She-Hulk: Attorney at Law will deliver a first for the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the form of fourth wall breaks by its title character. We saw those in Deadpool, of course, but Jennifer Walters was doing that in the comic books long before the Merc with the Mouth.
Talking at the global press conference for the Disney+ series, Head Writer Jessica Gao, director Kat Coiro, and star Tatiana Maslany revealed how She-Hulk addressing the audience plays into what we'll see in the show. Gao even sheds some light on an alternate idea that was considered featuring text boxes similar to what we're used to seeing on the page.
Check out the full exchange below:
Coiro: Well, I like to say that she was doing it long before Deadpool or Fleabag.
Gao: I mean, it’s true. If you know anything about She-Hulk the character, you would know that she did that.
Maslany: When Deadpool copied She-Hulk. Continue.
Gao: It went through a lot of evolutionary steps. A long journey of, 'How much should she talk to camera?' Is she talking directly to the audience? Is there another meta element? Is she talking to somebody else that’s more behind the scenes?' At one point, there was an iteration in the scripts where, instead of really talking directly to camera, there were text boxes that were editor’s notes, like the comic books. She was actually interacting with the editor’s notes that would be onscreen. I mean, we did eventually scrap that idea but we went through a lot of different versions of how she would do it.
Coiro: And ultimately, it was about finding the balance to where breaking the fourth wall does connect to the audience and draws us in. But not so much so that we’re not connecting to her story and the world that we’ve built.
Maslany: I think that there’s something about She-Hulk’s awareness. Where she’s able to go from being Jen to She-Hulk with seamlessness. Her consciousness stays the same. And she’s aware of the audience; that feels like it’s her superpower engaged with the meta element. It’s like an extension of her superpower. It's like she's saying, 'I know I’m talking to the camera. I know you guys are watching this.' And there’s something about that super hyperawareness that is who she is.
Gao: Yeah, you’ve gotten pulled, as the audience, into her inner circle. And she is trusting you with all of her internalized thoughts and feelings.
It's clear a lot of thought has gone into how these fourth wall breaks will be handled in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, and it should be good practice for Marvel Studios ahead of Deadpool 3.
She-Hulk: Attorney at Law premieres on Disney+ on August 18.