The Hulk Woman Episode 5 Review

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Warning! This review contains spoilers for the 5th series of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.

Marvel Studios’ “The Hulk Woman: Juror Advocate” returns with a fifth episode of the action-free, action-packed sitcom, “Mean, Green and Straight in Those Jeans,” which is now streaming on Disney+. Following cliffhanger last week, the influential supervillain Titania registered the trademark of the name “Hulk Woman”-a name that Jen didn’t even want—and is suing Jen for using it. Instead of defending herself or resorting to the services of Matt Murdock, Jen hires her reserved colleague Mallory Book to represent her interests in a counterclaim.

Last week’s episode cleverly combined its plot A and plot B, as Jen’s disastrous dating life finally brought some success, and Wong interrupted the romantic moment to challenge Jen to battle some demons on a magic show. In the episode written by Dana Schwartz, this week there is another disparate plot A and plot B that have nothing to do with each other. Plot A disappoints without incident, and plot B takes time to develop.

Ginger Gonzaga gets a chance to prove herself by playing Nikki Ramos not just as a supportive friend who listens, but Pug behaves bizarrely out of character. Until now, he has been a sympathetic voice of reason, dryly reacting to comically exaggerated personalities such as the failed playboy Dennis Bukowski and the werewolf elf Runa. But in this episode, he puts on a strange fake accent when he brags about his “drip broker” linking him to an underground chain of superhero stores.

Jamila Jamil gets more attention than any previous episode as Titania’s rivalry with the Hulk Woman intensifies. But their fight from the pilot series is not even mentioned. Titania spends most of the episode in front of a judge, letting her corporate lawyer speak for her. Plot A is mostly confined to the courtroom as Jen tries to prove that she used the name Hulk Woman long before Titania registered it as a trademark. Instead of telling that Titania recently attacked a Female Hulk in the midst of a lawsuit, the case got bogged down in dry semantics.

In this episode, the court is again used as a comedic setting to humiliate Jen. The title “Mean, Green and Straight in These Jeans” is taken from Jen’s embarrassing dating profile, and becomes even more embarrassing when Beech reads it out loud in front of the court. The Book’s growing friendship with Jen would have been much more effective if her coolness had been more prevalent in previous episodes. Here she slowly warms up with Jen, but it’s unclear if she was initially cold.

The Category B plot develops when it adheres to what the series does best: using comedy to explore the untouched corners of this superhero-filled comic book universe. The storyline gets back on its feet when Pug puts on his “Iron Man” sneakers and bows, giving way to the spotlight to Luke Jacobson, Edna Fashion from the MCU. Luke is a flamboyant fashion designer specializing in superhero costumes. Brilliantly played by guest star Griffin Matthews, Luke is as eccentric and attractive as E.

Last week’s episode was so successful because it had a lot of jokes that landed and culminated in an exciting action sequence in which a Female Hulk teamed up with Wong to repel an invasion of demons. There is no action in this week’s episode, and very few of its gags come across. If the show relies heavily on the sitcom format and keeps the action so sparse, then parts of the sitcom should be much funnier.

This is the first episode directed by Anu Walia after Kat Coiro defined the style of the series. Valia is a solid director when it comes to actors and pace, but her production lacks the small stylistic refinements that made Coiro’s episodes popular. This issue really adheres to one annoying trend of Coiro’s tenure. In every episode, it seems like he’s teasing something big the next week, but then the next week comes along, and the next week there’s another teaser.

However, the series does a great job of developing its character as Jen experiences her second origin story. Basically, every superhero has two origin stories. The first shows how they got their powers; the second, a more detailed origin story, details their path to accepting these powers and figuring out how to use them most effectively. Long after he was bitten by a radioactive spider, Peter Parker grew up and gave up his place in the Avengers in order to remain a friendly neighborhood Spider-Man for a while. Long after he became a sorcerer, Stephen Strange learned to give up control and trust his associates. The Hulk woman removed Jen’s first origin story in the pilot episode. But the rest of the season gradually followed Jen from initially abandoning her Female Hulk form to her adoption. Every week she gets more and more information about what she likes to be a Female Hulk: “Amazing hair, no hangover, going home with headphones on, not afraid.”

There is no comedy tag in the middle of the end

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