Awkwafina’s Katy Could Fix An Avengers Problem After Shang-Chi

Warning! Spoilers ahead for Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings.

In Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Awkwafina’s Katy could fix a reoccurring problem for the MCU by changing the dynamic between the Avengers' heroes, and their romantic partners. While starting off as comic relief, Katy plays a significant role in the events of the film and ends up fighting against the soul-consuming entity the Dweller-in-Darkness, and its demonic minions. Katy's arrow shot through the Dweller’s neck proves a decisive move, turning the tide of the final battle, highlighting how she could enhance the team.

Shang-Chi and Katy are portrayed as platonic friends in the movie. While there is no romance shown between the pair, it is notable that Katy chooses to blindly follow Shang-Chi around the world without question, indicting there is potentially something more there under the surface. Marvel may choose to avoid a romance between Katy and Shang-Chi, or future MCU movies may seek to explore this devotion in greater detail. Awkwafina's Katy is an original character in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and therefore there's no comic book history to be beholden to, allowing scope either way.

Related: Shang-Chi Dunks On Hawkeye's "Powers"

At the end of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Wong summons Shang-Chi and Katy to Kamar-Taj. They're joined there by Bruce Banner and Carol Danvers, laying the early groundwork for the next Avengers movie. Wong treats Shang-Chi and Katy as equals, indicating that she will be invited to join the Avengers along with Shang-Chi to fight against the looming threat. If Shang-Chi and Katy do have a romance and become a couple, it could fix one of the Avengers' problems that has been present since Phase One of the MCU, namely that romantic partners are not invited to become Avengers. Even though they often have something significant to contribute to saving the day, an Avenger's romantic partner is commonly left on the sidelines or forgotten completely while the hero goes off to fight. Katy's inclusion could break this glass ceiling by finally allowing a couple to fight side-by-side as members of the Avengers team.

While Shang-Chi and Katy have already fought together to save the world before their invitation to be Avengers, notable couples that have been split when the action kicks off include Tony Stark & Pepper Potts, Thor & Jane Foster, and Dr. Strange & Christine Palmer. Most egregiously was Hope Van Dyne being benched in Ant-Man. In the comics, The Wasp was a founding member of The Avengers (albeit Janet Van Dyne's version of the character) and was part of a couple with Hank Pym's Ant-Man. While Hope dons the Wasp's wings in Ant-Man and the Wasp and fought in the climactic battle against Thanos in Avengers Endgame, the MCU has still not yet formally acknowledged her as part of the main Avengers team.

Notwithstanding this, if the relationship between Shang-Chi and Katy remains platonic, it still offers plenty of interesting opportunities for Awkwafina to develop her character as a female Avenger. Katy established herself in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings as a skilled archer. There is nothing to say that she need only be defined as being half of a couple with Shang-Chi.

Next: Shang-Chi's Ending Repeats A Problem We Thought The MCU Had Evolved Past

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