Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (open spoilers)

The trailer just dropped.

This looks like it has some good Eastern martial arts action in it. I’m not very familiar with Simu Liu, who plays Shang-Chi, and we don’t see much personality in the trailer but Tony Leung and Michelle Yeoh are in it and they’re great actors. I am also a fan of Awkwafina and find her pretty funny so she’ll be the comedy-relief sidekick type and I am OK with that.

Interestingly, Leung is playing The Mandarin so MCU is looking to update him and build on some of the things they’ve teased earlier. Fu Manchu is out and per the Wikipedia page for the movie, Marvel studios do not have the films rights to the character. That and the character’s association with racial stereotypes lead them to go with Mandarin instead.

That teaser trailer did its job. I want to see that movie.

A few thoughts:

  1. If it wasn’t for the Marvel logo, I don’t think most people would even realize it’s a Marvel movie. Granted it’s just a teaser, but there’s nothing in it so far even hinting at a tie-in.
  2. And on that, I think this is the first new character movie not introduced/hinted at in a previous movie since Doctor Strange. It’s been a long time.
  3. Looks like at least part of it takes place in San Francisco. I’m wondering if there will be a connection to Ant-Man/Jimmy Woo.

He was sorta mentioned in Winter Soldier (one of the names on the list of people to be killed by the helicarrier).

Well, the Mandarin is pretty much a pastiche of Fu Manchu (but with power rings) anyway. My understanding is that the rights issues with Fu Manchu are pretty convoluted, so I can definitely understand Marvel wanting to steer clear of that. Plus, Mandarin has already been established as existing in the MCU, and how many Fu Manchu-pastiche characters do you need in one universe? (For Marvel comics, the answer is at least three - Mandarin, the Yellow Claw, and Fu Manchu himself).

As to the association with racial stereotypes, I don’t think Mandarin is really any better - he definitely was an embodiment of the “Yellow Peril” - but he’s not nearly as well known as Fu Manchu, so I suppose that at least gives them more room to introduce him to general audiences without including the worst elements of the stereotypes.

Yep.

I know nothing at all about this character. But the snippets from the bus fight were awesome (that punch kick thing!) and now I’m think that this may be the first thing I see back in an actual theater. I know I’ll at least pay for it on Disney+ (which I haven’t done for any of their other releases).

I know it’s going to be some kind of flashback backstory but the crouching tiger looking stuff looks better than the present day stuff.

I hope the after credit scene is She-Hulk speaking directly to the audience: “Shang-Chi? Seriously? Who do you have to f…”

Where’s the “Like” button on this thing?

Captain Marvel?

On edit - forgot about the Infinity War stinger.

I hope the post-credit scene is with Mandarin consulting with…

FIN FANG FOOM!

Years ago when the teasers were coming out for the first Avengers movie, I had a bit of a nerdgasm when I mistook a Chitauri leviathan as Foom.

She-Hulk gets her own TV series (10 episodes) that will be out next year. So technically she’ll get a lot more screen time than Shang-Chi ever does.

I’ve got mixed feelings. I was more a fan of Iron Fist than Shang-Chi as a kid, but the Netflix MCU version soured everyone on that character, so we’ll give this a try.

All I know about the Mandarin is from the Iron Man Adventures cartoon, which had a teen-aged Tony, Pepper, and Rhodey fighting techno-villains in high school and looking for Howard Stark, who disappeared on the trail of The Mandarin. That version of the character, with 10 rings granting a different super power, was kinda cool.

I think that will still be the case. The trailer shows a Crouching Tiger-style series of fights that seem to draw on power granted by the rings (this time not finger rings but bracelets, presumably to further differentiate it from the Infinity Gauntlet).

Considering they’re canonically (in the comics, at least) engine parts stripped from a crashed alien spaceship, bigger arm-sized circles might be more “fantasy plausible” than convenient finger-size rings.

Yeah, I was going to say, the “rings” we appear to briefly see in that trailer look a lot more plausible as alien engine parts than the comic book original’s rings, which look like…rings. For whatever reason, the alien used engine parts that were exactly the right size for a human to wear as finger rings, with convenient symbols on each of them. Although, apparently they’ve been retconned now to look more like bits of tech.

The rings I remember:

The rings as they apparently appear now canonically. (I couldn’t find an image that Discourse would parse as a one-box image).

The fake Mandarin from Iron Man 3 apparently wore prop rings similar to the older designs I remember.

Simu Liu is a major part of the supporting cast of a very enjoyable Canadian comedy “Kim’s Convenience”, viewable on Netflix. Kind of a “Schitt’s Creek” for the urban Korean community in the way it slowly transcends it’s initial premise and focuses on familial character development.

I also wanted to point out one bit from the trailer, which is a prime example of why I generally enjoy the MCU movies so much more than the DCEU movies. In one of the bus action scenes, we see the bus partially tipped over, and a random passenger about to fly out the window to become road pizza, and Shang-Chi saves her. It’s a small moment, but in the MCU, the heroes actually at least make some gestures towards caring about the innocent bystanders endangered by the mass carnage. Joss Whedon re-shoots aside, in the DCEU, the “heroes” tend to be too caught up in causing the mass carnage to even acknowledge the existence of innocent bystanders.