She-Hulk Director Kat Coiro Was 'Squeamish' About The Finale's Big Fourth Wall Break

This article contains spoilers for the finale of "She-Hulk."

Breaking the fourth wall in fiction is always a huge risk. It blurs the line between the story and reality and can completely ruin the suspension of disbelief necessary for a lot of genres, but when it's done right, it can be a fun way to comment on the very nature of storytelling. In the recent finale of "She-Hulk," Jennifer Walters (a.k.a. She-Hulk, played by Tatiana Maslany) doesn't just break the fourth wall in a "Deadpool" or "Malcolm in the Middle"-esque turn to camera, she actually crawls her way out of the screen and into the Disney+ app interface, then goes on a journey to find the people in charge of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That's a little more than your basic fourth-wall break, and it was truly intimidating for the episode's director, Kat Coiro. 

In an interview with Variety, Coiro, who also helmed episodes 1,2,3,4, and 8, explained that she was initially a bit terrified of taking such a big swing and potentially alienating fans. After all, some of what She-Hulk has to say is guaranteed to upset some of the more toxic fans of the MCU, and it's always scary to kick that hornet's nest. 

A nice little self-roast

In the episode, She-Hulk manages to track down an android named K.E.V.I.N., based on Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, and she has some complaints. While Coiro was worried about upsetting the fans by making fun of the MCU, she said that Feige was completely game:

"Kevin had a huge hand in that finale and in the character of K.E.V.I.N. Ironically, I was more squeamish about it than they were. I was like, 'Are we going too far? Are we throwing Marvel and fans under the bus by putting down Marvel films?' They have such a self-deprecating, irreverent sense about themselves and were totally willing to poke fun at themselves. Any criticism you can lob at them, they have thought of."

You have to grow a pretty thick skin to be a creative in the public sphere at all, and I imagine that you have to have a skin of adamantium to survive being in charge of something like the MCU, so it makes sense that Feige and the rest of the team have a good sense of self-deprecation. When it comes to worries about other characters popping through the fourth wall and doing the same thing, Coiro said not to worry, because "the glitch has been fixed." Allowing every character in the MCU to break the fourth wall would dilute its meaning and honestly get a bit annoying. Let's leave that to She-Hulk and Deadpool, who have been doing it in their comics for years. 

Gao could have taken it even further

Jessica Gao, the creator of the "She-Hulk" series, knows a thing or two about fourth-wall breaking. After all, she was a writer on "Rick and Morty," a show that breaks the fourth wall on a regular basis, and she said that the conversation between Jen and K.E.V.I.N. was truly based in her reality:

"That conversation between Jen and K.E.V.I.N. is very much the relationship that I have with real-life Kevin and a lot of that is taken from conversations I've had with him. That scene was so much longer in the scripts. If they had let me, I probably would have written a 10-minute conversation of my avatar arguing with Kevin. This is probably the tightest version of what it could have been. There were a couple of jabs where Kevin was like, 'OK, this is a little mean now.'"

Gao herself appears in the episode and Jen fires off some complaints at the writer's room, too, so she made sure not to only throw shade at her boss. While that 10-minute conversation would have been a bit too much for Disney+, it would be a blast to read. Oh well, maybe if we ever get the Disney+ shows on disc that can be in the special features booklet. Take my money!

Season 1 of "She-Hulk" is now streaming on Disney+.