Written by: Rainbow Rowell
Art by Rogê Antônio
Colors by: Rico Renzi
Letters by: VC’s Joe Carmagna
Cover art by: Jen Bartel, Adam Hughes
Cover price: $3.99
Release date: January 19, 2022
She-Hulk #1 catches up with Jen Walters aka She-Hulk as her personal and professional life has hit the proverbial skids. As she works her way through a series of friends, colleagues, and contacts to get her life back on track, a (supposedly) dead figure from her past lands on her doorstep.
Was It good?
I’m not sure how to feel about She-Hulk #1. On the one hand, I like the light tone Rowell is going for. It’s not Byrne-era jokey She-Hulk, but it has the self-effacing lightness that feels like the opening prologue from a RomCom. It’s She-Hulk re-introduced as a lovable loser female protagonist from every Sandra Bullock film of the ’90s.
On the other hand, this entire issue is little more than an introductory prologue. The plot is thinner than the paper it’s printed on, and this is a digital-first issue. Everything about the titular hero centers around showing you how low She-Hulk’s fallen before the main conflict is introduced on the very last page. Arguably, Rowell could have gotten to the meat of the plot much sooner by showing She-Hulk’s down-on-her-luck status in a 2-page montage and saved the readers unnecessary decompression. As it is, the issue is more fluff than fight and barely manages to generate curiosity beyond the last-page cliffhanger.
As another positive, the art in this issue is quite good. There’s a brief brawl with Titania that looks great. She-Hulk (in Walters form) looks sufficiently mousy and in a perpetual state of discombobulation, amplifying the contrast of the character between her human and Hulk states. It looks great with minor caution. We’ve been hard on Rico Renzi in the past for his bizarre desire to go overboard with pinks and purples. You can see some of that here, but it’s not as overdone as we’ve seen in the past.
Keep it clean, Rico. There’s more than one color in the rainbow.
She-Hulk #1 successfully pulls off a ’90s-style, light and airy tone showing how the main character is down-on-her-luck in every way possible. While the tone is inoffensively pleasant, this first issue is nothing more than a decompressed prologue that doesn’t get to the heart of the story until the last page. It’s the cotton candy of adventure stories, and maybe that’s enough for She-Hulk fans who’ve waited for her return to form.