Issue(s): She-Hulk #2, She-Hulk #3
You can also see the bit about them both having the same writer.
A brief check in with the Headmen...
...and then back to the memos.
You can also see She-Hulk mostly dismissing the idea of going back into law, which does sort of ignore her Solo Avengers #14 appearance (although that was presented as a rarity).
Eventually, as Chase assured DeFalco it would happen, we get some action. In the form of Toad Men, which She-Hulk turns directly to John Byrne to complain about.
Here's the cover she's referring to.
By the way, i'm not sure what Kryloreans are, unless it's a misspelling of Krylorians, which were Bereet's people (and that may make sense as a jokey Hulk related alien race).
We cut away to a Weezie telling her boss that she's found the perfect candidate in She-Hulk...
...and when we return to She-Hulk and the Toad Men, we catch them resting while they wait for their scene to start back up.
In the not-so-creative humor department, She-Hulk gets her sweater blown off.
But she does start thinking that there's "something screwy going on around here". She notices that the Toad Men's flying saucers are just hanging there and that their guns are just regular rifles dressed up in plastic. And the Toad Men turn out regular to be dwarves in rubber masks. She soon figures out that the backdrop of flying saucers is actually just a canvas drop.
Now, i'm loving the fourth wall stuff. But what's going on here may overload the idea. First we've got the memos; that's one layer. That's actually not all that unusual; we've seen the same idea with dueling footnotes in the past. Then there's the Wasp and She-Hulk talking about sharing the same writer and She-Hulk complaining directly to Byrne, and taking a break during the subplot cutaway. That's the second layer. And i think that's great as a parody of comic conventions. But then we have the revelation that the Toad Men threat isn't real. Well, of course it isn't. The book has made it very clear that none of this is real. But it turns out this part is "not real" in the sense that it's the work of Mysterio.
Honestly, take out the fourth wall jokes and this would have been a nice set-up of a standard Mysterio plot. But with that stuff mixed in it gets, not confusing, but i guess thematically confusing.
Nonetheless once we're past that we can get back to the regular madness. She-Hulk is able to think her way past Mysterio's illusions...
...but he's lucky enough to have prepared a gas capable of knocking her out.
Just like the Ringmaster was last issue, Mysterio is working for the Headmen. They offer him membership (i guess his fishbowl counts towards their theme), but he refuses so they give him what turns out to be counterfeit money in a suitcase rigged with a device designed to trigger Spider-Man's spider-sense.
Speaking of Spider-Man, he's our obligatory guest star for issue #3.
He is attracted to Mysterio as expected, but the Headmen weirdly thought that Spider-Man would kill him instead of just subduing him and finding out who hired him.
Meanwhile, we find that She-Hulk's head has been removed.
And then one of the craziest pages in these crazy issues.
Deadpool (or Joe Kelly) was surely reading all of this and taking notes.
Spider-Man makes his way to the Headmen's, er, headquarters...
...where he finds out what's been done to her.
He refers to having to fight She-Hulk's body as "Your classic 'I must -- but I must not' situation".
If you don't know what Byrne is talking about here, i talked about this briefly in the entry for Hulk #320-323. It was apparently a complaint that towards the end of the Shooter period he had a requirement that every story have a "can't... must" moment (e.g. i can't hurt my friend She-Hulk but i must hurt my friend She-Hulk).
While Spider-Man is can't... must-ing, She-Hulk wakes up, sees the Headmen and realizes that it's issue three of her book and then calculates how long it has been in Marvel time.
Meanwhile, we see that the character "Weezie" is also in on the fourth wall gag, but her boss (still not identified as District Attorney Blake Tower, although as Clyde points out, he is called Mr. Towers), is not.
Spider-Man gets knocked out, and Chondu's head gets put on She-Hulk's body.
If your recall, this plot was all about Chondu because he was previously stuck on that weird gargoyle body.
But he's not happy about his new body either. And as She-Hulk notes, they already did (or are "doing"; but it was over by now) the male in a female's body bit in Alpha Flight.
Spider-Man knocks Chondu's head off the body and then realizes that the She-Hulk body that he's been fighting is really a clone. One "cut to the Chase" joke later...
...and the Headmen are mopped up.
One final gross thing. It turns out the clone of She-Hulk's body had a vestigial head.
I find this to be a brilliant spoof of super-hero comics and their tropes. Crazy weird but genuinely funny while still working as a "straight" super-hero plot, too. From Assistant Editors Month to Damage Control, i've often found myself less than 100% sold on comedy and fourth-wall breaking, but this hits me just right. Similar to Damage Control, the long term implications for She-Hulk (and other characters, including the Wasp) acting like they know they're in a comic book can still be alarming to someone who likes the integrity of his shared universe unbroken but the Marvel universe has definitely survived this being an aspect of She-Hulk's character.
It's too soon for real fan letters, but there is a lettercol in issue #3 with letters from people that got sneak peeks and people just anticipating the series, including a very nice one from Chris Claremont:
Dear Bobbie, et al:
Quality Rating: A-
Chronological Placement Considerations: I've got Spider-Man's appearance in the same gap as his Moon Knight #2 cameo. The Wasp says that she's been spending most of her time in California with Hank, which doesn't dictate placement but i've put it after West Coast Avengers #42-45.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (2): showArthur Nagan, Blake Tower, Blonde Phantom, Chondu, Jerry Morgan, Mysterio, Ruby Thursday, She-Hulk, Spider-Man, Wasp
Blake Tower must be Steve Rogers' long lost twin brother. Fun issues. Really liked this series and its irreverent humor even though I never really cared for Deadpool or many other attempts at the same shtick.
Posted by: Robert | October 2, 2014 6:27 PM
Funny stuff, but to be honest the whole "breaking the fourth wall" stuff did get old. Eventually it just started to feel like a lazy way to a joke instead of Byrne coming up with anything creative.
(Speaking of creative, Byrne re-used that "The Brain That Wouldn't Die" bit with the phoney detached head in a future issue of the Sub-Mariner he did).
Posted by: Gary Himes | October 2, 2014 6:35 PM
Man, I loved this series!
Posted by: Bill | October 2, 2014 7:32 PM
"Where's the rest of me?" is a reference to the movie Kings Row with Ronald Reagan.
Posted by: MikeCheyne | October 2, 2014 7:43 PM
In the panel where Weezie breaks the fourth wall, Weezie says "G'night, Mr. Towers - plural. How can that be Blake Tower - singular?
Posted by: clyde | October 2, 2014 9:53 PM
Posted by: Bill | October 2, 2014 10:07 PM
The fourth wall stuff is good when there's not too much of it. Possibly one or two but when it's on almost every page it diminishes its effect. The talking heads joke page wasn't very funny. On the other hand the "I can't, I must" was. Also, referring to other comics makes all the other comics part of not being in the 'real world.' Should Alpha Flight now be referencing other comics or maybe their unaware they're in a comic?
I think I don't mind it but I'm in the finding it a bit alarming category. Still, there's always time to change my mind.
Posted by: JSfan | October 3, 2014 7:20 AM
I was going to say, I always loved Byrne's occasional Spider-Man. It was so dynamic, and I liked the way he did the wide eyes on the costume as well as the faintly Ditkoesque leanness of his overall build. Some artists had Peter looking as bulky as any old Marvel male. It seemed pretty consistent to me over the years (c.f. FF #250); maybe the Byrne/McFarlane influence ran the other way?
I had liked Byrne's characterization of She-Hulk in FF (for example, the issue where she's photographed sunbathing nude), and he really had sold me on her by the time of this series. It was just great fun, and it did a lot to give a distinctive and inviting personality to a character who originally had been a pretty lazy creation by Lee.
Claremont's letter was very nice, and it's interesting that he and Byrne both had newish "lighter" titles around this time (Excalibur), after their years of sturm und drang elsewhere, together and separately.
Posted by: Todd | October 4, 2014 6:25 AM
Blake Tower is bald during The Winter Soldier trial
Posted by: Jay Gallardo | October 5, 2014 7:02 AM
Jesus, this stuff isn't funny.
Posted by: Jay Patrick | October 5, 2014 6:06 PM
By the way, Byrne has said that he was attempting to draw Spider-Man in the above splash "on-model" for the time period. In 1989,"on-model" meant "McFarlane".
Posted by: Jay Patrick | October 5, 2014 8:50 PM
The "It's only canvas" panel appears to be a reference to the poster for the 1981 werewolf movie "The Howling".
The title to #3 refers to the "Aunt May marries Doc Ock" Spider-Man issue.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | October 11, 2014 7:05 PM
I gave absolutely zero consideration to buying this series when it came out. But reading it now for the first time, I'm giving serious consideration to having it join Simonson's Thor run as my first post-liquidation purchases. Aside from the fantastic Byrne art, the whole "breaking the fourth wall" works much better for me here than it ever did with Deadpool, partially because I find Deadpool so incredibly annoying.
Posted by: Erik Beck | August 30, 2015 1:15 PM
John Byrne's depiction is what made me LOVE She-Hulk as a character! The 4th wall breaking aspect was very unique at the time (I wonder if part of the problem is that we are looking at this book with "modern eyes" where "ironic detatchment" has become such a commonality among comic books that it's now seen as a cliche. Not to mention how often it's abused in other medium, with utter sh...junk like Disaster Movie diluting the entire concept.) But again, She-Hulk is still appearing elsewhere, so (unlike Deadpool) she's only a "comedy" character in her own book. I think they helped keep the concept from becoming stale. At least for me anyway.
Posted by: Jon Dubya | August 30, 2015 4:30 PM
@Jay Gallardo: "Blake Tower is bald during The Winter Soldier trial"
In that case, the artist was following Dan Slott's recent She-Hulk series, where Tower is suddenly fat and bald, which he claims is due to stress over dealing with the She-Hulk's increasingly erratic personality. I always figured it was really Dan Slott covering for Juan Bobillo's extremely off-model version of Tower.
Posted by: Omar Karindu | November 1, 2015 7:07 PM
Damn, I never noticed till it was said here but yeah it does look like Byrne's drawing Spidey in slightly more unrealistic, McFarlane-type poses. I like JB's version of Spidey (particularly the issues he did with Stern), just here he's tweaked it slightly to make the poses a little stranger.
Posted by: Jonathan | November 2, 2015 8:31 AM
@Omar Karindu: I like Bald Blake Tower. Nobody goes bald in the Marvel Universe. The characters are already bald when they first show up or never at all.
Posted by: Jay Gallardo | July 18, 2016 8:30 AM
the Fixer went bald.
Posted by: kveto from prague | July 18, 2016 3:48 PM
@Kveto: He did? Well, i Guess then that the Fixer is the exception that proves the rule....
Posted by: Jay Gallardo | July 19, 2016 8:24 AM
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