Superhero Origins: She-Hulk



Superhero Origins: She-Hulk

She's the green gal with the Gamma Ray blood! Once a simple criminal lawyer, a fateful afternoon with her cousin Bruce Banner and an unfortunate run in with some gangsters turned the mild mannered Jennifer Walters into the amazonian She-Hulk! Join as we explore the comic book origins of the She-Hulk.

Superhero Origins: She-Hulk

She’s the green gall with gamma ray blood. Welcome to, and today we’ll be taking a look at the origins of Jennifer Walters, also known as She-Hulk.

As with most comic book characters, there are often re-imaginings and different versions to a character’s past. We have chosen to primarily follow the storyline that unfolded in 1979’s The Savage She-Hulk #1.

Jennifer Walters was once a talented but shy criminal lawyer. On one fateful afternoon, she received a visit from her cousin Bruce Banner, whom she hadn’t seen in years. Bruce, as we all know, was a man who transformed into the incredible Hulk when he became angry, a secret he had been carrying as a burden for many years. Desperate to share his terrible secret, he confided in Jennifer as soon as they were in private. Although Jen was shocked by the news, she invited Bruce to come home with her so they could talk it over properly.

Unbeknownst to the Bruce and Jennifer, they were followed home by two criminals who worked for a gangster that sought to frame one of Jennifer’s clients. As soon as the cousins arrived at their destination, the thugs took their chance and shot Jennifer, seriously wounding her. Acting quickly, Bruce managed to startle the gunman with a garden hose before getting Jen to safety. Seeing that their chance had been blown, the gangsters sped away in their car. Meanwhile, Bruce searched desperately for a way to help Jennifer, who was in dire need of a blood transfusion. Spotting an empty doctor’s office across the street, Bruce had to do something fast. Knowing that she shared his blood type, Bruce gave her a blood transfusion with the only blood he had on hand: his own. Only after he was sure that she was in stable condition did he call for an ambulance and the police. Fearing the police might learn his secret identity, Bruce used his powers to escape as soon as he was left alone.

Now at the hospital, Jennifer didn’t have much time to relax before the thugs returned to finish the job, this time disguised as doctors. As the men attempted to restrain her and smother her with chloroform, Jen suddenly felt an “all consuming rage” flow through her veins. The next instant, the startled goons were thrown across the room. By the time they looked up, Jane had transformed into the She-Hulk; an enormous, green skinned monster with Amazonian proportions.

Hurling a hospital bed at her attackers, she pursued them out of the room, down an elevator shaft and out onto the street. There, the goons almost made good their escape in a car, but were stopped when the She-Hulk threw a telephone pole at them, neatly removing all of the vehicles tires. She then tore the thugs from their useless car and forced a confession out of them, in plain view of the police who had just arrived on the scene. With the police distracted with the criminals, Jennifer made her way back to her hospital room, sensing that her powers were fading.

By the time she made it back to bed, she had shrunk back to her normal self again, and acted oblivious to what had happened when a nurse arrived to check on her. She then vowed that the She-Hulk would return to solve any problem that Jennifer Walters could not.

As the She-Hulk, Jennifer has superhuman strength and resilience, but retains her intelligence and verbal skills much more than Bruce Banner does when he becomes the Hulk. Different comic book issues have explained the key to her transformation in different ways. Initially, it was triggered by anger like the regular Hulk, as in the first issue. However, later issues have had Jennifer able to transform at will, while others still have had her become permanently stuck in She-Hulk form.

Over the years, Jennifer Walters has continued to practice law, sometimes in She-Hulk form. She has also become a member of the Avengers and had several romantic relationships with other Marvel characters. She’s also made brief appearances in several cartoon series’ and videogames, most notably in the 1990’s The Incredible Hulk cartoon.

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