A hero published by Marvel Comics. Shang-Chi, Master of Kung-Fu first appeared in 1976 in Special Marvel Edition #15. He was created by Stevel Englehart and Jim Starlin.

It was the mid-70's and interest in martial arts was at an all time high. Bruce Lee movies were hugely popular, Kung-Fu with David Carradine was on television, and according to Carl Douglas Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting. Marvel Comics ever with its finger on the pulse of popular culture decided to use their licensing of the character Fu Manchu to create a new hero with a martial arts theme. And so, Shang-Chi, the Master of Kung-Fu was born.

Fu Manchu, evil overlord and general despot, decided that he needed to carry on his line and set about doing so in his usual style. He chose a woman based purely on her genetic make-up, got her pregnant, and upon the child's birth, took the baby and sent the mother away. The child, a son named Shang-Chi, was trained in martial arts from a young age and kept in nearly complete seclusion otherwise, lest he discover that his father was not much of a role model and wanted by law enforcement on six of the seven continents of the world.

When Shang-Chi was a young man, his father sent him out to kill one of Fu Manchu's foes, a man named Dr. Petrie. Shang-Chi seemingly succeeds in his mission, but is soon confronted by Sir Dennis Nayland Smith. Smith had opposed Fu Manchu's plans for years and though Fu Manchu was kept seemingly young through the use of his Elixier Vitae, a potion that extended his life, Nayland Smith was advanced in years. Smith was also confined to a wheelchair after having been injured by Fu Manchu]. Nayland Smith told Shang-Chi who his father really was and to give him proof. Shang-Chi returned to his father and confronted him with Nayland Smith's evidence. When Fu Manchu offered no evidence otherwise, Shang-Chi turned from following his father and swore to bring him to justice.

For years, Shang-Chi traveled the world, defending others from the plots of his father and seeking to defeat him. Eventually Shang-Chi was able to defeat Fu Manchu when the Elixier Vitae lost its effectiveness for the old villain and he was required to capture his son to add his blood to the mixture. Shang-Chi was able to prevent Fu Manchu from taking the potion and he died. After that, Shang-Chi hung up his robe and sought peace. He has appeared in the last few years in Marvel's Marvel Knights series and even in the X-Men.

My thanks to sighmoan for straightening out my recollection of Shang-Chi's origin.

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