It had already been confirmed that Wong and the Abomination would be coming back in MCU phase 4. But nobody had ever anticipated that the two would make an appearance in Shang-Chi & The Legend Of The Ten Rings. What’s even more astonishing is that the two are seen engaged in combat in a caged ring. What made Doctor Strange’s closest confidante fight the Hulk’s arch rival in a movie that is completely unrelated to both the characters?
Many fans have speculated that the Shang-Chi movie would feature Simu Liu‘s titular character entering an underground martial arts tournament. Shang Chi could be seen fighting his sister Xialing (Meng’er Zhang) in one of the scenes in the trailer. The theories have been proven to be true. There will indeed be a tournament where fighters fight to death in caged matches. But the most suprising scene was when we saw a comic accurate Abomination duke it out with Wong, a master of magic and the mystic sciences. While the face of the arcane warrior was not shown, an earlier pciture of Simu Liu and Benedict Wong, who plays Wong in the MCU, was taken during Shang-Chi’s filming. That leaves little room for error. The magic using warrior you see in the trailer against Abomination is indeed Wong.
Shang-Chi’s Hidden Doctor Strange Connection
Both the Abomination and Wong are prime candidates to win this martial arts tournament. Wong has his magic and wits. He could easily use them to make even the strongest of giants to submit to his might. The Abomination on the other hand is an avatar of raw, brute strength. Tim Roth’s character was incarcerated in a secret SHIELD facility after the events of The Incredible Hulk. He may have escaped his prison and is now fighting in the tournament for the sheer glory of it. Also, the Abomination might be eyeing a lucrative prize to be awarded to the winner of the tournament. That might serve as a motivation.
But Wong’s intentions to join the tournament will never be about money, fame, or power. He is a master of magic and the mystic arts. If he is indeed in the tournament, he must have a solid reason to have made his presence felt in Shang-Chi.
Wong is in the tournament probably because he wants something the Mandarin has. Doctor Strange gave us the concept of magical artefacts, objects that help harness various fantastic magical abilities. The Eye of Agamotto, the Wand of Watoomb, and Vaulting Boots of Valtorr, and the Cloak of Levitation are good examples of how powerful artefacts can be. The Mandarin also has an artefact in his possession. The Ten Rings could have piqued Doctor Strange’s interests and he could have asked Wong to infiltrate mandarin’s operation and gather information on them.
Maybe the Ten Rings are the reward to whoever wins the martial arts tournament showcased in Shang-Chi. Wong might be in the pursuit of obtaining those rings so that they could be kept safe within the confines of the Sanctum Sanctorum. So that the power of the Ten Rings never falls into the wrong hands.