Is Shang-Chi Villain Death Dealer Hiding a Secret?

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is reclaiming its roots, as evident within the debut trailer for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, which showcases a defining return by the shadowy syndicate that tangled with Tony Stark manner again in 2008’s unique Iron Man. Yet, whereas Shang-Chi (Simu Liu) is on a collision course with the long-awaited “real” Mandarin (Tony Leung), he’ll clearly have his fingers full preventing a masked villain named Death Dealer, whose hitherto obscurity within the pages of Marvel Comics appears to belie the character’s significance within the movie.

Death Dealer, as depicted within the upcoming Shang-Chi film, seems to be an integral member of the titular Ten Rings group led by the Mandarin, who can also be recognized right here as Wenmu, which makes him a hybrid of comedian character Fu Manchu, Shang-Chi’s father, mentor and eventual adversary. Yet, it’s clear that Death Dealer additionally performed a position in Shang-Chi’s upbringing, for the reason that trailer exhibits a flashback by which the black-clad, white-mask-rocking antagonist is seen standing subsequent to Mandarin, maliciously motivating Shang-Chi—who’s nonetheless a little one at this level—to repeatedly punch a submit. Indeed, the scene supplies essential context to a fantastically frenetic showdown between the thriller character and an grownup Shang-Chi later within the trailer. Curiously, regardless of Death Dealer’s clear prominence within the movie (confirmed by a presence within the movie’s first wave of Marvel Legends motion figures), we nonetheless don’t even have an official affirmation on who’s enjoying the character.

Marvel Comics

Shang-Chi has clearly given Death Dealer a main improve from a restricted existence tied to a mostly-forgotten three-issue 1982 comedian e-book arc that began with Master of Kung-Fu #115. The London-set storyline initially depicted the character as a former MI6 agent named Li Ching-Lin, who was ousted from the group attributable to his brutal strategies. Consequently, Shang-Chi, who was an MI6 agent himself at this level, is tasked with searching down the rogue agent. The endeavor finally proves difficult, since Lin turned out to be a secret asset for Fu Manchu, who subsequently endows him with a black costume, cranium masks and the title Death Dealer. However, this model of the villain wouldn’t get too many alternatives to pester Shang-Chi, who would finally hand him a fiery deadly defeat with a brazier. Ironically, not like most supposedly-deceased characters within the Marvel Universe, the loss of life dealt to Death Dealer was everlasting; a notion that lends an charisma to the character’s film resurgence.

Of course, the MCU has successfully utilized obscure comedian villains earlier than, most prominently exemplified by Doctor Strange’s utilization of Kaecilius. In a method akin to Death Dealer, obscure Mordo disciple Kaecilius was plucked from a 1965 problem of Strange Tales and elevated to foremost villain standing of a main blockbuster, performed by the nice Mads Mikkelsen, no much less. Likewise, whereas Mandarin’s manifestation will possible dominate Shang-Chi, the trailer appears to depict Death Dealer because the titular hero’s main antagonist within the would-be franchise’s first movie; a notion bolstered by the apparent expectation that Mandarin—as a correct model of the A-list Marvel villain falsely teased in Iron Man 3—will stay a distinguished fixture within the MCU for the foreseeable future. Thus, if Death Dealer carries the movie’s weight as a villain, then deeper motivations would seemingly turn out to be hooked up to the character, whose portrayer stays a thriller, oddly sufficient.

Back to top button