She-Hulk Is the Reason Bruce Banner Was Human in Shang-Chi

Jessica Gao, head writer for She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, revealed that Bruce Banner’s physical appearance in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’ post-credits scene was decided by the show.

Gao was asked in a new interview with THR if She-Hulk had been forced to start with a human Bruce Banner to keep continuity with the Shang-Chi post-credits scene, but she explained that it was the other way around. “No, he was in human form in the Shang-Chi tag because of our show, and the reason we had him in human form was because of the nature of the accident. We knew that we wanted him to bleed onto Jen, which is how she got his blood.” Bruce Banner’s fully human appearance at the end of Shang-Chi, despite being more recently seen as “Smart Hulk” in Avengers: Endgame, has been sparking fan discussion since the movie’s release in 2021.

Gao went on to explain that the choice was made because the creative team had done their homework on the character. “Hulk would not bleed; you can’t pierce Hulk’s skin, certainly not through a dinky car accident,” Gao explained. “So we needed to have him be in human form in order to have his Gamma-radiated blood get onto Jen and into her system, and we had to come up with a reason for why he was human.”

In She-Hulk’s comic book origin story, Jennifer Walters got her cousin’s blood through an emergency transfusion after being caught in the crossfire of a mob hit on her father, a sheriff. Gao recently explained why this origin story was changed and simplified for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, saying that executives vetoed one aspect in particular. “The heads of Marvel specifically didn’t want to do a mob hit. I think it was because it didn’t feel like it vibed with the show.” Gao also said that the story needed to be simplified so they could get to the interesting parts, adding that “we really wanted to get going, we didn’t want to spend half an hour setting up why this happened.”

The second episode of She-Hulk, “Superhuman Law,” officially confirmed where the series stands in the MCU timeline relative to Shang-Chi, as the final moments of the episode featured a reporter talking about Abomination’s escape from prison. A clip was shown of Emil Blonsky fighting in the underground club featured in The Legend of the Ten Rings, where the villain’s match against Wong was briefly shown. Gao had previously stated that the events of She-Hulk are happening “not too far” after Shang-Chi, adding that Episode Two would make the timeline clearer.

The first two episodes of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law are currently streaming on Disney+ with new episodes debuting every Thursday.

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