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For other uses, see Mandarin (disambiguation)

"I've had many names throughout my life. The Warrior King, Master Khan, the most dangerous man on Earth. For years, I thought that was all I was meant to be. But when I met their mother, everything changed."
―Xu Wenwu to Katy Chen[src]

Xu Wenwu (Mandarin: 徐文武) was a legendary and nearly mythical figure who rose to power after discovering a set of mythical rings, and founded the army known as the Ten Rings. Wenwu established himself as a powerful warlord who conquered kingdoms over the millennia, the rings' power gifting him immortality. In the modern-day, Wenwu had continued seeking power, finding the ancient city of Ta Lo. He fell in love with Ta Lo's gatekeeper, Ying Li, and fathered Xu Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing. Despite swearing off violence to raise his family, Wenwu eventually reclaimed his rings when Ying Li was murdered at the hands of the Iron Gang. He trained Shang-Chi to be an assassin to avenge his wife's murder. However, Wenwu's two children would grow fearful of their father and eventually abandon him.

In the 21st Century, Wenwu discovered that Aldrich Killian was able to recruit Trevor Slattery to impersonate Wenwu himself, giving him the Mandarin moniker, while also appropriating the legend of the Ten Rings. Enraged at Slattery's portrayal of him, Wenwu had him abducted and sentenced to imprisonment for tarnishing his name. Eventually, Wenwu would begin hearing his late wife's voice, urging him to free her from imprisonment in Ta Lo. Wenwu sought out his children to aid him, only for Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing to reject his request, siding with Ying Nan to stop his army. Through his attempts to rescue his wife, Wenwu unintentionally unleashed the Dweller-in-Darkness. Wenwu sacrificed himself to protect Shang-Chi from the Dweller, passing the Ten Rings down to him, before the Dweller then drained his soul from Wenwu's body and killed him.

Biography

Early Life

Legendary Warlord

"He was a warrior king. Inspired generations of men through the Middle Ages, perhaps even further back in time."
Jackson Norriss to Trevor Slattery[src]

Around a thousand years ago, Xu Wenwu discovered ten rings which had gifted him with unmatched power and immortality. Possessing the power of the rings, Wenwu soon became a powerful warlord and founded the organization, known as the Ten Rings.[1] Wenwu's past was shrouded in mystery, but his followers had described him as being an ancient warrior-king that has inspired generations of men since the Middle Ages. As the leader of the Ten Rings, Wenwu had become a myth to his followers, with only his most trusted men being aware that he really existed.[3]

Ten Rings' War

Crusades Through Asia

Wenwu leading the Ten Rings into a battle

"十环的传说已经流传了上千年。不论这个故事如何演变,它的主人公永远都是同一个人。有人说他的十环是火山口里捡来的,还有人说是墓穴里盗来的。它们给了他神一般的力量,也赋予了他长生不老的魔法。他本可借着十环之力来惩恶扬善,但他想要的...只有征服。[6]"
Ying Li to Shang-Chi[src]

Having established his name as a legendary and feared warlord, Wenwu traveled across Asia, building the power of the Ten Rings and conquering whatever lands he desired. On one instance, Wenwu would lead his army to a castle occupied by the Seljuk Empire, who stood in fear as Wenwu approached alone, on horseback. As a sea of arrows were fired at him, Wenwu unleashed the power of his Ten Rings, blocking the arrows as he charged forward.

Wenwu blocks all the arrows with his rings

With the power of his rings, Wenwu launched himself through the air, and landed in the middle of the defending army, as he swiftly used the power of his rings to obliterate his enemies. Keeping his foes at bay, Wenwu eventually launched a massive power strike from his rings, which blew through the opposing army and obliterated the gateway into the castle. Wenwu and his army were swiftly victorious, and had claimed the castle in the name of the Ten Rings.

Wenwu watches Ten Rings soldiers training

Wenwu and his army would take control of another facility, which would become the Ten Rings Headquarters, where Wenwu would continue ruling over the Ten Rings, observing his army of soldiers training. Through the few hundred years, Wenwu would use his army's to continue building his power, as they assassinated their enemies and conquered more of the globe. However, despite the immense power he had gained, Wenwu would never be satisfied, and continued seeking more power.[1]

Search for Ta Lo

Wenwu flying back into his Headquarters

"听过塔罗的传说吗?一个隐世的村庄,在那里,神祖的功法代代相传。传说中的神兽和古老的法术还都存在。我要找到这个地方。[7]"
―Xu Wenwu to Hui[src]

In 1996, Wenwu, not yet fully satisfied with his power, seeked out the village of Ta Lo, said to contain various mythical beasts, to expand his powers. Wenwu returned to the Ten Rings Headquarters, onboard his Helicopter, while examining his books about Ta Lo and the creatures that were rumored to reside there.[1]

Wenwu and Hui discussing the Ten Rings

Upon landing at the headquarters, where the guards bowed to him, Wenwu was greeted by Hui, who commented that he heard that their work in Afghanistan was going well, to which Wenwu noted that Raza had done good work at capitalizing on the instability in the region. Wenwu and Hui walked through the Ten Rings soldiers training, as Hui noted that they had been doing good work presenting Wenwu with a folder with pictures of dead men.

Wenwu is delivered the Iron Gang Leader

Hui then explained to Wenwu that they had successfully killed every member of the Iron Gang, as they had been caught attempting to sell weapons in their territory without paying their dues to the Ten Rings. Wenwu was then presented with the new Iron Gang leader, who had been captured and was awaiting execution. Wenwu then calmly removed the leader's hood, questioning if he knew who he was, which the leader nervously confirmed.

Wenwu confronting the Iron Gang Leader

Wenwu also questioned if the man knew the fate of men who stole from the Ten Rings, who which the leader noted that Wenwu's men had already killed his family, insisting that he should finish the job. In response, Wenwu grabbed the leader's throat and powered up the Ten Rings, only to instead tell the man to kill himself. With that, Wenwu ordered Hui to let the leader go, before he returned back into his office.[5]

Wenwu explaining his plans to find Ta Lo

Wenwu had a meeting with Hui in his office, where he had explained his plan to find Ta Lo and claim their power for his own, with Hui promising that he would arrange for the Ten Rings to send out a scouting team to search the area for him. However, Wenwu's desire for the power that Ta Lo held, led him to insisting that they leave immediately to find it.[1]

Duel Against Ying Li

Wenwu and Hui witness the forest attack

"你好像不知道我是谁。”
“我不管你是谁。走吧,不要自找麻烦。[8]"
―Xu Wenwu and Ying Li[src]

Once they tracked down the area, Wenwu and Hui were driven through the forests in their Jeeps, with Wenwu still closely examining his books for more details on the area. However, as they were driving, they realised that the forest was closing in around them, forcing their driver to attempt to flea.

Wenwu continues to search for Ta Lo

Once they reached a clearing, Wenwu realised that they were driving towards a cliff, as he used his rings to fling himself out of the car and land safely on the cliff edge. However, he was too late to save his allies, as Wenwu watched the car full to the bottom of the cliff, with Hui and his men still inside. Despite the loss, Wenwu continued on with his mission, going through the forest on foot.

Wenwu preparing himself to battle Ying Li

Despite the forest itself having attacked him and his men, he made it to village's entrance, where he encountered a woman named Ying Li, who guarded the entrance to Ta Lo. She and Wenwu engaged in a fight, where she displayed her own impressive combat skills, but the two immediately began to fall in love.

Wenwu is finally defeated by Ying Li

During the fight, Li held her own against his Ten Rings, making Wenwu really impressed. However, much to his shock, Li used her own powers to manipulate his Ten Rings so that they start to act against him, using his own powers against him. Li temporarily took the ownership of all of his rings and turned it into a powerful energy ball to attack Wenwu, making him clash against a tree. However, before he would fall down hard on the ground and get seriously injured, Li redirected him to the river using her powers, thereby saving his life.[1]

Peaceful Life

Reunion with Ying Li

Wenwu having his picnic with Ying Li

"She showed me a part of myself I didn't know was there. It was like I was seeing the world for the first time. She gave up everything so we could be together, and so did I."
―Xu Wenwu to Katy Chen[src]

A highly impressed Wenwu deeply fell in love for Ying Li, not just the only woman to defeat him in a thousand years, but the only person. A lovestruck Wenwu returned to Ta Lo's gates again and again to meet Ying Li, where they would have dates at that same location and eventually fell in love. However, the villagers of Ta Lo would not accept Wenwu, fearing his past sins would have destroyed the village. As a result, Ying Li decided to leave Ta Lo with Wenwu.[1]

Fleeting Peace

Wenwu getting married to Ying Li

"After all those years, I finally found something worth growing old for."
―Xu Wenwu to Katy Chen[src]

Wenwu eventually married and had two children with Ying Li: a son named Xu Shang-Chi and a daughter named Xu Xialing. For a time, Wenwu settled down with his family, loving them enough to set aside his terrorist empire and even forsake the power of the Ten Rings in order to be with them.

Wenwu playing his games with his family

During this time, Wenwu and Ying Li had attempted to return to Ta Lo and live in peace there, however, the elders of Ta Lo, led by Guang Bo turned them away, claiming that Wenwu's history with the Ten Rings would destroy the peace of Ta Lo.[1]

Losing His Love

Wenwu discovering Ying Li has been killed

"她说我是可以改变的,我也可以放下一切。可是她错了。如果我当初没有把它们摘下来,那些混蛋根本都不敢动手。我要他们付出代价。[9]"
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]

One evening, Wenwu had left his home, leaving Ying Li to look after their children, as she would train Shang-Chi in the ancient fighting style of Ta Lo. However, once Wenwu had returned to their home, he discovered a scene of destruction, with Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing standing among the chaos. Wenwu discovered that the Iron Gang had come searching for him to get revenge for his past actions, and had proceeded to murder Ying Li when they could not find him.

Wenwu deciding to avenge Ying Li's death

Wenwu was devastated by the loss of Ying Li, and returned to his room to grieve. Once Shang-Chi came to speak to his father, Wenwu was staring at his rings and noted that this never would have happened had he been wearing them, as the Iron Gang would not have dared to challenge him. With that, Wenwu decided to put the rings back on and avenge his wife's death.[1]

Ten Rings Return

Massacre of the Iron Gang

Wenwu bringing Shang-Chi on his mission

"血债...必须要血偿。你愿意帮爸爸吗?[10]"
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]

Having put the rings back on, Wenwu began searching for the members of the Iron Gang who had invaded his home and murdered his wife. After tracking them down to a bar, Wenwu brought Shang-Chi along with him so that the latter could witness his father getting payback for Ying Li's death.

Wenwu furiously attacks the Iron Gang

Letting go of Shang-Chi's hand, Wenwu stepped over to the table where the Iron Gang were enjoyed themselves, powered up his rings, and smashed his fist through their table. Before they could even react, Wenwu proceeded to mercilessly slaughter the Iron Gang and used the rings to launch them across the bar with incredible force, leaving Shang-Chi to watch in shock and then step aside as Wenwu launched one of the gang members into a glass wall next to him.

Wenwu brutally kills the final gang member

With the final gang member lying by Shang-Chi's feet, Wenwu stepped over to him and demanded to know where the Iron Gang Leader was so that he could kill him. Unfortunately, the gang member insisted that he did not know and Wenwu proceeded to kill him with a blast of energy to the head. With his revenge partly satisfied, Wenwu asked Shang-Chi if he was willing to help avenge his mother. When Shang-Chi nodded yes, Wenwu took his hand and the two of them left the bar behind, with Wenwu planning on how he would find the gang's leader.[1]

Training Shang-Chi

Wenwu ordering to Shang-Chi to follow him

"You have to strengthen your mind, along with your body. If you want them to be yours one day, you have to show me you are strong enough to carry them."
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]

Although he avenged Ying Li's death with the slaughter of the Iron Gang, Wenwu was still left with an emptiness in his heart, so he chose to rededicate himself to the Ten Rings and wear his Rings at all time. Wenwu also decided that he would have Shang-Chi trained to become a warrior for the Ten Rings, although he had also chosen to not have Xu Xialing trained, since Wenwu only wanted male warriors to fight in his armies.

Wenwu and Death Dealer train Shang-Chi

To assist in Shang-Chi's training, Wenwu recruited Death Dealer, as he observed his son being trained to fight with the same foricity as the other Ten Rings warriors, training him with blades, as well as his own fists. Wenwu would also stand by and watch, as Shang-Chi was forced to punch a thick wooden bar repeatedly, with Death Dealer striking him with a stick if he began to relent due to the pain. Wenwu watched on, as Shang-Chi would punch the wooden bar for hours, leaving his knuckles bleeding.

Wenwu offering Shang-Chi some advice

Eventually, Wenwu approached Shang-Chi following hours of him punching the wooden bar and invited him to take a break. Retiring to his room, Wenwu cleaned the blood from his son's knuckles, promising that the pain would go away and he would eventually be stronger for it. As they were speaking, Wenwu noticed that Shang-Chi was looking at his Rings, as Wenwu noted that they had brought their family strength, and now Shang-Chi would have to prove himself to be strong enough to wear them himself.[1]

Stark Industries Technologies

"I understand you failed to obtain the War Machine Armor. Explain why you should leave this room alive."
―Xu Wenwu to Ten Rings Agent[src]

In 2009, the Ten Rings struck a deal with Obadiah Stane which involved purchasing the illegal Stark Industries weapons. The Ten Rings ambushed the United States Air Force convoy in Afghanistan and kidnapped Tony Stark, imprisoning him in their base, attempting to force him into making them weapons for them. However, Stark made a suit of armor and escaped. Stane later betrayed the Ten Rings and had Raza as well as multiple of his men killed.[11]

Wenwu targeted Stark and attempted to have him assassinated by using Ivan Vanko, sending his agent to arrange passage for Vanko to Monaco, although this failed.[12] Over the next year, the Ten Rings suffered numerous defeats at the hands of Iron Man, as Wenwu ordered his men to capture James Rhodes and his new armor. Although Rhodes managed to defeat the Ten Rings, to Wenwu's frustration, his men managed to obtain a valuable information needed to take Iron Man down.[13]

2012 Copycat Attacks

"A terrorist from America needed a boogeyman to bring your country to its knees. So, he appropriated the Ten Rings. My Ten Rings. But because he didn't know my actual name, he invented a new one. Do you know the name he chose? The Mandarin. He gave his figurehead the name of a chicken dish. And it worked. America was terrified. Of an orange."
―Xu Wenwu to Katy Chen[src]

In 2012, Aldrich Killian orchestrated the series of terrorist attacks against the United States of America,[2] inventing the moniker of the "Mandarin",[1] which was an ancient Chinese war mantle, meaning "advisor to the King".[3] Wenwu was dismissive of the moniker, due to its association with mandarin oranges.[1] Trevor Slattery, who portrayed "Mandarin", completely twisted his image, which absolutely infuriated him. After Killian was defeated by Iron Man, Slattery was arrested and imprisoned in the Seagate Penitentiary, and Wenwu sent Jackson Norriss to break Slattery out and capture him.

Disguised as a documentary filmmaker, Norriss successfully infiltrated the prison and abducted Slattery into Wenwu's custody.[3] Slattery was brought to Wenwu himself who was intended to kill him, however, in the last moments, he witnessed Slattery's actor performance and changed his mind. Wenwu decided to keep Slattery as his personal "court jester" and imprisoned him at his headquarters.[1]

Completing Shang-Chi's Training

Wenwu watches Shang-Chi's combat skills

Once Shang-Chi was older, Wenwu would observe him as his warriors trained his endurance, striking him with staffs, while Shang-Chi remained strong and barely reacted. Finally, Wenwu had a dozen of his Ten Rings warriors attack his son with blades, only for Shang-Chi to prove himself as the superior warrior, being able to disarm all of his opponents with relative ease, coming out as the victor in the fight, much to the considerable satisfaction of Wenwu, who had been observing the entire clash, alongside Death Dealer, with Wenwu confirming that Shang-Chi was ready to become a member of the Ten Rings.[1]

Shang-Chi's First Mission

Once Shang-Chi was fourteen years old, Wenwu decided that he would send him out to assassinate the leader of the Iron Gang, and thereby avenge Ying Li's death. However, despite completing his mission, Shang-Chi failed to return to the Ten Rings Headquarters, and chose to hide himself from Wenwu.[1]

Adopting Razor Fist

"While I was on business in Romania, I saw a boy on the street who reminded me of you. He was standing on a box, juggling three balls with his one arm. I was so impressed, I adopted Mattias as my own."
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]

At some point, Wenwu traveled to Romania for business purposes. During his visit, he found a child named Mattias who had lost his right hand, but was able to juggle three balls with his remaining arm. Wenwu took a liking to Mattias since he reminded him of Shang-Chi, and decided to adopt him. Mattias soon became another of Wenwu's protégés, who quickly rose to become one of the Ten Rings' top operatives.

Wenwu had a mechanized Razor Blade to be implanted over Mattias' missing hand, and from that point onwards, Mattias dubbed himself "Razor Fist" and used the razor blade arm as his signature weapon. Wenwu found the name Razor Fist amusing and approved it, despite it technically being incorrect.[5]

Defection of Xu Xialing

Following Shang-Chi's disappearance, Xu Xialing would eventually defect from the Ten Rings as well. Wenwu used his vast resources to easily track down his children, but respected their decision to leave the Ten Rings and instead kept a close eye on them in their self-imposed exile.[1]

Family Reunion

Locating his Children

"Did you get my postcard? The one with the dragon?"
"I know which one."
"I wanted you to find your sister, so I wouldn't have to go through all this unnecessary violence to get you here."
―Xu Wenwu and Shang-Chi[src]

Over the next few years, Wenwu began hearing a voice inside his head, which was the voice of Ying Li, calling for Wenwu come rescue her. Believing the voice, Wenwu communicated with the voice and determined that Ying Li had not actually been killed by the Iron Gang, and was instead being held captive in Ta Lo. As a result, Wenwu had determined that he would go to war with Ta Lo and rescue Ying Li, determined to reunite his family.

Knowing that the way into Ta Lo was almost impossible to navigate, Wenwu realised that the way to find the path would be to use the Eyes of the Dragon, which would show him the pathway into Ta Lo. However, Wenwu had realised that these eyes had been given to Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing before Ying Li's death. Wenwu ordered the Ten Rings to track down his children, tracking Shang-Chi down to California, as he sent Razor Fist and Gao Lei to find him and reclaim the Eye, with them completing their mission following a duel with Shang-Chi.[1]

Attack on the Golden Daggers

Wenwu being reunited with Shang-Chi

"I told my men they wouldn't be able to kill you if they tried. Glad I was right."
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]

Wenwu had then tracked Xu Xialing down to the Golden Daggers Club, as he and his soldiers led an attack on the club in order to obtain her part of the Eyes of the Dragon. While Razor Fist and Death Dealer led the attack, chasing down Xialing and battling Shang-Chi who had come to aid his sister, Wenwu stayed back, until he and his soldiers had successfully captured Xialing and Katy Chen, as he then found Shang-Chi battling Death Dealer.

Stepping into the fight, Wenwu used his rings to grab Shang-Chi's arm and throw him back, revealing that he had already captured Xialing and Chen. Wenwu then told Shang-Chi that he had already told the Ten Rings that they would not have been able to kill him if they tried, noting that he was glad that Shang-Chi had proved him right by surviving. Wenwu then told Shang-Chi that it was time for them to return home, as he and Shang-Chi rested their foreheads together and left the club.[1]

Returning to Headquarters

Wenwu bringing his family to their home

"I gave you ten years to live your life, and where did it get you? Now it's time for you to take your place by my side."
"That's not going to happen."
―Xu Wenwu and Shang-Chi[src]

Returning to his Helicopter, Wenwu took his family and hostages back to their Headquarters, as his army of Ten Rings soldiers stood by and bowed to Wenwu as he arrived, as Wenwu looked to Shang-Chi to see his reaction to their greeting. Wenwu then allowed his children to explore their former home again, with Shang-Chi looking at his old training post, while Xu Xialing took Katy Chen to view her former bedroom.[1]

Wenwu lighting his candles for Ying Li

As the day turned to evening, Wenwu took some time to look at his memorial to Ying Li, where he lit and candle for her. Wenwu was then rejoined by Shang-Chi, as he handed him some candles and told him that his mother would be happy that he had come home. Wenwu then questioned if Shang-Chi had gotten the postcard with the Great Protector on it from him, noting that he sent it so that Shang-Chi would be forced to seek out his sister without any unnessercy violence.

Wenwu and Shang-Chi discuss their past

Wenwu claimed that he hated being the bad guy in his son's eye, to which Shang-Chi questioned how he had been able to find him in California, to which Wenwu explained that he had always known where his children were. Wenwu went on to accuse Shang-Chi of bouncing from one family to the next, and meeting Chen in the United States of America, who he called Shang-Chi's girlfriend, while they worked at the Fairmont San Francisco parking cars for rich guests.

Wenwu inviting Shang-Chi to his dinner

Wenwu had then told Shang-Chi that he had given him ten years to live his life, while questioning where these years had gotten him, before telling him that it was time for Shang-Chi to take his place by his side, as the leader of the Ten Rings. However, Shang-Chi still insisted that this was not going to happen. In response, Wenwu simply told Shang-Chi that he reminded him of Ying Li, before noting that he must be hungry, and inviting him to join them for dinner.[5]

Dinner with his Family

Wenwu discusses Trevor Slattery's insults

Wenwu invited the group to join him for dinner, only to soon find tension between Shang-Chi and Razor Fist, who had continued staring at each other. Although Wenwu insisted that they needed to stand down, since they were all on the same side now, Shang-Chi denied this was true. In response, Wenwu told Shang-Chi about his reaction to him running away, claiming that he had barely eaten or slept as a result of losing his son.

As he continued with his story, Wenwu explained that, while he was on a business trip in Romania, he had encountered a young boy who reminded him of Shang-Chi, explaining that he had watched this boy standing on a box and juggling three balls with his one arm. Wenwu told Shang-Chi that he had adopted the boy as his own son, to which Razor Fist had also noted to Shang-Chi that his father gave him a home and a purpose with joining the Ten Rings.

While Xu Xialing noted that her father also gave him a Razor Arm, he insisted that it was called a Razor Fist, which Xialing and Katy Chen insisted did not make sense, due to the name being an oxymoron. However, seeing that Razor Fist was getting confused and frustrated, Wenwu insisted that they stop, noting that he could call his blade whatever he wanted. Following this, Razor Fist left the family and Chen alone to eat and talk.[5]

Wenwu asked Chen what her true Chinese name was, expressing the importance of their names. Wenwu went on to tell the group his true name, noting that the only person who used to use that name was Ying Li. Continuing with this thought, Wenwu told them about how Aldrich Killian had invented a name for him, by recruiting Trevor Slattery to portray him and appropritate of his Ten Rings to use it as a cover for Killian's terrorist actions. As they listened, Wenwu explained that this plan had worked, and that the United States of America had become terrified of a fake terrorist, named after a chicken dish as well as a mandarin orange.[1]

Revealing the Secret Map

Wenwu discusses Ying Li's voice messages

Wenwu explained to his guests that Ying Li had been seemingly speaking with him, which Shang-Chi had refused to believe, leading to Wenwu promising to prove it to them. Wenwu brought them all into his office, as he explained that he had been working there when he heard the voice of his late wife, claiming that she was still alive and had actually been imprisoned within Ta Lo, as she begged for Wenwu to come and save her. However, Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing remained unconvinced, insisting that their mother was dead.

Determined to prove this to them, Wenwu took his family to a sculpture of the Great Protector, where he placed the Eyes of the Dragon, causing water to be shot out around them, only to freeze in time, much to the amazement of Shang-Chi. As they watched, the water then fell on the ground and created a map, which Wenwu explained was the secret pathway into Ta Lo. Wenwu told Shang-Chi and Xialing that he intended to follow this path and attack Ta Lo, with the intention of rescuing his wife from them.

Despite him showing that he had the support of the Ten Rings behind him, as his warriors held up their Hooked-Swords in salute of Wenwu, Shang-Chi insisted that they could not attack Ta Lo, claiming that there was no way that their mother was alive, and Wenwu would be committing genocide for no reason. Enraged by this, Wenwu proceeded to use his rings to throw Shang-Chi, Xialing and Katy Chen to the ground, ordering Razor Fist to take them into their prison cells while they prepared for war.[1]

Preparing for War

Wenwu watches as his children escape him

"They'll come back once I bring her home. Prepare the men for war."
―Xu Wenwu to Razor Fist[src]

While Wenwu was watching the monitors of the Ten Rings Headquarters, he witnessed Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing managing to steal a Car from their garage and escaping from the compound, having managed to get out of their cell, taking Katy Chen and Trevor Slattery with them. As Wenwu watched his children escaping him, he was rejoined by Razor Fist, as he instructed him to prepare for their mission, which Razor Fist agreed to.

Wenwu then prepared for the upcoming battle by wearing his armour, before sitting in his office, studying his books on Ta Lo. As he read, Wenwu heard the voice of Ying Li in his head, calling out for him to rescue her, as he turned to see a vision of Li and Xialing sitting together and smiling at him. The voice and vision further enforced Wenwu's determination to rescue his late wife from Ta Lo.

Wenwu was then snapped back to reality as Razor Fist had arrived at his office, and informed him that the Ten Rings were now ready for the mission, to which Wenwu confirmed that the pathway would be open by dawn. Razor Fist then agreed to prepare their squad of Jeeps for the mission to attack, as he left Wenwu to continue studying his books and preparing to battle the people of Ta Lo, and to rescue Ying Li.[1]

Battle of Ta Lo

Wenwu leading the Ten Rings into Ta Lo

"You've spent your entire life afraid. Always running, always hiding. You were there when they came for her, and you did nothing. You stood at a window and watched her die!"
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]

Using the guide given to him by the Eyes of the Dragon, Wenwu was able to lead his soldiers into Ta Lo, as they drove their Jeeps into the other dimension, until they eventually found their path was blocked by the villagers of Ta Lo. Once his soldiers had stepped out and stood their ground against the villagers, Wenwu stepped forward, finding that Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing had betrayed him and joined the villagers against him.

Wenwu attempted to convince his children that Ying Li was being held behind the Dark Gate and he was there to rescue her, although Shang-Chi insisted that this was not true. Wenwu was also challenged by Ying Nan and Guang Bo, who insisted that they were not hiding his late wife, with Bo claiming that they had turned Wenwu away from Ta Lo years earlier, because the crimes of his past would have destroyed their land, which angered Wenwu.

Eventually, Wenwu was forced to accept that his children would not join him, as he turned to Razor Fist and ordered him to lead the Ten Rings in an attack against the villagers. Wenwu then stood by and watched the Ten Rings firing their Electrified Crossbows at the villagers before engaging them in a battle with their Hooked-Swords. As chaos broke out across the village, Wenwu remained focused on the Dark Gate and simply marched through the battle.

Wenwu being challenged by Shang-Chi

Before he could reach the village's temple, Wenwu was stopped and challenged by Ying Nan, who was determined not to allow him to open the gates, as she claimed that what was there would destroy them all. However, before they could begin to fight, Death Dealer attacked Ying Nan, forcing her to be distracted and allowing Wenwu to continue his march towards the Dark Gate, although he was spotted by Shang-Chi, who chased after him.

Wenwu calmly confronting Shang-Chi

Stepping inside the village's temple, Wenwu bowed and prayed before the image of Ying Li, until he was found and confronted by Shang-Chi. Once again, Shang-Chi desperately attempted to convince his father that his mother was not behind the gates, which Wenwu refused to listen to. Wenwu then attempted to throw his son off balance by insulting him, only for Shang-Chi to insist that he was no longer afraid of him, which Wenwu denied.

Wenwu begins to fight against Shang-Chi

The father and son then began fighting each other, with Wenwu unleashing his rings against Shang-Chi, who defended himself with his Dragon Scale Staff. Wenwu insulted his son saying that he spent his entire life afraid - always running and always hiding. However, eventually Wenwu managed to launch himself into the air and land a kick to Shang-Chi's head, knocking him to the floor, while also insulting his son by reminding him of how he had hidden in fear when the Iron Gang had come to their home and murdered Ying Li, as Shang-Chi watched.

Wenwu eventually defeating Shang-Chi

However, rather than this stopping Shang-Chi, this resulted in him becoming enraged as Shang-Chi attacked him father, forcing the fight to leave the temple. Once they made distance between one another, Wenwu began firing his rings at Shang-Chi, who was able to block the attacks with his staff before continuing to fight his father. As Shang-Chi and Wenwu continued to fight, Shang-Chi pointed out that Wenwu was gone for them when they need him the most, and even if he managed to get his mother back, why would she take him back. In fury, Wenwu immediately ended the battle by striking Shang-Chi with the full force of the rings, launching him into the lake with incredible force.[1]

Showdown with Shang-Chi

Wenwu begins to attack the Dark Gate

"I have to save her. She's calling to me."
"I wish that were true. Dad, please. Your family needs you."
―Xu Wenwu and Shang-Chi[src]

With nobody standing in his way, Wenwu launched himself through the air with the power of his rings, and landed before the Dark Gate. As Wenwu stepped to the gates and touched the Dragon Scale, he heard the voice of Ying Li in his head once again, calling to him to rescue her. In response, Wenwu then powered up his rings and proceeded to punch the Dark Gate with all of his strength, causing shockwaves to begin shifting the scales.

As Wenwu continued to punch the gates, he transferred all ten rings onto one arm, so he could punch with more strength, but failed to noticed that the shifting of the scales was causing Soul Eaters to be freed from the gates, which then flew back to the village. Eventually, while Wenwu continued punching the gate, the Great Protector flew out of the lake to protect the villagers from the Soul Eaters that Wenwu had inadvertently unleashed upon them.

With the Great Protector battling the Soul Eaters, Wenwu was then knocked off his feet by the return of Shang-Chi, who kicked his father away from the gate and stood against him. Once again, Shang-Chi insisted that Ying Li was not back there, although Wenwu protested that he had to save her, blind to the creatures that he was unleashing. To stop his father, Shang-Chi then demonstrated the fighting style of Ta Lo, as Wenwu prepared for the fight.

The father and son had then continued their previous battle, with Shang-Chi now using the same fighting style as his mother, which Ying Nan had taught him, to get the upper hand over Wenwu. Despite his son doing better in this clash, Wenwu was still able to use the power of the rings against him, only for Shang-Chi to eventually manage to use his control of the air to catch five of the rings in mid-air, giving him control over them.

Wenwu battles Shang-Chi for the rings

Wenwu and Shang-Chi then battled for control over the rings, eventually finding themselves locked in a pull of power between the rings, with each using five of the rings to attempt to pull them away from the other. Determined to end the battle, Wenwu then proceeded to launch his remaining five rings at Shang-Chi with all of his power, causing a large explosion, while Wenwu fell to the ground hard, believing that he had defeated Shang-Chi.

Wenwu braces himself for defeat.

However, to Wenwu's amazement, Shang-Chi stepped forward with the power of all ten rings under his control. Wenwu then stood by helplessly, as Shang-Chi used the same power of his mother to increase the power of the rings, preparing to fire a deadly blast of energy at Wenwu, which would undoubtedly kill him. Despite having the opportunity to kill his father however, Shang-Chi instead dropped the rings at his feet, demonstrating his power.

Wenwu realises he has been deceived.

As they stood against each other, Wenwu insisted that he had to save Ying Li, only for Shang-Chi to once again insist that, while he wished it was true, his mother was not back there. However, before they could continue to attempt to find a peaceful resolution, they witnessed the Dark Gate being destroyed, as the Dweller-in-Darkness burst through, having gained enough power. Wenwu could only look on in horror, as he realised that he had been deceived.

Wenwu is killed by the Dweller-in-Darkness

With the Dweller free, it turned to attack Wenwu and Shang-Chi, only for Wenwu to reclaim the rings and use their power to throw them both out of the way. However, this caused Wenwu to briefly turn his back to the Dweller, who snatched him from the ground with its tentacles and began sucking the lifeforce from his body. Knowing he could not be saved, Wenwu looked down at his son, reminiscing on times he spent with Shang-Chi, from his adulthood to when he was only an infant, and bequeathed the ten rings to him before the Dweller consumed his soul and killed him.[1]

Legacy

Ten Rings' Leadership

"If my dad won't let me into his empire, I'm gonna build my own."
Xu Xialing to Katy Chen[src]

Upon obtaining the rings following Wenwu's death, Shang-Chi was able to kill the Dweller-in-Darkness, avenging Wenwu's death. The following night Wenwu's death was honored alongside Ying Li, and all the others who lost their lives during the battle, with both Shang-Chi and Xu Xialing having come to terms with their father and forgiven him despite all he did. Shang-Chi kept the rings for himself but opted to use them more responsibly, while Xu Xialing claimed she would finish dismantling the Ten Rings.[1] Instead, Xu Xialing took over Wenwu's position as the new leader of the Ten Rings intending to continue her father's work, but she also decided to implement major reforms to the organization.[14]

Personality

"我吃的盐比你吃的饭还要多。[15]"
―Xu Wenwu to Guang Bo[src]

A ruthless and calculating warlord, Wenwu led the Ten Rings with an iron fist, threatening his subordinates with death if they did not accomplish his orders, like when one of his agents failed in obtaining the War Machine Armor. His mystical rings gave him an insatiable hunger for power for centuries, aiming to be the Khan of the entire world. Nevertheless, Wenwu is not extremely cruel with his men: when his agent told him that he had got valuable information surrounding War Machine's battle suit, Wenwu simply spared him, demonstrating that he accepts any kind of useful progress on his plans. He also had great respect for the family, in a quest for power he met a woman named Ying Li, whom he married and had two children Shang-Chi and Xialing which led him to leave his cloak and focus on family life, but all that changed when a criminal organization called Iron Gang murdered his wife returned to his cloak to avenge her and take up the cause he thought he had left behind, training their children for their succession.

Having his style of leadership, Wenwu has demonstrated that he does not like to be imitated, being willing to punish those who had dared to impersonate him for their purposes. When the Mandarin fiasco engineered by Aldrich Killian incriminated the Ten Rings from Extremis-caused explosions and had Trevor Slattery posing as the leader of the Ten Rings, Wenwu resented them enough even after Killian died to the point of sending one of his most loyal agents to the Seagate Penitentiary to abduct Slattery.

Wenwu showed somewhat of a dry sense of humor when joking about how the fake name Killian came up with to impersonate him was ridiculous and found it funny that USA was intimidated "by a chicken dish" as well as "a mandarin orange", similarly he decided to spare Trevor Slattery from execution after being amused by his acting performances, instead deciding to keep Trevor as a prisoner and make him a jester for his court on an occasional basis.

Wenwu was not a very talkative person, when in battle he opted to stay quiet and remain focused in combat avoiding any distractions. When threatening his enemies Wenwu tends to remain calm and speak in a polite voice, despite this he still very intimidating needing only a few words and angry stares to make others cower. He tended to suppress his emotions and keep a level headed attitude, though when taunted enough he can act more impulsive such as when he Shang-Chi claimed that Ying Li wouldn't accept him back even if she came back to life, Wenwu on a rare moment of anger punched Shang-Chi with the full force of the rings tossing him into a lake when previously he was only attempting to knock his son down.

Despite all, Wenwu greatly loved and cared for Ying Li, his late wife, and was willing to put side his organization away as living a normal life with her while raising a family. Ying Li was the best of him and the only woman he ever loved enough to become a better man and loving father. Sadly, her death caused him to take his position again and take vengeance on her murder. As a result, he became cold and distant towards his children, forcing Shang-Chi into a hellish training to become a dangerous martial artist while manipulating him, while also neglecting Xialing and not allowing her to train alongside her brother. He cruelly trained his son to be a killer, pressuring him into becoming an assassin, and selfishly ignored his daughter due to being unable to look at her as she reminded him so much of his late wife.

Wenwu even displayed a spiteful side to him, in that he called out Shang-Chi for doing nothing and just watching his mother die through a window. disregarding that Shang-Chi was only a child at the time and could have done nothing to prevent his mother's death, and was angered in how Shang-Chi turned the argument around on Wenwu, for how he was not there when they needed him, how it was his crimes that his wife was made to pay for with her life, and that ultimately he chose the Rings over his family. In the end though, during the final moments of his life, Wenwu's thoughts were filled with times he spent with his son, proving that his love for him ran true and deep, and his final act was to pass on the Rings to his son to give him what he needed to defeat the Dweller-in-Darkness.

Powers and Abilities

Powers

  • Ten Rings Empowerment:

    Wenwu wielding the rings before a battle

    The Ten Rings granted Wenwu with a variety of superhuman abilities, including enhanced strength, durability, speed, agility, stamina, reflexes, nigh-immortality, and the ability to manipulate the rings at will. When the rings were used by Wenwu, they generated an aura of blue, purple, and transparent energy currents around them while an aura of blue and purple dim light running through the veins of his body, whereas they glowed orange and golden while being used by Shang-Chi.
    • Superhuman Strength: Wenwu's physical strength was enhanced to superhuman level by the Ten Rings, numerous times stronger than any normal human being. The enhanced strength granted by the rings was proportional to how many rings Wenwu was wearing at once, he usually kept five rings on each arm to evenly distribute his strength enhancement but could double the power of his punches by moving all rings to a single arm. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he used the rings to fling a soldier high up through the air before smashing him to the ground, generating a shockwave around him, and send many soldiers flying away with ease. During the Search for Ta Lo, he easily break open the door of his jeep to escape when it was driving towards the cliff. He was able to match Ying Li's strength, who was empowered by the Great Protector, generating a slight grey shockwave when blocking and countering each others blows. He was able to effortlessly slam both his son and daughter to the ground when both of them disagreed the decision on attacking Ta Lo, strong enough to cause Shang-Chi flipping in the air several times before hitting the ground. During the Massacre of the Iron Gang, he was able to punch a member of the Iron Gang several meters away, killing him instantly, and smash through their table with his fist, breaking it in half. He was also able to easily launch one of the member across the bar with considerable force, and then swiftly slam away one member for several meters towards another member, causing them to crash against a wall with incredible force, killing them both. During the Battle of Ta Lo, Wenwu was able to easily push Shang-Chi several meters back, land a kick to his head which knocking him to the ground with some bruise on his forehead, land a kick to his chest which knocking him back, and charge at and push him far away back, leaving the temple and crashed into a grassland with cuts on his cheek. He was able to easily hold back Shang-Chi Dragon Scale Staff, with him being unable to pull his staff out of his father's grip. He was even able to slightly shake the dragon scale on the Dark Gate when punching it, strong enough to generate shockwaves with each punch which slightly shifted the scales and caused debris to fall, weakened the magic inside them. By transferring all of the Ten Rings into a single arm, they greatly augmented his physical strength, allowing him to completely shake the dragon scale on the Dark Gate when punching it, generating a huge shockwave with each punch and further weakened the magic inside them, causing Soul Eaters to be freed from the gates as the scales shifted considerably. He was able to punch Shang-Chi away for several meters even after he was empowered by the Great Protector. During the battle against Shang-Chi who gained control over five of his rings, Wenwu was even able to successfully block his powerful kick which had enhanced its strength by wearing the rings on his leg, generating a huge shockwave around them, and had enough strength to push Shang-Chi back several meters away through the air with considerable force.
    • Enhanced Durability: Wenwu's durability was enhanced by the Ten Rings, numerous times more resistant to physical and energy damage than any normal human being, as well as being able to withstand falling from immense heights that would definitely kill a normal human. During the Search for Ta Lo, Wenwu was able to withstand and survive the car crash without any injury, and later he was able to easily withstand being hit and kicked by Ying Li, and survived being hit by an energy ball projected at him by her using his own rings and then crashed against a tree with considerable force, all without any noticeable injury. During the Battle of Ta Lo, he was able to easily withstand being hit by Shang-Chi with his Dragon Scale Staff, with no injuries and keep fighting afterwards. He was able to easily withstand attacks from Shang-Chi even after he was empowered by the Great Protector, being able to withstand a kick launch at him with considerable force after dropping down from a very high position with no injuries, and withstand being launched far way through the air by Shang-Chi with substantial force. He was even able to survive falling from a considerable height without wearing the rings, as he used all of his rings to attack Shang-Chi, with no noticeable injuries.
    • Enhanced Speed: Wenwu's speed was enhanced by the Ten Rings, allowing him to run and move at incredible level of speed, much faster than any normal human being. He was fast enough to go toe-to-toe with Ying Li, who was empowered by the Great Protector, and even being able to go toe-to-toe with Shang-Chi, who was empowered by the Great Protector and later the Ten Rings.
    • Superhuman Agility:

      Wenwu leaping towards Ying Li

      Wenwu's agility was enhanced by the Ten Rings, allowing him to coordinate his body with perfect balance, equilibrium, flexibility, and dexterity, much greater than any normal human being, as well as leaping great distances and heights with precision. Wenwu used the rings as a means of propulsion to launch himself into the air then land safely by shooting the rings towards the ground in order to break a fall. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he used the rings to launch himself several meters high up into the air and again to safely land on the ground. During the Search for Ta Lo, he easily leap out of his jeep mid-air and land safely on the cliff edge when it was flinging towards a cliff. During his fight against Ying Li, Wenwu used the rings to launch him several meters forward to attack her, and again but without shooting out the rings. During the Battle of Ta Lo, Wenwu easily flipped several meters high in the air to kick at Shang-Chi, and later he used the rings to launch himself several hundred meters through the air, flying across the lake between the village and the mountain, and again to safely land before the Dark Gate. He was also able to jump several meters up to attack Shang-Chi, and use the rings to safely land on ground after being launched far away through the air by Shang-Chi who had empowered by the Great Protector. During the battle against Shang-Chi who gained control over five of his rings, Wenwu was able to maintain balance mid-air and land back on the ground after being fling away several meters by him, and jump up for a considerable height without shooting out the rings to attack Shang-Chi. He used the rings to launch himself several meters away while saving Shang-Chi in the process, successfully dodged the Dweller-in-Darkness crashing at them.
    • Enhanced Stamina: Wenwu's stamina was enhanced by the Ten Rings, allowing him to exert himself at peak capacity for long periods of time without tiring or showing any sign of fatigue. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he was able to fight against their entire army single-handedly for an extended period of time without tiring. During his fight against Ying Li, he was able to fight against her for a long period of time without any sign of fatigue. During the Battle of Ta Lo, Wenwu was able to fight against Shang-Chi for an exceedingly long period of time with without tiring.
    • Enhanced Reflexes:

      Wenwu catching Shang-Chi's staff

      Wenwu's reflexes were enhanced by the Ten Rings, allowing him to react and dodge objects traveling at high speeds, much quicker than any normal human being. During the fight against Ying Li, his reflexes were sharp and fast enough to dodge or block her rapid attacks with ease, and effortlessly dodge a rich hat hurled to him at high speed. During the Massacre of the Iron Gang, he used the rings to block a pistol and a shotgun fired at him at point-blank range by the members of Iron Gang with ease. During the Battle of Ta Lo, Wenwu was able to effortlessly dodge and block Shang-Chi attacked with his staff, and even catch it from behind without even looking. After Shang-Chi was empowered by the Great Protector and later the Ten Rings, Wenwu's reflexes were sharp and fast enough to dodge or block his rapid and powerful attacks at close range with ease. He was also able to dodge the Dweller-in-Darkness crashing at him and Shang-Chi while saving his son in the process.
    • Nigh-Immortality: The Ten Rings stop Wenwu from ageing as long as they are worn, as well as preventing him to die from natural causes, such as earthly infections, diseases, and disorders, making him near-immortal. He was still in his prime despite being more than a thousand years old. However, the rings did not grant him true immortality as they could not protect the user from fatal injuries or supernatural causes of death, as seen when his soul was consumed by the Dweller-in-Darkness and killed him.
    • Weapon Calling:

      Wenwu recalling his rings

      The Ten Rings obeyed Wenwu calling as though they were driven by a form of intelligence and self-awareness. He was able to telepathically control and use them as weapons in various ways to attack his opponents, and would return to him whenever he wants. However, Shang-Chi was able to take control of the rings away from him by using the unique martial arts practiced in Ta Lo to redirect their energy, and later even took control of all the rings.
    • Energy Manipulation: Wenwu could control and manipulate a magic energy field emitted by the Ten Rings at will, generating an aura of blue, purple, and transparent energy currents. He could use them for a variety of purposes, such as creating an energy barrier, shooting the rings towards the ground to launch himself high up into the air and again to safely land on the ground, firing them individually or together as high-powered projectiles, shooting blasts of energy, extending the rings as energy chain to use as a whip, projecting energy blasts, and blocking or deflecting attacks from opponents.
      • Energy Projection:

        Wenwu shooting his rings

        Wenwu could shoot the Ten Rings individually or together as energy projectiles. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he shot the rings to attack several soldiers at once, knocking them down and strong enough to shatter their armor. He later shot the rings to overpower an entire army with ease during a battle across a snow covered forest. During his fight against Ying Li, he shot one of his rings at her, breaking the rocks behind her after she dodged it, and shot five rings at her mid-air while launching towards her, penetrating a tree's trunk after she dodged them, and shot one of his rings at her again when attacking her. He later charged his rings to enhance the energy in them and then shot all of the rings at her. During the Battle of Ta Lo, Wenwu shot his rings one at a time consecutively at Shang-Chi, and later shot five rings at him to the chest at point-blank range, breaking his staff in half, and shot five rings at him again with extreme force, launching him very far away into the lake at high speed, generating a massive wave and leaving him in an unconscious state. He shot one of his rings at Shang-Chi again after he was empowered by the Great Protector. After Shang-Chi gained control over five of his rings, Wenwu shot his remaining five rings to attack him while simultaneously deflecting his attacks, and smash the rings to the ground with considerable force and launch them towards Shang-Chi, cracking the ground and generating small shockwaves along the path of the rings, and shot them at him from underneath the ground, sent him flying upwards for a considerable height, and then shot all five rings at him after jumping very high up into the air with substantial force, causing him to crash into the ground and generate an immensely huge shockwave. Moreover, Wenwu could shoot the rings towards the ground to launch himself high up into the air and again to safely land on the ground. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he shot the rings towards the ground and launch himself several meters high up into the air and again to safely land on the ground, generating powerful shockwaves in both of the processes which knocked down the soldiers nearby. During his fight against Ying Li, Wenwu shot two rings on each arms to launch himself several meters forward to attack her. Wenwu could also launch himself high up into the air without shooting out the rings by projecting energy towards the ground. During his fight against Ying Li, he used them to launch himself several meters forward to attack her. During the Battle of Ta Lo, he shot all of his rings towards the ground and launch himself several hundred meters through the air, flying across the lake between the village and the mountain, and again to safely land before the Dark Gate. He later shot all of his rings towards the ground to launch himself several meters away while saving Shang-Chi in the process, successfully dodged the Dweller-in-Darkness crashing at them.
      • Energy Blast:

        Wenwu kills gang member with energy blast

        Wenwu could use the Ten Rings to project an energy blast. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he used all of his rings to project a massive energy blast that was powerful enough to go through the entire opposing army that was in its path, sending numerous soldiers flying away upon impact and completely destroyed the gateway of the castle. He later used five of his rings to project an energy blast to flip over a horse cart carrying lots of gold during a battle across a snow covered forest. Wenwu could also shoot blasts of energy out of his arm without shooting out the rings. During his fight against Ying Li, he shot an energy blast at her after launching towards her. During the Massacre of the Iron Gang, he shot an energy blast at a member of the Iron Gang, causing him to fly away and crash through a window, and killing another member by shooting an energy blast directly into his head at point-blank range. During the Battle of Ta Lo, he used five of his rings to project an energy blast at Shang-Chi with considerable force.
      • Chain Creation:

        Wenwu battling with his rings

        Wenwu could extend the Ten Rings as energy chain to use as a whip. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he used five of his rings to form an energy chain to strangle a soldier and fling him high up through the air before smashing him to the ground, and later even used all of his rings to form a longer and more powerful energy chain to attack many soldiers at once, strong enough to send them flying away upon impact. He later used five of his rings to form an energy chain to overpower an entire army with ease during a battle across a snow covered forest. During his fight against Ying Li, Wenwu used all of his rings to form energy chain to attack her, managed to briefly subdue her by tying them to her arm and pulling her towards him. He used five of his rings to form an energy chain to bind Shang-Chi's arm and throw him several meters back when he was about to kill the Death Dealer. During the Massacre of the Iron Gang, he used five of his rings to form an energy chain to strangle a member of the Iron Gang and easily launch him across the bar, crashing against a glass wall which severely injured him. During the Battle of Ta Lo, he used five of his rings to form an energy chain to attack Shang-Chi. He also used five of his rings on each arm to form two energy chains to safely land on the ground after being launched far away through the air by Shang-Chi. After Shang-Chi gained control over five of his rings, Wenwu used the remaining five rings to form an energy chain to fight against him. The rings were strongly held together by a magic energy field, when they battled for control over the rings, neither of them could break each others energy whip with each using five of the rings to attempt to pull them away from the other, which locked in a pull of power between the rings and ending up in stalemate.
      • Force-Field Generation:

        Wenwu blocks all the arrows with his rings

        Wenwu could use the Ten Rings to create an energy barrier. During the battle against the Seljuk Empire, he spun the rings around himself at high speed to create a large energy barrier while riding his horse, blocking all the arrows as he charged forward. During the Massacre of the Iron Gang, he used the rings to create a small energy barrier, durable enough to withstand a pistol and a shotgun fired at him at point-blank range by members of Iron Gang.

Abilities

"Are you planning to stop me all by yourself?"
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]
  • Master Martial Artist:

    Wenwu fighting against Ying Li

    As the leader of the Ten Rings, Wenwu was an extremely skilled and formidable hand-to-hand combatant and martial artist, with centuries of training and combat experience, making him one of the most powerful and best fighters on the planet. His fighting style resembled the Hung Gar style of Kung Fu. He had defeated and killed many enemies in his lifetime. Wenwu also trained his son Shang-Chi into one of the most dangerous martial artist in the world. He repeatedly defeated numerous opponents with ease and held his own well against Ying Li despite her great martial arts skills being complimented by her aerokinesis. When fighting Shang-Chi, Wenwu proved to be a superior fighter, being able to easily gain the upper hand on and decisively defeat his son while he was using a Dragon Scale Staff, though Wenwu was using the rings. He was able to knock him down repeatedly and swiftly reverse Shang-Chi's brief dominance, breaking his staff and sending him into the ocean. Even after Shang-Chi acquired his aerokinesis, Wenwu was still able to fight evenly with him, managing to deliver multiple blows and counter Shang-Chi's moves, ultimately ending the fight in a standstill.
  • Chain Mastery: Wenwu was extremely skilled in using a chain for combat, being able to use the Ten Rings to conjure an energy whip. He was able to easily take down multiple enemies with a single swing and evenly match against Shang-Chi when they are both using the Ten Rings to conjure a whip during the Battle of Ta Lo.
  • Master Marksman: Wenwu was an extremely skilled marksman. He could launch his rings with force and accuracy.
  • Master Acrobat:

    Wenwu kicking at Shang-Chi

    Wenwu was highly skilled acrobat and gymnast due to years of training and experience. His acrobatic abilities was further enhanced by the powers of the Ten Rings. He was able to perform highly acrobatic feats when fighting against Shang-Chi and Ying Li.
This section requires expansion
  • Master Assassin: To be added
  • Genius-Level Intellect: To be added
  • Master Tactician: Wenwu somewhat a highly skilled, effective tactician and leader, succesfully lead his own army with great efficiency and conquered many lands.
"Have you been practicing your English?"
―Xu Wenwu to Shang-Chi[src]
  • Bilingualism: Wenwu was fluent in his native Mandarin, as well as English.

Equipment

Weapons

"How long did your dad have them before he gave them to you?"
"Um... About a thousand years."
Captain Marvel and Shang-Chi[src]
  • Ten Rings:

    Wenwu wearing his rings

    Wenwu allegedly acquired his ten rings from a crater or stole them from a tomb. The rings drastically increased his strength and lifespan, and he could also wield them in a manner similar to a whip or launch them as projectiles and remotely return them to his arms. They also glowed blue on his person, whereas they glowed orange while being used by Ying Li or Shang-Chi. Wenwu used the power from these rings to conquer much of Asia, with his army of the Ten Rings, becoming a feared warrior. However, Wenwu gave up the rings for several years, once he had fallen in love with Ying Li, only choosing to take them back following her death. Wenwu would use the power of these rings in a final effort to save his wife, believing her to be behind the Dark Gate, although this was a deception by the Dweller-in-Darkness. During his duel with Shang-Chi, who was attempting to stop him, Wenwu inadvertantly unleashed the Dweller from it's imprisonment, as Wenwu passed the ten rings down to Shang-Chi moments before the Dweller took his soul and life.

Other Equipment

  • Armor: As the leader of the Ten Rings, Wenwu would march into battle wearing a full suit of protective armor, despite him using the ten rings to create protective shields that sheltered him from incoming arrows. Many centuries later, Wenwu donned a protective set of black and blue armor for the Battle of Ta Lo. The sleeves were short enough for him to wear his rings. and the belt featured the symbol of his organization.

Vehicles

This section requires expansion

Facilities

This section requires expansion

Relationships

Family

Allies

Enemies

Appearances

Appearances for Xu Wenwu

In chronological order:

Trivia

  • In the comics, the Mandarin is a would-be conqueror who came across ten Makluan rings, whose power he used to build a criminal empire. Using a combination of superhuman martial arts abilities, alien science, Chi manipulation, and the ten energy-blasting Makluan rings, the Mandarin wages a never-ending war on civilization. He was also one of Iron Man's greatest enemies.
  • Shang-Chi's father in the comics was originally Fu Manchu, a Chinese doctor and criminal mastermind, who was an adaptation of the character of the same name from Sax Rohmer's novels. When Marvel lost the comic book rights of Fu Manchu, the character was reinvented as Zheng Zu, a powerful Chinese sorcerer and leader of the Five Weapons Society.
  • Wenwu is named after the Chinese dual concept of wen (civil administration) and wu (martial administration).
  • One of the many aliases that Wenwu claimed he had been called was "Master Khan." In the comics, Master Khan is a villainous sorcerer from K'un-Lun and an enemy of Iron Fist who was killed by Namor. The alias "Master Khan" was also later used by the Mandarin in the comics. In the comics, Mandarin claimed to be a descendant of Genghis Khan, as in the movie, Wenwu is over 1000 years old, he could be Genghis Khan himself. In the Iron Man, the flag of the Ten Rings had a Mongolian script.

Behind the Scenes

  • According to Jon Favreau and Jeff Bridges, the Mandarin was intended to be the primary villain in the first Iron Man. Kevin Feige revealed in an interview that early drafts of the film depicted the Mandarin as a younger individual, contemporary to Tony Stark, who would have business dealings with Stark Industries. Though this idea was eventually omitted to further push Obadiah Stane as the main antagonist of the film as opposed to the Mandarin, some of the traits for the character were incorporated into the character of Aldrich Killian in Iron Man 3.
  • The Mandarin was considered by Marvel Studios to be introduced in The Avengers alongside Shang-Chi in the post-credits scene as a tease for the Chinese market, but Beijing's development team shot down the idea as they didn't want the first Chinese character of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to be a villain.[16]
  • The lore of the Mandarin in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has dealt with several retcons throughout the years:
    • While early versions of Iron Man 3 featured the real Mandarin, the movie ultimately revealed the "Mandarin" was an impostor which led to the creation of the character Trevor Slattery, as writer Drew Pearce suggested during one of the writing sessions. Director Shane Black further supported this decisions arguing that "Who would be fool enough to declare that they're an international terrorist? If you're smart, whatever regime you're part of, you'd put a puppet committee and remain in your house".[17]
    • Furthermore, Kevin Feige commented that due to the Mandarin's story in the comics, which relies on a lot of stereotypes, they wanted a reinterpretate the character in his MCU debut, and they decided to depict the Mandarin as a "symbol and fear-onger, which is what he was in the comics. This is a very modern, if not post-modern, interpretation of that." This was depicted in the film by Aldrich Killian, as it was revealed Killian himself was the Mandarin, the puppeteer behind Slaterry's "Mandarin".[18] However, the idea of the "real Mandarin" existed in previous film of the Iron Man franchise, and thus the Marvel One-Shot: All Hail the King was made.[19] According to Drew Pearce the idea of the short was an excuse to bring Slattery back and tease him for future appearances and not an attempt to apologize to the fan-base.[20]
    • The short depicted that the real Mandarin was angered that Trevor Slattery and Aldrich Killian had used his moniker and ordered a Ten Rings member Jackson Norris to capture Slattery. Following the release of the short, Feige added that the idea was that "Killian was perverting the notion of things he's heard" to make his own version during his campaign.[21] The short also explained the Mandarin had been a title commonly associated to the Ten Rings mythos for ages, however, this was retconned in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings.
    • Writer David Callaham stated that Xu Wenwu did not use the title of "The Mandarin" himself: "Our version of the character is not The Mandarin in the way that people are expecting him to be. "The Mandarin" is a title that has been applied to him in the past by people that don't understand his culture." Director Destin Daniel Cretton followed on from this by stating: "It was for me the part of the Shang-Chi comics that I personally really connected to. It was really important for us to find the root of that anger and that pain. That was the goal from the get-go, and probably the number one fear of all of us was creating a Mandarin that was further contributing to the "Yellow Peril" type of stereotypes that are still flying around."[22] In spite of this, in the film, Wenwu claims that Aldrich Killian had invented the name by the events of Iron Man 3 and implied that he had never been called the "Mandarin" in the past. This contradicted an issue of Iron Man 3 Prelude which featured the character being addressed by a Ten Ring Member as such and Marvel One-Shot: All Hail the King, where Jackson Norriss referred to as Mandarin.
    • The mythos of the Ten Rings were retconned as well for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings changing from a Mongolian red flag to a Chinese black flag without any explanation in-universe.[23]
  • Tony Leung revealed in an interview with GQ that he created a backstory for Wenwu in which he was a victim of domestic violence at the hands of his father and grew up without self-esteem as a result. Upon gaining superpowers, he wished to rediscover his self-esteem, though it caused him to become narcissistic and take his anger out on everyone else. These factors ultimately led to him being unable to love his children, due to his inability to love himself.[24]
  • Xiau-Ping Fan, Zhang-Zheng Meng and Quan-Jun Su were stunt doubles for Tony Leung in the role of Xu Wenwu.
  • Leonard Sun was a stand-in for Tony Leung in the role of Xu Wenwu.

References

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The Marvel Cinematic Universe Wiki has a collection of images and media related to Xu Wenwu.
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The Marvel Cinematic Universe Wiki has a collection of quotes related to Xu Wenwu.
  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 1.23 1.24 1.25 1.26 1.27 1.28 1.29 1.30 1.31 1.32 1.33 1.34 Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
  2. 2.0 2.1 Iron Man 3
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Marvel One-Shot: All Hail the King
  4. Translates from Mandarin to: Fool
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Deleted Scene
  6. Translates from Mandarin to: The legend of the Ten Rings has been told for thousands of years. Every generation, the story grows. But at its center, there is always one man. Some say he found the rings in a crater or stole them from a tomb. They gave him the strength of a god, and the gift of eternal life. He could have used them for good. But all he wanted... was power.
  7. Translates from Mandarin to: Have you ever heard the legend of Ta Lo? A hidden village with mythical creatures and ancient magic. Where people practice a martial arts from the gods. I want to find it.
  8. Translates from Mandarin to: You don't know who you're talking to."
    "I don't care who you are. Turn around now, and I won't have to hurt you.
  9. Translates from Mandarin to: She told me I could change, that I could leave my past behind, but she was wrong. If I hadn't taken them off, those men wouldn't have dared do this, and now they will pay for it.
  10. Translates from Mandarin to: A blood debt, has to be paid by blood. Will you help me?
  11. Iron Man
  12. Iron Man 2
  13. Iron Man 3 Prelude
  14. Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings Post-credits Scene
  15. Official subtitle: "I've lived ten of your lifetimes."
    Translates literally from Mandarin to: "I've eaten more salt than you've eaten rice."
  16. THE AVENGERS Nearly Included A Post-Credits Scene Introducing Shang-Chi And The Mandarin To The MCU
  17. Iron Man 3 - Audio Commentary
  18. Kevin Feige, Marvel Studios President, On The Future Of 'Iron Man' & Hiring Shane Black | HuffPost Entertainment
  19. ALL HAIL THE KING: Writer/Director Drew Pearce - VFK Exclusive - Voices From Krypton
  20. Audio Commentary for All Hail the King
  21. Could We See the Real Mandarin; Is Red Skull Dead? - IGN
  22. Shang-Chi: Tony Leung's Wenwu Is 'Not The Mandarin In The Way People Are Expecting' – Exclusive
  23. Why Shang-Chi Movie Changed Ten Rings Logo From Iron Man
  24. Tony Leung Breaks Down His Most Iconic Characters | GQ - YouTube

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