All Of Shang-Chi's Costumes In The Comics, Ranked | CBR – CBR – Comic Book Resources

Shang-Chi may have gotten a fancy new suit for his MCU debut, but the Marvel hero has worn his own fair share of costumes in the comics over the years.
Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have welcomed the new hero who debuted in Shang-Chi & The Legend of the Ten Rings. The character has a long history in the comics that dates back to his first appearance in Special Marvel Edition‘s “The Hands of Shang-Chi: Master of Kung-Fu” from 1973.
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While the MCU version received a powerful modernized costume in the movie, the comics version of Shang-Chi has worn a few different outfits over the years that ranged from traditional fighting gear to an updated superhero suit, with some odd changes that disappeared as quickly as they were introduced.
Shang-Chi’s debut in Special Marvel Edition #15 introduced the original costume that he wore for years in the comics as he fought against his evil father’s criminal organization alongside government agencies like MI-6.
This outfit resembled a traditional fighting outfit that was similar to a karate gi, though it was red with golden embellishments on the trim. He also wore a red headband and silver bracers that would become a nearly constant accessory to his various costumes over the years.
Shang-Chi wore quite a few casual outfits in his Master of Kung Fu ongoing series that launched in the 70s, but he wore one outfit that stood out for its reflection of the time period that even appeared on a cover in the 80s.
This casual look featured a solid black turtleneck that he paired with an unmissable pair of white bell-bottom pants, complete with his red headband and a sash through the belt loops. While his silver bracers were left off his casual outfit on the cover, when he removed his shirt inside the comic (as he often did to fight), his bracers were on underneath his turtleneck.
Shang-Chi returned to the comics after a bit of an absence with appearances in series like Heroes For Hire and Marvel Knightswhich featured updated versions of his original red-and-gold fighting gear. However, when he officially joined Misty Knight’s Heroes For Hire, he appeared in a red vest with loose-fitting dark purple pants, though he often abandoned the vest.
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The pants also switched back to the usual red design depending on the artist, finished with a purple sash to call back to the new color scheme that thankfully didn’t last for too long. The silver bracers, as usual, remained a familiar part of his costume that also served him well for defense.
Marvel released a line of mature comics under the MAX imprint, which included the Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu that saw him working with his old friend and romantic interest Leiko Wu to stop the dark plans of his returned father.
While Shang-Chi eventually returned to his preferred shirtless fighting outfit in the finale of the series, he originally appeared in a stealthier modern look. This featured a dark leather jacket, tight black turtleneck, and dark pants, though he also briefly appeared in a dark version of his original fighting outfit as well.
Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Bagley introduced quite a few new versions of familiar characters in Ultimate Spider-Man, modernizing popular heroes and telling new stories free from the usual Marvel continuity, becoming known as Ultimate Marvel.
Shang-Chi appeared alongside other street-level heroes like Iron Fist and Moon Knight as they attempted to stop the Kingpin, though they didn’t appear much in the series. Ultimate Shang-Chi wore a black costume that was trimmed with red and gold around his collar and sleeves, with a red sash and a yin yang symbol over his heart.
After the Master of Kung Fu series ended with Shang-Chi leaving behind his traditional fighting gi, he adopted a simpler and usually shirtless costume in the 90s that kept his loose-fitting pants and silver bracers. However, Shang-Chi also began to appear with a new half-sleeve dragon tattoo that first appeared during a crossover with the X-Men.
This tattoo would follow Shang-Chi for a few appearances in other series like Journey Into Mystery, though it would disappear from the character’s arm after a short absence from the comics. It would later be revealed that it was only a temporary tattoo applied for his undercover work, though that didn’t make much sense to fans.
The Avengers and other characters were recently assembled together by the cosmic force known as the Phoenix, which had arrived on Earth hoping to choose a new host after previously being denied psionic mutants like Jean Grey and Hope Summers. Shang-Chi was one of the chosen who was placed in matchups by the Phoenix in order to determine the best host.
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Each character was given a fraction of the Phoenix’s power, which gave them a fiery costume overhaul. Shang-Chi’s costume was yellow and white and emblazoned with the Phoenix symbol along with white wrappings and a golden belt. While he was Captain America‘s pick to host the Phoenix, his refusal to kill saw him ejected from the tournament, and he lost the powers and costume.
Shang-Chi’s casual attire was given a more fitting addition when he began working alongside Captain America’s Secret Avengers to stop the Shadow Council’s plans to resurrect his sorcerer father, who was renamed as Zheng Zu.
While he wore his usual red fighting pants with the now-blue sash, he paired this with a tight black T-shirt that featured a stylized dragon and yin yang symbol on it, along with his familiar silver bracers. His time with the Secret Avengers would see his costume change over the series into a simple red-and-black jumpsuit, which would later be given a further superhero overhaul.
His time with the Secret Avengers made him a perfect candidate for the Avengers when Captain America and Iron Man reorganized the team to make it bigger and start tackling worldwide and intergalactic threats.
Shang-Chi adopted a red-and-black bodysuit with golden bracers and boots that he wore for a few years. Most of his weaponry was also given a golden redesign, and he even briefly gained the power to multiply himself into deadly kung fu copies. He also wore this costume when he took on the giant dragon island of Madripoor thanks to size-changing Pym Particles.
Shiang-Chi’s modern comic series introduced a new version of his costume that updated his original look with elements that would later appear in his MCU costume. His new suit featured a red tunic and green pants along with golden dragonscale armor that further tied him to the mythical dragon known as the Great Protector.
This connection was used for his MCU origins and further empowered the hero, though his costume in the comics is a ceremonial marker of his place as the Champion of the House of The Deadly Hand and leader of the Five Weapons Society in place of his fallen father.
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Entertainment reporter, writer, and all-around geek, Scoot Allan has written for print and online media sources like Geek Magazine, GeekExchange, GrizzlyBomb, WhatCulture, and the Urban 30 before joining CBR, ScreenRant, GameRant and The Gamer as a staff writer. He enjoys salad but prefers french fries.


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