This post contains spoilers for the latest episode of "She-Hulk: Attorney At Law."
Another week, another episode of "She-Hulk" that goes out of its way to tell a refreshingly self-contained story of a day in the life of Jennifer Walters (Tatiana Maslany) … though not without dropping its latest hint tying itself together with future installments in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Fans have become fully primed to search for clues about what may come next, even as last night's episode of the low-stakes Disney+ series hung a lampshade on the Matt Murdock/Daredevil obsessives out there and took a swerve towards a typical sitcom wedding episode. But amid such a low-key and breezy hour, the writers couldn't resist ending with one more reminder of the unseen main villain behind the curtain — one that may factor into the next phase of the universe on the big screen.
Three episodes ago, "She-Hulk" introduced the Wrecking Crew as a gang of tough guys looking to attack Jen in the middle of the night and attain a sample of her blood in the chaos to deliver to their "boss." Although that attempt failed, viewers receive an alarming glimpse of the danger that our superhero attorney has no idea she's in. Within a mysterious lab carefully monitoring her every move, an unidentified individual reads a message from "HulkKing" asking about the status of "the next phase of the plan."
Combined with recurring mentions of "Intelligencia," a 4chan-like website that also references a certain supervillain group from the comics, all signs appear to be pointing towards "She-Hulk" further setting up the previously confirmed news of Tim Blake Nelson's return in Captain America: New World Order" as the villainous Samuel Sterns/Leader.
While this last episode's A-story deals with Jen attempting to project an image of self-confidence at her cousin's wedding, her attorney coworkers Nikki (Ginger Gonzaga) and Mallory (Renée Elise Goldsberry) deal with an especially troublesome client that puts a creepy website ("for hateful man-babies," in Mallory's disdainful words) named Intelligencia on their radar. Though mostly a swipe at 4chan or Reddit, the name of that site serves an even greater purpose as a reference to a supervillain group in the pages of Marvel Comics.
Traditionally led by M.O.D.O.K. and the Leader, Intelligencia was formed as a sort of suppervillain support group between brilliant criminal minds to pool their resources and get up to all kinds of mischief. Naturally, they set their sights on Bruce Banner's Hulk during their first major appearance in a crossover event titled "Fall of the Hulks." Here, they established ties with General Thaddeus Ross (played by the late, great William Hurt in the MCU) and ultimately became the group responsible for creating Red Hulk … a villain that could very well turn up in the MCU itself down the line.
The "HulkKing" certainly points to someone with connections to the gamma-irradiated big guy, which could indicate possible suspects like a recast General Ross/Red Hulk, Emil Blonsky/Abomination (although he seems to have reformed himself entirely and left his criminal ways behind him), or perhaps Tim Blake Nelson's Leader. In any case, it'd be natural to reintroduce him before in "She-Hulk" before his big reappearance in the next "Captain America" film.
Is this what "She-Hulk" is leading to (pun most definitely intended) in its final episodes? Tune in to new episodes on Disney+ every Thursday to find out.
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