Welcome back to another installment of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law From Page to Screen. In the show’s first week, we looked at the differences between the comics’ and series’ versions of Jennifer Walters becoming She-Hulk as seen in the first episode. In Episode 2, viewers got a live-action introduction to Jen’s new legal job, taken straight out of Dan Slott’s and Juan Bobillo’s 2004 She-Hulk run—Goodman, Lieber, Kurtzberg & Holliway (GLK&H). Episode 3 took She-Hulk in a bold direction. While it didn’t appear to be the most comics-inspired episode, it did introduce an apparently reimagined version of a comic villain.
At the end of the episode, Jen is jumped by four men who wield the stolen tools of an Asgardian construction worker. The gang is apparently the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of the supervillain team, the Wrecking Crew. The group first appeared in 1974 in The Defenders #17. Since then, however, the Wrecking Crew has primarily been associated as a villain to Thor, though they appear as adversaries in a wide variety of contexts in Marvel Comics.
Despite being construction-themed, the Wrecking Crew has a rather fantastical origin. The Wrecking Crew began in Marvel Comics with Dirk Garthwaite, a demolition worker whose violent upbringing made him equally unstable and violent. Dirk donned a mask and costume and assumed the criminal persona of “Wrecker,” causing mayhem at crime scenes with a crowbar. Wrecker’s crime spree one day brought him Loki, who was summoning his ally the Norn Queen to restore his magical power. Dirk was mistaken for Loki after stealing and wearing Loki’s helmet, and he was granted magical power in the form of superhuman strength and endurance.
Wrecker used his newfound power to carry out Loki’s command and battled Thor. Wrecker was defeated by the Destroyer armor after several attempts to kill Thor and was imprisoned. Wrecker eventually escaped from prison with three other inmates: Bulldozer, Piledriver, and Thunderball. The villain found his crowbar (which held his enchanted powers) and decided to share his power with his new crew of escapees. The Wrecking Crew was born when a thunderbolt hit the crowbar while all four held it.
In She-Hulk, the Wrecking Crew so far seems to be a rather puny, comedic version of the comics’ team. Though the group’s live-action origin is a nice nod to the heavy Thor-based comics crew, as they got their “abilities” by robbing an Asgardian construction worker of his enchanted tools. The Wrecking Crew members weren’t just looking for a fight with Jennifer Walters. Thunderball, wearing a ski mask, tries to inject her with what appears to be a blood sampling device. This opens the door for questions about the MCU Wreck Crew’s “boss” and what they want with Hulk blood.
The live-action Wrecking Crew has barely appeared in She-Hulk, so it is difficult to say if they will remain this fairly de-powered version of the classic comics team, or if they have more development later in the series. In She-Hulk comics, there is a comedic moment where the Wrecking Crew is imprisoned in the Big House, a Pym particle shrunken-down prison. Perhaps there is a chance for even more Ant-Man references in an MCU Disney+ series.
She-Hulk: Attorney at Law is now streaming on Disney+.