The first episode of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law made it clear that the MCU was moving into uncharted territory. Not only does the legal comedy break the fourth wall, it also explores the sex lives of superheroes. In the latest episode, we see She-Hulk try online dating. Despite Jen’s struggles as a woman dating in her 30s—or because of them—the episode itself delivers a ton of relatable laughs and a surprising amount of sex positivity. And as director Kat Coiro and head writer Jessica Gao told Nerdist at a recent press junket, that was exactly the point.
“She’s a woman in her 30s who is single and she’s trying to balance everything,” Coiro shared. “She’s juggling the career and the family and the friends and, of course, sex and dating.”
Being able to build in those human aspects of Jen’s friendships and love life were vital when it came to making the show. “That was another foundational piece of the puzzle of making She-Hulk work,” Coiro said. “How do you navigate social media? How do you deal with men who like one version of you, but not the other? I think what’s interesting about her is that’s a very relatable feeling. Even if our versions of A and B are not so extreme, we all have those different versions of ourselves that people will respond differently to.”
That comes into play in episode four as Jen sets up a dating profile as She-Hulk. While her Jen profile got barely any love, her Shulkie account nets her a series of not so great dates. But the last guy seems like a total catch… until the morning after when he sees Jen instead of She-Hulk. Even the idea of an MCU character having an online dating profile and inviting someone back apartment feels very different. But it ties into the overall sex positivity of the show. It makes She-Hulk stand out.
Being real about sex and not ignoring it spoke not only to the character and the show but also to the creators behind it. “It was very important to all of us that the show is sex positive,” Gao explained. “Because we are a group of very sex positive people. We don’t want sex to be taboo. And we also don’t want it to be missing from this very real slice of life portrait of this person. Sex is a normal part of everyone’s life. It’s a part of human life and biology and it’s healthy. It’s normal. There shouldn’t be anything taboo about it. So we just wanted to incorporate it into the show.”
That mindset is built into every facet of the show and it’s something the creative team is very proud of. In fact, as Gao told us, it’s more than just sex positivity: “I like to say the show is proudly horny forward!”