Welcome back to yet another From page to Screen focusing on She-Hulk: Attorney at Law. In the show’s first week, we looked at the differences between the comics’ and series’ versions of Jennifer Walters’ origin story. The following week, 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 introduced a reimagined version of comic book villains, in its fourth week, the show decided to focus on Jen’s love life and, the following week, on Jen’s nemesis, Titania. Episode 6, being a “self-contained wedding episode” was approached as its own thing while referencing a lackluster comic arc where Jen ended up being engaged herself. As for episode 7, with the introduction of Man-Bull, El Águila, and Porcupine, we took a look at other She-Hulk villains that could be showing up down the line.
Episode 8 gave us the long-awaited Matt Murdock / Daredevil appearance, which bore some similarities with The Good Old Days story arc featured in the 2014/15 Charles Soule She-Hulk run. Soule, who like Walters and Murdock is an attorney himself, got both characters meeting on opposing sides of the court with a slightly different setup than what we got in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.
In the show, Jen was oblivious as to who Murdock was, to the point of directing a “Who is this asshole?” to the camera. She later looked him up ahead of their meeting at the bar, but not only was she initially unaware of who Matt was, but she also had no idea Daredevil was even a thing. In the comic, they were already familiar with each other, so much so that even previously in the same run, Jen had gone to Matt looking for some legal advice when dealing with a case involving Doctor Doom and his son, Kristoff Vernard. She then sought to do the same when defending Captain America only to be turned down in a way that only made sense a few pages ahead when she enters the courtroom and finds Matt as the opposing counsel. Unlike in the show, the shock of him being there isn’t only on the reader/viewer but especially on her.
There is a lot more lawyering in the comic than in the show, with Jen’s client being a bit more high profile than Leapfrog. Captain America, who had recently seen the Super-Soldier Serum within his body being neutralized (in the Rick Remender run that would lead to Sam Wilson becoming the new Captain America), was being charged with wrongful death in a civil suit and had approached Jen to be the one to represent him. Murdock was then the attorney for the plaintiff, looking to get Steve Rogers convicted of the role he played in the death of his friend Samuel in the 1940s, a few years before Rogers was even Captain America.
Little did both Walters and Murdock know that Steve Rogers was (sort of) playing both sides. With his old age, he had enemies that would want to tarnish his legacy once he’d be gone, and that meant setting up the whole lawsuit situation. It wasn’t like he could just send in the Avengers to punch their way out of it since that would make it seem that he was indeed guilty of all charges. He had to find another way to not only avoid a conviction but to completely discredit the entire case. He then managed to get Murdock involved so that, in the public eye, everything was being done in order to convict him since Matt was regarded as being one of the best. As for Jennifer, as hard as he wanted Matt to go, he also needed someone equally as good on his side since, in his own words “I didn’t want to lose, you know.”
Outside the courtroom, their late-night encounter also played a bit differently. In She-Hulk: Attorney at Law Jennifer left her apartment when trying to protect her client from being attacked, leading to her first confrontation with Daredevil and the eventual disclosure that Murdock was behind the mask.
In the comic, it was Matt that came to Jennifer in order to get her out of the house and into the Los Angeles night sky. But even if he felt that they both should unwind following an entire day stuck in a courtroom, dealing with a case that both were having a bit of trouble adjusting to, his true purpose was to try and free Jen of the feeling that Cap should be above the law, and that his conviction should be taken as a real possibility. It is here that Matt tells Jennifer that when he was asked to step into the role of prosecutor, Cap was the one who ok’d it, making Murdock promise not to pull any punches. This made it seem, for both Jen and Matt, that Cap might actually be guilty after all, and that it was all a weird way of him finally coming clean about past mistakes.
In the TV show, their late-night exploits lead them to Leapfrog’s secret-not-so-secret lair. After Matt explains that Patilio kidnapped Luke Jacobson the two work together to rescue the latter. They make quick work of the goons/henchmen defending the premises and get Jacobson to safety without breaking a sweat.
There’s a very similar occurrence in the comics that happens once the case was settled (go read the comics to know exactly how that transpired). We also got a Daredevil / She-Hulk team-up when Steve Rogers seemingly figures who might have been the mastermind behind the entire lawsuit situation. Dr. Faustus, an Austrian specialist in psychological manipulation seemingly had access to old Nazi information from the ’40s and was able to explore the events in order to hurt Cap’s image. When faced with this information, Jen and Matt do not hesitate and, with the case already closed, have no issue with breaking into Faustus’ compound and, much like in the show, getting it done in the blink of an eye.
In She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, following their day together—first in the courtroom, then at the bar, and finally rescuing Jacobson—Jen and Matt start making plans to meet up again after he goes back to New York since that would be his last night in LA. But, unlike in the comic run, that night out never happened since they skipped all of that and just…
In the book, it was almost the reverse situation. They also found themselves on the west coast (San Francisco, not LA, where Matt was living at the time) but it was Jen that had to go back to her practice in New York. When realizing that that would be her last night in town, Matt also asks Jen out, and they do end up going out, just not in the usual sense.
The first eight She-Hulk: Attorney at Law episodes are now streaming only on Disney+.