Simu Liu in Shang-Chi

New Shang-Chi Trailer Gives a Deeper Look at the Father/Son Issues That Drive the Movie

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The new trailer for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings dropped last night, and we were gifted with more lore surrounding the ten rings that Shang-Chi seemingly gives up. In the first trailer, Simu Liu’s Shang-Chi was battling between the life he left behind and the one he made for himself in San Francisco. This trailer gives us a deeper look into his history and the reasoning behind him leaving his home and training behind.

What’s interesting to me about this is Shang-Chi’s admission to Awkwafina’s Katy that he tried to change his name and escape—that his journey to San Francisco wasn’t as much a “break” as it seemed in the first trailer but more like Shang-Chi trying to leave behind the world his father tried to bring him into.

In the comics, his father is a “renowned criminal sired a child who he raised as his heir to an insidious secret society and named him Shang-Chi, the ‘rising and advancing of the spirit.’ In a hidden, ancient fortress in China, the boy became adept at both a multitude of martial arts and philosophical disciplines, completely unaware of his father’s evil pursuits.”

From what we see in the trailer, that may still be Shang-Chi’s origin story in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which is exciting! Marvel does a relatively good job of bringing in the history of these characters to their live-action counterparts, but sometimes, things change. But this trailer seems pretty comic-accurate (at least at its most basic level), and that’s a wonderful thing for fans of Shang-Chi, as well as the MCU overall.

I’m excited for Shang-Chi, not only to learn more about this incarnation as a hero, but also to see how Marvel handles an origin story like this. We haven’t really gotten the “reluctant” hero, if you could call Shang-Chi that. He’s more reluctant in accepting the powers given to him by his father. The closest is probably Peter Parker in Spider-Man: Far From Home, and even then, he’s still Spider-Man. He just wants to also be a kid.

But as Michelle Yeoh’s Jiang Nan points out: He’s just as much his mother’s son as he is his father’s, despite what he wants. Shang-Chi is the first that I can think of who has this power and this ability but doesn’t want to be the “hero” his father wants him to be. I say “hero” because as Shang-Chi says in the trailer, he’s a criminal—one that Shang-Chi clearly faces off against. Marvel loves a father and son working through their problems together, and getting to see Simu Liu tackle that with Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is going to be an exciting adventure for the Marvel Cinematic Universe and this new introduction to the character.

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings hits theaters September 3, and we can’t wait to see what Simu Liu, Marvel, and everyone has in store!

(image: Marvel Entertainment)

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Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.