Characters Appearing: Fah Lo Suee, Fu Manchu, Shang-Chi
Master of Kung Fu #27
Issue(s): Master of Kung Fu #27
...and confronts his father.
Fu Manchu says that the dagger was actually thrown by an agent of Shang-Chi's sister. Fu Manchu provides Shang-Chi with an opportunity to kill him, but he declines.
The conversation between father and son was interesting.
Fu Manchu was warning his Council of Seven about his daughters acquisition of the ruby eyes from last issue when Shang Chi arrived.
A writer complains about the coloring:
"I am really annoyed at the artistic representation Orientals are given and I hope this will be corrected in future series. Their skin is not that deathly yellow pallor; neither is it Caucasian, but a suitable mix must be found."
There is a single, crucial fact that you should be aware of, Jim, in regard to our coloring of Oriental characters in this and other Marvel titles. You suggest a "suitable mix" between the shades we are presently using, as if it were within our power to designate precisely which hues and tones we would like to use; unfortunately it is not. Our printer offers us a predetermined selection of 48 different colors and shades, excluding black and white, which we have to work with.
You can bet that if white people were coming out a bright shade of neon-pink or something, a solution would have been found. Furthermore, in reality, Chinese people generally do not have a skin color that different than white people, so if your choices are two ridiculous shades of yellow or a Caucasian skin tone, you'd think they'd go with the Caucasian color.
Quality Rating: C
Chronological Placement Considerations: Giant-Size Master of Kung Fu #3 takes place prior to this, per the second Reference below.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
I agree that if white people were coming out neon-pink that the color issue would be corrected, but that doesn't change Marvel's situation where they are limited to the colors available to them by their printers. Obviously back in the day when color comics were first published, the printers made sure that white skin color was accurate, but they didn't bother to do all the mix and matching for a suitable Asian skin color. So until the printers had upgraded their printing process, Marvel was simply out of luck.
I'm not sure when a more realistic skin color scheme was available, or if they just abandoned having a different skin color for Asians and used the same white color, as your suggested. By the mid to late eighties, I don't think there was any difference in skin color.
If you really want to get into strange colors, what about the grey skin used for the Asp, an Egyptian. I saw that grey color used for several other Middle Eastern types.
Posted by: Chris | April 21, 2013 2:23 PM
I still contend that Marvel should have just used "caucasian" for their eastern asian characters, and that is what they eventually do (see Godzilla #1, for example).
But you're right about that grey. Really weird. I think they would have done better if they actually had a Middle Eastern lead, though.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 21, 2013 6:41 PM
The Golden Beetle from last issue is referred to here inexplicably as a Golden Scorpion.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | April 8, 2018 2:30 PM
Page 16, panel 5, Shang-chi says "How was the world bettered by forcing me to believe I had slain Dr. Pertrie?" (sic), suggesting to me that he knows the truth/retcon so that this episode takes place after Giant-Size MOKF #3.
As to the coloring, it should be easy enough to compare Shang-chi to, say, Jimmy Woo. It seems likely to me that Marvel made a deliberate choice to give Shang-chi that skin tone as part of his "costume" design so that he would stand out. Otherwise it should be simple enough to distinguish him as Asian through sensitive, unexaggerated eye shape.
Posted by: Michael Grabowski | May 24, 2018 10:14 AM
Thanks, Michael. I've moved Giant-Size Master of Kung Fu #3 to prior to this.
Posted by: fnord12 | June 2, 2018 2:48 PM
Comments are now closed.
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