In Review: Shang-Chi (2020) #1 (of 5)

THE MASTER RETURNS! An ancient and evil secret society has stayed in hiding since the death of their leader, Zheng Zhu.

Synopsis: THE MASTER RETURNS! An ancient and evil secret society has stayed in hiding since the death of their leader, Zheng Zhu. But now his successor has been chosen to shift the balance of power in the world – Zheng Zhu’s son, Shang-Chi! Witness the Marvel Universe’s greatest fighter return to a world of death and destruction he thought he left behind long ago – and discover the secrets to Shang-Chi’s past that will change his world forever.


The Story

Having killed his father Sheng Zhu, Shang-Chi has escaped his father’s cult and now works in San Francisco for Mrs. Wang’s bakery. Additionally, Shang-Chi is not aware that Sister Hamme, his real sister has taken over the Cult and is looking to kill him out of revenge for her father’s death.

When he gets a visit from MI6 Agent Leiko-Wu his apartment is suddenly attacked by some of Sister Hammers men. At this point, two potential allies present themselves in the form of Brother Sabre and Sister Dagger. The two warriors want Shang-Chi to take his rightful place as leader of The Five Weapons Society.


The Artwork

The art team of Dike Ruan and  Philip Tan do a brilliant job with this first issue. I loved the opening few pages where we are treated to a crash course in the titular character’s origin story and the backstory of Sheng Zhu and The Five Weapons Society. Added to that is some great background imagery for San Francisco and the wonderful atmosphere that the art duo creates for Mrs. Wang’s bakery, which introduces the hero.



This opening issue does a brilliant job of setting the mood for what is a basic Kung Fu revenge story. To be honest. I am not familiar with the character of Shang-Chi. So this comic is my introduction to him and most likely an introduction for other newcomers too. Writer Gene Luen Yang does a brilliant job of introducing the characters and the world, and the art team does some fantastic vistas and wonderful martial arts-style fight sequences.

Overall. A solid beginning.

You can get hold of a digital version of this comic and subscribe for the 5 issue mini-series here at ComiXology.

Shang-Chi (2020) #1 (of 5)
  • Covers
  • Story
  • Artwork
  • Lettering
  • Colours

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
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