When it comes to Marvel, it is fair to believe that the story gets exciting not just because of the heroes, but the villains as well. Throughout its history, the MCU has given us truly horrific villains with perfect casting choices. Ranging from Thanos to Dormamu to the likes of Ultron and Hela, the antagonists have never disappointed us. This brings us to Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. The movie is directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, and Simu Lui is playing the titular character. Shang-Chi was created by Steve Englehart and Jim Starlin, making his debut in 1973’s Special Marvel Edition #15.
The trailer of the film, released by Marvel, has given us a brief idea of the plot of the movie. Considering Shang-Chi, this is that one character who has not been spoken of in the Marvel Cinematic Universe yet. Even Simu believes that this very factor will play a major role in the film’s release, as people are not aware of the character’s background. But there’s another character in the trailer that needs our focus. And no, I’m not talking about the Mandarin.
If we look at the trailer, there’s a mysterious masked villain. The real question is, who is this character? The trailer doesn’t offer the character’s name, but there’s a notable comic book villain known as ‘Death Dealer’. This character was created by Doug Moench and Gene Day and he debuted in 1982’s Master of Kung Fu #115. Born Li Ching-Lin. He was a double agent of Fu Manchu’s based in London, within the ranks of MI6. Shang-Chi is talked to bring him down.
Death Dealer’s association with the real Mandarin is no surprise. He was seen by his Master’s side on numerous occasions. But that is not it. He is directly connected to Shang-Chi as well. In the trailer, he was seen training Shang-Chi throughout childhood, adolescence, and, presumably, right up until he decided to choose his own faith. This decision of his may be one of the many reasons why Death Dealer is tasked to deal with Shang-Chi. It will be a classic coach and player brawl.
Death Dealer will definitely be surrounded by all the mystery. Many questions will hover over the head like who is the real person behind this mask, and how is he (or she) connected to the Mandarin and Shang-Chi. Marvel has no intentions of leaking this information. As of now, the character has no credited actor attributed to them. This ominous assassin could very well be a part of Shang-Chi’s life when he believed that he living freely and independently for ten years.
It could be believed the Death Dealer is eyeing the legacy of the Mandarin. Or this one could be simply because of ego as he might avenge the reputation of the Mandarin when Shang-Chi refuses to join them. He or she is a member of the Ten Rings and will be a major enemy of Shang-Chi over the course of the film. It will definitely be interesting to see who the real Death Dealer is and if he/she has any connection to Shang-Chi beyond a teacher. The film can surely dwell on Shang-Chi’s complicated history with the same.
It is unclear if Death Dealer will remain alive by the end of the film. The character is anyway enjoying its initial fame, just like Black Widow’s Taskmaster. Fans are already theorizing in every possible manner. The killing of Death Dealer would not mean an end to the title. In the comics, it’s also established that he has a son named Huo Li – who went on to seek revenge against Shang-Chi. Even if the current DD dies by the end of this flick, we can expect a sequel with the same, going at Shang-Chi in an old-fashioned revenge mode. But we can expect more information about the character to arrive soon as Marvel has stepped on the gas with its marketing.
The trailer has given many story leaks. We will see Shang-Chi’s childhood and his extensive training, carried out by Death Dealer himself. The movie will also focus on the backlash of his decision to not join forces with anyone. The trailer has established that Shang-Chi will establish himself as the Master of Kung-Fu, as in the comics. The movie will be full of action, and drama.
Starring Simu Liu as Shang-Chi, Tony Leung as Wenwu, Awkwafina as Shang-Chi’s friend Katy, Michelle Yeoh as Jiang Nan, as well as fellow MCU newcomers Fala Chen, Meng’er Zhang, Florian Munteanu, and Ronny Chieng, Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings releases only in theaters on September 3.