise that the show is funny.
Something Attorney at Law excelled in was social commentary. Gao and her writing team used their platform to shed light on some important topics and I thought it was done very well. It poked fun at social influencers and online trolls and while this might be upsetting for certain online people who will not enjoy the show, the rest of us think it’s perfectly fine.
My biggest problem with the show is that it doesn’t take big risks. While other shows like WandaVision, Loki, Moon Knight, and Ms. Marvel all took big risks that not only paid off but set themselves apart from other shows. Attorney at Law doesn’t do that. The first four episodes are very simple, nothing earth-shattering or unexpected, save for all 4 credit scenes. Thankfully, this didn’t really skew my enjoyment for the show as much as I thought it would.
I also think that the show hasn’t found itself tonally yet. All of the episodes are vastly different and that throws you off. Each episode is fine on its own but when the story is trying to build up to something semi-cohesive, the drastic tonal shifts don’t work.
Overall, She-Hulk: Attorney at Law is a good show albeit a safe one. The cast shines through but the show hasn’t really found its footing yet and while I have no doubt that people will have a fun time watching the show, it could have been better.