Comics : She-Hulk (Vol. 3) #1

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This story is part of a Lookback Series: Lost Classics

This review was first published on: 2007.

Background...

As of Avengers (Vol. 3) # 68, Jennifer was exposed to Project Bloodwash aka "The Red Zone", an airborne flesh-eating virus created by the Red Skull. The Skull manipulated his way into the position of Secretary of Defense (as Dell Rusk) and commissioned the creation of the biological weapon. This exposure combined with contact from Jack of Hearts, who inadvertently altered the gamma radiation in her blood, caused her to transform into a savage incarnation of She-Hulk.

Weeks later she turned up in Bone, Idaho looking for her cousin Bruce in the hopes that he could help her. The transformation into her "hulk" form was involuntary now, triggered by fear. They were eventually able to stabilize her condition through additional contact with Jack of Hearts. However this was after she trashed the town during a prolonged battle. Jennifer is deeply troubled by her actions - even though she wasn't in her right mind at the time.

In Detail...

"The Girl From Gamma Gamma Gamma"
She-Hulk (Vol. 3) #1
May 2004 : SM Reference
Summary: Spider-Man Reference (In photo on wall)
Editor:  Tom Brevoort
Writer:  Dan Slott
Pencils:  Juan Bobillo
Inker:  Marcela Sosa
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Review

Years ago (during a time when the group Chumbawumba was popular) we find Jennifer Walters studying late at night in her dorm room. At least she's trying to study. The booming refrain "I get knocked down! But I get up again!" blasts into her room. This motivates her to get up and calmly proceed to the medicine cabinet. She grabs some cotton balls and jams them in her ears and returns to her studies.

Fast forward. Jennifer graduates summa cum laude from law school. Most of her graduating class has no idea who she is, since she (apparently) never attended any parties. As the rest of the class plan to get together later, Jennifer looks away from her father's camera at the departing students and can hardly hide her apathy at her accomplishment. The resulting picture shows her holding her rolled degree with an unexpressive face

Present day. Jennifer's radio alarm clock activates, automatically tuning into the preset station. The local celebrity reporter relates the events of the past evening for her audience (that would be us). During an after-party showcasing Janet Van Dyne's (Wasp) new spring collection, She-Hulk was seen leaving the party with Mika, Europe's top male model. Ultimately they return to Avengers mansion. Fast forward. Rose petals. Fast forward. Room in disarray.

Jennifer slowly awakens and realizes that she has reverted to her human form. She also realizes that she is pinned underneath the sleeping Mika. To avoid any potentially embarrassing questions, she transforms back into She- Hulk, inadvertently throwing Mika to the floor. They wish each other good morning and proceed to the roof where Jarvis has breakfast prepared. After the meal, Jarvis pulls her aside to pass on some concerns from Iron Man about her frequent "overnight guests". Jennifer laughs it off and heads to the courthouse.

When she arrives for court, she uses her Avengers parking permit to get a closer space. During the trial - in which she proves that Mr. Paxton's improperly stored Antarctic vibranium affected the iron production in nearby residents' bodies - she is called away on a real Avengers emergency. The judge understands her situation and grants a continuance until tomorrow. The defense attorney for Paxton, Mallory Book, who works for the firm of Goodman, Lieber, Kurtzberg, and Holliway is outraged at this behavior but can do nothing about it.

Jennifer joins the other Avengers in orbit around Earth to defeat Modok, A.I.M., and the Blizzard who intend to freeze the Earth solid. While the other Avengers handle the A.I.M. mercenaries, She-Hulk shatters the Blizzard's protective force field. She is unable to remember exactly who he is: "Snowflake? Freezer Burn? Chilly Willy®?". Blizzard yells at her through the shared communication channel, "The Blizzard! I'm the Blizzard, you cow!". Modok and company are forced to retreat. In celebration of their victory, she invites Mika to a party at Avengers mansion. This one features her karaoke abilities. Her song choice: "Tubthumping".

The next day, the jury rules in favor of Jennifer in the Paxton case. Another victory leads to another party which involves more time with Mika. The next morning Jennifer catches Mika trying to leave before she wakes up. When questioned, he replies that their relationship isn't working for him. He explains that he needs to find someone with more depth. This coming from an underwear model.

To further complicate her life, Captain America and the Wasp ask her to leave the mansion. She still has a place on the team, but she'll have to find another place to live due to her abuse of parking privileges and frequent parties.

When she arrives at work, District Attorney Tower informs her that Mallory Book was able to get a mistrial in the Paxton case due to her involvement in saving the world. This gave her unfair leverage over the jury and the original ruling was overturned. Due to the nature of this reversal, Tower thinks that this will set a bad precedent and reluctantly fires Jennifer.

Jennifer makes her way to the nearest bar. The Blizzard comes into the bar looking for payback. He encases her in ice, blaming her for ruining his chance to make a name for himself. She easily breaks free of the ice. Instead of fighting back, She-Hulk invites him to join her and proceeds to drink him under the table. She asks Luiz the bartender to call the cops to pick him up. The grateful bartender obliges.

At this point Holden Holliway steps forward and compliments her unorthodox approach to crime fighting; pointing out that due to her "unique metabolism and immense weight" she is unable to actually get drunk. When She-Hulk asks what he wants, he offers her a job with his firm (GLK&H) one of the most prestigious firms on the east coast. His offer comes with one condition: he wants Jennifer Walters, not She-Hulk.

Jennifer is reluctant to change back, but does so as a sign of good faith. Unfortunately this form lacks the unique metabolism and immense body weight necessary to handle the amount of alcohol she has consumed. Jennifer becomes instantly drunk, but manages to accept his job offer before throwing up on his shoes and passing out in the floor.

In General...

One item I need to address. The "shared communication channel" used by all involved in the space battle. Let's just assume that Iron Man (who participated) locked on the frequency used by A.I.M. and set their communication channels on the same frequency. It was never explained how they were talking to each other during the story, so I'll be using the Marvel "No Prize" approach. The exchange between She-Hulk and Blizzard made me laugh out loud, so I'm not going to rip on it too much.

The approach of drinking an enemy under the table should be used more often. I got a good laugh out of that as well.

Overall Rating...

4 webs. A very good first issue with a nice blend of superheroing and comedy.

The only real complaint that I have is Bobillo's depiction of Jennifer's arms; her biceps are enormous. I know that she's extremely strong, but that's an unusual rendering. Ignoring that one little quirk, he has a unique style that fits the series, so I'm not complaining about it.