Shadow Fist Society
Biographical Information
Official NameShadow Fist Society
AliasesThe Shadow Fists
TypeCrime syndicate
PurposeOrganized crime
Operational Information
Base of OperationsNew York City
Event Participant1986 Wild Card Day
First AppearanceWild Cards
CreatorJohn J. Miller

The Shadow Fist Society (or simply the Shadow Fists) is a fictional criminal organization from the Wild Cards series of novels.


The Shadow Fist Society is an umbrella organization consolidating the interests and territories of several New York City gangs, primarily those operating out of Chinatown and nearby Jokertown. Run by crimelord Kien Phuc, the Shadow Fists quickly began to encroach upon criminal enterprises traditionally run by the Mafia. This rivalry between the newer Shadow Fists and the older Mafia finally erupted into a gang war with both sides employing wild card enforcers. The Shadow Fists soon emerged triumphant and became the pre-eminent organized crime syndicate in New York. Their success was largely due to the extensive use of wild card talents, an area where the Mafia fatally lagged behind.

Originally a corrupt South Vietnamese general, Kien Phuc emigrated to the United States after the end of the Vietnam War. Resuming his former criminal activities, Kien became involved in the local extortion, drug, and prostitution rackets of New York's Chinatown. Abutting Jokertown as it did, it was inevitable Chinatown's criminal elements would become entangled with those of the joker community. Unlike the more tradition-bound Mafia families, Kien's policy was to accept and utilize wild carders in his criminal pursuits. Unknown to Kien, his greatest enemy, the man who would come to be known as Yeoman, followed him back to the States to pursue a mission of revenge.

An early operative employed by Kien was Scar, a bloodthirsty ace and the leader of the now defunct Cannibal Headhunters gang. Yeoman's first blow against Kien and the Fists was to liberate Mai Minh, a kidnapped ace with the power of sympathetic healing, from Scar's headquarters. Yeoman killed Scar in the process and Kien's plan to sell Mai's ability to heal joker deformities for a profit was permanently disrupted.

Two years later the New York underworld was thrown into chaos when the ghost-like ace called Wraith stole Kien's personal journal from a heavily guarded safe. Nearly all Shadow Fist members at the time were mobilized in the search to recover this journal. The journal passed through several hands, including those of the ace assassin Demise, before being acquired by Yeoman. Luckily for the criminal organization the journal was accidentally erased by Wraith's own powers and the entire struggle to reacquire it was unnecessary, though Kien did not know this and had to assume many details of the Fists' plans were exposed to his enemies.

By now the rivalry between the Mafia and the emerging Shadow Fists had become highly volatile. The Immaculate Egrets and a joker gang, the Werewolves, had allied together to encroach on Mafia territory. The Mafia, aided by a double agent in the district attorney's office, were pushing back with the help of SCARE aces. A gang war erupted from which the Fists eventually emerged victorious. The Fists plan was revealed to be not merely control of the city's criminal element, but control of New York City itself. Amid this chaos, Yeoman went undercover as "Cowboy" to bring down the Fists from within.

It was also during this time that Croyd Crenson, operating as a mercenary for the Mafia, accidentally infected Loophole Latham with a communicable form of the wild card. Latham emerged from his infection as an ace with the power to infuse others with the power to exchange bodies with a target. Bisexual and with a predilection for teenagers, Latham accidentally discovered his new power and quickly utilized to create a third branch of the Fist organization, the jumpers.

Eagerly employing this powerful new resource, the Fists allowed the jumpers to terrorize New York when they weren't busy replacing important figures in business and government with imposters. Using the jumpers, Kien also flushed out traitors within his empire by faking his own death and stealing the body of his lieutenant Fadeout. A lucrative sideline was also developed by using jokers to occupy the bodies of wealthy humans and deplete their trust funds before starting life over in a new human body. This plan was called "Jump the Rich" and was initially masterminded by Bloat, a joker revolutionary who gave the jumpers safe haven on the Rox.

The Fists' power began to falter with the second (and permanent) death of Kien. Loophole Latham soon followed him to the grave, and the jumpers became more and more closely allied with Bloat and the Rox than the Shadow Fist Society proper. Lazy Dragon, a powerful ace from Chinatown, went missing after a battle with the Oddity. Warlock, leader of the Werewolves, was incarcerated and the Demon Princes became the pre-eminent gang of Jokertown once again.

The Shadow Fist organization is now largely dismantled or fragmented beyond hope of repair. When he was alive, Kien was the driving force behind the criminal syndicate and with most of its other leaders dead or currently inactive there was no one to take his place. Barring some unforeseen development it is unlikely the Fists will ever re-emerge as a force in New York's underworld.


Known OperativesEdit


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