Shang-Chi will feature the real Mandarin and the Ten Rings, fixing Iron Man 3’s fake villain twist (and enhancing the story from the comics).
The trailer of Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings shows that the titular hero is getting a new backstory in the MCU, fixing the fake villain twist to iron Man 3 in the process. Hailing from the 1970s, Marvel’s Shang-Chi was a kung fu master who had turned against his evil father. However, the character is being updated for the MCU, offering a chance for Disney to fix an earlier bug.
Marvel released the first Shang-chi trailer in April 2021, setting viewers’ expectations for the Phase 4 movie. Unlike other MCU entries, Shang Chi and the legend of the ten rings It seems to be a bit more ingrained in terms of its action sequences; Although there is a hint of the fantastic, particularly the shots of the guardian lions and the Red Army, the film seems to lean towards its kung fu influences, relying less on massive CGI scenes and more on thrilling, well-choreographed fight sequences. In doing so, the film not only offers something new for the MCU, but is also fulfilling the missed opportunity with the Marvel series criticized by Netflix critics. Iron fist.
Shang-chi therefore, he is positioned to address a number of problems in Marvel history. One of the biggest mistakes of the last ten years was how iron Man 3 used Mandarin, Tony Stark’s arch nemesis in the comics. By upgrading the character to fit the tech-oriented tone of the Iron Man movies in the MCU, the character changed, but in a way that was deeply unsatisfying for fans of the character.
Mandarin is a major antagonist in the Iron Man comics, so it was only a matter of time until it appeared in the MCU; However, Tony Stark’s third solo film subverted expectations for the character with a reveal of a twist. Rather than being a true warlord and criminal, this version, played by veteran actor Ben Kingsley, is actually an actor named Trevor Slattery. Slattery was hired by the film’s main antagonist, Aldrich Killian, who exploited Slattery’s drug addiction (and acting talent) to create a “target” on which the US government will focus. This bogus “terrorist” claimed to be associated with the “Ten Rings” organization (the terrorists who captured Stark in Iron Man). By claiming responsibility for the “attacks”, he covered up the experiments of Killian’s Extremis Soldiers.
It makes sense that this has been changed iron Man 3 and combined with the Extremis plot. While magic has appeared in the MCU, the Iron Man movies are all about futuristic (but still credible) technology and military conflicts. The Mandarin, as he appeared in the comics, is a wealthy Chinese martial arts master who wears various alien rings containing the spirit of dead warriors; Although there is a technological element to the Mandarin’s stories, on a basic level it doesn’t fit the tone set for Iron Man in the MCU. The original story of Extremis in the comics is also changed; written by Warren Ellis in the early 2000s, Iron Man: Extremis it didn’t include the element of extreme heat and fire (it was more like a highly regenerative super soldier serum), and Dr. Aldrich Killian commits suicide instead of taking on an antagonist role.
iron Man 3 found a way to fit Mandarin into the MCU while avoiding harmful Chinese stereotypes, while also using the Extremis story in a way that was visually and thematically different from what was happening in the MCU. Captain America films. Unfortunately, the Mandarin touch was unsuccessful. The powerful and interesting character from the comics essentially came down to a punchline. While the twist was unexpected, and Slattery’s out-of-character interactions with Stark are genuinely fun, the end result was essentially that the “real” Mandarin never made it into the MCU.
The next Shang-chi The movie is reintroducing Mandarin, but this time, the MCU is using a more comical version of the character. Although it seems Shang-chi is trading the Ten Rings for bracelets, everything else in the trailer suggests that Tommy Leung Chiu-wai’s version of the character looks more like his comic book counterpart: he’s wealthy, rules a criminal organization, and is being played by a Chinese actor. . The terrorist, whose real name is Wenwu, is a martial arts master and has an ancient mystique around him, hinting at the Makluan Rings in the comics. More importantly, this time around the Mandarin is genuinely the film’s main antagonist and will be portrayed as sinister and menacing (unlike Kingsley’s goofy, drug-loving Slattery).
Of course, a big difference from Marvel Comics is that in Shang-chi, Mandarin is replacing Fu Manchu. This is necessary on a couple of levels: one, the character of Fu Manchu is deeply racist, and two, Marvel did not create the character, which complicates the issue of film rights. Initially, Marvel tried to adapt the popular television show. Kung Fu in the 1970s as a way to capitalize on the martial arts craze at the time; instead, Marvel licensed Dr. Fu Manchu, a pulp villain from Saxon Rohmer’s 1910 novels. In these earlier comics, Shang-Chi is Fu Manchu’s son who is estranged from his father when he discovers his evil nature.
For what should be obvious reasons, having Dr. Fu Manchu in the MCU wouldn’t work. After Marvel lost the rights to the character, they renamed him Zheng Zu, but the xenophobic aspects of the character’s story continue to haunt him. Created by a white male, the villain Fu Manchu is completely stereotypical and represents the worst aspects of Orientalism. What’s worse, the character has a long history of controversy: Even in the 1930s, concerns arose about how the Fu Manchu franchise represented the Chinese. It’s fair to say that Marvel’s decision to adapt the character in the 1970s, when it republished the old Fu Manchu The movies were the subject of protests, it was troublesome, to say the least.
Making Mandarin the father of Shang-Chi allows the MCU to honor the best parts of both characters from the comics, while avoiding the most damaging stereotypical elements. Representation is important, and Marvel Phase 4 seems to be dedicated to being more diverse. Shang-Chi, played by Simu Liu, is the first Asian character to get his own solo film in the MCU, and the studio has made an effort to cast actors predominantly of Chinese descent. Such as Black Panther it was a pioneering film for its representation, Shang-Chi and the legend of the ten rings seems willing to do the same.
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