- She-Hulk: Attorney At Law received both praise and criticism, with one major criticism being Jennifer Walters’ quick mastery of her Hulk powers compared to Bruce Banner.
- New information from Marvel Studios’ official timeline reveals that Jennifer trained with Bruce for a significant amount of time, from Fall 2024 to Spring 2025, providing context to her training journey.
- Bruce’s personal struggles and anger issues explain why it took him longer to gain control over his Hulk powers, making Jennifer’s faster progress more understandable in comparison.
She-Hulk: Attorney At Law tells the origin story of Jennifer Walters, and one major criticism of the show has been given much more clarity. The Disney+ series She-Hulk introduces lawyer Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany), the cousin of Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) who gains some of his gamma-irradiated DNA and with it Bruce’s powers as a Hulk. She-Hulk follows Jennifer as she adapts to her new powers as She-Hulk, with the Marvel Cinematic Universe series also fully showcasing her fourth-wall breaking abilities.
Though She-Hulk was a sizable streaming success upon its Disney+ debut, it also has drawn its share of criticisms, over both individual moments like She-Hulk‘s twerk dancing scene with Megan Thee Stallion, and over larger elements pertaining to the show’s story. One particular aspect of She-Hulk that has been subject to criticism is how the show depicts Jennifer’s transformation and training as She-Hulk. However, some new information on She-Hulk‘s overall timeframe puts the training criticisms in a whole new light.
Why She-Hulk’s Introduction Was So Controversial
She-Hulk’s Show Controversies Explained
While a percentage of She-Hulk‘s criticism has been rooted in a bad faith sexist lens, a larger portion of it relates to Jennifer Walter’s ease at mastering her She-Hulk powers. Admittedly, when comparing Jennifer’s training to master becoming a Hulk to that of her cousin Bruce Banner, there is no question that the MCU has placed far more emphasis on the latter. Bruce mastering his anger is essentially the core of The Incredible Hulk, with Bruce finally managing to do so by The Avengers, in which he reveals “I’m always angry.”
Despite the apparent harmony formed between Banner and the Hulk, the two entities still deal with internal friction, before finally combining into Smart Hulk by Avengers: Endgame (though Bruce has reverted from being Smart Hulk since Endgame.) With She-Hulk telling Jennifer’s story in a much shorter timeframe and with far less Hulk trials on her part, her mastery of becoming a Hulk looks like an uneventful breeze compared to Bruce’s. However, with new information on the MCU’s timeline presented in the book Marvel Studios The Marvel Cinematic Universe: An Official Timeline, Jennifer’s entire arc in becoming a Hulk on She-Hulk has been recontextualized.
She-Hulk and Hulk Trained From Fall 2024 To Spring 2025
Among the reveals in Marvel Studios The Marvel Cinematic Universe: An Official Timeline, She-Hulk takes place over a much longer period of time than the show itself makes it seem like. The book specifically reveals that Jennifer trained with Bruce to gain control over her Hulk powers from the fall of 2024 to the Spring of 2025. That reveal adds a great deal of context to Jennifer’s story, and paints a much more comprehensive picture of her training in She-Hulk.
Admittedly, it could be argued that by compressing Jennifer’s training with Bruce in such a way that it looks like it took place over a matter of weeks at most, this is a narrative shortcoming on the part of She-Hulk, especially if viewers must rely on ancillary MCU material in order to fill in the blanks. However, training montages in movies and TV shows very often condense long periods of training into relatively short but triumphant montages. She-Hulk simply follows that tradition in how it depicts Jennifer’s Hulk training with Bruce.
Why Jenn’s Training Speed Makes Sense
Even with the information outlined by Marvel Studios The Marvel Cinematic Universe: An Official Timeline, Jennifer still gains mastery over her Hulk powers much more quickly than Bruce did, but a few factors in Bruce’s story help explain why that is. To begin with, while Jennifer has a Hulk coach in her cousin, Bruce is the first Hulk ever, which effectively left him to his own devices in trying to understand his newfound and highly unstable condition linked directly to his anger. Additionally, Bruce’s anger itself also shows why it took him longer to gain control over the Hulk within him.
While Jennifer Walters has been shown to be a generally even-keeled, composed person, Bruce Banner has long dealt with infamous anger issues even before his gamma radiation accident. The fact that Bruce’s anger is the trigger for unleashing the Hulk makes it a much more pressing priority for him to get his anger under control. While She-Hulk: Attorney At Law seems to speed through Jennifer gaining total control over her newfound Hulk powers, the timeline of her doing so and Bruce Banner’s own personal troubles when he became the Hulk put it all into a very clear framework.