Tim Roth is currently pulling off one of the most unexpected comebacks in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but he couldn’t have done it without writer Jessica Gao. The She-Hulk: Attorney at Law creative recently sat down with Comic Book’s Phase Zero podcast to discuss the debut of her new series, and revealed in the process that she is the reason for Roth‘s return to the Marvel fold. Before Gao boarded the upcoming Disney+ project, the British actor’s Gamma-irradiated baddie was a bit of a one-off character in the franchise. He opposed Edward Norton‘s Bruce Banner in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk, and though he survived the events of the film, he has mostly been disregarded by Marvel Studios in the years since. That changed with Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, last year’s surprise hit that featured the Abomination in a quick cameo appearance.
According to Gao, it was actually her She-Hulk pitch to Marvel that sealed the deal on Emil Blonsky becoming a player in the MCU once more. She explained to Comic Book that she had envisioned Blonsky as part of her series from the very beginning, but was worried Marvel might turn the idea down after so much time away from the character:
So Abomination, Emil Blonsky, was in my original pitch and at that point, the last time we saw him was in 2008, The Incredible Hulk. I had no idea what their relationship to this character was anymore. I don’t know if they had any plans but it was a story I wanted to tell so I just put it in there. What’s the worst that could happen? I don’t get the job. Look, I have not gotten the job so many times at Marvel it was like old hat to me. I had no more fear. I was like Daredevil. I was the woman with no fear now.Jessica Gao
She then dropped the intriguing tidbit that Marvel Studios was so on board with her concept, they added Abomination to Shang-Chi just to remind audiences of his existence before She-Hulk‘s release. Gao elaborated:
Because he was built in to be such a big part of the show in that original pitch and in the writer’s room, we really like, we were creating this whole story for him. Because everything in Marvel is connected, that was actually why he then was put in Shang-Chi, because he was in our show. That way, it was kind of to seed him so that people can get excited but also remember him and it kind of forced people to go, ‘Oh, I should go back and check in on him and remember who he is and what all of that was about.’Jessica Gao
It seems Hulk’s former rival will have a lot to do when She-Hulk: Attorney at Law hits the small screen on August 18th. Gao‘s comments may also indicate The Incredible Hulk will have a more important role in the grand scheme of the MCU going forward. After all, the writer’s final comment implicates Marvel boss Kevin Feige as the perpetrator behind seeing Abomination back into the mainstream so seamlessly. When asked whose idea it was to put the monster in Shang-Chi, Gao replied:
It’s Kevin. All roads lead to Kevin.Jessica Gao
Source: Comic Book