One of the most exciting aspects of Phase 4 is the new batch of Marvel characters that will finally make their way to the big screen. From the Eternals to Ms. Marvel, the future is looking exceptionally bright with many fan-favorites from Marvel Comics finally getting their time in the MCU spotlight.
Along with these fan-favorites, there are other characters on the MCU slate that audiences are still widely unfamiliar with, and Marvel's Master of Kung Fu tops that list.
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings was supposed to premiere in May 2021 before being pushed a couple months back to July, and most fans are still none the wiser on whom Shang-Chi is in the MCU, or what exactly makes him so special.
Simu Liu, the actor playing Shang-Chi in the all-Asian cast, is a huge Marvel fan and couldn't be more excited to take on the role. And while his movie may not release until next summer, Liu has taken it upon himself to bring up the hype for his Marvel debut by letting fans know how his new character stacks up against a few MCU alumni.
SHANG-CHI VS. THE MCU
Without treading into spoiler territory, Simu Liu recently spoke with Toronto Life about Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings when he was asked who would win in a fight between his titular character, Iron Man, Hulk, and Black Widow. Liu confidently replied that "Shang-Chi wins" that fight, claiming that his yet-to-be-seen MCU hero "can definitely throw a punch," but that fans will "have to wait and see" what else Shang-Chi is capable of.
Liu explained that he's got knowledge "as a fan" of Marvel Comics that helped him make this distinction, but also that he's "got some skin in the game" as the hero in the upcoming MCU kung fu flick that helps him back up his claim.
"I win! Shang-Chi. I could debate this as a fan for hours, but now that I’ve got some skin in the game, I have to think I could take any of these guys on. Shang-Chi can definitely throw a punch. As for his other skills and powers, you’ll have to wait and see."
HOW STRONG IS LIU'S SHANG-CHI?
Just when fans thought they finally had the "Strongest Avenger" argument settled, Liu throws a wrench in the discussion and makes everyone question how their favorite MCU character compares to Phase 4's new lineup of heroes.
Even so, it would take a lot more than a mean punch to knock the Incredible Hulk off his feet, so most fans would think that Liu has still got some serious explaining to do. Well, this isn't the first time that fans have gotten the hint that Shang-Chi is going to possess some truly awesome abilities.
Early rumors of Shang-Chi's plot outlined a tournament that the Chi-Meister will enter that is somewhat similar to what fans saw play out in Thor: Ragnarok. The tournament is rumored to feature the likes of wizards, aliens, fighters, and even more well known characters that are still a mystery at this time, and Shang-Chi is supposedly going to have the ability to clone himself as he fights.
So, yeah... a group of Avengers going up against ten Shang-Chi's may play out a bit differently.
Additionally, it's said that the winner of this tournament wins the legendary 10 rings as the grand prize, and it's also rumored that the Mandarin will enlist Shang-Chi to fight in this tournament and try to win the rings for him. So, if the Mandarin thinks Shang-Chi is worthy to fight in his place, then the new hero will truly be something special to see in the MCU's fighting world.
To sum it all up, if Shang-Chi is expected to hold his own against the likes of wizards and aliens in this wild tournament of Marvel's most powerful fighters, then there's clearly much to be learned about the Master of Kung Fu in his MCU debut when Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings hits theaters on July 9, 2021.