Marvel's martial arts master Shang-Chi will star in a new Master of Kung Fu one-shot, written by WWE Superstar-turned-UFC fighter CM Punk (Drax) and illustrated by Dalibor Talajic (Secret Wars: Master of Kung Fu).
Featuring a cover by Mike Mayhew (Star Wars, Rocket), the one-shot will sport Marvel Legacy numbering, to reflect the character's appearances in Special Marvel Edition and the original run of Master of Kung Fu.
"I grew up on Shang Chi," Talajic told Syfy Wire. "I am a huge fan of Bruce Lee, so naturally I adore Shang Chi as well. I love both [Paul] Gulacy and [Mike] Zeck stuff. Gulacy treated Shang Cji like a noir book, while Zeck made it very impressive in fight scenes. I had my dream come true some two years ago when I did the Master of Kung Fu mini with Haden Blackman. The editor on this project, Kathleen Wisnecky, knows me from that time, so I hope she was pleased with what we did back then and she called me back."
Introduced in 1973 by Steve Englehart and Jim Starlin in Special Marvel Edition #15, Shang-Chi proved so popular that with 17, the series was renamed to Hands of Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu. In addition to his mastery of numerous unarmed and weaponry-based wushu styles of martial arts, Shang-Chi also has the ability to create duplicates of himself.
Coming from a martial arts background, Talajic told Syfy Wire that he plans to use his personal experience to help him depict Shang-Chi in action-packed fight sequences that are both dynamic and realistic.
"[I]f there are going to be fight scenes, you can expect them to be quite grounded in something that's persuasive, not just random kicks," said Talajic. "If you browse through the books I did so far, I always try to make my action scenes fluid and forceful. Over the top sometimes, yes, but fluid. And since it's Shang Chi we're talking about ... He IS the greatest fighter there is -- so yes, you can expect some seriously spectacular stuff."
Here's the full solicitation text for Master of Kung Fu #126:
The Marvel Universe is full of fighters: brawlers, scrappers, weapons experts, mystical kung fu virtuosi. But there’s only one martial artist skilled enough to be called the greatest. SHANG-CHI has been a pinch hitter for a long time, stepping in for Avengers missions when no one else would do, but when no one can match your speed or skill, sometimes it’s best to work alone. To see what you’ve been missing if you don’t know Shang-Chi, don’t miss MASTER OF KUNG FU!
Master of Kung Fu #126 will be available in November.