6 Things I Want to See in the Shang-Chi Sequel
Marvel Studios officially announced a sequel to Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings this week after signing director Destin Daniel Cretton to a new contract. That’s great news! Shang-Chi was an awesome flick and there is a ton of sequel potential. Simu Liu, Awkwafina and the whole enterprise are ripe for becoming a new corner stone of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I am here for it.
So what’s a sequel going to feature? Shang-Chi has almost zero comic book lore to draw from. Marvel has tried again and again to give him some stories, some background and some anything, but none of it has ever really cracked the comic book consciousness. And The Legend of the Ten Rings came up with a lot of its own original mythology and lore anyway. So the canvas is wide open to come up with plenty of ideas and directions. That’s great and all, but a comic book dork like me knows a lot of Marvel stuff to draw from for a sequel!
Join me after the jump for new ideas, concepts, characters and developments I want to see in the Shang-Chi sequel! And feel free to share your own ideas in the comments below!
6. The Immortal Iron Fist
I’m really breaking the internet with this one, huh? So sue me. The Immortal Iron Fist is Marvel’s other famous martial arts superhero, so yeah, I wanna see him in the Shang-Chi franchise. Simple as that. He’s got a cool look, he’s got a cool super-power, and Iron Fist has some actually awesome mythology/lore/stories to draw from. And it’s a sequel, so having a new sidekick/team up sounds pretty reasonable.
We also got official confirmation from Kevin Feige this week that Charlie Cox will reprise the role of Matt Murdock/Daredevil in some upcoming MCU projects. Like most fans, I hope this opens the floodgates to more Netflix actors to return as their characters. And yes, I’m going there: I would be perfectly fine with Finn Jones coming back as Danny Rand. In the past, I was very open to the idea of casting Danny Rand with an Asian actor because the Marvel stuff lacked good Asian representation. But now that Shang-Chi is a huge hit, that is not as much of a concern. So keep the continuity, bring back Finn Jones…or really stick to the Netflix show continuity and bring in Jessica Henwick as College Wing! She ended the show with the Iron Fist powers!
5. The Seven Capital Cities of Heaven
All the really great Iron Fist lore comes from the series by Ed Brubacker, Matt Fraction and David Aja from a bunch of years ago. And even if we don’t get Iron Fist to appear in the sequel, I am very open to bringing in his lore and giving it to Shang-Chi. The Seven Capital Cities of Heaven are seven realms outside of the normal world, and they each have a mystical champion. Sound familiar? Ta Lo was established in the first Shang-Chi movie as being in its own realm outside of the normal world. Coincidence? I should hope not!
The fact that the Seven Capital Cities of Heaven come together for a fighting tournament between their champions every couple of years/decades should also not go amiss. If you’re looking for a plot for your sequel, everybody loves a good tournament arc. Hell. Maybe that’s how you introduce Iron Fist, as an opponent in the fighting tournament!
4. Shang-Chi actually using the ten rings
So what’s to become of the actual ten rings? I think Shang-Chi should use them. He’d have to grapple with questions of immortality, power and responsibility, but they make for a kickass and very visual super-power. So go hog wild, Shang-Chi! Earn your superhero status! Be a cool guy! There are plenty of reasons why a hero would not pick up the rings going forward, but Shang-Chi went through a lot to get his hands on those things. They’re not the One Ring, there’s not some dark power corrupting the user. I think Shang-Chi should make them part of his arsenal going forward.
3. Avengers membership
Obviously we have no idea what the Avengers landscape will look like by the time we get a second Shang-Chi movie. Most people, myself included, think we’re heading for a Young Avengers or a Dark Avengers. But surely as the MCU timeline progresses, somebody is going to put together another Avengers, right? Even if it’s largely behind the scenes? What are Wong, Bruce Banner and Carol Danvers doing? Are they not Avengers? There’s a new Captain America. Some new version of the Avengers needs to be in play by the time the sequel comes out, and I want to see Shang-Chi acknowledged as being part of that lineup.
2. Katy romance
This is a major point of debate in Shang-Chi: Are he and Katy a couple or should they remain platonic friends? I’m happy with either option, but if I had to choose, I would go with romance. I like a good romance, and Shang and Katy were great together in the first film. I am also a big Awkwafina fan, so I would love to see her role expand as much as possible. I also love the idea that Awkwafina can be a superhero’s love interest. I hope I’m not out of line to say that she is not conventionally “Hollywood” attractive. She’s not some demure love interest who only exists to be pretty. And that’s why it’s great that she can be considered a love interest. I think it would be a fine direction to go — as along as she also gets to keep her comedic sidekick status, too.
1. Fewer dragons
Typing the words “fewer dragons” together hurts my soul. But it needs to be said. The one thing I didn’t particularly like in Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings was the giant CGI monster battle in the finale. Marvel is supposed to recognize now how that can’t always be the go-to. You can’t go crazy with the CGI in the third act. That sort of climax had its day. Now I want real, grounded, emotionally powerful finales. Shang-Chi doesn’t need to fight any more dragons. Fighting people is much more interesting.
Posted on December 8, 2021, in Lists of Six!, Marvel, Movies and tagged Awkwafina, Marvel Cinematic Universe, MCU, Shang-Chi, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Simu Liu. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.