A Step in the Right Direction


Another episode of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law has landed on Disney+. This new Marvel Cinematic Universe TV series follows Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany) as She-Hulk, the lawyer who can transform into a 6-foot-7 superhero. “The Retreat” is the show’s seventh episode and follows Walters as she visits Emil Blonsky’s (Tim Roth) wellness retreat. Unfortunately, this show has gotten off to a weak start, and while this episode is far from any of Marvel’s best work, it is a step in the right direction for a series that has consistently headed down the wrong one.

The episode begins with Jennifer going on a few dates with Josh, the nice guy she met at the wedding in the previous episode. They get along well, and after a few dates, they sleep together. However, after that, Josh ghosts her. It’s easy to sympathize with Jennifer as she faces this situation, which feels grounded in the real world. This episode does a better job of using the superhero setting to depict a relatable situation of waiting and waiting for a person to text us back. While Jennifer’s constant phone-checking can feel exaggerated and not in a funny way, the intention of these scenes works.

The direction from Anu Valia is more creative in this episode, as she shows the passage of time with fun camera movements and a good amount of style. Unfortunately, the comedy is still not where it should be, but the attempts are less miserable than in earlier episodes. This episode finally chooses to step away from the courtroom for a little bit and has Jennifer stuck at Blonsky’s wellness retreat with a broken car and no cell phone reception. It’s always excellent narrative fun to see someone trapped in a place they have no interest in being in with characters that get on their nerves, and this episode embraces that.

As Jennifer sits down with an oddball group of characters having a therapy session, she shares what happened with Josh. It is nice to see Jennifer be vulnerable about her feelings and take the time to be serious, as we see how Jennifer has struggled with her identity as She-Hulk. The way that she describes wrestling with two halves of herself and wanting someone to like her for just Jen rather than She-Hulk is well-written. It’s also wonderful to see the people in the group encouraging her to delete Josh’s contact.

After Jennifer leaves the retreat, we get sent three days into the past, where we learn that Josh cloned her phone and got a sample of her blood after sleeping with Jennifer. This ending cliffhanger sets up more of what’s to come, as the show finally feels as if it’s about to have a non-influencer antagonistic force. While the show continues its weak writing and unconvincing CGI problems, it finally feels as if the show is building to something. While it would be nice if the episode’s story had a more significant impact on an overall narrative, we’ll take what we can get for now and hope that next week is another improvement.

SCORE: 6/10

As ComingSoon’s review policy explains, a score of 6 equates to “Decent.” It fails to reach its full potential and is a run-of-the-mill experience.



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