As Marvel Studios approaches the end of Phase 4, the MCU has delivered a slew of new villains in theaters and on Disney+ over the past couple of years. The most recent addition to this group came with Jameela Jamil in her Marvel debut as Titania in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, although many fans still see a big problem with the direction this show is taking on the villain front.
Warning - the rest of this article contains spoilers for Episode 6 of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.
The problem isn't specifically with Titania herself, even though fans would surely like to see more of her with Jamil having only been in two full episodes of She-Hulk thus far. The issue lies in the fact that, in the closing moments of Episode 6, the viewing audience was introduced to yet another faceless big bad whose identity has yet to be revealed.
To be fair, this isn't the first time She-Hulk has teased this villain, as Episode 3 showed Jennifer Walters going up against a gang of mercenaries that were out for her blood, which they would then deliver to this still-unrevealed villain. But considering the show only has three episodes remaining, the MCU is continuing a trend that's been persistent throughout its Phase 4 Disney+ shows - one which has viewers less than enthused.
She-Hulk Continues MCU Disney+ Villain Trend
Since the MCU expanded onto Disney+ in January 2021, every show to date has featured an ultimate big bad that hasn't come to the forefront until the final episodes.
This started in WandaVision with Agatha Harkness, who only revealed herself to be the show's antagonist in the final moments of Episode 7 with the "Agatha All Along" musical number. While she was the closest thing any of the shows have had to a "main villain," featuring teases throughout the first six episodes before her reveal, she still showed up fairly late in the game.
Four different season finales have introduced a brand-new antagonist, regardless of whether they'd been alluded to all season long or had little-to-no build-up or mention. This includes Vincent D'Onofrio's Kingpin in Hawkeye, Infinity Ultron in the animated What If...?, and most recently, the crocodile goddess Ammit in Moon Knight.
This was even the case with the villain who will be the overarching antagonist of the entire Multiverse Saga in Jonathan Majors' Kang the Conqueror. An undisclosed figure was said to be running the Time Variance Authority throughout Loki Season 1, but, even though He Who Remains is heavily featured in Episode 6, this was his only appearance in the series.
Now, this is the case yet again in Marvel Studios' She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, which started with Jameela Jamil's Titania as the central villain. But that changed at the end of Episode 6 when the camera panned over to yet another undisclosed big bad.
This shot came in a lab that was monitoring Jen at her friend's wedding as the group worked out how to penetrate her skin and get her blood. While a group of mercenaries attacked Jen in Episode 3 with a vial that didn't pierce her, this time, the show's supposed main villain comes with a much bigger needle as preparation begins for Round 2.
When Will She-Hulk's Main Villain Be Revealed?
Even though three episodes still remain in She-Hulk Season 1, there are still a number of plot threads that need to be addressed.
One episode will feature Tim Roth's Emil Blonsky returning to run his "Abomaste" support group for reformed villains, which has been shown in multiple trailers. This will also come along with the shot of Blonsky walking through a crowd in his Abomination form with a t-shirt on as he makes his third appearance in the show thus far.
Also still on fans' radar is Charlie Cox's Daredevil, who will feature heavily in only one of the next three episodes as he suits up in his red-and-yellow suit for the first time. The relationship between him and Jen will likely take center stage throughout that episode, leaving only one installment of room for Shulkie's final bad guy(s) to reveal themselves.
Despite how intriguing She-Hulk's mystery villain may be, this continues the Disney+ trend of villains with very little time as the actual villain.
Who Will Be She-Hulk's Main Villain?
At the moment, there's a good chance that She-Hulk will feature Tim Blake Nelson's Samuel Sterns as the final villain considering his hunt for Hulk-blood throughout the show. When fans last saw him in The Incredible Hulk, he'd just gotten some of that blood directly implanted into his brain, which could send him on a hunt for more of that power source.
This would also tie in well with his recently confirmed status as the main villain in Captain America: New World Order, connecting him back to the Hulk's story while taking the first steps towards his 2024 big-screen return.
But even with that story continuing, that doesn't change the fact that Disney+ has had a problem with giving its shows' villains little or no time to develop in these limited series. Hopefully, Phase 5 and Phase 6 can remedy that issue, but with eight examples already laid out for fans in Phase 4, it's something that many will pay close attention to in the coming years.
The first six episodes of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law are streaming on Disney+.