Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings released some of the best reviews for a movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The movie is filled with references and nods and some of the most epic fight sequences. Fans are already calling it one of the best solo ventures in MCU since Black Panther. This movie also explored the first Asian-origin superhero with a solo venture. This has become a revolutionary moment in superhero movies’ history. There’s a lot of excitement in finding out what happens to this character and how it affects the future of MCU. But when does Shang-Chi take place in the MCU timeline?
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Shang-Chi explored the father-son relationship with Shang-Chi and his sister Xialing being asked back by their father Wenwu. Wenwu possesses the Ten Rings and uses it for his own selfish ordeals. The brother-sister duo realizes that their father needs their help to rescue their mother’s soul from a sealed cave. This cave is located in the hidden kingdom of Ta-Lo. But upon reaching their they realize that Wenwu was being manipulated by a beast from another dimension known as the soul sucker. Wenwu ends up releasing this beast into their own dimension and Shang-Chi and the rest have to defeat it before it lays havoc on the world.
Timelines in MCU
In general, most movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe are associated with the year that they were released. This helped fans to understand the place the movie holds in the MCU timeline. The first few outliers included the characters whose origin stories took place way back in time. Captain America: The First Avenger was one such movie. The complications with timelines started taking place after Phase 3. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was released in 2017 but the events of the movie take place only a few days after the first movie hence it actually takes place in 2014. Spider-Man: Homecoming takes place one year before the actual release year of the movie. The release of Endgame changed the timeline entirely as it took us to post the events of the blip – jumped five years into the future.
Where do the events of Shang-Chi take place?
The opening events of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings take place hundreds of years ago as it gave us a hint into the story of Wenwu. The rest of the movie takes place a certain number of years after Avengers: Endgame. Then we are given solid dates as Wenwu meets Li in 1996 and they got married soon and gave birth to Shang-Chi later that year only.
Shang-Chi leaves the Ten Rings around 2010 and meets up with Katy around the same year and according to this, the events of the movie take place around 2020. This contradicts the idea of post Endgame events and hence Shang-Chi must have been born around 2000. But that is not the case at all because according to Endgame’s script, Wong was also snapped out of existence. So the film clearly takes place after Endgame.
We’re pretty sure that Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is set sometime around late-2024 or mid-2025 considering the events of Phase 4. Another evidence for this is the appearance of Bruce Banner and Carol Danvers in the post-credits scene. Carol was in the same suit that she wore in Endgame’s finale, but her long hair had returned. Smart Hulk had reverted back into Bruce Banner, who looked much older than before. And his permanent injury after the snap was still visible.
It could even be set up during or after No Way Home because as the trailer suggested, Wong leaves the scene in that film. He was headed to Kamar Taj. But he could have taken a part in Xialing’s tournament after leaving the snowy sanctum. I’m assuming that Shang-Chi takes place sometime between No Way Home and Multiverse of Madness.
What to expect after these events?
This could prove to be very helpful to the events that have taken place so far in the MCU. Marvel can now avoid the idea of why Shang-Chi was present or didn’t help out during the events of Avengers: Endgame. This keeps him at a distance from the events of the blip and how it has affected the world. At the same time, we can now deal with how this character has his own story that is not massively affected by the actions of the previous MCU movies.
Another hint towards where the events of this movie took place could be understood from the end credit scenes. This could take us behind the events of what comes next and how it connects to the other upcoming projects in the MCU. We see the Ten Rings reaching out or calling for something as Wong analyses them with his sorcery. This could refer to what Eternals were calling the emergence. Or it could also refer to what interdimensional evils Doctor Strange will battle out in Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness.