What Does Shang-Chi and the Mandarin Have in Store for the MCU?Written by Devleena Dash
After several stunning works like Wandavision, Loki, and Black widow, the MCU is set to release another marvelous movie; Shang-chi. The film brings to life two of Marvel’s most powerful comic characters, Shang-chi and Mandarin. In the wake of the upcoming movie, let’s talk about who these characters are, the Ten Rings, and what the movie has in store for you!
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Who is Shang-Chi?
Shang-chi’s character made its debut in Marvel’s Special Edition #15 in 1973. The craze towards martial arts in that decade and love for Bruce Lee inspired the character of Shang-chi. That is why Shang-chi shares a striking resemblance to Bruce Lee.
Like his father, Fu Manchu, Shang-chi is a master of Kung Fu and other kinds of martial arts. What makes him so powerful is that various martial arts teachers have trained him throughout his life. But in addition to that, his powers also have been forged into him like a weapon. Though he can fight with Swords, Nunchaku, and other weapons, he is most known for his hand-to-hand combat. He can easily fight off villains barehanded.
Shang-Chi has the power to harness his ‘Chi’ or his internal energy. This helps him harness his power efficiently, keeps his emotions in check while fighting, and makes him all the more powerful.
But despite all his strength, power, and glamour, he is a peace-loving person and completely against joining his evil father, Fu Manchu, in his terrorist operations.
Who Is the Mandarin?
The Mandarin is a legendary terrorist leader with a sketchy past and the founder of the Ten Rings. Mandarin is said to be an ancient king who was highly influential cunning, and cruel throughout time. Thus, he is feared by everyone who knows of him. Shang-chi is the son of Mandarin.
Mandarin had approached an American woman to bear his child. He has scientifically chosen his woman for her master genes and asked her to bear Shang-chi. Blinded by his power, influence, and money, the woman agreed and gave birth to Shang-Chi.
Mandarin runs a terrorist organization, and one of the most famous victims of this organization was Iron man, as seen in the first Iron Man movie.
Who Are the Ten Rings?
The ten rings have immense power and are used by Mandarin. The rings are a Makluan (A race of Dragon-like aliens) Technology. These were supposed to power Makluan Spaceships, and Mandarin found the rings when he found a crashed Makluan ship.
The Ten Rings give their owner superhuman strength and powers. Hence, they help Mandarin perform various powerful attacks, which he puts to evil use. They Harness the power and increase the impact of the blow by several times. The rings’ powers seem to be sonic in nature, that when used, attack with a powerful blast. The rings can also take orders and do what their owner wants them to do, even when away from him.
The Mandarin has a solid connection to the rings. He can know what is happening to the rings when he is not wearing them. Mandarin can mentally take over someone if they try to wear the rings when Mandarin is not around.
Apart from superhuman strength and connection, the rings can be used for telepathy, teleportation, and breaking force fields. However, it is said that the rings are less effective when used against force fields.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Avid fans of Marvel know the Mandarin was supposed to be the villain of the Iron Man. But due to racial stereotypes and fear of losing or disappointing fans, the director Jon Favreau backed out of this decision. But this decision still disappointed the fans who were waiting for the character of Mandarin to be introduced. However, Mandarin was introduced as a villain in iron man 3. But the fans were dejected once again, as instead of a powerful, ruthless, Asian warrior king, ‘Mandarin’ was front for the criminal Aldrich Criminal, another villain from Marvel Comics.
However, things are going to change and get exciting with the Shang-Chi movie. The movie introduces the beloved Shang-chi in the movie universe and brings in Mandarin, the terrorist leader, as the bad guy.
Not only that, but this is one of the first Marvel movies to dive into the characters’ backstories and origin stories. We expect the movie to indulge us in a journey to the past that talks about the Mandarin, his encounter with the rings, and how he became the all-power villain he is now.
While Iron Man movies portrayed The Ten Rings as a terrorist organization and focused on that, this movie gives us a look into the power of the actual Ten rings. The trailer shows that rings are worn on the arms as bracelets.
Expect to see phenomenal attacks, scenes that bend reality, larger-than-life-size chaos and mythical encounters that fill you with awe.
It is evident from the trailer that Shang-Chi and his father do not get along well. The trailer shows us that Shang-chi has left his father and living an ordinary life away from the villainous grasps of terror, but his father has other plans. While Mandarin keeps reminding Shang-chi that he can’t outrun who he really is, Shang-Chi wants nothing to do with this father or the organization.
The character of the father is not the same one from the comics. Marvel lost the rights to the character Fu Manchu, Shang-chi’s father, in the comics. The character of the father in the movie is named Wenwu. But do look out for epic battles between Shang-chi and the Mandarin.
The movie is eagerly awaited, and for good reasons. Alongside the legendary Shang-Chi, Mandarin, and the Ten rings, the trailer shows us glimpses of mythical lands, legendary temples/monuments, and more. One can see a fight with large lions that could be fu dogs from marvel and an amazing scene from underwater where Shang-chi encounters a gigantic pale, red dragon. The dragon is rumored to be either ‘The great protector’ or ‘Fin Fang Foom’ from the Marvel comics.
The majority of the movie characters are played by Asian actors, with the lead taken by Simu Liu (Shang-Chi), Tony Leung (The Mandarin), and Awkwafina (Katy). With a fantastic cast and a legend right from the Marvel comics, we can’t wait to see this movie.
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