"It feels really good to have so many women in front of the camera and behind the camera in control, in power, having their opinions heard," Jamil tells ET ahead of the Thursday premiere of the new Disney+ series. "And also, it's a really interesting story!"
She-Hulk stars Orphan Black Emmy winner Tatiana Maslany as the titular Marvel hero, aka Los Angeles attorney Jennifer Walters, who inadvertently receives her transformative Hulk strength after becoming infected with her cousin, Bruce Banner's (Mark Ruffalo), gamma-radiated blood. The series is uniquely structured for an MCU installment -- it's more like a legal comedy that just so happens to have some super-powered humans as its main players -- and draws inspiration from the meta elements of popular She-Hulk comic runs.
Gonzaga, who plays Jen's BFF and co-worker, Nikki Ramos, told ET at She-Hulk'sLos Angelespremiere that she loves getting to portray the supportive pal, who sees Jen's newfound superpowers as just another unique chapter in their long friendship.
"Because of that fourth wall break, I feel like the audience does get that Nikki experience," she shares. "Jen doesn't want to be a superhero, and Nikki is kind of infallibly positive, as far as what her friend's potential could be, so she's always kind of recklessly throwing her in, encouraging her to kind of get into a lot of 'good trouble,' and get really messy and do all the things."
Many MCU best friends have found their way toward their own hero's journey, but Gonzaga joked that, for now, Nikki is simply content to "readily take credit for anything that She-Hulk does because I'm constantly encouraging [Jen] to be She-Hulk."
However, she adds, "Nikki definitely inserts herself into a lot of situations and has a more of a willingness, I will say, a reckless, stupid willingness, so she will do a lot of borderline illegal things to kinda get to the end product. She definitely involves herself in a lot of the hijinks."
With the introduction of a new female hero always come some degree of online discourse, and Gonzaga said she was impressed at the way the She-Hulk series tackles that misogyny head-on, making it part of Jen's evolution as a character just as it was happening in the real world.
"It's weirdly almost, like, visionary on [She-Hulk: Attorney at Law creator] Jessica Gao's part," the actress marvels. "We've all lived in the world, we've seen it, but it's cool to satirize it, and also point out the truths about it."
"She-Hulk is very self-aware, so it's almost like part of the goal is to remind society to be very self-aware," she adds. "I like addressing it. If we're gonna be a bunch of women on this show with a female writer, female directors, like why would we shy away from the moment to use that microphone?"
Noting that previous Marvel series like WandaVision have pushed the envelope in terms of storytelling style and meta narratives, Gonzaga says she saw tackling the misogyny of superhero fans as "kinda long overdue, and uniquely perfect for She-Hulk."
The narrative of backlash against female heroes finds its way into the show in the form of online commentary and television pundits' misogynist critiques of She-Hulk's every move, as well as Jamil's villainous character, Titania, whom the Good Place star describes as a "female misogynist."
"Internalized misogyny lives in many different people of many different genders," Jamil explains of her character, a longtime antihero and antagonist of She-Hulk in the Marvel comic canon. "To be able to find a funny and completely ridiculous way to tell that story was especially cool for me."
"Everything we hate, she's it and she's it to the maximum," she adds with a laugh. "She's just the messiest b*tch in the MCU... She's very insecure, and that's where all of her badness comes from-- it's her deep need for love and attention, as with most bad people."
Jamil did some intense training to play the villainous role -- even earning herself quite the NSFW injury during her stunt work -- and she said that, while the She-Hulk series doesn't get a chance to explore Titania's backstory, she'd love to develop the character further in a future MCU project.
"I would love that, because it's such a great story," she shares. "Her and Loki are my two favorite characters in the MCU."