Sunday, September 25, 2022

REVIEW: 'She-Hulk: Attorney at Law' - A Wedding Showcases How Jen Is Criticized No Matter Where She Goes in 'Just Jen'

Disney+'s She-Hulk: Attorney at Law - Episode 1.06 "Just Jen"

Jen is a bridesmaid in a friend's wedding, a stressful event compounded by uniquely She-Hulk issues.

"Just Jen" was written by Kara Brown and directed by Anu Valia

Someone is putting a concerted effort into stealing Jen's blood to obtain her Hulk abilities. It only remains a brief tease throughout the season. However, the viewer can never forget about it. It lurks in the shadows. One attempt has already been made. Jen easily dispatched them. Now, they are arming themselves with an even bigger needle. That's the tease at the close of this episode. It has very little to do with everything else that is happening. It's still significant. It also suggests that Titania isn't the biggest threat Jen has to face. She has been the most prominent. It's all a projection of hurt feelings. Titania is used to being the celebrity everyone fawns over. Jen doesn't exactly what that attention. She receives it so effortlessly. Moreover, she has bested Titania in every encounter so far. That's infuriating to Titania. She won't stop until she obtains some kind of symbolic victory over She-Hulk. It's a situation Jen has to always be aware of. It doesn't immediately present as life-threatening. Titania has her own abilities. She is incredibly strong too. She can punch Jen and send her flying across the courtyard. She provokes a fight. She needs to be dominant in this way. Jen wants to appease her high school friend, Lulu, by not stealing the spotlight during her wedding. That's inevitable the moment Titania crashes the party. Jen knows all of this is about her. Titania isn't simply being a good friend who wants to celebrate the love of the couple getting married. She's obsessed with She-Hulk. That's her only motivation for everything she does now. Jen knows that. No one else in the room does. This isn't a crowd of close loved ones for Jen. She was friends with Lulu at one time. She mostly feels obligated to be a bridesmaid because she was asked. She doesn't know how to say no. This friendship mattered. Moreover, she believes it's expected of her to show up as She-Hulk. She has to flex in that way to elevate the credibility of this ceremony. Of course, Lulu is annoyed her friend is stealing the spotlight. She wants this day to be all about her. In fact, she wants to belittle Jen throughout this entire process. She treats her as inferior simply because she isn't dating anyone. That's the only way she could possibly have value. The viewer is keenly aware how that isn't true. People continue to target Jen in numerous ways. A lack of romance is something projected onto Jen as being a bad thing. It's not for a lack of trying or a desire to be loved. It's been difficult for her to find someone who is equally attracted to her as Jen and as She-Hulk. She finds a possibility in Josh. They have a charming and easy dynamic. It celebrates Jen for all that she is. But she can never focus on exploring that connection because of the threats that loom around her.

It's inconvenient for Jen to attend this ceremony as well. Luke designed a dress that would work for her in either form. The event is still a distraction from the work that must be done. That provides an opportunity for Mallory and Nikki to work together. It also showcases how common people with special abilities have become in this world. Craig Hollis cannot die. However, he's so afraid of confrontations that he'll literally kill himself for a few moments just in order to escape. It's absolutely horrifying and traumatic. He has convinced multiple people to marry him. He then believes it's more desirable to end things in this dramatic way. Mallory and Nikki enjoy telling him how insane and immature he is. They still represent him. They find a creative solution to ensure everyone leaves happy and at peace with what they got. Everyone has different desires. Those outcomes are obtained. This storyline is mostly just an excuse to spend more time with these characters. Mallory invites Nikki into her world. It allows her a chance to shine. Nikki's dynamic with Jen is so meaningful and relaxed. However, it's fulfilling to see others lift her up for her talents as well. That is noticed and appreciated. Meanwhile, Mallory details her family life with a husband and a child. She appears to have her life figured out. She also doesn't want to disrupt Jen's life by directing her to the website with tons of death threats towards her. It may all be nothing. It's people venting online. They can't handle a woman stepping forward with the same exact skills as a man they've loved for a decade. Jen's mere existence is a threat to their fragile egos. They put their words online for anyone with an account to see. Titania took things a step further. But again, Jen could handle herself. Titania has to visit the dentist afterwards in order to fix the picture-perfect image she has created of herself. It's not difficult for Jen to do this. The stakes remain fairly low. Even Lulu isn't dramatically mad upon She-Hulk crashing the party. In fact, it's fun. Jen can do more than drink her cares away. The effects of alcohol still hit her while in human form. That remains a constant even though things come back with clarity after she transforms. She simply has to remember how to do so. It's funny when she can't for a moment. That's all that it is though. Jen remains in control of her life. That's the evolution of the season. She is finding how to be proud of who she is and what she is doing. She can't ignore the drastic changes. She has to embrace them even though they cause people to view her differently. Those threats can emerge from any corner of her life. She has to be ready. The adversaries are preparing themselves. Jen is too because she is becoming more confident in who she is now. Of course, she still has to note to the audience how insane and inconvenient all of this is. She can't be perfect too soon. That imperfection is endearing through every step of this journey.