The most harmful fan of She-Hulks is her top competitor

The most harmful fan of She-Hulks is her top competitor ...

Every superhero has a shadow nemesis: the one who turns a mirror on their deepest motivations and forces them to confront what makes them a hero, like She-Hulk, the star of Marvel's new Disney Plus series She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.

Yes, we were talking about Jameela Jamils Titania, who fought it out in a courtroom with Tatiana Maslanys titular hero in the show's premiere. Let's examine how Mary Skeeter MacPherran rose from the ranks of the Marvel Comics many to gain immortal fame as She-Hulks most trusted thorn-in-her-side.

First things first: for those who enjoy Neil Gaimans Sandman or William Shakespeare's excellent works, Titania is not the Faerie Queen from the beloved Elizabethan comedy A Midsummer Nights Dream (though, as it happens, both characters have a memorable romantic connection with a real ass). Rather, this Titania has her roots back in Marvels second-ever crossover event, 1984s Secret Wars.

Mary Skeeter MacPherran, an unremarkable Denver woman whisked away to the strange planet of Battleworld (its a long story) who volunteers to allow Doctor Doom to transform her into a superpowered bruiser codenamed Titania, solely for the purpose of teasing with the assembled Marvel heroes, is first introduced in the series by Jim Shooter and artist Mike Zeck.

Titania's background was given just a brief, effective sketch in this initial appearance: We know that she used to be a shrimpy, unremarkable person; we know that she has something of an inferiority complex; and we know that these two qualities give her a chip on her shoulder large enough to wield her against anyone she encounters. No sooner does Titania gain her powers than she crushes Thor villain Crusher Creel, the Absorbing Man, who looks like the toughest guy here

Titania, a serial aficionado, was introduced to a host of large-than-life heroes and villains in 2004's She-Hulk series by author Dan Slott and artists Juan Bobillo and Paul Pelletier.

Titania is a pseudo-mirrored image of Kamala Ms. Marvel Khan, a second-generation Marvel character who became enthused about (and eager to emulate) caped celebrities. The irony is that, for her, being powerful enough to punch your way to fame and recognition was worth it.

The key love-hate relationship between Titania and She-Hulk in Secret Wars #7 was triggered by her persistent, obsessive desire to prove herself against the superhero set, but the two would return time and again to pick pointless confrontations with an increasingly exasperated Jen Walters, who had a keen interest in being MacPhersons' nemesis of choice.

Titania was never quite able to shake off her childhood fear of mediocrity, and she must prove that she is up to her standards, expressed through a very specific and obnoxious demand to fight. By the time of 1989s Solo Avengers #14, a chastened Titania was forced to solemnly promise She-Hulk to return to jail and leave her alone.

Titania had figured out that she would have the other consistent relationship in her life, one that was both helpful and dysfunctional in its own way. In one memorable and bizarre scene from Tom DeFalco and Ron Frenzs Mighty Thor, Creel sits down at a diner with Thor himself to stop her from giving up her law-abiding life and returning to prison.

Titania is a terrific foil for Jen Walters because of her consistent, unashamed sexuality: keeping two steady boyfriends in each of her identities during her original 1970s series, jumping into bed with her Avengers teammate Starfox in the 1980s, and moving faster through boyfriends than Elaine from Seinfeld in the 2000s.

MacPherran has already discovered a new comic continuity twist, joining Creel as a member of the heroic Gamma Flight crew. She has already found a way to live a happy, strangely functioning love life.

It's unclear how much, if at all, the televised version of Titania will resemble her toxically obsessed comic counterpart, given the actress' media portrayal, both at She-Hulk's famous fourth-wall ruthlessness habits.

It's a shame she forgot to bring the shoulder spikes.