She-Hulk: What You Need To Know About Tatiana Maslany's MCU Character

Jennifer Walters is She-Hulk

It looks like the wait for She-Hulk is over! To clarify, I do not mean that the original series based on the Marvel heroine has finally released, but the character has been cast. Canadian actress Tatiana Maslany, best known for her Emmy-winning role on Orphan Black, will play the MCU’s next big, green badass.

Created by Stan Lee and John Buscema in 1980, She-Hulk, who was born Jennifer Susan Walters in Los Angeles, California, has quite a bit in common with the alter ego of Bruce Banner, with the exception of having comparatively better control of her temper. Not to mention, much like Banner’s Professor Hulk state, Jennifer’s green complexion and superhuman physiology is permanent, while allowing her retain the same mental capacity.

The strong and sassy comic book character favorite will make her live action debut on her upcoming, self-titled Disney+ exclusive series, which has no confirmed date for release at the moment. On the bright side, that leaves unwitting Marvel fans plenty of time to acquaint themselves with She-Hulk before the premiere, which can be achieved in a matter of minutes with the following six sensational facts, starting with further insight into just how well Jennifer Walters and Bruce Banner know each other.

The Incredible Hulk and She-Hulk on Hulk and the Agents of SMASH

She-Hulk And The Incredible Hulk Are Close Relatives

Though you could make the argument that becoming mean, green, crimefighting machines brought both them closer, Jennifer Walters’ relationship with her older cousin Bruce Banner goes back to their childhood when they would spend summers together at his Ohio home. Young Jen served as the hero Bruce needed at this time in his life, as he suffered the abuse of his father, by spending hours with him at the public library and even hiding inside, past closing. You could say that he returned the favor by turning her into a hero.

Bruce Banner preparing to give Jennifer Walters his blood

Emergency Transfusion Of Bruce Banner’s Blood Made Jennifer Walters She-Hulk

The day that Jennifer Walters became She-Hulk is the day she almost died after a notorious crime boss named Nicholas Trask shot and wounded her as she was spending time with Bruce Banner, who was forced to treat her on his own after becoming a suspect in her attack. To save Jen’s life, Banner transferred some of his own gamma-radiated blood to her, resulting in a transformation quite similar to whenever he would become The Incredible Hulk, initially speaking, that is. Walters’ She-Hulk state would evolve into a less savage beast, maintaining her human side each time she would hulk out, and, eventually, her green skin and hair and increased mass and muscle became her permanent appearance.

Hulk fighting She-Hulk

She-Hulk Has At Least One Superpower Hulk Does Not Have

Despite their physiological similarities, a full break-down of each Hulks’ respective superpowers would reveal Bruce Banner’s alter ego as the one who possess the larger arsenal of specific abilities, but there is one especially unique power that only She-Hulk possesses between the two. After receiving training from an egg-headed alien race known as the Ovoids, Jennifer Walters can, in the most basic terms, switch bodies with another individual, but it only works that way in particular if the transfer is consensual.

Otherwise, the power (which is She-Hulk rarely uses, anyway) could be compared to the Skrulls’ shapeshifting ability by how it allows her take on certain physical characteristics of a chosen person, but without achieving an identical resemblance.

Human Torch with She-Hulk

She-Hulk Once Replaced The Thing In The Fantastic Four

I cannot imagine, however, that Jennifer Walters would have been willing use her body switching to take on The Thing’s physical characteristics (not that she would have needed to) when she joined the Fantastic Four. She-Hulk has joined forces with several superhero collectives, such as A-Force, the Hulkbusters, and even the Avengers, but when Marvel’s Ben Grimm decided to leave Marvel’s superhero family temporarily after the Secret Wars, he asked her to take his place. The potential of this meaning that the Fantastic Four could be brought into the MCU through Tatana Maslany’s new show is not very likely, but stranger things have happened.

She-Hulk and Thor

She-Hulk Dated Thor, Among Other Famous Comic Book Romances

Speaking of strange things, the amount of inter-superhero relationships that have existed in the Marvel universe is surprising to the casual fan, but when you consider how many of them She-Hulk has been a part of, that is when the topic becomes especially interesting. Among her more notable romances are Luke Cage; a hook-up with the likes of Tony Stark, Juggernaut, and others; marriage to J. Jonah Jameson’s werewolf son John; and a more recently confirmed relationship with Thor. It is a shame, however, that she does not get as much credit for being able to juggle her love life with saving the world, along with her other main profession.

Jennifer Walters heading to court

She-Hulk Has A Law Degree And Is Still A Practicing Attorney

Before following in her cousin’s footsteps by adopting the crimefighter lifestyle, Jennifer Walters studied criminal justice at the University of California, Los Angeles, and went on to become a successful attorney in New York City. In fact, her defense of a mobster who had been by betrayed Nicholas Trask is what led the crime boss to target her life, resulting in her stunning transformation as She-Hulk.

Even after becoming an active superhero, Walters has not put her law career on pause (sometimes serving as part of a larger firm or otherwise practicing privately) and has even come to the defense of her fellow costumed vigilantes when put on trial, which sounds like good news for anyone who has missed the court room drama of Daredevil and may be able to expect it on the new She-Hulk series.

What do you think? Does our insight into the origins of She-Hulk make you even more excited to see her MCU debut on Disney+ or are we just a few important details shy of really capturing the essence of what makes her one of Marvel’s greatest heroes? Let us know in the comments and be sure to check back for additional information and updates on Tatiana Maslany’s biggest role yet, as well as even more inside looks at the legacies of your favorite comic book characters, here on CinemaBlend.

Jason Wiese
Content Writer

Jason Wiese writes feature stories for CinemaBlend. His occupation results from years dreaming of a filmmaking career, settling on a "professional film fan" career, studying journalism at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO (where he served as Culture Editor for its student-run print and online publications), and a brief stint of reviewing movies for fun. He would later continue that side-hustle of film criticism on TikTok (@wiesewisdom), where he posts videos on a semi-weekly basis. Look for his name in almost any article about Batman.