The joke in the She-Hulk: Attorney at Law finale highlights an lingering MCU problem, but Black Panther 2 wasn’t the right movie to focus on.
The She-Hulk: Lawyer the joke of the final about Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is a low hit. She-Hulk: Lawyer Episode 9, “Whose Show Is This?” breaks through the fourth wall like Marvel has never done before. Jennifer Walters, aka She-Hulk, literally climbs out of Disney+ to confront her writing team at Marvel Studios about the direction of the finale. They tell her it’s all part of Kevin’s plan, referring to Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige. When Jen finds “Kevin”, he’s not the real Feige, but an AI robot calculating “almost perfect” storylines for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Before Jen goes through the changes she wants for her finale, KEVIN asks her to step out of her She-Hulk form because it’s expensive and “the visual effects team has moved on to another project.”
At the end of the line, Wakandan is drumming in the background, implying that She-HulkThe VFX budget has been reduced as the team is now at work Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. When the joke was written and filmed, She-Hulk team probably wasn’t sure what Marvel projects were coming up, so left room for a recognizable music stitch. Of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever next on the MCU release schedule, it makes sense they would pick it for fun, but it ended up being the wrong choice due to Marvel’s and Black Panther‘s controversial VFX history.
She-Hulk’s Black Panther 2 Joke Highlights Marvel’s VFX Trouble
The Marvel Cinematic Universe relies heavily on special effects, and while the effects of MCU Phase One movies hold up well, they’ve gotten worse in recent years as Marvel has focused more on quantity than quality. Into the joke She-Hulk: Lawyer points to this ongoing problem. It’s refreshing to see Marvel kidding itself, but it doesn’t change the fact that Marvel has a CGI/VFX problem with no signs of a fix soon. Last summer, several visual effects artists who have worked for Marvel Studios over the years came forward anonymously to describe how overworked and underpaid they were. One artist said they sometimes worked more than 64 hours a week and others said they had panic attacks at work.
Black Panther was definitely the wrong choice for She-Hulk’s VFX prank
The first Black Panther movie in particular had some less than perfect effects during the climax. VFX artist Todd Sheridan Perry shared: Inverse earlier this year that this was the result of a last-minute creative change from Marvel Studios that made it impossible for Black Panther be ready on time. A second VFX house was called in to help with the workload, but it was still too much. This situation is almost exactly what KEVIN suggests is happening with the visual effects in She-Hulk. To blame Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is ignorant at best and insensitive at worst considering what happened to the first movie.
Let alone, She-Hulk: Lawyerso much about the negative reactions of female superheroes, should know better than joke about Black Pantherdealing with similar levels of vitriol when it comes to black superheroes. She-Hulk didn’t have to pick the next Marvel movie on the roll. Maybe it would have been an even more obvious joke to pick a song from the Guardians of the Universe soundtrack, with The Guardians of the Milky Way Holiday Special coming this year and Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3 next year. Ultimately, the She-Hulk: Lawyer joke fainted, but hopefully it indicates that Marvel is learning their lesson about CGI/VFX and that audiences will see improvement in the future.
All episodes of She Hulk: Lawyer Season 1 is now streaming exclusively on Disney+.
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